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15 Times Movie Heroines Rescued Dudes In Distress

List RulesVote up the best moments of a heroine saving a dude from certain death.

The "damsel in distress" is one of Hollywood's most long-standing cliches - but let's not forget about "dudes in distress." Sometimes they need rescuing, too, and it's those very damsels - more than capable of fending for themselves - who often do the rescuing, giving their action-movie heroes a hand when the situation calls for it. After all, not every man is a crazy powerful action hero, and female characters certainly aren't so powerless that they simply need to sit back and wait for someone to save them. 

Whether they're the star of the film or a side character helping out the male star, capable female action heroes are here to stay. At the end of the day, no matter who's rescuing whom, all characters can unite in a common goal of kicking action movie villain tail.

Remember to vote up your favorite moments when women rescued men from certain doom.

  • Photo: Star Wars: Return of the Jedi / 20th Century Fox

    It's clear from the first Star Wars that Leia is no typical damsel in distress. Sure, farm boy and Jedi-wannabe Luke Skywalker and the roguish flyboy Han Solo get to rescue a princess, but upon being freed from her cell in the Death Star, Leia grabs a blaster and takes over the mission. Then, after Han Solo is frozen in carbonite by Darth Vader and shipped off to Jabba the Hutt, it's Leia's turn to return the favor. 

    Leia stages a daring rescue attempt to break out Han in Return of the Jedi. Disguised as a bounty hunter, Leia takes Chewbacca as her bounty and brings him before Jabba to collect the reward. Leia proves she's fearless by threatening Jabba's life with a thermal detonator during their negotiations over the reward for Chewbacca. Then, after proving herself to be a true blue bounty hunter and seemingly earning the trust of everyone in the palace, Leia unfreezes Han in the middle of the night

    As every Star Wars fan already knows, Jabba has actually set up a trap and captures Leia during her rescue attempt. It's not until Luke shows up later that Leia is finally free, but, even then, it's Leia that delivers the killing blow to Jabba by wrapping her chains around his neck.

    Heroic rescue?
  • Photo: Wonder Woman / Warner Bros. Pictures

    In practically any other film ever made but Wonder Woman, Steve Trevor would be the hero. Trevor is a dashing WW2 fighter pilot who moonlights as a spy for the British government. Yet in Wonder Woman, he's the one that needs rescuing. 

    Steve is on the run from the Germans when he crash-lands on the shore of Themyscira. Diana, AKA Wonder Woman, is on the coast as he makes landfall, and she quickly dives into the water to save him. Diana pulls Trevor onto the sand just in time to see a fleet of Germans attacking. Luckily, Diana's fellow Amazons fend off the onslaught.

    Heroic rescue?
  • Aldrich Killian and Maya Hansen are scorned scientists from Tony's past whom he ignored and didn't take seriously at the time; both return with a vengeance in Iron Man 3 to demand the iron avenger's full attention. The duo of angry nerds have been hard at work for years perfecting Hansen's Extremis serum, but no matter how hard they try, they can't seem to work out a tiny little bug where users who are administered the serum spontaneously explode. 

    Pepper Potts's initial involvement in all this isn't exactly a win for feminism, as Killian injects her with the serum to use as a bargaining chip so Tony has to perfect Extremis or else watch the love of his life kick the bucket. But Killian's plan backfires on him, as Pepper is one of the lucky few Extremis users that gain incredible powers without combusting. When Tony is down and out during his final showdown with Killian, Pepper users her Extremis abilities to blast away the mad scientist.

    Heroic rescue?
  • Photo: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1 / Warner Bros.

    Hermione has long been Harry Potter's secret weapon. While Harry is the chosen one, armed with passion, bravery, and the protective love of his mother, it's Hermione who possesses the know-how required to be one of the greatest witches ever. 

    In Deathly Hallows, Harry, Hermione, and Ron are pursued by Voldemort's forces while attempting to destroy his Horcruxes. But, after an encounter with a Horcrux poisons Ron's mind and causes him to leave the group in anger, it's only Hermione left to guide the Boy Who Lived. Luckily for Harry, Hermione is a witch that anyone would want in their corner. 

    The duo makes their way to Harry's childhood home, where they have a run-in with Nagini, Voldemort's snake, disguised as an old woman. Harry is alone in the room with the woman when Nagani reveals her true self and strikes. Harry is powerless to defend himself, and the Snake is relentless until Hermione shows up and blasts it with a spell. There's a moment of silence, then Nagini strikes again, but Hermione is ready with a fire spell and puts it to rest for the moment. 

    Heroic rescue?