Horror Movies and TV

The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History  

Ranker Film
451 votes 33 voters 54 items

List Rules Vote up your favorite female characters who are still breathing 'til the end...

If you're a fan of scary movies, this is your opportunity to vote for the best final girls in horror movies. A "final girl" is a female character who manages to survive the wrath of the killer -- human or otherwise -- when most, if not all, of the other characters have been wiped out. Although the term originated in the 1990s, final girls were around for decades before that, as Laurie Strode in 1978's Halloween, Sally Hardesty in 1974's The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, and Lila Crane in 1960's Psycho prove. 

Horror movie survivors of this type are most commonly found in slasher flicks. The Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, and Halloween franchises commonly make use of the final girls trope. Traditionally, these characters tend to be the purest and most virtuous of the group or cast of characters. That's because, for reasons known only to the filmmakers themselves, the abundance of '80s slasher movies usually had the villain target teens who were amorous with each other. Friday the 13th, in particular, was notorious for that and became part of the trope. 

The threats final girls face are not always psychos wielding knives, machetes, or hooks. They can survive interstellar creatures, as Ellen Ripley does in Alien. What counts is that the final girl gets through the ordeal, leaving her to tell the tale of what happened.

Vote up your favorite final girl horror characters from the list below.

1
Sidney Prescott is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Neve Campbell

Scream (1996), Scream 2 (1997), Scream 3 (2000), Scream 4 (2011)

2
Laurie Strode is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Jamie Lee Curtis/Scout Taylor-Compton

Halloween (1978), Halloween II (1981), Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998), Halloween: Resurrection (2002), Halloween (2007), Halloween II (2009), Halloween (2018)

3
Ellen Ripley is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Sigourney Weaver

Alien (1979), Aliens (1986), Alien 3 (1992), Alien Resurrection (1997)

4
Sally Hardesty is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Marilyn Burns

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

5
Nancy Thompson is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Heather Langenkamp

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984), A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987)

6
Tree Gelbman is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Tree Gelbman Jessica Rothe

Happy Death Day (2017), Happy Death Day 2U (2019)

7
Grace is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Grace Samara Weaving

Ready or Not (2019)

8
Ginny Field is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Ginny Field Amy Steel

Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)

9
Julie James is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Julie James Jennifer Love Hewitt

I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997), I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998)

10
Dana Polk is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Dana Polk Kristen Connolly

The Cabin in the Woods (2011)

11
Mari Collingwood is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Mari Collingwood Sara Paxton

The Last House on the Left (2009)

12
Chris Higgins is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Chris Higgins Dana Kimmell

Friday the 13th Part 3 (1982)

13
Max Cartwright is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Max Cartwright Taissa Farmiga

The Final Girls (2015)

14
Jess Bradford is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Jess Bradford Olivia Hussey

Black Christmas (1974)

15
Kirsty Cotton is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Ashley Laurence

Hellraiser (1987), Hellbound: Hellraiser II (1988), Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth (1992), Hellraiser: Hellseeker (2002)

16
Anita Needy Lesnicky is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Anita Needy Lesnicky Amanda Seyfried

Jennifer's Body (2009)

17
Mia Allen is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Mia Allen Jane Levy

Evil Dead (2013)

18
Jamie Lloyd is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Danielle Harris

Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988), Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989)

19
Gale Weathers is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Courteney Cox

Scream (1996), Scream 2 (1997), Scream 3 (2000), Scream 4 (2011)

20
Heather Langenkamp is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Heather Langenkamp Heather Langenkamp

Wes Craven's New Nightmare (1994)

21
Natalie Simon is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Alicia Witt

Urban Legend (1998)

 

22
Clear Rivers is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Ali Larter

Final Destination (2000)

23
Angela Vidal is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Angela Vidal Manuela Velasco

[REC] (2007), [REC 2] (2009), [REC] 4: Apocalypse (2014)

24
Kristin Parker is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Kristin Parker Patricia Arquette

A Nightmare on Elm Stree 3: Dream Warriors (1987)

25
Alice Hardy is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Final Girls From Horror Movie History
Alice Hardy Adrienne King

Friday the 13th (1980), Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)