All movie characters need obstacles to overcome or trials to endure, and sometimes that means getting put through the wringer and taking a lot of punishment. However, in some cases, characters prove they aren't just tough - they are basically immortal. This isn't something that only happens with supernaturally immortal slasher monsters or unnaturally impervious superheroes, either. A lot of films have totally ordinary mortals who prove to be extraordinarily death-proof.
While it seems to be most common among action movie heroes - because you can't have a franchise without a durable protagonist - the trope of the virtually indestructible character spans all genres, from drama to comedy to sci-fi horror. Whether it's for comedic effect - like Red from Pineapple Express - or a byproduct of being around for such a long time and part of so many films (like everyone's favorite martini-drinking British spy), being functionally unkillable adds a unique dynamic to the character's entire existence. Vote up your favorite indestructible characters.
- Photo: John Wick/ / Summit Entertainment
This assassin who has come out of retirement, played by Keanu Reeves, is a virtual killing machine who can mow down entire squads of mercenaries with quick tactical maneuvers and almost impossible headshot combos. In some cases, being impossible to kill means taking insane amounts of damage and shrugging it off - which Wick also manages to do - but sometimes it simply means being an unstoppable force of nature who can take on as many adversaries as are thrown at them.
During the course of the first three films in the John Wick franchise, the eponymous hitman kills a combined total of over 299 people on screen through a blend of handgun artistry, machine gun skill, hand-to-hand combat, and creative explosions. Oh, and horses.1157Indestructible?
- Photo: Dr. No / United Artists
With an onscreen career spanning over 26 films in total - including two non-canonical productions - James Bond is unkillable both onscreen and in terms of being an intellectual property cash cow. Throughout his long career as a secret agent, Bond is faced with numerous injuries, traps, and logic-defying circumstances that should have rendered him a goner, but only left him inconvenienced. In Skyfall, Bond (Daniel Craig) gets shot with a high-velocity sniper rifle that knocks him off a moving train and sends him falling a hundred feet into a river - and that's at the start of the movie!
Over the course of the record-setting franchise, he gets poisoned, he gets his manhood bludgeoned, and the sinister Ernst Stavro Blofeld (Christoph Waltz) literally drills into his skull. In Goldfinger, the villainous Auric Goldfinger (Gert Fröbe) ties Bond (Sean Connery) spread eagle to a metal table and attempts to cut him in half, slowly, with a laser. In Die Another Day, a bearded Bond (Pierce Brosnan) flatlines his own heart and restarts it using just his will power and a lot of suspension of disbelief. Point is, when you've been battling insane maniacs hellbent on world domination since 1962, you're going to need to be pretty indestructible.8430Indestructible?
- Photo: Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom / Paramount Pictures
The world's introduction to Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) set the stage for his whole shtick, which is surviving impossible odds. The beginning of Raiders of the Lost Ark sees the iconic history professor turned tomb desecrator nabbing ancient relics while dodging poison blow darts, spike pits, and a huge, hurtling boulder that nearly crushes him (a trap that makes very little sense from either practical, engineering, or reusability standpoints).
Over the course of his adventures, Jones escapes from a viper-filled chamber, jumps out of a plane on an inflatable raft, defeats hundreds of Nazis, survives the literal magical wrath of God, fights more Nazis, and outsmarts the traps protecting the Holy Grail. And that was all decades before a much older, disappointing Indiana Jones survives a nuclear explosion by hiding inside a lead-lined refrigerator in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.6414Indestructible?
- Photo: Kill Bill Vol. 1 / Miramax Films
Beatrix "The Bride" Kiddo (Uma Thurman) is a revenge-driven super assassin trained by the greatest martial arts master and honed into a weapon of destruction. In the Kill Bill saga, the Bride is unkillable in many ways, but most notable is that she takes a handgun blast to the head, at point-blank range, and survives.
After suddenly snapping out of a coma, she seeks retribution, which leads to a journey in which she wins a swordfight against the Crazy 88, gets a shotgun blast (albeit filled with rock salt) to the chest, gets buried alive and punches her way out, and finally gets paralyzed by a tranquilizer dart and still manages to mark off everyone on her hit list. It only goes to show you that you don't betray someone who is a bottomless well of vengeance-fueled rage.6222Indestructible?