No matter how tough you are or how much you can bench, every guy has his tipping point.

Just as long as it’s not a scene from “The Notebook” or “Atonement.”

Here are the top 10 saddest moments in guy movie history.

10. Wyatt Earp is my friend. “Tombstone,” 1993

Perhaps Val Kilmer’s best role, his portrayal of Doc Holliday in the 1993 George P. Cosmatos film “Tombstone” has its own place in guy movie history, and no scene continues to pull more heart strings than “Wyatt Earp is my friend.” It sums up the bonds between friends and brothers, even in the face of adversity and long odds.

Turkey Creek Jack Johnson: Why you doin’ this, Doc?
Doc Holliday: Because Wyatt Earp is my friend.
Turkey Creek Jack Johnson:Hell, I got lots of friends.
Doc Holliday: …I don’t.

Maybe not the saddest moment, but if you shed a tear, it’s excused.

Val Kilmer starts us off, but another of his characters will cause one of the other moments on our list later on.

9. “The Outsiders” 1983

Christ. The whole freakin movie.

Francis Ford Coppola’s adaptation of the S.E. Hinton book that we’ve all read at some point goes down with “The Warriors” about the two best movies about white kids in gangs. (By the way, did you know that Diane Lane was in this movie? She still looks good…)

We’ll settle on the tearjerker scene when Johnny Cade dies.

So, this is what you get for helping people?

You punk!

Come on, Johnny, don’t die.

Come on, don’t die on me now.



8. The ending. “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” 1969.

No embedding…sorry

Damn Bolivans. Butch and Sundance and the Hole-in-the-Wall gang taught us to root for the bad guys sometimes.

RIP Paul Newman.

7. “Don’t ever stop!” — Rocco dies. “Boondock Saints” 1999

Our shout out to Boston: The improbable of improbables, “Boondock Saints” was not a box office bomb, it was a nuclear explosion. But it’s one of the most popular action movies in New England.

Rocco, who taught us the true meaning of the f-word, dies toward the end of the movie, and it was sad to see the comic relief and general best friend die. But then again, every Italian in that movie died.

6. Remember us. “300” 2006

Dilios: “Remember us.” As simple an order as a king can give. “Remember why we died.” For he did not wish tribute, nor song, nor monuments nor poems of war and valor. His wish was simple. “Remember us,” he said to me. That was his hope, should any free soul come across that place, in all the countless centuries yet to be. May all our voices whisper to you from the ageless stones, “Go tell the Spartans, passerby, that here by Spartan law, we lie.”

5. William Wallace yells “freedom.” Braveheart 1995.

“Braveheart” is known for some of the best Middle Ages battle scenes in cinema history. The girlfriends watch it with us because of a cunning and deep love story, the loss of one woman and the arrival of another.

And this early quote draws emotion as well:

Young William: What are they doin’?
Argyle Wallace: Saying goodbye in their own way. Playing outlawed tunes on outlawed pipes.

4. Go to them. “Gladiator” 2000

A true warrior’s death. “Gladiator” was the first great film of the 21st century, and it had an ending worthy of a tear or two, even from a dude.

3. “Earn this.” “Saving Private Ryan” 1998

Tom Hanks has no small plaque on the guy movie hall of fame, but this tops the list with his moving character, Captain John H. Miller. When he dies, it’s … it’s just FUBAR man.

2. Mickey dies. “Rocky III” 1982

He trained, motivated and believed in Rocky Balboa. The loss of the trainer and mentor nearly destroys Rocky, and if you cried when Mickey said “I love ya kid” you’re certainly not alone.

1. Goose dies. “Top Gun” 1986


So many guys have seen “Top Gun“, and many of us have seen it dozens and dozens of times and no matter how much poker is being played or beer is being consumed or laughs are being had, the room goes quiet when Goose dies.

“Top Gun” has a little bit of everything in the guy movie realm — best friends, competition, explosions, jet planes, a father complex, a hard-to-get girl, beach volleyball, and beer.

And it has led to a generation of women that find themselves serenaded to “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin'” by the Righteous Brothers.

However, for these few minutes, we pause. There’s nothing funny going on.

Blast staff writer Daniel Peleschuk and several of John’s buds contributed to this report

About The Author

John Guilfoil is the editor-in-chief of Blast: Boston's Online Magazine and the Blast Magazine Network. He can be reached at [email protected]. Tweet @johnguilfoil.

11 Responses

  1. Manuel

    I have to agree on Goose. Straight up. And Saving Private Ryan’s riddled(excuse the pun) with man crying moments.

  2. I don't agree with your articles but others might

    Really? Come on. No sports movies? No For Love of the Game? No Miracle? No Friday Night Lights? Shame on all of you.

  3. Monica

    Who edits your pieces? Microsoft Word doesn’t catch everything, you know.

    Ex: Val Kilmer stars us off, but another of his characters will cause one of the other moments on our list later on.

    STARS us off?

    Also, the dialogue isn’t even transcribed correctly.

    The few times I’ve visited your website I’ve noticed similar problems with poor grammar and writing structure.

  4. Martin

    I agree with most of the above. Except what about the scene in Rudy where he finally gets accepted to Notre Dame? I cry EVERYTIME I see it! And the movie Seven Pounds should be on this list too. That’s a heart-wrencher at the end.

  5. Tony

    I know it’s not sad per say, but I know that RUDY brought on many “proud” guy tears, including myself.

  6. Tony

    I’m not too fond of reliving the scene of Will Smith having to kill his dog in I Am Legend either.

  7. Ryan

    the ending to Friday Night Lights, pretty much every other scene in the movie radio but especially when his mother dies, its only a documentary on ESPN but “Without Bias” is pretty sad about Len Bias’s life, the combination of scenes in friday night lights where Boobie Miles
    1.gets hurt
    2.gets told he cant play anymore
    3.cries in the car with his uncle
    4.attempts to play and gets severely hurt
    just to name a few

  8. Erik

    Yes, I am legend, when he kills his dog sam. Then there is the end of man on fire, the bridge when he gets the girl back but has to trade “his life for her life”, and just one more…25th hour got me.


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