Most harrowing scene in a movie.

The Saving Private Ryan thread goes into one of the most gut wrenching scenes I’ve ever watched: the killing of Mellish. Another scene that I had a large problem watching was the killing fields in The Killing Fields-- watching him carry that baby and knowing that each step was probably his last. . . Well, I couldn’t. I had to head to the lobby.

The rape scene in The Accused-- just horrible to watch. What would your most harrowing movie scenes be?

Setsuko starving to death while Seita cooks her some food in Grave of the Fireflies. (They’ve both been slowly starving because of the war, and when Seita manages to get some food it’s too late for Setsuko.)

The “load lightening” scene in Amistad. Casually chaining a bunch of people together and throwing them overboard tied to an anchor was bad enough, but something about the whole nonchalant way they went about it really pushed it into the “too much” area for me.
The choice from Sophie’s Choice is up there too, more so now that I have kids myself.

I hate the opening scene of Cliffhanger.

The scene in Schindler’s List where the Nazis pepper the ceiling with machine gun fire, just in case someone was hiding in the floor above. That and the unseen death of the young girl in the red coat.

9 minute single-shot scene from “Irreversible.” If you’ve seen it… you know.

If you haven’t… Monica Belucci gets raped and then beaten savagely.

Ugh, yes. My friends almost had to carry me out of the screening after that part. Having trouble searching ATM as I’m on my smartphone, but I’d read that Foster pretty much blanked out the whole experience of filming that scene, plus she ended up comforting some of the male actors after that scene was finished shooting.

The ankle-breaking scene from Misery.

Pretty much the entire second half of The Passion of the Christ. It’s Jesus being whipped then nailed up then whipped some more.

Most of my friends haven’t seen that movie, and none of them are Christian. I tell them if you’re not Christian, it’s just a really harrowing movie and it’s not worth seeing. It’s only good for Christians who are in to guilt.

The corpsman dying as he tried to tell his buddies how to treat him, also in Saving Private Ryan.

David being left out in the woods by his mom in A.I. Artificial Intelligence.

Bond being tortured in Casino Royale.

Several of mine have already been mentioned (specifically from Saving Private Ryan and Grave of the Fireflies) so I will add the scene from Reservoir Dogs where the cop gets his ear cut off. Gah.

This is exactly what I came in here to post. The most horrowing scene I’ve ever watched in a movie. < shudder >

Sophie’s Choice. The title scene.

American History X.

Upper teeth. Curb. Boot.

There is no other scene in the history of cinema that shook me so hard.

I agree with lots of other ones in this thread, but this one stands out. The others, well, I knew to expect trauma, but Cliffhanger…for a supposed popcorn action movie, that sequence is intense and horrible.

Another nomination I just thought of- the girl fighting that freaky little voodoo doll in Trilogy of Terror.

In the City of God, a Brazilian movie about gangs in Rio, there is a scene where one of the gangsters is going to shoot two kids in the feet to teach them a lesson. One of the kids can’t be more than five years old and the terror on his face anticipating getting shot is too real for a five year old actor. I wonder what they did threaten him with to scare him that much.

Although there are gut-wrenching scenes like this, I highly recommend the movie especially for people who are fans of The Wire series.

The scene in Robocop where Peter Weller gets maimed is similar. It had a level of grisly brutality that really seemed out of sync with the rest of the film.

I’m not sure if City of God is guilty of this, haven’t checked it in a while, but other Brazilian films do use street urchins to play… well… street urchins. So the terror may have been from some other terrible thing he really saw. It’s a reason why watching those types of Brazilian films are already a bit difficult to me, knowing that some of the child “actors” are not really actors at all but really do live in the slums.

Speaking of Brazilian films, Pixote, which is an older Brazilian movie, is one of the most difficult to watch films I’ve seen. After seeing that, at least City of God had happy moments. What sticks out in my mind, after many years, is the scene showing the remains of an illegal abortion done with knitting needles.

I’ve seen it. Game over, this wins. Makes “The Accused” look like a comedy.