When most of us think of our favorite Pixar movies, we probably don’t think of the death scenes. After all, Pixar is famous for its family-friendly animated films that offer valuable lessons about life for their viewers. However, there are actually quite a few deaths throughout Pixar’s many films. While some are incredibly moving, others can be quite traumatizing, especially for young kids. We all remember crying through a certain scenes in Coco or The Good Dinosaur. And how could we forget how villains met their ends in Pixar’s more action-packed movies?
We’ve looked back at some of the most memorable death scenes in Pixar history to find out what the characters actually said in their final moments. It turns out, there are some pretty iconic, albeit distressing, final lines in Pixar movies — and most of them are a lot more meaningful than you may have initially realized.
Warning: Spoilers ahead.
Syndrome shouted this at the heroes in The Incredibles
Pixar‘s The Incredibles was filled with some seriously iconic lines — and most of them belonged to the legendary Edna Mode. In one of her memorable lines, the superhero costume designer told Mr. Incredible, "No capes!" She explained that capes were too dangerous, as they always got caught on something, resulting in grizzly deaths.
Well, Edna was clearly onto something. At the end of the movie, after a battle, the Incredibles escape villain Syndrome, and he yells, "This isn’t the end of it. I will get your son eventually. I’ll get your son!" Mr. Incredible casually tosses a car towards Syndrome’s plane, and, seeing what’s happening, Syndrome quietly says, "Oh no." He gets knocked onto the wing of the plane, and, as Enda warned, his cape sucks him into the engine and he meets a terrible fate.
As Seventeen pointed out, one fan theorized that Edna had designed Syndrome’s suit, too — which would mean that she could have given him a cape on purpose. Maybe she’s the real hero of the movie.
Henry said these touching final words to his son in The Good Dinosaur
The Good Dinosaur tells the story of a young dinosaur, Arlo, who is crippled by his fear. When Henry, Arlo’s father, takes him on a journey alongside the river, where Henry explains to Arlo that he just wants him to get past his fear. Unfortunately, a tragic accident soon occurs.
In his final words, Henry says, "I know you have it in you," adding, "You’re me and more." He then decides to head back home, saying, "I think we went far enough today. The storm’s getting worse. Let’s get you home." Suddenly, the storm becomes much, much worse, and a huge wave of water is seen making its way towards the two dinosaurs. "Run, Arlo!" Henry screams, before tossing his son to safety. Sadly, Henry can’t get out of the way, and he is swept up by the wave.
While this tragic Pixar moment seems to be the end for Henry, Raymond Ochoa, who voiced Arlo, told HuffPost, "They always leave it open. In some movies, such as The Lion King, you see Mufasa die, but in this movie you really don’t. He’s swept away, so there’s always the opening to bringing Poppa back."
Ernesto de la Cruz actually dies twice in Pixar’s Coco
The Pixar movie Coco follows a young Mexican boy who dreams of becoming a musician and travels to the Land of the Dead. On his journey, he meets his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz, a famous singer. It turns out, Ernesto isn’t exactly who he says he is.
The villainous singer actually dies twice in this movie. The first time, Ernesto dies when a huge bell falls on him at the end of a performance of his hit song "Remember Me." His final words are the lyrics of the song, "Until you’re in my arms again, remember me." He is then sent to the Land of the Dead. As Den of Geek noted, this first death definitely foreshadows that he’s "a total bell-end."
The second time he dies, Ernesto’s skeleton is taken by a spirit monster and flung out of a stadium where he had been performing "Remember Me." Inevitably, he is flung straight into a huge bell, which then crushes him once again.
Charles Muntz yelled out these final last words in Up
Up tells the story of an old, widowed man, Carl, who turns his house into a makeshift hot air balloon with thousands of helium balloons. The old man sets off for Paradise Falls, a remote location in Venezuela, with Russell, a young boy who accidentally comes along for the ride. Carl soon meets his childhood hero, explorer Charles Muntz, but Muntz turns out to be a villain who wants to take a rare bird home with him. Ultimately, Carl decides to rescue the bird for Russell’s sake.
As Carl tries to escape Muntz’s gigantic flying Zeppelin, the two old men get into a fight. The final words Muntz screams are, "Enough! I’m taking that bird back with me — alive or dead!" However, Carl, Russell, and the bird get away just in time, while Muntz accidentally falls to his death. It turns out the bird wasn’t the one who was going to die — it was Muntz!
As Roger Ebert wrote in his review of the Pixar movie, this final battle may have seemed like your average animated fight, but it really meant a lot more. "There are stakes here, and personalities involved, and two old men battling for meaning in their lives."
Hector’s final words in Coco reveal his intentions
Since Coco is largely set in the Land of the Dead, it naturally features a lot of, well, dead characters. One of these characters is Hector, who turns out to be the young protagonist’s great-great-grandfather. He also turns out to be the original author of the song "Remember Me," a song that the villain Ernesto de la Cruz steals. Before Hector dies, he is Ernesto’s partner, responsible for writing their music. However, when he decides to return home to his family, Ernesto panics. In a shocking scene, Ernesto pours Hector a poisoned drink so he can steal his songs and his guitar. Hector’s final words are, "I’m going home, Ernesto. Hate me if you want, but my mind is made up."
Of course, he never makes it home. The audience even sees him collapse in the street. Plenty of critics were shocked by the scene. As a reviewer for CinemaBlend wrote, "I found the decision to include [this scene] in this way an incredibly brave move from Pixar and director Lee Unkrich. It’s a powerful moment, not just in Coco, but in animation."
Here are Hopper’s last words in Pixar’s A Bug’s Life
A Bug’s Life is an older Pixar film that tells the story of a colony of ants. In order to pacify the local grasshoppers, the ants must collect food for them every year. When Flik accidentally loses all of the food, he is banished from the ant colony. However, he returns with a pretend bird contraption operated by ants and designed to frighten the grasshoppers away. His plan almost works, but Hopper, the lead grasshopper, finds out. He’s just in the middle of threatening Flik… when a real bird shows up.
"Well, what’s this? Another one of your little bird tricks?" Hopper exclaims. "Are there a bunch of little girls in this one, too? Hello girls!" Sadly for Hopper, this bird is real. She grabs him and drops him into her nest where he is devoured by her three babies. Yikes, quite a grizzly death for a kids’ film!
Nemo’s mother, Coral, was thinking about her family
Finding Nemo starts with Marlin and his partner, Coral, happily chatting about their future. They’ve just moved into a new home, and they have what look like hundreds of eggs. The pair couldn’t be happier. In their exchange, Coral and Nemo discuss baby names. Marlin suggests naming half of the baby fish Marlin Jr. and the other half Coral Jr. Coral muses, "I like Nemo." The happy couple then joke around, with Marlin teasing, "You remember how we met?" Coral replies, "Well, I try not to," and he jokingly chases her around. Suddenly, everything goes quiet — there’s a barracuda right outside. Coral jets down to protect her babies and, sadly, she and almost all of the eggs are killed.
As director Andrew Stanton explained to CinemaBlend, Coral’s death was important to the story. "The other thing is that not everybody is a parent, but I knew what I wanted was everybody to be empathetic to what it’s like to be a parent. … In my mind [Coral’s death] was necessary to get into that state." It’s safe to say that watching Coral’s final moments definitely got most viewers feeling pretty empathetic to Marlin and his only remaining egg!
Mama Coco’s final words will made you cry
The final death in Pixar’s Coco is definitely bittersweet, as it’s of the elderly matriarch of the family, Mama Coco. Coco, Miguel’s great-grandmother, was the daughter of Hector, whom Miguel meets in the Land of the Dead.
In the movie, Coco seems to be suffering from dementia. However, by the end of the movie, she remembers her father when Miguel returns to the land of the living and sings Hector’s song "Remember Me" to her. As one fan wrote for The New York Times, "The repeated occurrences of ‘Remember Me’ are not just a clever play on the movie’s themes of recollection and family … ‘Remember Me’ is a gut punch, that fittingly lingers long after it’s gone."
Sadly, Mama Coco dies shortly after this scene, and her death is bittersweet. The last words we hear from her are, "I kept his letters, poems he wrote me." She went on, "Papa was a musician." It’s touching to see Mama Coco remembering her father and, as the movie suggests, keeping him alive in her memory.
Bing Bong said these words before he died in Inside Out
Inside Out told the story of Riley, a young girl who moves to a new city and has to deal with some of the emotional challenges that come with growing up. Riley’s emotions are played out by a series of characters, such as Joy and Sadness. But when Riley’s core memories get lost and tainted with Sadness, Joy and Sadness leave their emotional control room on a quest to help Riley get back to normal. On their way, they meets Bing Bong, Riley’s imaginary friend.
When Bing Bong and Joy fall into the pit of discarded memories, he sacrifices himself. His heartbreaking last words are, "You made it! Go — go save Riley! Take her to the moon for me, okay?" before he fades away.
As actor Richard Kind, who voiced Bing Bong, explained to MTV News, his death symbolized Riley was growing up and moving on from childish things. Apparently, the original death scene was even sadder. "When I first saw the movie, the scene down in the valley, where the memories have been lost and disposed of, was about 40 seconds to a minute longer," he said, adding, "It was absolutely heartbreaking, and I likened it to the scene in Bambi when his mother dies."
Rod "Torque" Redline met a tragic end in Cars 2
Rod "Torque" Redline isn’t a major character in Cars 2, but he is a memorable one. Rod is a spy who seems like he’d be perfectly at home in a James Bond movie. Sadly, Rod is tortured and killed in the opening scenes of the film by the villain Professor Z. His death sets the tone for the movie and shows viewers that Professor Z is one dangerous car.
The disturbing scene is pretty upsetting — and Rod’s final words make it even harder to watch. After Rod refuses to give up any information, Professor Z threatens him with cracking his engine block and "forcing oil into the combustion chamber." Rod responds, "What do I care? I can replace an engine block." After Professor Z realizes Mater has what he needs, Rod screams out, "No!"
While we don’t actually see Rod’s death, we do see him bursting into flames in the reflection of a screen. This is definitely one of Pixar’s darkest moments.
Chicharrón faded away in the Land of the Dead with these last words in Coco
Chicharrón is a relatively small character in Coco. He is an old man in the Land of the Dead and a friend of Hector’s. While he’s already dead, his permanent death, in which he disappears from the Land of the Dead, occurs because all of his living relatives have passed away and he’s no longer remembered in the Land of the Living. In a sad scene, he says, "I’m fading, Hector. I can feel it. Play me something." Hector sings to him, and when the song ends, Chicharrón tells Hector, "Brings back memories. Gracias." These last words are particularly poignant as the whole film is about keeping people’s memories alive after they are gone.
As Edward James Olmos, who played Chicharrón, told ComingSoon.net, his character’s death "becomes what the story’s about." He added, "It’s so well done because basically, he asks one thing from Hector. Play me a song." The character’s death, Olmos said, makes you think of all the loved ones you’ve known. "You want to remember now, everyone that’s made you who you are right now, and how you got here," he shared.
Doc Hudson had these last words in Cars
Doc Hudson was a major character in the first Cars movie, as he is a famous old race car. However, when Paul Newman, who voiced the character, passed away before the second Cars movie, the writers decided to write Doc out of the sequel. His last appearance was in the Cars credits when he appears to drive off a cliff after Lightning McQueen tells him, "I know all your tricks." For a moment, McQueen seems worried. He approaches the cliff’s edge, saying, "Doc? Doc?" Moments later, Doc comes roaring back, saying happily, "Not all my tricks, rookie." In hindsight, this final appearance is a little eerie. Perhaps Doc’s adventurous side got the better of him?
As Insider pointed out, neither Cars 2 nor Cars 3 provided an answer to what happened to Doc. The first sequel barely acknowledged Doc’s apparent death. As Insider wrote, "The sequel just awkwardly tip toes around its biggest mystery without ever fully embracing it." Apparently, an earlier version of Cars 3 actually included an explanation for his death, according to Screen Crush, but it sounds like we’ll never really know what happened.
Auguste Gusteau said this before we learned of his death in Ratatouille
Auguste Gusteau is a major character in Ratatouille, but he actually dies before the movie begins. Most of what we see of Gusteau is in rat Remy’s imagination. However, in one pivotal scene, Remy discovers Gusteau’s will — his finals words, in a way — which says that the entire Gusteau’s Restaurant emporium should go to his heir. As Remy reads another secret letter, he discovers that Linguini is Gusteau’s son and rightful heir — this means that Linguini and Remy can take over the restaurant.
While we don’t see Gusteau’s actual death, we do hear about it. Apparently, Gusteau died of a broken heart after losing two stars on his restaurant. In an old interview with Gusteau that Remy watches on TV, he describes what’s needed for someone to become a top chef. "You must be imaginative, strong-hearted. You must try things that may not work, and you must not let anyone define your limits because of where you come from," he says, shortly before we’re told of his death. "Your only limit is your soul. What I say is true: Anyone can cook, but only the fearless can be great."
Leland Turbo was in the middle of a transmission before he died in Cars 2
Leland Turbo is yet another car who is killed in the spy thriller Cars 2. Leland is a secret agent car who is in the middle of a transmission to Finn McMissile when he is discovered. "You won’t believe what I’ve found out here. This is bigger than anything we’ve ever seen and no one even knows it exists!" he says. He goes on, "Finn, I need backup, but don’t call the cavalry, it could blow the operation, and be careful! It’s not safe out here!" He quickly adds, "Good luck!" Suddenly, the doors open and two car silhouettes appear. It’s clear that Leland’s cover has been blown.
The next time we see him, he has been crushed. Yikes! This death is definitely a little disturbing, but Leland’s final words totally set the tone for the rest of the movie.