11 splatterific exploding head scenes from the movies

Contributed by
Dec 14, 2012, 4:09 PM EST

Nothing beats an exploding head. The skull makes excellent shrapnel, and the brains make excellent goo. So for the 16th of our 31 specials for the 31 days of Halloween, here's a collection of scenes in which heads go up like watermelons at a Gallagher concert—or, more appropriately to the season, pumpkins used for target practice.

Check back tomorrow at noon to gorge on the most disgusting Halloween candies you can buy.

The Frighteners (1996)

One advantage of dying in a ghost story: When Jeffrey Combs gets his head blown off, the flesh-and-blood model is immediately replaced by its ectoplasmic equivalent.

Scanners (1981)

Did you know that telepathy makes heads explode? Well, it does.

The Fury (1978)

Of course, you can also use telepathy to blow up the body and send the head flying like the cap on a shattered Coke bottle.

Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

As long as God had to go frying Nazi heads, he exercised some basic creativity and did not fry them the same way twice.

Battle Royale (2000)

Never mess around with an explosive collar.

Big Trouble in Little China (1986)

Here's one baddie who seems to blow up out of sheer, unbearable frustration.

Mars Attacks (1996)

In which we learn that the one force capable of exploding Martian heads is the music of Slim Whitman.

Live and Let Die (1973)

James Bond defeats his enemy Kananga by inflating and exploding him. Nice work if you can get it. May be the least convincing exploding head—actually, entire body—here.

Dawn of the Dead (1978)

The guy who gets blasted here is actually not a zombie but an innocent bystander targeted by a racist cop. The end result's the same, but I think we need an independent investigation.

Chopping Mall (1986)

Cleanup in Aisle Six.

Pulp Fiction (1994)

We know this clip isn't from a sci-fi, fantasy or horror flick, but it's too good not to include. And besides, it makes a fine argument for safeties on handguns.

And while you're in a Halloween state of mind, why not check out:

Day 1: 19 amazing Star Wars pumpkins

Day 2: Our 9 favorite crazy zombie kills of all time (video)

Day 3: 10 scariest Stephen King novels

Day 4: 14 great Cthulhu toys that make devouring souls fun

Day 5: 15 haunted cereals that will scare your dentist

Day 6: 20 great costumes to dress up your pet

Day 7: 21 (mostly) sexy female stormtroopers (NSFW)

Day 8: 9 movie and TV clowns that scared the hell out of us

Day 9: 10 creepy movie kids even Angelina Jolie wouldn't adopt

Day 10: 6 most awesome Stephen King horror films (plus 3 that sucked)

Day 11: 16 horror movie posters so gruesome they make our eyeballs bleed

Day 12: 16 hot movie and TV vampires who turn us into willing victims

Day 13: 20 awesomely hot Slave Leia costumes (slightly NSFW)

Day 14: 14 lamest horror movie killer costumes (What were they thinking?)

Day 15: 9 of the grossest, goriest X-Files creatures

Day 17: 15 of the most disgusting Halloween candies you can buy

Day 18: 19 freakiest movie and TV neighbors from hell

Day 19: 11 most disturbing Treehouse of Horror segments from The Simpsons

Day 20: 9 rampaging space zombies hungry for our sci-fi brains

Day 21: 10 most nightmarish movie prom nights

Day 22: 11 scary, goofy and just plain revolting movie possessions

Day 23: 13 kick-ass moments from Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Day 24:13 real haunted houses you can visit in the U.S.

Day 25: 15 ghoulish apps you can download to your iPhone

Day 26: 20 hot film and TV witches and warlocks that cast a spell on us

Day 27: The 10 most truly, utterly evil things in sci-fi

Day 28: The 15 cursed movie objects you NEVER want to own

Day 29: 14 most twisted original Twilight Zone twist endings

Day 30: 16 sci-fi costumes that would definitely get you fired (NSFW)

Day 31: 12 awesome sci-fi Halloween moments, real and fake