7. The Blown-Off Head in Maniac (1980)
Special Makeup and Effects: Tom Savini
Some might call Maniac’s infamous shotgun-to-the-head scene a case of twisted masochism, but we simply call it badass. Handling the discomforting effects on director William Lustig’s vile (yet awesome) exploitation flick, Tom Savini had to create several woman-skewering visuals, since the film’s slasher is a disturbed sicko who loves scalping hot chicks. But one sequence, where the horrid Frank Zito (Joe Spinell) must first kill the boyfriend before getting the girly, required a male victim—a change of pace.
So, naturally, Savini opted to play the guy himself, thus sealing his place in horror’s pantheon as one of the genre’s most memorable casualties. He and his sexy blonde friend are necking in a parked car when Zito, hooded and armed, leaps onto the car’s hood, points his sawed-off weapon directly at Savini, and fires away. The result, which you can peep above, isn’t pretty. Well, it is pretty fucking epic.