Alien's Ellen Ripley And 8 Other Horror Movie Heroines Who Kicked Ass

Ellen Ripley Alien

The Final Girl is certainly a popular horror trope, but as many horror fans likely know, not all are created equal. Some Final Girls live to tell the tale, and some are there because they fought tooth and nail, and maybe lost a few appendages, to get there.

The following is a celebration of these women, whose blood, sweat and tears went into forging a competent escape from sure doom and surviving. Ellen Ripley, of course, is on this list, but so are many others whose mental fortitude and sheer willpower extend even into the vast reaches of deep space.

Ripely Alien

Alien - Ellen Ripley

C'mon, it was obvious Ripley was going to make the list. The lead of the first four Alien movies (and possibly more) is a given here because she's a badass and she takes on Xenomorphs when the situation calls for it. Sure, she has her moments of fear, but she also ultimately knows that it's kill or be killed. Ripley faces her fear and kicks its ass. She even ultimately sacrifices herself in an attempt to kill the Alien threat for good, which was pretty badass, even if she was cloned to make another movie.

Grace Le Domas Ready Or Not

Ready Or Not - Grace Le Domas

Dealing with in-laws can be something worthy of commendation all on its own, let alone ones who are actively trying to kill you. Grace in Ready Or Not fought for her life in order to survive a cursed rich family, and she took a lot of damage in the process. I'll cop to the fact that the Le Domas family was not the most competent of foes to go up against, but it's not like Grace had a ton of combat training herself. Also, she gets lots of points for overall toughness, because I could not have suffered through half the stuff she did that night.

Laurie Strode Halloween

Halloween - Laurie Strode

Another obvious icon on the list, Laurie Strode was just as badass back in the day as she is in her golden years. Ok, perhaps the fact she actively prepares and hunts for Michael Myers in the latest Halloween movie does raise her profile quite a bit, but it's not like she was a pushover in the old movies either. Laurie successfully fought off an abnormally strong and indestructible serial killer nearly double her size in several incarnations, and in the current canon, she has yet to be defeated by him.

As Above So Below

As Above, So Below - Scarlett Marlowe

Scarlett Marlowe set out to complete her father's work and successfully find the Philosopher's Stone, and she got a whole lot more in the process. Scarlett and her accomplices didn't necessarily ask to venture into hell, but full credit to her for running all the way back through it by herself to get the actual stone and save George's life. I'd love to say I would've done the same, but truthfully I probably would've been crushed by that bone avalanche or just walked out entirely before things even got spooky.

You're Next

You're Next- Erin Harson

We often hear in life that animals being threatened are more afraid of us than we are of them, though not quite as often in the case of killer animals wearing masks. The good news is the rule still applied in You're Next when a group of psychopathic killers messes with a group of people, only to learn one of them has survivalist and combat training. Erin made short work of her would-be assailants and persevered through a hellacious night to turn the tables. Unfortunately, things don't end well for her compared to others on this list, but that doesn't make her any less badass.


Scream - Sidney Prescott

Sidney Prescott would be a great person to have around if there's a Ghostface killer in your town, but only if she's not close to you in any way. While she was able to thwart a handful of incarnations of the costumed killer across her movies, she didn't do much to protect the people around her. Still, most of the people on this list had to defeat one major foe who just kept on coming, not different people. She's a scream queen, and certainly a legacy character worthy of mention on this list.

Let The Right One In

Let The Right One In - Eli

Here we have the first vampire on this list, and by her own admission, technically not a girl. Eli was one prior to her transformation though, and as far as child vampires go, she's about the most badass one we've seen in movies to date. There's nothing more satisfying than her end scene protecting Oskar, and just the overall friendship the two share. It's still a disturbing film, but Eli is certainly one of the highlights of Let The Right One In that has preserved its legacy.

The Descent

The Descent - Sarah Carter

Sarah Carter is about as helpless as all the other humans in The Descent, but she has a pretty damn good run in the end. She is successfully able to kill a good deal of Crawlers, but the ultimate killer move is the one against her former friend Juno at the end. It takes a special kind of petty to put aside the hellish circumstances you're in to make sure a despicable person gets what's coming to them, and while I probably wouldn't have put a pickax through Juno's leg given all that was going on, she did manage to settle a score and secure her escape, depending on which ending you watch.

A Nightmare On Elm Street

A Nightmare On Elm Street - Alice Johnson

Rest in peace, Kristen Parker, and no disrespect, but Alice Johnson is one of Freddy Krueger's greatest foes of all time! Her dream abilities are a crucial x-factor in bringing his dark reign of terror to an end, and let's be honest, it's a better skill than Kristen's. Granted, it takes a good deal of sacrifice of others for her to utilize it to the fullest, and she did almost give birth to the next Freddy, but all things considered, I can't say I'd trust anyone more to keep Freddy out of my dreams.

Are there any deserving women of horror you think were snubbed? Be sure to list them in the comments, and be sure to stick with CinemaBlend for all the latest news happening in television and movies.

Mick Joest
Content Producer

Mick likes good television, but also reality television. He grew up on Star Wars, DC, Marvel, and pro wrestling and loves to discuss and dissect most of it. He’s been writing online for over a decade and never dreamed he’d be in the position he is today.