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Nightmare Fuel / The Green Mile

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"He fryin' now!"

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  • Can anybody watch Delacroix's horrifically botched execution (pictured to the right) and NOT pass out in sheer terror? Deliberately sabotaged by Percy, the sadistic guard, the scene goes on for over TWO EXCRUCIATING MINUTES. Instead of wetting the sponge that goes on the head of the person sitting in the chair, he leaves it dry, which interferes with the conductivity. As a result, instead of a relatively quick execution, the poor man's head catches fire, and he dies an excruciating, torturous death, CONSCIOUS through the whole thing!
    • Making it even worse is that John Coffey gets to feel everything Delacroix is feeling - every agonizing second - during the execution. Frank Darabont stated such horribly botched executions - albeit with a few less special effects - actually happened.
      Hal: Why don't you shut it down!?
      Paul: He's still alive! You want me to shut down while he's still alive!?
    • The corpse itself made it even more frightening. Unlike Arlen's or Coffey's, where the corpse would only show minor burn marks, Del's shows the reason why they call an electric execution "cooking". Darth Vader on Mustafar looked good in comparison.
    • The book version of the scene, written by Stephen King himself, is even worse, as it vividly describes Del's eyes oozing from their sockets while he's slowly cooking to death; and when the execution's done and Paul uses a stethoscope to check for a heartbeat (the attending doctor having fainted dead away) Del's skin slides off his chest like a done tom turkey. The volume the execution takes place in, "The Bad Death of Eduard Delacroix," really lives up to its title.
  • The flashback to how Wild Bill kidnapped the two little girls is also incredibly disturbing. Seeing it go from shots of a happy family to the family's hired hand threatening the girls before raping and killing them is like something out of a nightmare. A Youtube comment described it perfectly:
    "Throughout most of the movie, Percy was the true villain and Bill was mostly a comic relief character. He actually had a lot of funny moments, despite being a dangerous lunatic. But then you get to this scene and it completely changes. In an instant, Bill becomes one of the most terrifying villains in cinematic history. An outright monster of a human being that makes Percy look like a good guy."
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    • How bad is it? Sam Rockwell, the actor who played Wild Bill, utterly despised that scene, not just out of genuine disgust for what the character was doing, but because he actually got along really well with the actresses who played the girls off-set. It was so bad that one of the girls actually started crying just because of how real it got. That's right, even the actor who played the villain loathed how unpleasant this scene is, which is simply Mean Character, Nice Actor at its most horrifying!
    • Wild Bill's evil and psychopathy is already foreshadowed, however, when he is first mentioned in the film before being brought to the Green Mile, as it's revealed that he murdered three people during a bank robbery, including a pregnant woman, and those were just some of his (known) crimes. Him managing to fake being doped up, only to get the drop on the guards bringing him in and almost killing Dean before being subdued by Brutal, establishes him to be a very dangerous individual. Him sexually assaulting and openly threatening to rape Percy. Him being the only person to take sadistic amusement in Del's botched execution. Him being the only inmate in the Green Mile who is utterly unrepentant about his crimes cements him as a nasty piece of work... but the reveal of him being the kidnapper, rapist and murderer of the two girls still manages to be shocking despite all that.
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  • In the flashback, John Coffey's anguished cries are heard by the search team and he is found cradling the bodies of the raped and murdered girls in his arms. When he's asked what happened, he says: "I couldn't help it. I tried to take it back, but it was too late!" Everybody assumes that he killed the girls, and was talking about his own murderous impulses. Actually, he found them and tried to heal them, but it was too late for that.
  • Paul's fate. He ends up outliving his whole family (except perhaps his grandchildren and their families) because he receives part of the life force of the death row inmate John's healing power. He believes this is a punishment from God for executing John, despite him agreeing to the execution. As a result, he's very much alive in the present day and in fairly good health despite being over 100 years old. Medical curiosity notwithstanding, it's likely he's only going to die if he kills himself.
  • The way Wild Bill grabs John while the guards are taking him to the truck, Wild Bill was thought to be unconscious until he suddenly grabs John causing him to see Wild Bill's entire life and fearfully calls him "a bad man" to which Wild Bill just sadistically smiles and responded with "that's right nigger, as bad as you want". The entire scene seems to imply that Bill has caught onto John's ability and just did it to torment him, that same experience was so horrifying for John that it also traumatized Paul when he was shown the same vision.
  • John Coffey not only feels all the pain going on around him, but it's implied he can sense the pain that's happened in the past (he hears the screams of those who died in the electric chair long after they're gone) and, perhaps, that he can sense all pain everywhere.
    • John Coffey's reaction to first seeing the electric chair bears repeating: He freezes and stares at it while his escort make futile attempts to move him on, then he says something "in a low and dreaming voice" that terrifies his disciplined, veteran death-row guard companions:
      John: They're still in there. Pieces of them, still in there. I hear them screaming.
  • The Solitary Padded room. Even "Wild" Bill begs not to be put in it.
  • One book-only character, Arthur Flanders (nicknamed 'The President') murdered his elderly father for insurance money but got his death sentence commuted to a life sentence — only to be drowned in the prison laundry twelve years later. And not in water but in dry-cleaning fluid; by the time they pulled him out his face was almost gone and they had to identify him by his finger prints.
    On the whole, he might have been better off with Old Sparky... but then he never would have had those extra twelve years, would he? I doubt he thought much about them, though, in the last minute or so of his life, when his lungs were trying to learn how to breathe Hexlite and lye cleanser.
  • When Percy stomps on Mr. Jingles, killing the poor mouse. With a loud audible squish. And a lot of blood.

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