8 biggest film explosions.

In homage to special effects – and as a gentle word of warning – we revisit 8 of the most destructive explosions from the silver screen…

Hopefully you’ve never had to make an insurance claim for serious damage to your property.

On the bright side if you have, spare a thought for these guys…

Film explosion
Step 1

Independence Day (1996)

An all-time epic, alien invasion flick – this Will Smith classic is not shy in the explosives department. It became the template for a 1990s resurgence in large-scale disaster movies, and its $75million budget was almost unprecedented at the time. In real terms though, the clean-up bill facing the City of New York would be far greater…

Step 2

Die Hard (1988)

Which to pick from this fiery franchise? We opted for the stand-out moment from our very first meeting with police detective John McClane, in which he spectacularly eschews a monumental TNT building explosion, tying a fire hose round his waist and leaping from the roof. For the 1980s these were serious production values, but again, we can only hope buildings insurance had it covered…

Step 3

The Dark Knight (2008)

The sight of The Joker, eerily dressed as a female hospital nurse, walking away from Gotham General as it erupts into flames is as unsettling as it is thrilling. To make matters even tenser, the detonator requires a second try before maximum chaos kicks in. There’s no way of preparing for this kind of havoc, so at least make sure you’ve covered yourself financially…

Step 4

Fight Club (1999)

The closing scene’s glorious juxtaposition has the Pixies’ haunting ‘Where is My Mind?’ played over Tyler and Marla watching the capitalist city below them go up in flames – and earns David Fincher’s masterpiece a place in our list. Of course, all the major financial firms would be insured up to the eyeballs, but still…

Step 5

Terminator 2 (1991)

One of most memorable big bangs in film history has to be the nuclear nightmare scene in this vintage Arnie picture. In Sarah’s dream, children play innocently in the foreground as the LA cityscape behind it is comprehensively flattened causing absolute destruction and netting the visual-effects team an Oscar in the process.

Step 6

The Hurt Locker (2008)

Hard to single out just one explosion from Kathryn Bigelow’s 6-time Oscar-winning war epic – so it makes the cut as a complete spectacle. A relatively modest $15 million budget certainly didn’t hamper this critically-acclaimed spellbinder and its detailed re-imaginings of blasts are among its defining moments.

Step 7

Cloverfield (2008)

12 years after Independence Day and its influence on the film-making psyche was still clear to see. Matt Reeves brought grand attacks on New York City up-to-speed in a world now reliant on technology, but where explosions are just as grisly. Once again, it’s the major landmarks which bear the brunt of the havoc – at one point the dismembered head of the Statue of Liberty is seen hurtling downtown.

Step 8

Star Wars (1977)

Ever got a quote for insuring the Death Star? Even back in 1977 we doubt it would have come cheap. This explosion was so iconic it was repeated several times in remastered versions – and even in the second instalment, Return of the Jedi. Special effects technology may have moved on considerably in the 39 years since Star Wars, but its impact has rarely been greater.

Please be aware that general exclusions may apply to home insurance claims as a result of an explosion. For example incidents involving war and terrorism are not covered.

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