10 Most Paused Scenes in Popular Movies Ever

10 Most Paused Scenes in Popular Movies Ever
Image credit: Appian Way, Warner Bros.

From hidden shots and Easter eggs to the most iconic sequences.

In the on-demand era, watching a movie, even a short one, can take hours. In the theater or on TV, the movie cannot be paused, so the most dedicated viewers used to have to go back to the theater to see the same movie over and over again or record the TV broadcast. Now it is enough to buy a movie or watch it online on streaming services.

Therefore, fans who prefer to analyze in depth what is happening on the screen, as well as to understand the most subtle Easter eggs and homages, feel more than satisfied in today's reality! With that in mind, let's talk about the most paused scenes in the movies you all know and love.

Movie Moments That Make Viewers Pause the Most

  1. The steamy (and hilarious) Naomi scene (The Wolf of Wall Street, 2013)
  2. Aren't you a little tall for a stormtrooper? (Star Wars: A New Hope, 1977)
  3. Jimmy Buffett saving his margaritas (Jurassic World, 2015)
  4. THAT scene with Sharon Stone (Basic Instinct, 1992)
  5. Captain America's shield (Iron Man, 2008)
  6. The swimming pool scene (Fast Times at Ridgemont High, 1982)
  7. Paul Freeman swallowed a fly! (Raiders of the Lost Ark, 1981)
  8. Foreshadowing Batman (Man of Steel, 2013)
  9. Single frames of Tyler Durden (Fight Club, 1999)
  10. Gravestone or ordinary boulder? (Star Wars: The Force Awakens, 2015)

Some of the moments presented above are impossible to miss, as they are full-blown sequences that last several minutes and are also considered incredibly iconic. On the other hand, other moments are so subtle, sometimes lasting less than a second, that they have only been seen by those who have seen the movies many times and paused them regularly.

Among the first to be mentioned are the raunchy scenes with Sharon Stone and Margot Robbie in Basic Instinct and The Wolf of Wall Street, respectively. Now, in 2024, such an increased focus on deliberately sexualized scenes is a bit problematic, but the fact that many viewers repeatedly paused those moments doesn't take away from the fun of the fact.

At the same time, some scenes are considered the most paused because they overwhelmed many fans with their foreshadowing of upcoming events. For example, three years before the release of The First Avenger, the creators of Iron Man hinted at the upcoming MCU metanarrative by showing Cap's shield. Fans were similarly excited in 2013 when Man of Steel featured a shot of a Wayne Enterprises satellite that hinted at Batman.

Also worth mentioning is The Force Awakens: In 2015, after seeing the final moments of the movie, we all speculated about how the Extended Universe storylines would fit into the new canon, assuming that the rock next to Luke was the tombstone of comic and book character Mara Jade, but unfortunately it turned out to be just a boulder. Still, it was one of the most watched scenes at the time!

Is there a moment in the movie that made you pause the most?