"He tried to kill me with a forklift!" (Olé!)
—Joel and the bots watching Fugitive Alien
Forklifts; they're tough, manly, working-class and generally rear-wheel-drive. They're commonplace all over the world and essential for large warehouses; they come in many types and sizes and combine all the joys of driving with carrying ridiculously heavy items suspended just above head-height.
They're also dangerous, intentional or not (as this informative German Safety Video parody shows). This trope is all about using them as a type of weapon; running over people, impaling victims on the forks or just crushing them under some heavy load, it doesn't really matter
In futuristic settings, any one-man crate-moving apparatus will do. See also Car Fu and Ramming Always Works.
Anime and Manga
- In Martian Successor Nadesico, the hero defeats a robot enemy with a forklift in the very first scene.
- A character is impaled by a forklift, which also inadvertently kills two others, in Final Destination: Spring Break.
- In the Mad Magazine parody of McCloud had McClod accidentally wipe out half of the Hong Kong police force with a forklift.
- Fugitive Alien. The Mystery Science Theater 3000 version (specifically, a song the cast sings to the tune of the background music) was the former Trope Namer.
- The second live-action Captain America (comics) movie.
- Bordering on Mini-Mecha, Aliens have the powerloader.
- Forklift Driver Klaus is a parody employee training video for forklift drivers in which several people get killed. Guess how!
- Despite that, technically this is not a case of Forklift Fu. The deaths are accidents, so the forklift is not used as a weapon.
- In Death Wish II, bad guys try to kill protagonist Paul Kersey with a forklift, but he escapes.
- Reversed in Death Wish 4 The Crackdown, he rides around in a forklift shooting, then moves out of sight. The forklift then comes on a kamikaze course for the gang of thugs only for them to realise at the last minute it's just full of boxes instead this time.
- Final Destination 3 set us up for one by putting an out-of-control forklift on a collision course with a bunch of characters we know to be doomed. At the last minute, it crashes into a shelf instead and a much lamer death by nail gun ensues.
- In the movie Class Of 1999, a robot is killed with a forklift.
- Retribution (1987)
- Blood Song (1982)
- Carnosaur 2—a T-Rex is killed with a forklift. Awesome!
- Ripcord impales a Neo-Viper with a forklift's fork in G.I. Joe the Rise of Cobra.
- Our Man Flint: While on Galaxy Island, Flint kills a guard by crushing him against a wall with a fork lift.
- Barb Wire
- Higanjima has a vampire get killed by a forklift to the heart
- You Only Live Twice. The SPECTRE Mooks at the Kobe dock try to kill James Bond with one.
- Variation: Bond tries to kill a Mook with a front-end loader in Casino Royale.
- Colonel Heller in Licence to Kill is impaled on a forklift by drug lord Sanchez.
- In Lethal Weapon 4 Riggs tries to attack Jet Li's character Wah Sing Ku with a forklift. Wah Sing Ku still beats the crap out of him.
- The Fisherman impales a deputy on a forklift in Ill Always Know What You Did Last Summer.
- In Santo Y Blue Demon Contra Dracula Y El Hombre Lobo, El Santo's girlfriend Lina rescues the luchadores by toppling a wall of boxes on a group of mobsters.
- Attempted in the second Boondock Saints movie, although most of the plan is that the good guys are hiding inside a crate carried by the forklift. It doesn't quite go according to plan.
LiteraryBook example: Corporate Bodies in the Charles Paris series by Simon Brett is a murder mystery novel where the instrument of murder is a forklift.
- In the second book of the Heroes of Olympus series, the Amazons use battle forklifts, complete with mounted crossbows and each prong sharpened into oversized sword blades.
- Astrid does this to kill the villain in the Doctor Who story "Voyage of the Damned".
- The Psycho for Hire site manager in "Planet of the Ood" attempts to kill the Doctor with a mechanical grab.
- In the TV show Monk, the intro sequence of the episode Mr. Monk and the Employee of the Month features the victim of the week getting attacked by a forklift. The forklift doesn't kill her directly; instead, it knocks a television on top of her. However, the initial plan of the forklift driver is to run her down with the vehicle.
- One episode of the classic The Incredible Hulk series had someone attempt to get the Hulk with a forklift. He took a hit in the leg, leaving Bruce Banner feeling the sting as well later.
- Illusionist Criss Angel performed a trick on his Mindfreak TV show where he appeared to get impaled by a forklift.
- The band Midnight Syndicate has a song entitled "Forklift Death".
- WWF: The Rock vs Mankind for the WWF title in an "empty arena match," Mankind pinned the Rock with a forklift. By all accounts it was very well received until the end where they decided to shoot a reaction shot of the Rock as the thing was descending on him and then a Reverse Angle shot of the forklift coming down, killing any Suspension of Disbelief.
- The New York chapter of the Unknown Armies campaign book "To Go" involves a shootout in a warehouse. It gives rules for using the forklift as a weapon.
- Paranoia adventure Vapors Don't Shoot Back. In their first mission the PCs must fight against automated forklifts (forkbots) in a warehouse.
- The Transformers media franchise has Decepticons Deadlift and Dirt Boss, both of which transform into forklifts. Since Decepticons are evil killing machines, we can reasonably assume that forklift death is occurring somewhere at some point in time in this universe.
- Well, Dirt Boss shoots small drill bit things that take over the body of another Transformer.
- Metroid: Other M has Samus fight something that seems to be a sci-fi forklift analog. At least, it can't seem to be anything else.
- Using the crane in Oni (which does happen to have forklift prongs!) to tip over an escaping vehicle.
- The forklift is an unlockable Easter Egg in Escape Velocity. It comes with an Mystery Science Theater 3000 sound bite, and is an overpowered Missile Launcher-like weapon.
- Metal Slug 4
- WWE Smackdown
- Battlefield 2: Special Forces. Running enemies over in cars or tanks is very doable, and they have machine guns as a "backup". Now do it in a vehicle no weapons, half the size, and with a quarter of the maneuverability.
- For added amusement, another player can lay prone on the tongs and fire from there.
- Grand Theft Auto
- Duke Nukem Forever, and yes, there's an achievement/trophy tied into this (kill six enemies with the forklift. Ole!)
- Halo: Reach has a drivable forklift that can be used to splatter enemies, but it can barely go fast enough to splatter a Grunt. They blow up nicely, however, so it's more useful to get one into position and then shoot it.
- Energy sword Elites, though? Their AI makes them run full speed at their target. If an Elite with a sword and a forklift get involved in a head-on collision, the forklift wins.
- The forklift also makes an improvised projectile when struck by an explosive. A forklift flying across the ground at several times your running speed will take out anything.
- In Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing, Ryo Hazuki's All-Star move causes him to get off his motorcycle and get in a forklift. The forklift knocks enemies behind Ryo by flipping them. There's also an achievement where you have to use it to take out Jacky and Akira.
- Heavy Rain: Depending on the player's choices, Jayden can end up handcuffed to the steering wheel of his car while Mad Jack picks it up and feeds it to the vehicle crusher; in the ensuing battle against Mad Jack, it's possible to have Mad Jack end up getting crushed by his own machine.
- In Left 4 Dead, the Tank can punch forklifts towards the survivors with deadly results. As deadly as falling down to the ground and only being able to use pistols can be, at least (unless if the forklift stays on the downed survivor, or worse, hits more than one survivor).
- In Max Payne 2, one of the Cleaners attempt to kill him with a forklift.
- Total Overdose and Chili Con Carnage allows you to use these as part of your killing spree combo.
- Characters in City of Heroes who can manipulate gravity have an attack called "propel", which summons a random in-game prop and hurls it at the enemy, including computers, statues, cars, and yes, fork lifts.
- Champions Online allows your hero character to pick up any of a number of props scattered around the environment and either bludgeon enemies with them or throw them at enemies. In most missions that take place in warehouses, this includes forklifts.
- You get one driven at you in an early level of Enter the Matrix.
- Related to the toy example above, a couple of video games based on the Movie-universe Transformers had forklift Autobot and Decepticon drones as common, low-level enemies (or players!). Contrary to the lumbering but lethal image implied by their alternate modes, the forklift drones are actually weak but quick.
- In Tomb Raider: Legend, Lara uses a forklift to drive through ancient traps in the England stage. The forklift is also required to access a hidden trophy. She doesn't use it to hurt anyone, though.
- From the Things Mr. Welch Is No Longer Allowed to Do In An RPG list:
527. Even if the rules allow it, I cannot spend $64,000 to get the vorpal option for a forklift.
- Wallace and Gromit: A Matter of Loaf and Death, directly parodying Aliens.
- Scooby-doo, of all people, does it in Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated (In case you're wondering, it's one of those It Makes Sense in Context things; the context in this case is the guy on the receiving end of the forklift tried to murder Scooby's friends.)
- In Metalocalypse, whether it's fatal was unclear, but Pickles accidentally impaled the new director on the set of Dethklok's Blood Ocean with a forklift when trying to park it.
- Unclear if a random one-off character died on Metalocalypse? That's why they exist.
- In G.I. Joe: Renegades Duke slams into Major Bludd with a forklift. This being a family-friendly show, it doesn't impale him though.
- In Generator Rex, Noah does this to Van Kleiss in order to save Rex.
- Ron Stoppable does this to Drakken in an episode of Kim Possible, although it's to pin him up against a wall instead of actually trying to kill him.
- An episode of King of the Hill has Dale attempt to kill Hank with a forklift after Hank proves to be a better basket-weaver than Dale.
- A mook from Batman: The Animated Series tried this on Batman in "P.O.V." It didn't work as Batman then used said forklift to puncture a hole into the bad guys fleeing ship.
- It should be noted that this is Truth in Television and these warning signs and such are there for a reason; forklifts are much heavier than they look and are dangerous pieces of heavy equipment.
- This incident on Prince Edward Island in July 2011.