Grand Theft Auto has always provided great stories, provides some monumentally memorable cut scenes.

  By Nathan Sharp

  Published Jun 10, 2021

  Email

  Various stills from the GTA series

  Grand Theft Auto has always been known for its gameplay. Ever since Grand Theft Auto III in 2001, the series has earned consistent critical acclaim for its level of detail, world-building, and incredible freedom in gameplay. Rockstar is a master of the open-world craft, and try as they might, other development companies just can’t seem to match their prowess and skill.

  RELATED:?10 Reasons Grand Theft Auto: Vice City & San Andreas Deserve Remasters

  With that said, the games also come complete with some well-written and genuinely engaging stories. It seems like the writing only gets better with time, and the series has provided gamers with some memorable cutscenes throughout the decades.

  advertising

  The introductory cutscene from GTA III

  It’s hard to envision today just how monumentally influential Grand Theft Auto III was to the gaming industry. Playing this game back in the fall of 2001 was unlike anything previously experienced in gaming, and it made gamers realize that the future was here.

  Watching the opening cutscenes of Grand Theft Auto III proved a magnificent and jaw-dropping experience, as the beloved series made a monumental shift from top-down 2D to 3D gaming. The industry was never the same after this.

  Trevor lays on the ground after tripping over a fence

  Trevor is arguably the most unhinged character in the entire Grand Theft Auto canon, but his cutscenes are still filled with levity. Case in point – tripping over Franklin’s fence. After chastising Franklin’s Aunt Denise, Trevor?says an inappropriate hello to Franklin before hopping his fence.

  Or, at least attempting to.?Trevor’s foot gets caught on the fence and he falls on his face, resulting in an explosive bout of anger in which he threatens to kill Franklin for laughing. It’s hilarious, but it’s also perfectly Trevor.

  advertising

  Trevor digs up Michael's grave

  Some people questioned the morose atmosphere and down-to-Earth realism of Grand Theft Auto IV, and Rockstar course corrected with GTA V. It was fun, it was light, and its story didn’t take itself too seriously. But there’s no denying that the campaign still contains its share of tantalizing drama, and it peaks with Trevor digging up Michael’s fake grave and finding the corpse of Brad.

  It turned the story completely on its head, redefined the Michael-Trevor relationship, and portrayed Trevor as an unhinged and dangerous psycho. He was never scarier than he was here.

  Niko holds a gun following Roman's death

  Grand Theft Auto IV had literary ambitions, and it is by far the most dramatic of the Grand Theft Auto games. The story ends in tragedy with the deaths of either Roman or Kate, both of which are the vengeful result of a failed business deal.

  RELATED:?5 Ways Red Dead Redemption 2 Is Rockstar’s Masterpiece (& 5 Ways It’s Grand Theft Auto V)

  The deaths utterly destroy Niko and turn him from a well-intentioned criminal into a full-on, rampaging psycho. They also end the story on an incredibly dour and depressing note – something of which GTA fans were certainly not accustomed to.

  advertising

  Tommy and Sonny stare down in Vice City

  Vice City takes many cues from Scarface, including?a climactic confrontation between two drug barons. Sonny arrives to take his share of Tommy’s criminal empire, and the two are forced into a curt and hostile hello. That is, until the game throws a massive twist at the player and reveals that Lance has been working with Sonny.

  It shocks both the player and Tommy, who proceeds to kill both Lance and Sonny in a cold-blooded frenzy.

  Tenpenny arresting CJ in San Andreas

  San Andreas opens in spectacular fashion. After getting off the plane and arriving back in the old neighborhood, CJ is immediately accosted by Tenpenny and arrested. It’s a fantastic cutscene, filled with remarkable dialogue that proved an enormous improvement over Vice City.

  Players also heard the voices of Samuel L. Jackson and Chris Penn, signifying that the series was ramping up in production values and?securing A-list vocal talent. What a fantastic way to open a fantastic game.

  advertising

  Big Smoke and Ryder unveil the green Sabre

  San Andreas never took itself very seriously (in fact, it’s probably the most lighthearted entry in the entire series), but it still contained some good drama.

  RELATED:?The 10 Best Rockstar Games, According To Metacritic

  In one of the game’s most shocking sequences, CJ is called by Cesar and discovers that his old friends Big Smoke and Ryder are working with the crooked Tenpenny. He also realizes that the green Sabre witnessed in his mother’s drive-by is being utilized by the group, indicating that they were responsible for her death.

  Niko talks to Roman in GTA IV

  Grand Theft Auto IV is largely concerned with the American Dream – specifically, the difficulties in obtaining it. Niko comes from an Eastern European country hoping to find riches in America, only to get sucked into a life of crime, debt, violence, and death.

  Following the deaths of either Roman or Kate and enacting his revenge, Niko?realizes that revenge won’t cure anything and accepts his spiritual defeat. He begins the story with promise and excitement but ends it as a broken man.

  advertising

  CJ talks to Big Smoke as he dies

  As lighthearted as San Andreas was, it also ends in relative tragedy. Following CJ’s adventures in Las Venturas, Los Santos devolves into chaos and widespread drug use – mirrors of the real-life?crack epidemic and LA Riots of the early ’90s.

  Big Smoke has earned riches and power as a drug distributor, and when CJ confronts him in his crack den,?he admits that he sold out his neighborhood solely for the money. It’s a tragic ending for what was once a solid friendship.

  Michael in therapy with his family

  One of the greatest scenes of Grand Theft Auto V doesn’t involve violence, drugs, or corruption – it involves simple family drama. Despite being a criminal, Michael remains a relatable character owing to the family dynamics he shares with his daughter, son, and wife. Michael brings the entire family to his therapist, and it goes about as well as one would expect.

  Michael and Amanda viciously fight while Jimmy and Tracey sit there awkwardly on their phones, sharing shocked glances whenever the subject of killing people comes up. And it comes up often.

  NEXT:?10 Great Rockstar Games You Totally Forgot About

  advertising

  Email

  

  Next

  5 Easiest Bosses In The DOOM Series (& 5 Hardest)

  Related Topics

  Lists

  grand theft auto

  About The Author

  

  Nathan Sharp

  (650 Articles Published)

  Nathan Sharp is a writer from outside Toronto, Ontario. He has a love of movies and television, having enjoyed them for more than twenty years. His preferences include drama, action, and horror, with the former being a particular point of interest and fascination.

  He also has a love of video games, particularly those of Rockstar.

  Whether it be about film, television, or video games, Nathan loves a good discussion and has written hundreds of articles for Screen Rant.

  More From Nathan Sharp

  advertising

  Split image showing Whitney and her Miltank, and Volkner about to throw a Pokéball

  Split image lycan and Jack Baker

  Split image depicting Melony, and Lapras and Mr. Rime

  advertising

  

  Which fighting games would make the best future movies?

  Split image depicting a group of humans in the Stoen Age, and a depiction of Tenochtitlan

  advertising

  Bulbasaur and Ash Ketchum Pokémon memes.

  Split image depicting Sidon and Zelda as seen in Breath of the Wild

  A tweet showing the fans excitement of Elden Ring and another of the Elden Ring logo