Entrances of All-Time
|Movie Title/Year and Film Character with Scene Description|
During the opening credits sequence, boxer Jake La Motta (Robert De Niro), with his face hidden in the monk-like hood of his leopard-skin robe, warmed up alone in the ring by shadow-boxing into the smoky air.
He gracefully danced or jogged up and down - in slow-motion - in the dreamy sequence to the melancholy, haunting soundtrack of the "Intermezzo" from Cavalleria Rusticana (an opera by Pietro Mascagni).
Escape From New York (1981)
The opening of the film, set in 1997, described the crime rate rising 400% in the US in 1988, and told how Manhattan Island had become a maximum-security prison. The rules were succinct: "Once you go in, you don't come out."
Bearded, one eye-patched, dangerous ex-commando "Snake" Plissken (Kurt Russell), convicted of numerous murders, entered as he was led down a narrow corridor by armed guards, to be granted a deadly 24-hour mission to rescue the President inside New York.
The Paramount logo dissolved into an actual mountain peak. It was 1936 in a South American rainforest jungle, with high jutting canyon walls shrouded by thick mists.
An expedition was being led by an American, Dr. Indiana "Indy" Jones (Harrison Ford), first seen faceless and only in silhouette while guiding the group. Teasingly viewed from the back, he sported his signature short, brown leather flight jacket, a brimmed felt fedora, and a bullwhip firmly held in his hand.
His face was memorably revealed after Spanish Peruvian Barranca (Vic Tablian) reached for his gun and cocked it when a treasure map was found. Jones responded reflexively with lightning speed by accurately and gracefully uncoiling his bullwhip and wrapping it around Barranca's hand.
His reaction sent the gun into the river where it discharged harmlessly. Barranca fled into the forest as Jones was fully revealed.
Time Bandits (1981)
This had to be one of the strangest, most unexpected entrances in film history.
Young Kevin (Craig Warnock) and his dwarf friends had just deposed of an ogre (Peter Vaughan) and his wife (Katherine Helmond) by knocking them overboard into the sea.
Not long after, the ship shuddered, and suddenly, it began to lift out of the water, revealing that it was a hat (!) worn by a giant (Ian Muir)!
The giant came ashore, raising the ship/hat and its occupants hundreds of feet into the air, and in a typically Monty Python-esque gruesome joke, the giant stepped on an unaware, bickering couple (resembling anthropomorphic elephants) in a shack along the beach.
Kevin and his friends were finally able to have the giant put them down after injecting a sleeping potion into his head.
Blade runner cop Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) first met the breathtakingly beautiful, cool assistant/secretary of Eldon Tyrell (Joe Turkel) named Rachael (Sean Young) in his spacious office, bathed in a yellowish-hue, a soft, golden, sunset-time glow and dominated by a gigantic bay window overlooking the city.
She appeared like a heroine from a 40s film noir - a Mildred Pierce (1945), Joan Crawford-like heroine with dark eyebrows, soulful eyes, red lips, smooth clear skin, and hair tied rigidly back.
After first asking him what he thought of the corporation's expensive artificial owl ("Do you like our owl?"), she questioned his dim view of Tyrell's work in creating replicants, and he told her: "Replicants are like any other machine. They're either a benefit or a hazard. If they're a benefit, it's not my problem."
She probingly asked Deckard a "personal question": "Have you ever retired a human by mistake?" Deckard emphatically replied: "No", to which she responded: "But in your position, that is a risk?"
Tyrell later told Deckard when she left, after Deckard had tested her (positively) for being a replicant, that she had been implanted with memories:
Struggling, desperate, argumentative, unemployed, and difficult-to-work-with actor Michael Dorsey (Dustin Hoffman) decided to challenge his weary and harried agent/friend George Field's (Sydney Pollack) repeated insistence and painful reminders to Michael that "I can't put you up for anything...because no one will hire you!"
After Michael muttered: "Oh, yeah," the scene in George's office cut to a crowded New York City street, as Michael's cross-dressed female persona "Dorothy Michaels" slowly emerged from the pedestrian crowd in a telephoto shot.
He/she was wearing an auburn wig, oversized glasses and a frumpy high-necklined dress - and would soon (successfully) audition for a role as a feisty hospital administrator on the daytime soap-opera Southwest General.
Most memorable was the entrance scene of Cuban refugee turned coke addict Tony "Scarface" Montana's (Al Pacino) sexy but callous cokehead future wife Elvira Hancock (Michelle Pfeiffer).
She wore a tight backless dress as she descended in an elevator, and slinked over to the group of gangsters.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
The first adult appearance of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Tom Hulce) came in flashback as a shock to a younger Antonio Salieri (F. Murray Abraham), after he had snuck into the dining room to sample the delectable food.
Salieri was interrupted by a boisterous couple, causing him to hide and watch voyeuristically. The amorous, giggling childish man, after dragging Constanze (Elizabeth Berridge) under the table, playfully told her to eat his shit after proposing marriage to her.
Suddenly, Mozart's Serenade for Thirteen Wind Instruments was heard, and to Salieri's amazement, the young man rose and frantically said: "My music! They've started! They've started without me!" before dashing back to orchestrate the chamber music.
The older Salieri reacted with narration:
Paris, Texas (1984, US/W.Germ.)
Travis Clay Henderson
The music of Ry Cooder accompanied the quest by dazed wanderer Travis Clay Henderson (Harry Dean Stanton) for his estranged wife Jane (Nastassja Kinski).
The film began with his stumbling through and out of the arid Texas desert during the opening credits.
The Terminator model T-101 (or Model T-800)
An indestructible cyborg Terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger) was sent back from the future (a devastated, post-apocalyptic 2029 Los Angeles) to present-day 1984. His mission was to eliminate Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton), the mother of future unborn son John Connor, a resistance leader of the future.
The powerfully-muscular Terminator materialized after lightning or electrical flashes in the night, naked (crouched and head down) in the bluish night-light of the city near a yellow garbage truck. [The scene was filmed at the Griffith Park Observatory, Griffith Park, in Los Angeles.]
The Terminator slowly stood up and scanned the surroundings and then walked over to an overlook to view the lights of the city.
He accosted three punks with switchblades and demanded their clothes, and killed two of them before getting his demands met.
A second series of electrical flashes in a downtown alleyway signaled the teleported entrance of another naked individual, dumped onto the concrete. His mission was to rescue and protect future resistance leader John Connor's mother Sarah Connor - and father the child.
He stole a pair of pants from a homeless bum, and ran off when the police approached.
He was further pursued into a clothing store where he obtained more items of clothing before eluding them.
Weird Science (1985)
Unpopular teenaged nerds Gary Wallace (Anthony Michael Hall) and Wyatt Donnelly (Ilan Mitchell-Smith), out of pure hormonal/sexual frustration, decide to use Wyatt's computer to create a "perfect" woman after watching a colorized print of The Bride of Frankenstein (1935).
At one point, Wyatt initially gives their creation mammoth breasts, to which Gary remarked: "Anything bigger than a handful, you're risking a sprained tongue."
Connected by a phone modem, they started feeding the computer cut-out magazine images of supermodels, Penthouse Magazine cutouts, Albert Einstein, and art/music skills while wearing brassieres on their heads ("It's ceremonial," explained Gary) while they connected electrodes to a plastic Barbie-doll figure. The computer started to act on its own while connecting into a government mainframe as it assembled the data - and an electrical storm activated the doll.
Suddenly after lots of explosions and wind, everything stopped and the door to Wyatt's room began to bulge inward, before finally exploding. Out of the red-lit, foggy hallway entered a sexy, leggy red-headed woman (supermodel Kelly LeBrock), wearing nothing but micro-panties and a small white muscle-shirt top.
She stood in the doorway, as Dr. Frankenstein shouted from their television: "She's alive! Alive!" Their creation cooed with a mischievious twinkle in her eyes:
In the subsequent scene, the two wide-eyed boys ogled her as they shared a shower with her, as the camera panned up and down her naked body and she commented: "You guys created me. I didn't come from anywhere. Before you started messing around with your computer, I didn't even exist. By the way, you did an excellent job. Thank you. Showering is real fun, isn't it? If we're gonna have any kind of fun together, you guys had better loosen up."
(chronological, by film title)
Introduction | 1920s-1935 | 1936-1939 | 1940-1945 | 1946-1949 | 1950-1955 | 1956-1959 | 1960-1965 | 1966-1969
1970-1975 | 1976-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1989 | 1990-1995 | 1996-1999 | 2000-2005 | 2006-Present