Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments



C5

 





C (continued)
Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions
Screenshots

Cool Hand Luke (1967)

In director Stuart Rosenberg's popular prison chain-gang drama with numerous Christ references and images:

  • the imprisonment of rebel prisoner Luke (Paul Newman) for maliciously destroying municipal property (cutting the heads off of parking meters)
  • the 'rules' of the house delivered to the prisoners by Carr (Clifton James): ("Them clothes got laundry numbers on 'em. You remember your number and always wear the ones that has your number. Any man forgets his number spends the night in the box...")
  • the titillating scene of a sexy teenage girl (Joy Harmon) - the warden's daughter? - frustrating the prisoners by soaping up, pressing her sudsy breasts against the window, and hosing off herself and her car in plain sight ("drivin' us crazy and lovin' every minute of it")
  • the epic brutal boxing match with boss convict Dragline (George Kennedy) in which Luke refused to give up by staying down on the ground - and thereby received a beating
  • the entertaining, one-hour 50 hard-boiled egg-eating contest (50) that Luke won
  • the image of the guard's impenetrable sunglasses
  • the prison visit of Luke's sick mother Arletta (Jo Van Fleet) who talked to him from the back of a pickup truck
  • the scene of Luke strumming a guitar singing the irreverent "Plastic Jesus" song following his mother's death
  • the nasty prison boss Captain's (Strother Martin) famous line to defiant Luke: "What we got here is failure to communicate"
  • the escape attempt in the concluding sequence with the final Christ-figure imagery and the smile on Luke's face as he sassed back: ("What we've got here is a failure to communicate") and was killed (and his epitaph: "he's a natural-born world-shaker")








The Court Jester (1955)

In co-directors Melvin Frank's and Norman Panama's classic musical comedy set in medieval England that spoofed swashbucklers:

  • the infamous rhyming wordplay and convoluted dialogue
  • the discussion between impersonating medieval valet/court jester Hubert Hawkins/Giacomo (Danny Kaye) and ambitious court witch Griselda (Mildred Natwick) about a riddle, with instructions on how to avoid a poisoned drink - specifically, about his having to remember the cup location for a pre-joust toast with a drink that was poisoned, but then -- much confusion with a change in the directions, with hilarious results:
    - "I've got it! I've got it! The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle. The chalice from the palace has the brew that is true! Right?"
    - "Right. But there's been a change. They broke the chalice from the palace!"
    - "They broke the chalice from the palace?"
    - "And replaced it with a flagon."
    - "A flagon...?"
    - "With the figure of a dragon."
    - "Flagon with a dragon."
    - "Right."
    - "But did you put the pellet with the poison in the vessel with the pestle?"
    - "No! The pellet with the poison's in the flagon with the dragon! The vessel with the pestle has the brew that is true!"
    - "The pellet with the poison's in the flagon with the dragon; the vessel with the pestle has the brew that is true."
    - "Just remember that..."
  • a second wordplay scene between King Roderick (Cecil Parker) and Hubert Hawkins:
    - The Duke. What did the Duke do?
    - Uh, the Duke do?
    - Yes. And what about the Doge?
    - Oh, the Doge!
    - Uh. Well what did the Doge do?
    - The Doge do?
    - Yes, the Doge do.
    - Well, uh, the Doge did what the Doge does. Uh, when the Doge does his duty to the Duke, that is.
    - What? What's that?
    - Oh, it's very simple, sire. When the Doge did his duty and the Duke didn't, that's when the Duchess did the dirt to the Duke with the Doge.
    - Who did what to what?
    - Oh, they all did, sire. There they were in the dark; the Duke with his dagger, the Doge with his dart, and the Duchess with her dirk.
    - Duchess with her dirk?
    - Yes! The Duchess dove at the Duke just when the Duke dove at the Doge. Now the Duke ducked, the Doge dodged, and the Duchess didn't. So the Duke got the Duchess, the Duchess got the Doge, and the Doge got the Duke!
  • the spell cast on the jester by Griselda that could hilariously be undone - and reinstated - by just a snap of the fingers, employed in the scene in which he was hypnotized (to believe he was a dashing lover) and he snuck into Princess Gwendolyn's (Angela Lansbury) chambers to woo her: ("What manner of man is Giacomo? Ha ha! I shall tell you what manner of man is he. He lives for a sigh, he dies for a kiss, he lusts for the laugh, ha! He never walks when he can leap! He never flees when he can fight (thud), Oop! He swoons at the beauty of a rose. And I offer myself to you, all of me. My heart. My lips. My legs. My calves. Do what you will - my love endures. Beat me. Kick me. (kiss, kiss) I am yours")






The Covered Wagon (1923)

In director James Cruze's early epic western, often considered the first great western:

  • the first authentic-looking outdoor views of the pioneering Western frontier, including the rugged trail, Conestoga wagons, plains, ranges, and buttes (of Utah and Nevada), and even Native-Americans
  • the 1848 "westward ho" trek of "the mightiest caravan that was ever to crawl across the valley of the Platte" - and the many adversities that the pioneers faced, including ferrying wagons across rivers, evidence of a deadly Pawnee Indian attack, quicksand, severe weather, etc.
  • with many of the stereotypical scenes included in early westerns, such as Indian attacks and shoot outs, river crossings and braving snow storms, and a buffalo hunt.



Creep Show (1982)

In writer Stephen King and director George A. Romero's satirical horror anthology and tribute to EC's horror comics of the 1950's:

  • in the last of the five horror anthology tales: "They're Creeping Up on You" - the creepy, sickening scene of the swarm-attack of ugly and gigantic cockroaches that emerged during a blackout in the germproof, sparkling-white, sterile, vacuum-sealed penthouse apartment of roach-phobic, obsessively-clean, racist, miserly, eccentric and cruel millionaire Professor Upson Pratt (E. G. Marshall). Swarms of the insects emerged from inside his corpse - from his chest and mouth

Crime Wave (1954)

In director Andre De Toth's low-budget, hard-boiled gangster-crime drama, shot on location in 1950s Los Angeles:

  • the tale of an ex-convict and reformed San Quentin parolee Steve Lacey (Gene Nelson) trying to go straight as an airplane mechanic, with loving wife Ellen (Phyllis Kirk)
  • the opening scene (shot from the POV of the thieves in their car) - the robbery of a gas station by 'Doc' Penny's (Ted de Corsia) gang of three, resulting in the killing of a motorcycle cop, and the wounding of gang member Gat Morgan (Ned Young)
  • the victimization of Steve, who became trapped and haunted by his former life when his former cellmate Gat, the wounded fugitive gang member (all gang members were escapees from San Quentin), demanded to be harbored in Steve's apartment; when his wife Ellen was threatened, Steve was pressured into joining the gang in a complex, daylight bank heist in Glendale (functioning as the getaway car driver and airplane pilot to fly them to Mexico afterwards)
  • the failed Saturday robbery when Steve's written tip alerted police, and the bank was staffed by policemen disguised as bank personnel and customers
  • throughout the film, Steve's pursuit as a suspect by a relentless, toothpick-chewing, sadistic homicide Detective Lieutenant Sims (Sterling Hayden) (who believed: "Once a crook, always a crook") - and Steve's own fear of being marked as a criminal: ("Once you do a stretch, you're never clean again! You're never free! They've always got a string on you, and they tug, tug, tug! Before you know it, you're back again!")
  • in the end, although Steve was handcuffed and arrested by Sims, in the final moments, it was all a pretense - Steve was let go and allowed to resume his life



Crimes of Passion (1984)

In British director Ken Russell's neon-lit, dark, 'guilty pleasure' cult tale and erotic thriller:

  • the scenes of part-time private investigator and security expert Bobby Grady's (John Laughlin) escape from a dull 12-year marriage to Amy (Annie Potts), who faked her orgasms
  • Bobby's intense, obsessive, erotic relationship with a moonlighting, kinky LA prostitute named China Blue (Kathleen Turner) - who wore a platinum wig and by day worked as a prim but workaholic fashion designer named Joanna Crane
  • during their first intense sexual encounter (for $50) that she fantasy role-played as a flight attendant: ("We're here to serve you. Please remember that although we may run out of Pan Am coffee, we'll never run out of T-W-A-Tea"), she sucked on his bare toe and then had sexual intercourse with him in multiple positions (viewed as silhouettes behind a gauzy curtain)
  • later in a dominatrix S & M scene (deleted from some versions to avoid an X-rating), a policeman (Randall Brady) was handcuffed to a bed and then sodomized with his own nightstick
  • also notable were the scenes with deranged, stalking psychotic reverend believing he was China Blue's savior - the perverse, ranting, peeping-tom, self-proclaimed Reverend Peter Shayne (Anthony Perkins) with strange erotic fantasies and a razor-tipped, chrome-steel dildo (dubbed "Superman") that was revealed from his doctor's bag of sex toys
  • the twist ending in which China Blue was 'saved' by the threatening Reverend involving a role-reversal (and costume-reversal); the character wearing China Blue's dress (presumably Joanna) was stabbed in the back by the razor-tipped dildo/vibrator. However, the Reverend was wearing the China Blue dress and a wig, while she was wearing the Reverend's outfit - a costume twist. She stabbed him as he threatened to assault Grady (who had arrived to save Joanna) with a pair of scissors
  • the Reverend's death (his parting words were: "Goodbye, China Blue")






"Crocodile" Dundee (1986)

In the surprise sleeper hit and romantic comedy from Australia:

  • the scene in which Australian Outback ranger Michael (Mick) J. 'Crocodile' Dundee (Paul Hogan, co-nominated for Best Original Screenplay) rescued American reporter Sue Charlton (Hogan's real-life wife Linda Kozlowski) from a crocodile in the wild as she was going for a swim (and a croc lunged out of the water, grabbed her necklace, and threatened to pull her in); he twisted a knife into the crocodile's head, and when she asked: "Is it dead?" he replied: "Well, if it isn't, I'm goin' to have a hell of a job skinnin' the bastard"; afterwards, he roasted it like a giant shish kabob
  • the fish-out-of-water sequences in New York City, including the memorable scene in which the leader of a street gang with a small switch-blade knife attempted to mug Dundee - the unflappable and chuckling 'Crocodile' man responded as he pulled out his large bushwhacker Bowie knife -- "THAT's a knife!", and then slashed the tough's jacket; after the gang fled, he said amiably to Sue: "Just kids having fun!"
  • the final scene set in a crowded subway station in which messages were relayed from Sue to Mick from bystander to bystander: (Sue: "Tell him not to leave. I'm not going to marry Richard...Tell him I love him"), and then Mick climbed up to the girders to gain height and walked to Sue on the heads and raised hands of the onlookers: ("I'll tell her meself. I'm coming through") - to tell her of his love and to kiss her - before a freeze-frame and the ending credits





Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000, US/HK/China/Taiwan) (aka Wo Hu Cang Long)

In Ang Lee's Best Picture-nominated martial arts/romantic film, with spectacular cinematography and martial arts action sequences, that won the Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award:

  • the many exciting, kinetic action sequences revolving around the mystical, legendary 400 year-old Excalibur-like sword known as "Green Destiny"
  • the first appearance of Jen Yu (Zhang Ziyi), the 18 year-old district governor's daughter, and the revelation that she was a disciple - secretly apprenticing under the harsh tutelage of bitter, heartless, evil and treacherous arch-criminal Jade Fox (Cheng Pei-pei)
  • the scene of the theft of the Green Destiny sword by impetuous and headstrong masked thief Jen Yu, and the exciting scene of security officer and female warrior Yu Shu Lien's (Michelle Yeoh) gravity-defying pursuit of masked thief Jen up walls, across buildings and over rooftops, and their martial-arts styled fighting
  • the poignant, secret and unfulfilled romance between Yu Shu Lien and heroic spiritual master and martial arts fighter Li Mu Bai (Chow Yun-Fat) who was about to retire, when they shared their love for each other over a cup of tea: (Li Mu Bai: "Shu Lien - There's no eternity to the things we can touch. My master would say, 'There's nothing we can hold onto in this world. Only by letting go can we truly possess what is real.'" Shu Lien: "Even to an old Taoist like you, not everything is an illusion. When you were holding my hand just now, wasn't that real?" Li Mu Bai: "Your hand is cold and callused from practicing machetes. All these years, and I've never had the courage to touch it. Crouching tigers and hidden dragons are in the underworld, but so are human feelings. Swords and knives harbor unknown perils, but so do human relationships")
  • Li Mu Bai's fatherly and scholarly interest in the petulant Jen, casually imparting advice during one sword fight and teaching her: ("Real sharpness comes without effort. No growth, without assistance. No action, without reaction..."), and their the visually-stunning sword fight on the top of a green bamboo forest
  • the "faithful heart makes wishes come true" speech by Jen's kind lover - a barbarian bandit named Lo "Dark Cloud" (Chang Chen) - about a mystical legend of a man who jumped from a mountain cliff to make his wish come true - and was saved from death because his heart was faithful and pure: ("We have a legend. Anyone who dares to jump from the mountain, God will grant his wish. Long ago, a young man's parents were ill, so he jumped. He didn't die. He wasn't even hurt. He floated away, far away, never to return. He knew his wish had come true. If you believe, it will happen. The elders say, 'A faithful heart makes wishes come true.'")
  • the climactic, artistic duel (with multiple weapons) between Jen and Shu Lien in an empty dueling arena - brilliantly shot with overhead cameras
  • the scene of Jen's rejection of her master teacher Jade Fox because she had outgrown her instruction, with Jade's response: "Believe me, I've a lesson or two left to teach you!"
  • Jade Fox's last words after being executed by Li Mu Bai: "You know what poison is? An 8 year-old girl full of deceit. That's poison!...Jen...my only family...my only enemy..."
  • the tearjerking death of Li Mu Bai, poisoned by Jade Fox with Purple Yin poison ("with no antidote"), and his final, long overdue declaration of his undying, concealed love for Yu Shu Lien with his last dying breaths: ("I've already wasted my whole life. I want to tell you with my remaining strength that I love you. I always have. (They kissed) I'll drift next to you every day as a ghost just to be with you. Even if I was banished to the darkest place, my love will keep me from being a lonely spirit")
  • the transcendent ending in which Jen jumped off Wudan Mountain, and floated softly downward to disappear into the mist










The Crowd (1928)

In King Vidor's urban melodrama:

  • the staircase scene when a young boy climbed claustrophobic, steep stairs and near the top learned that his father had died
  • the marvelous visuals capturing New York City's teeming streets, and the enormous crowd shots
  • the sweeping camera sequence from outside a skyscraper up the face of the building and through a window and zeroing in on office worker John (James Murray) lost in a sea of desks
  • the romantic/courtship scenes between the two young lovers John and Mary (Eleanor Boardman) - especially in the funhouse sequence
  • the couple's reaction to the accidental death of their daughter - reflected on their horrified faces
  • the poignant scene of John with his young son on a railroad overpass when the boy restored his faith in himself
  • and the final sequence of the reconciled couple enjoying a comical vaudeville show as the camera pulled back and they became anonymous in the audience



Cruel Intentions (1999)

In an update of the French Les Liaisons Dangereuses:

  • the prolonged, wet, spit-swapping kiss scene between innocent Cecile Caldwell (Selma Blair) and manipulative Kathryn Merteuil (Sarah Michelle Gellar)

The Crying Game (1992, UK)

In Irish writer/director Neil Jordan's jolting thriller:

  • the scene of IRA volunteer soldier Fergus (Stephen Rea) visiting gorgeous-looking London hairdresser/nightclub singer Dil (Oscar-nominated Jaye Davidson) - known as the 'wee black chick' that Jody loved, to fulfill kidnapped/dead British soldier Jody's (Forest Whitaker) dying wish
  • after kissing each other, the superbly unexpected moment of revelation when Dil's red kimono robe dropped to the floor as the camera panned down to show off 'his' true gender and manhood, followed by his apology to the shocked Fergus: "You did know, didn't you?"
  • the tearful "interrogation" scene between a gun-toting Dil and Fergus, whom Dil had tied to his bed after finding out he had been complicit in the death of his ex-lover Jody, as the song "The Crying Game" played on Dil's tape deck. With a gun pointed at him, Fergus told Dil that he loved him: ("I love you Dil"), would do anything for him: ("I'd do anything for you, Dil") and would never leave him - with Dil responding, as he laid his head on Fergus' chest/shoulder: "I know you're lying, Jimmy, but it's nice to hear it"
  • the scene of Dil's vengeful murder of Fergus' accomplice Jude (Miranda Richardson), when he accused her of being implicated in Jody's death: "You was there, wasn't you? You used those tits and that ass to get him, didn't you?!"




Cutter's Way (1981) (aka Cutter and Bone)

In Czech filmmaker Ivan Passer's crime thriller:

  • the amazing opening slow-motion sequence (under the credits, with music by Jack Nitzsche) of a Santa Barbara, CA main street Old Spanish Days Fiesta parade (that slowly changed from b/w to color) - with the camera following a blonde twirling in a white frilly dress
  • the sequence then wiped into a day and night-time shot of the exterior of a hotel (labeled El Encanto in neon) - to introduce one of the film's two main characters, with a side close-up of the chin-mustache of laconic yacht-salesman-beach-bum Richard Bone (Jeff Bridges) while he was touching up with a woman's electric shaver following hiring out his gigolo services to a blonde (Nina Van Pallandt), the wife of a boat customer, for a one-night stand
  • afterwards, a silhouetted figure wearing sun-glasses was witnessed dumping 17 year-old sex-crime victim Vickie into a garbage can in a dark alley on a rainy night
  • the scene of embittered, self-righteous, drunken, one-eyed, one-armed, one-legged, crazed and angry Vietnam vet Alexander Cutter (John Heard) crashing into his neighbor's car while returning home with an expired license, and later becoming completely obsessed over confronting the girl's killer - believing the real suspect to be elite and menacing oil businessmen J. J. Cord (Stephen Elliott)
  • the scene of Maureen "Mo" Cutter (Lisa Eichhorn) telling her disgruntled husband that his plan to blackmail/extort Cord regarding the girl's murder was itself a dumb crime: "You're not some saint avenging the sins of the Earth, you know. Alex. And if you are, what am I doing here? Oh, I know. I'm like your leg. Your leg! Sending messages to your brain when there's nothing there anymore" - before being viciously slapped
  • the stunning concluding scene of Cutter riding heroically (and tragically) on a white stallion within Cord's guarded residential mansion during a large garden party - and lethally crashing into Cord's study window where Bone had just learned that Cord was the female's killer - inspiring the usually-uncommitted and reluctant Bone to take up the fight and shoot Cord with the weapon in Cutter's dead hand - to abruptly end the film






Cyrano de Bergerac (1990, Fr.)

In director Jean-Paul Rappeneau's romance drama:

  • the balcony scene of long-nosed, bulky swordsman Cyrano de Bergerac's (Oscar-nominated Gerard Depardieu) recitation of poetry to his love Roxane (Anne Brochet) who was above on her balcony - while coaching gallant but inarticulate soldier Christian de Neuvillette (Vincent Perez); during Cyrano's words, she became suspicious: ("But why are your words so hesitant? Why?"); Cyrano took over the dialogue: ("It's dark...They grope in the darkness looking for your ear...My heart is large whereas your ear is small. Besides, your words slip down speedily along the wall. Mine are heavy like fruit on a bough"); then when she realized that his responses were more rapid, Cyrano told her: ("They're now used to the exercise...One harsh word from so high could make my heart die"); Cyrano kept up the charade, and told her he was using his "true voice" that sounded altered to her: ("Let us stay near but talk without seeing each other...It's quite wonderful in darkness. You see a cloak of blackness. I see a dress of summer white. I'm but a shadow. You are a light. I'm using my true voice... In this dark night which protects me, I can be myself"); and then Cyrano realized how he regretted deceptively pantomiming his true love: ("It's a crime, in love, to play this pantomime. There always has to come a moment. And I pity those who know it not. When we a noble love attain but each pretty word causes pain....All those, all those, all those which come. Everything, I throw away. I'm stifling! I love you. This is no game! My heart cries your name! I've loved you every passing day. Last year, on the twelfth of May, you changed the style of your hair. I was dazzled by its bright flare. Do you understand? Do you realize? Do you feel my soul rise to the skies? Everything tonight is so wonderful, so sweet. I speak, you listen. Me, at your feet! Even in my sweetest dreams, I never planned on this. Now I must die.")





100's of the GREATEST SCENES AND MOMENTS
(alphabetical by film title)

Intro | Quiz | A1 | A2 | A3 | A4 | B1 | B2 | B3 | B4 | B5 | B6 | B7 | C1 | C2 | C3 | C4 | C5 | D1 | D2 | D3 | D4 | E
F1 | F2 | F3 | F4 | G1 | G2 | G3 | G4 | H1 | H2 | H3 | I1 | I2 | I3 | J | K | L1 | L2 | L3 | L4 | M1 | M2 | M3
M4
| M5 | M6 | N1 | N2 | N3 | O1 | O2 | P1 | P2 | P3 | P4 | P5Q | R1 | R2 | R3 | R4
S1 | S2 | S3 | S4 | S5 | S6 | S7 | S8 | S9 | T1 | T2 | T3 | T4 | T5 | U | V | W1 | W2 | W3 | W4 | YZ

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