Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments




Babe (1995)

In director Chris Noonan's Best Picture-nominated animal tale:

  • the remarkable talking animals (including the sheepdog, the duck, the elderly ewe, the trio of singing mice, and runty, orphaned piglet Babe)
  • the rousing storybook finale in which sheep-herding Babe is victorious (with the password Baah Ram Ewe) in the prestigious National Sheepdog Championships contest and is told by kind-hearted, prideful owner Farmer Hoggett (James Cromwell): "That'll do, pig, that'll do"

Baby Doll (1956)

In director Elia Kazan's scandalous, pot-boiling, condemned and censored film (for its time) by the Legion of Decency:

  • the first sensational image of white-trash, 19 year-old 'baby doll' child bride "Baby Doll" Meighan (Oscar-nominated Carroll Baker) sucking her thumb in a childlike crib while being spied upon through a hole in the adjoining wall by sexually-frustrated husband Archie (Karl Malden)
  • vengeful Sicilian Silva Vacarro's (Eli Wallach in his screen debut) numerous seduction scenes of Baby Doll - in the back seat of a rusty, wheel-less Pierce-Arrow, in a double-seated swing in the yard, in an adjoining room where he kisses her under a switched-off bare bulb as Archie speaks on the phone nearby, and at the stark dinner table when they share hunks of bread dipped in raw greens
  • Baby Doll's trip to town with Archie and her demands for an ice cream cone
  • in the child's nursery - the memorably lewd sight of Vacarro mounting and sitting astride a small wooden hobby horse - rhythmically rocking back and forth on the tiny toy whose head is hardly visible between his legs - he playfully gyrates back and forth to the raunchy accompaniment of the rock song "Shame on You"
  • Vacarro's attempt in the attic to get Baby Doll to sign papers against her husband regarding arson

Back to the Future (1985)

In director Robert Zemeckis' witty science fiction adventure comedy/fantasy film:

  • the scene of madly-eccentric, wild-eyed, crackpot scientist Dr. Emmett "Doc" Brown (Christopher Lloyd) and his first testing of his time-travel car at Twin Pines Mall in the early morning of October 26, 1985
  • the frizzy-haired Doc unveils his time machine invention to "Marty" Seamus McFly (Michael J. Fox), his silver DeLorean car, powered up to 1.21 gigawatts of electricity with plutonium, stolen from Libyan terrorists
  • after witnessing Doc's dog Einstein's short one-minute time-travel trip into the future ("temporal displacement") in the parking lot (at 88 mph), Doc appears ecstatic

The Bad and the Beautiful (1952)

In director Vincente Minnelli's show-business related drama:

  • the scene of Georgia's (Lana Turner) discovery of Jonathan's (Kirk Douglas) affair with starlet Lila (Elaine Stewart)
  • Georgia's reaction in the hysterical, screaming out-of-control car sequence
  • the final image of the director, actress and screenwriter eavesdropping together on one telephone receiver

Bad Day at Black Rock (1955)

In John Sturges' masterpiece about racial prejudice:

  • the credits sequence with the Streamliner diesel train racing across the arid desert
  • the image of Macreedy (Spencer Tracy) as a one-armed stranger in a hostile Western town
  • his visit to Adobe Flat (home of a Japanese farmer/war hero named Komoko)
  • thug Coley's (Ernest Borgnine) daredevil pursuit of Macreedy's jeep in the desert
  • the karate-chop fight scene in Sam's greasy-spoon Bar and Grill when a taunted and fed-up Macreedy ("You're not only wrong, you're wrong at the top of your voice") subdues Coley
  • the nighttime deadly struggle between Macreedy and Reno Smith (Robert Ryan) and Macreedy's inventive making of a Molotov cocktail

Badlands (1973)

In the debut film of 29 year-old director Terrence Malick:

  • the opening voice-over, monotone narration of South Dakotan, magazine-addicted teenager Holly Sargis (Sissy Spacek): ("My mother died of pneumonia when I was just a kid. My father had kept their wedding cake in the freezer for ten whole years. After the funeral, he gave it to the yardman. He tried to act cheerful, but he could never be consoled by the little stranger he found in his house")
  • the image-filled torching of Holly's house after the killing of her widowed father (Warren Oates) by her unstable ex-garbage collector boyfriend - a James Dean look-alike named Kit Carruthers (Martin Sheen)
  • Kit's execution of a basketball
  • their killing spree and flight through the Badlands and into the wild frontier of Montana
  • their final dance in the car's headlights (to the tune of Nat King Cole singing A Blossom Fell on the radio) before Kit is captured

Bambi (1942)

In Disney's classic feature-length animation:

  • the visually-beautiful and musically-expressive animated Disney classic based on the Felix Salten story, with cute and lovable rabbit Thumper and bashful, loveable skunk Flower
  • the coming-of-age scene of young stripling Bambi stumbling over his shadow and having trouble with his footing when taught how to walk/run/hurdle by Thumper
  • Bambi's first visit to the meadow
  • his lesson on how to slide across the ice - and ending up spread-eagled
  • wise old Owl's humorous sex-education speech on the power of falling in love ("twitterpatted")
  • the traumatic, off-screen (sound of gunshot) death of Bambi's mother by Man - a hunter in a snow-covered meadow and the small fawn's fearful cries of "Mother, where are you?" during a raging snowstorm
  • the buck's fateful message about her death ("Your mother can't be with you anymore")
  • Bambi's fight with a rival deer for doe Faline
  • the scene of protecting Faline from a pack of mad dogs
  • the destruction of the forest by fire
  • the final scene of a grown Bambi proudly taking his place and standing with his 'Prince of the Forest' father, silhouetted against the sky

Bananas (1971)

In actor/director Woody Allen's early anarchic slapstick comedy:

  • the opening scene of the play-by-play commentary of a Latin-American president's assassination for ABC's Wide World of Sports - provided by sportscaster announcer Howard Cosell (Himself), as he asks the dying leader: "I suppose that now we will have to announce your retirement" and "Well, of course, you're upset"
  • the scene of nerdy Fielding Mellish (Woody Allen) as a consumer product tester with a malfunctioning exercise-machine ("The Execucisor")
  • aspiring playboy Fielding's nervous purchase of a porno magazine and his cringing when his order is screamed out by the clerk ("Hey Ralph? How much for a copy of Orgasm?")
  • his cowardice in a subway mugging by two thugs (including a young Sylvester Stallone in his screen debut)
  • his breakup with red-headed radical Nancy (Louise Lasser) and his whining: (Fielding: "How am I immature?" Nancy: "Well...intellectually, emotionally and sexually." Fielding: "Yeah, but in what other ways?")
  • the scenes of Fielding's involvement as a fake-bearded revolutionary guerrilla in a tiny Latin American banana republic as the guest of dictator Gen. Emilio M. Vargas (Carlos Montalban)
  • the scene of a dinner toast when he tensely begins chewing on his glass, his ordering hundreds of sandwiches for his troops before being installed as El Presidente
  • his US trial scene in which he cross-examines himself and objects to the judge ("I object your honor. This trial is a travesty. It's a travesty of a mockery of a sham of a mockery of a travesty of two mockeries of a sham. I move for a mistrial")
  • the closing televised wedding honeymoon night scene with Nancy that is viewed as a boxing match by commentator Howard Cosell

Band of Outsiders (1964, Fr.) (aka Bande à part)

In Jean-Luc Godard's quirky and experimental Nouvelle Vague (French New Wave) crime drama (described by the narrator's pitch: "A few clues for latecomers: Several weeks ago... A pile of money... An English class... A house by the river... A romantic young girl..."):

  • the film's love triangle between two young Parisian aspiring low-life criminals: intellectual dreamer Franz (Sami Frey), vulgar opportunist Arthur (Claude Brasseur), and beautiful ingenue Odile (Anna Karina)
  • the two men's play-acting or pantomiming of a shootout in the street between Billy the Kid and Sheriff Pat Garrett after which overacting Arthur rolls around on the pavement pretending painful agony
  • the intense, 90-second, half-hearted face-off/shootout with drawn guns filmed at mid-distance on the front lawn after a bungled robbery attempt at the villa of Odile's own Aunt Victoria (Louisa Colpeyn)
  • the scene in the English class in which the teacher (Daniele Girard) reads French passages from Romeo and Juliet and assigns the students to re-translate back into English - while Arthur kept slipping love notes to Odile
  • the sequence of Franz and Arthur reading aloud gruesome crime stories in a tabloid - ending with an account of tribal slaughter in Rwanda
  • the celebrated scene of the three running through the Louvre in nine minutes and 45 seconds, breaking the world record "previously set by Jimmy Johnson of San Francisco" by two seconds (repeated in Bertolucci's The Dreamers (2003))
  • the "minute of silence" scene in a cafe (a soundless interlude that was actually 36 seconds) (Franz: "A minute of silence can last a long time... a whole eternity")
  • the impromptu scene of the trio of characters each separately line-dancing the Madison in a half-empty restaurant (copied in Tarantino's Pulp Fiction (1994))

The Band Wagon (1953)

In director Vincente Minnelli's great movie musical:

  • the 8-minute, dreamy, film-noir, pulp B-movie, jazz-dance spoof on Mickey Spillane's "The Girl Hunt Ballet" in the film's climactic performance of long-legged femme fatale Gaby Gerard (Cyd Charisse) and Tony Hunter (Fred Astaire)
  • two other numbers:
    (1) the sublime Astaire-Charisse love duet in Central Park titled "Dancing in the Dark"
    (2) the elegant soft-shoe dance of Tony and pretentious producer-director Jeffrey Cordova (Jack Buchanan) to "I Guess I'll Have to Change My Plan"

The Bank Dick (1940)

In one of W.C. Fields' classic comedies:

  • the words of advice given by Egbert Souse (W.C. Fields) to his future son-in-law Og Oggilby (Grady Sutton) - "Surely, don't be a luddie-duddie, don't be a moon-calf, don't be a jabbernow, you're not those, are you?"
  • the scene when Egbert is hired as a vigilant bank security dick - he chokes a young boy in a cowboy outfit waving a toy gun - believing that he is a holdup man - as the bratty boy walks out of the bank, he ridicules the guard's shiny, bulbous red nose: "Mommy, doesn't that man have a funny nose?" His mother chides him for making fun: "You mustn't make fun of the gentleman, Clifford. You'd like to have a nose like that full of nickels, wouldn't you?"
  • Egbert's Black Pussy Cat Cafe drinking routine
  • Souse's use of a Mickey Finn to hold off effeminate, inquisitive and persistent bank examiner J. Pinkerton Snoopington (Franklin Pangborn)
  • and his memorable, zany, slapstick getaway car chase scene as a "hostage" with a terrified robber - it is a superbly-timed chase - the cars (Souse's car is followed by the local police, the bank president, and a representative from the movie company) zoom and circle around, barely avoiding crashing into each other or other obstacles in the path - the getaway car careens through streets, over ditches (over the heads of ditchdiggers), around curves and up a mountainside, missing collisions at every turn with the pursuit vehicles. When asked by the thug in the back seat to give him the wheel, Egbert matter-of-factly pulls it off the steering column and gives it to him; when the robber is struck unconscious and apprehended, Sousè is an unlikely hero once again for thwarting another heist

Barbarella (1967)

In director Roger Vadim's psychedelic cult classic and sexual satire:

  • the infamous, teasing, slow-motion opening credits sequence that strips 41st century comic-strip heroine Barbarella (Jane Fonda) of her space-suit outfit
  • the unusual elbow-sex scene and sexploits with a hairy primitive (her reaction to physical love: "But no one's done it for hundreds of centuries!"), a blind winged angel Pygar (John Phillip Law) ("An angel doesn't make love - an angel is love") and a lesbian evil Black Queen (Anita Pallenberg) ("You are very pretty, Pretty-Pretty")
  • Barbarella's escape from being pecked to death by songbirds ("This is really a much too poetic way to die!")
  • the "sex pill" scene between goofy revolutionary Dildano (David Hemmings) and Barbarella (which causes her hair to curl)
  • Durand Durand's (Milo O'Shea) unsuccessful attempt to kill Barbarella with pleasure by orgasmically "playing" her with a euphemistic pipe organ ("Sonata for Execution of Various Young Women") and his aghast reaction to her defeating the machine ("What kind of girl are you?! Have you no shame?!")

The Barretts of Wimpole Street (1934)

In director Sidney A. Franklin's historical romance based on the successful stage drama:

  • the climactic scene in which poet Elizabeth Barrett (Norma Shearer) struggles out of the tyrannical grasp of her domineering father (Charles Laughton)

Barry Lyndon (1975, UK)

In director Stanley Kubrick's three-hour visually-stunning costume drama (with astonishing, gorgeous candlelit cinematography by John Alcott and oil painting-like tableauxs) adapted from William Makepeace Thackeray's 1844 novel with stately voice-over narration by Michael Hordern:

  • the film's second dueling scene of impetuous and jealous young Irish rogue Redmond Barry (Ryan O'Neal) against competing suitor Captain John Quin (Leonard Rossiter) for the affection of his cousin Nora Brady (Gay Hamilton) - with Barry's stubborn assertion ("I'm not sorry and I'll not apologize")
  • the bare fist-fight between Barry and a burly fellow soldier Poole (Pat Roach)
  • the battle scene of British soldiers marching toward the French troops in rows and being mowed down - with the death of Barry's friend Captain Grogan (Godfrey Quigley) in a muddy ditch
  • the brief affair between Barry and a young Prussian war bride/mother (Diana Körner)
  • Barry's admission of spying for Prussian Captain Potzdorf (Hardy Krüger) to nobleman Chevalier de Balibari (Patrick Magee): ("I have a confession to make to you. I'm an Irishman...")
  • the scene of Barry's first flirtatious meeting with Lady Lyndon (Marisa Berenson) during a gamester session
  • the scene of Barry's detestable step-son Lord Bullingdon (Leon Vitali) accusing his father of abuse toward the Lyndon family during an afternoon concert in the drawing room ("...his brutal and ungentlemen-like behavior, his open infidelity, his shameless robberies and swindling of my property, and yours") and Barry's brawling retaliation
  • the sad death scene of Barry's son Bryan (David Morley) after being thrown from a horse - with his parents at his bedside
  • the film's lengthy third duel scene of Barry vs. his stepson ("I have not received satisfaction")
  • the final shot of Lady Lyndon reacting to Barry's name as she signs his yearly annuity/bribe (to stay away)

Barton Fink (1991)

In this Coen Brothers classic:

  • the scene of eccentric movie studio mogul Jack Lipnick (Michael Lerner) supplicating himself by a swimming pool and kissing the feet of wiry-haired, thick-framed black-eyeglass-wearing New York playwright Barton Fink (John Turturro) when he asks the writer to give him a wrestling picture with Wallace Beery within a week ("We need that Barton Fink feeling")
  • the fiery scene in which Fink's traveling insurance salesman/psychotic homicidal neighbor Charlie Meadows (John Goodman) returns to the rundown Hotel Earle in Hollywood of 1942, emerges from a flaming elevator, shoots two cops waiting for him there as he runs down the flaming corridor screaming out with his shotgun: "Look upon me. I'll show you the life of the mind!" - then whistles before exclaiming to Barton: "Brother, is it hot!"
  • the last scene in which the bewildered playwright, suffering terminal writer's block, finds himself on a beach with Meadows' brown paper-wrapped parcel and a bathing beauty (Isabelle Townsend) - his dream girl from a picture on the wall of his surreal hotel room #621 with peeling wallpaper. After she greets him with "It's a beautiful day," he asks: "Are you in pictures?" to which she responds: "Don't be silly"

(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 | PG4 | H1 | H2 | H3 | I1 | I2 | I3 | J | K | L1 | L2 | L3 | L4 | M1 | M2 | M3
| 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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