Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments



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Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions
Screenshots

Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984, UK)

In director Michael Radford's grim adaptation of George Orwell's classic novel:

  • the opening credits sequence of governmental propaganda films (featuring Big Brother - "played" by Bob Flag)
  • the screaming Two Minutes Hate
  • oppressed middle-class drone Winston Smith's (John Hurt) narration from his diary writing: "April the 4th, 1984. To the past, or to the future. To an age when thought is free. From the Age of Big Brother, from the Age of the Thought Police, from a dead man... greetings"
  • Winston's job at the Ministry of Information (ironically-titled) to alter the past by turning people into non-existent "unpersons"
  • Winston's oft-repeated dream of a green pasture with isolated trees on the horizon that was turned into a reality during an idyllic love affair with rebellious Julia (Suzanna Hamilton)
  • once found out, the excruciating torture/brain-washing of Winston administered by O'Brien (Richard Burton) in Room 101 with the notorious rat-cage torture: ("If you want a vision of the future, Winston, imagine a boot stamping on a human face -- forever")
  • the bleak ending in which Winston played chess with himself in the Chestnut Tree Cafe (as he admitted his crimes on a television screen), after having an unromantic encounter with Julia: ("Under the spreading chestnut tree / I sold you / You sold me") - he turned to the image of Big Brother and told it: "I love you"






Nine to Five (1980) (aka 9 to 5)

In director Colin Higgins' feminist-leaning workplace farcical comedy:

  • the catchy Oscar-nominated title song sung and written by Dolly Parton during the opening title credits montage (shot in downtown San Francisco)
  • male-dominated, married personal secretary Doralee Rhodes' (Dolly Parton in her film debut) threatening tirade to get her gun and fire at lecherous, chauvinistic and harrassing corporate boss Franklin Hart (Dabney Coleman) after being ogled one too many times: ("If you say another word about me or make another indecent proposal, I'm gonna get that gun of mine and I'm gonna change you from a rooster to a hen with one shot!")
  • the three "old fashioned ladies' pot party" in which Doralee, new secretary Judy Bernly (Jane Fonda), and senior office manager Violet Newstead (Lily Tomlin) fantasized about killing their boss in various ways, each one labeling him as "a lying, sexist, egotistical, hypocritical bigot":
    - Judy hunted him down with a rifle
    - Doralee hog-tied him and put him on a spit
    - and Violet portrayed Disney's Snow White and poisoned him with coffee
  • the scene of Violet - thinking she'd poisoned Hart with rat poisoning - stealing a corpse from the hospital
  • Hart held captive by the trio in a bizarre suspension system
  • Hart's reaction to his unwanted transfer: "Brazil?"
  • Hart's sycophantic assistant Roz's (Elizabeth Wilson) reaction to the triumphant, champagne drinking trio: "Holy merde!"
  • - and the film's final caption: "Franklin Hart was abducted by a tribe of Amazons in the Brazilian jungle and was never heard from again"







Ninotchka (1939)

In Ernst Lubitsch's sophisticated romantic comedy (with the tagline "Garbo LAUGHS!"):

  • a sophisticated romantic comedy, advertised as the first in which "Garbo LAUGHS"
  • the scene of somber and dour, plainly-dressed Russian commissar Nina "Ninotchka" Ivanovna Yakushova's (Greta Garbo) arrival at the Paris train station (after being dispatched as a special envoy from Moscow), where she was met by a trio of Russian delegates/comrades (Sig Rumann, Felix Bressart, and Alexander Granach), who apologized for not bringing flowers because they didn't know she was female - and she sternly and unsmilingly cautioned them to downplay her sexuality and not act gallantly: "Don't make an issue of my womanhood. We're here for work. All of us. Let's not waste any time. Shall we go?" - and she refused to have a porter carry her bags (and called his business "social injustice"); as she walked off, she told them the news: "The last mass trials have been a great success. There are going to be fewer but better Russians"
  • in the hotel lobby, she observed a ladies hat in the showcase window of a hat shop and disparaged the Western capitalist civilization that produced such a piece of frivolous and costly merchandise: "How can such a civilization survive which permits their women to put things like that on their heads? It won't be long now comrades"; later in the film, (in an insightful critique of Communism by the director), she went to her locked, lower bureau drawer - knelt and removed the hat that she had twice disapproved of in the showcase window of the hotel lobby, and then had secretly bought; she held it up, stared at it, moved over to the large, full-length mirror in her bedroom and firmly placed the frivolous, cone-shaped hat on her head with both hands; afterwards, she sat down, looked uncertainly at herself, leaned forward and gazed at her new persona, and then rested her chin on her hand
  • the scene of her meeting with dashing Count Leon d'Algout (Melvyn Douglas), when all she wanted was assistance in holding her unfolded map of Paris to go to the Eiffel Tower to learn about it from a "technical standpoint"; point-blank, she told him: "I am interested only in the shortest distance between these two points. Must you flirt?...Suppress it!"
  • the first instance of Ninotchka saying her famous line after being introduced to Leon's elderly, dignified butler Gaston (Richard Carle): "The day will come when you'll be free. Go to bed, little father. We want to be alone"
  • the second instance in the film when Garbo stated her famous wish to be alone: "We want to be left alone"
  • the famous "execution" scene
  • the stinging repartee between Grand Duchess Swana (Ina Claire) and Ninotchka
  • the attempted seduction scene in Leon's art-deco style apartment, when she responded to his request for feedback: "Ninotchka, you like me just a little bit?" - and her reply: "Your general appearance is not distasteful...The whites of your eyes are clear. Your cornea is excellent"; and then her denial of his feelings of love: "Love is a romantic designation for a most ordinary biological - or, shall we say, chemical - process. A lot of nonsense is talked and written about it"
  • Leon's continued charming and romancing of the cold Ninotchka, when the clock struck twelve: "It's midnight. Look at the clock. One hand has met the other hand. They kiss. Isn't that wonderful?...Ninotchka, it's midnight. One half of Paris is making love to the other half"
  • Leon's failed attempt to arouse loving emotion in Ninotchka: "Love isn't so simple, Ninotchka. Ninotchka, why do doves bill and coo? Why do snails, the coldest of all creatures, circle interminably around each other? Why do moths fly hundreds of miles to find their mates? Why do flowers slowly open their petals? Oh, Ninotchka, Ninotchka, surely you feel some slight symptom of the divine passion? A general warmth in the palms of your hands, a strange heaviness in your limbs, a burning of the lips that isn't thirst but something a thousand times more tantalizing, more exalting, than thirst" - she gave a cold reply: "You are very talkative" - but he was finally able to plant a kiss on her lips - and she reciprocated after he wooed her: "Oh, my barbaric Ninotchka. My impossible, unromantic, statistical..."
  • the celebrated cafe scene of dashing Count Leon d'Algout attempting to melt somber and dour Russian commissar Ninotchka's icy, stony-faced, humorless, impassive exterior and have her "laugh from the heart" by telling her dumb jokes and stories in a restaurant; when that utterly failed and she remained stone-faced without any reaction, he leaned backward on the shaky table behind him and accidentally toppled over in his chair, causing everything to crash to the floor; he finally succeeded in making her laugh uproariously and uncontrollably- she howled, threw her head back, and collapsed across the table, pounding it with her hand; Leon slowly got up from the floor, recomposed himself, and sat next to her, and then he recovered and broke down into howling laughter with her; he saw the humor of the situation and joined in everyone's laughter at his own expense
  • the last image of Kopalski picketing the restaurant with a sandwich board that read: "Buljanoff and Iranoff Unfair to Kopalski"











Nixon (1995)

In Oliver Stone's documentary-drama with homage paid to Citizen Kane (1941) with its flashback structure, dinner-table scene and newsreels:

  • the recreation of the 1960 Presidential television debate between Richard M. Nixon (Oscar-nominated Anthony Hopkins) and John F. Kennedy (Himself)
  • the scene of Nixon noisily playing "Happy Days Are Here Again" on the piano and calling his wife Pat (Oscar-nominated Joan Allen) a "cocksucker" when she complained about political life (and then suggested a divorce) after he lost to incumbent Pat Brown in California during the gubernatorial race in 1962: ("It's over, Dick....I have always stood by you. I campaigned for you when I was pregnant. During Checkers, when Ike wanted you out, I told you to fight. This is different, Dick. You've changed. Life is tough and it is unfair and sometimes you forget that in your self-pity. You forget sometimes, Dick that I had a life before you - before California...You've changed. You've grown more bitter, like you're at war with the world. You weren't that way before. I'm 50 years old now, Dick. How many millions of miles have I traveled? How many millions of peoples' hands have I shaked that I just don't like? How many thank-you notes have I written? It's as if I, I don't know, just went to sleep a long time ago and missed the years between. I've had enough...I want a divorce...This isn't political, Dick. This is our life")
  • Nixon's press conference, when he promised to never run again after his defeat in 1962: ("...But as I leave you, I-I want you to know. Just think what you're gonna be missing. You won't have Nixon to kick around anymore"), to prevent a divorce from Pat
  • the famous televised "I am not a crook" speech to the nation: ("...Because people have gotta know whether or not their president is a crook. Well, I am not a crook. I've earned everything I have....She doesn't have a mink coat, but she does have a respectable Republican cloth coat")
  • the scene in which a resigning and sobbing President Nixon prays with Secretary of State Henry Kissinger (Paul Sorvino): "What have I done wrong? I opened China. I made peace with Russia. I ended the war. I did what I thought was right. Ah... God, why do they hate me so? Is unbelievable. It is insane. Oh, M-Mom, I'm sorry. God, please forgive me, God. I really didn't mean it. I didn't know what to do. I don't know why this is happening to me. I can't believe..."
  • and his poignant late-night conversation with a portrait of Kennedy: "When they look at you, they see what they want to be. When they look at me, they see what they ARE..."
  • his sweaty, final farewell and impromptu speech to his assembled White House staff, including a tribute to his mother: ("Nobody will ever write a book, probably, about my mother. Well, I guess all of you would say this about your mother. My mother was a saint....Yes, she will have no books written about her. But she was a saint...the greatness comes, not when things go always good for you but the greatness comes when you're really tested, when you take some knocks, some disappointments, when sadness comes. Because only if you've been in the deepest valley can you ever know how magnificent it is to be on the highest mountain...Remember, always give your best. Never get discouraged. Never be petty. Always remember, others may hate you. But those who hate you don't win unless you hate them. And then, you destroy yourself. And so we leave with high hopes and good spirits and with deep humility. And I say to each and every one of you, not only will we always remember you but always you will be in our hearts. And you'll be in our prayers")








No Country For Old Men (2007)

In the Coen Brothers' dark Best Picture-winning crime drama:

  • the strangulation murder of a young deputy (Zach Hopkins) by a handcuffed amoral, thrill-killer Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem), using his handcuffs as a garrote from behind. After the killing, he reacted with a grinning, satisfied exhalation, and then walked away from the bloody, scuffed-up floor from the flailing boots of the struggling man
  • the infamous coin-toss wager scene in which Chigurh threateningly offered a Texaco gas station manager an enigmatic choice, in a cat-and-mouse conversation: ("What's the most you've ever lost in a coin toss?...The most you ever lost in a coin toss....Call it...Yes...Just call it....You need to call it. I can't call it for you. It wouldn't be fair....You've been putting it up your whole life - you just didn't know it. You know what date is on this coin?... 1958. It's been traveling twenty-two years to get here. And now it's here. And it's either heads or tails. And you have to say. Call it....Everything...You stand to win everything, call it.")
  • the concluding scene in which the evil and remorseless killer Chigurh confronted Vietnam veteran and Texas resident Llewelyn Moss's (Josh Brolin) young and innocent wife Carla Jean (Kelly Macdonald) in her bedroom, before her murder (off-screen): ("I knew this wasn't done with. I ain't got the money. What little I had is long gone and there's bills a-plenty to pay yet. I buried my mother today. Ain't paid for that neither....I need to sit down. You got no cause to hurt me...You don't have to do this...I knowed you was crazy when I saw you sitting there. I knowed exactly what was in store for me... I ain't gonna call it...The coin don't have no say - it's just you.")
  • the ending sequence - retired Sheriff Ed Tom Bell (Tommy Lee Jones) sorrowfully recollected a second dream about his father to his wife Loretta (Tess Harper) - a metaphor for mortality in life: ("..The second one, it was like we was both back in older times and I was on horseback goin' through the mountains of a night. Goin' through this pass in the mountains. It was cold and there was snow on the ground and he rode past me and kept on goin'. Never said nothin' goin' by - just rode on past. And he had his blanket wrapped around him and his head down. When he rode past, I seen he was carryin' fire in a horn the way people used to do, and I-I could see the horn from the light inside of it - about the color of the moon. And in the dream I knew that he was goin' on ahead and he was fixin' to make a fire somewhere out there in all that dark and all that cold. And I knew that whenever I got there, he'd be there. And then I woke up")





No Way Out (1987)

In Roger Donaldson's twisting political thriller (an update of the 1946 Kenneth Fearing potboiler The Big Clock, originally adapted for the big screen as The Big Clock (1948) and starring Ray Milland):

  • one of the most infamous sex scenes of all time - the passionate love scene in the back seat of a limousine between Lt. Commander Tom Farrell (Kevin Costner) and the Defense Secretary David Brice (Gene Hackman) mistress Susan Atwell (Sean Young) - punctuated by a glimpse of the Washington Monument
  • the scene of Brice's accidental murder of Atwell who fell from her second floor balcony
  • the surprising suicide of scheming, yet loyal aide Scott Pritchard (Will Patton) when his superior Brice tried to make him the fall guy in the murder of Susan Atwell
  • the devious trick-surprise ending revealing Farrell's true loyalty (to the KGB) as fabled mole/spy 'Yuri'



Noah's Ark (1928)

In this melodramatic epic, a silent film (part-talkie) directed by Michael Curtiz:

  • the intercut sequences of the Biblical story of the 'Great Flood', with a climactic flood sequence - that mixed minatures, double-exposures, and the full-scale destruction of actual sets
  • in a scene reminiscent of Cecil B. DeMille's earlier Biblical epic The Ten Commandments (1923), Noah (Paul McAllister) went on a mountain trek where in one dramatic scene he experienced a burning bush and the creation of giant tablets on a mountainside with flaming letters warning of a Flood ("to destroy all flesh"), and his commission by God to build an Ark
  • just before the flood, the scene of virginal Miriam's (Dolores Costello) sacrifice by King Nephilu (Noah Beery) of Akkad - as the archer drew back his bow, he was struck by lightning
  • a fierce storm and another lightning bolt that destroyed the temple and torrents of water caused a massive flood that ravaged everything





Norma Rae (1979)

In director Martin Ritt's social drama:

  • the inspirational scene in which small-town Alabama cotton mill union organizer Norma Rae (Oscar-winning Sally Field) held up above her head a hand-scrawled, cardboard "UNION" sign while standing on a table -- causing her fellow factory workers to one-by-one shut down their machines in solidarity and stand up for their rights

North by Northwest (1959)

In Alfred Hitchcock's masterpiece of mistaken identity - of a Manhattan advertising executive who was victimized, and then found himself on the run as an implicated murder suspect, and was pursued cross-country by a seeming conspiratorial group of spies, the police, and the FBI:

  • the memorable Saul Bass opening credits sequence set to Bernard Herrmann's lively score, beginning with an unnatural, pale green screen that was shot across with upper-right to lower-left diagonal lines and vertical lines - gridlines that appeared to make the green surface look like the gridwork of graph paper; the major credits sliced across the criss-cross pattern of lines, before the gridwork was soon transformed (or dissolved) into the side of a tall New York City skyscraper - a glass-surfaced building that diagonally filled the screen from the lower left to upper right at an angle; on the huge wall of glass were distorted reflections of midtown Manhattan from below, with yellow taxis at rush hour moving back and forth
  • the opening kidnapping scene when baffled New York adman Roger Thornhill (Cary Grant) was mistaken as double agent 'Kaplan' - and driven to the Long Island (Glen Cove) country estate of 'Townsend' and strong-armed by two sinister-looking thugs; there he was questioned by a distinguished gentleman, presumably 'Lester Townsend' (a UN diplomat) and 'Townsend's' henchman, Leonard (Martin Landau) - in fact, Thornhill was duped and was actually talking to Philip Vandamm (James Mason) - a foreign spy dealing in American secrets, and his hit-man
  • the drunk-driving sequence when Thornhill was force-fed large quantities of bourbon and placed in the driver's seat of a Mercedes roadster convertible on a dark, winding ocean cliff road later that night, when he was expected to become the victim of a fatal, drunk-driving accident
  • the hotel elevator scene when Thornhill's doting, socialite mother Clara (Jessie Royce Landis) naively asked her son's enemy assassins in the crowded elevator space: "You gentlemen aren't really trying to kill my son, are you?"
  • the United Nations murder scene when Roger was speaking to the real Lester Townsend (Philip Ober) - not the phony Townsend at the estate - and was photographed while gripping a knife in mid-air that had been thrown into Townsend's back by an assassin - and it was assumed by the crowd that Roger had killed the UN diplomat
  • the film's surprising revelation - an intelligence agency chief, a paternalistic official named the Professor (Leo G. Carroll), who stated that Kaplan was an imaginary, fictional agent who didn't even exist, and his suggestion that the government do nothing and take advantage of their "good fortune" by continuing to use Thornhill as a decoy
  • the seduction scene aboard a railroad car with cool, untrustworthy, mysterious, platinum blonde femme fatale Eve Kendall (Eva Marie Saint), traveling cross-country with fugitive Thornhill on the Twentieth Century Limited from NYC to Chicago
  • one of the most famous and beloved set pieces ever filmed -- Thornhill's arrival by bus at a deserted Highway 41 crossroads (in neighboring Indiana) in the flat countryside where he had been lured by enemy spies on the pretext of meeting and connecting with the fabled Kaplan - his non-existent double; a stranger stood across the road from him (in widescreen) and strangely wondered about a nearby crop-dusting plane: "That plane's dustin' crops where there ain't no crops"
  • the famous seven minute pursuit-attack sequence by the deadly crop-dusting bi-plane in the open, flat and desolate Midwest cornfield as Thornhill sought protection in a cornfield; the dramatic editing heightened suspense when the strafing plane crashed into an approaching semi-trailer Magnum Oil truck
  • the crowded art auction scene at a chic, 1212 North Michigan Avenue address in Chicago - where Thornhill located Eve with her supposed lover - the fake 'Townsend' (Vandamm) and his henchman Leonard; they were bidding for a Pre-Columbian art object (to be used later to hide microfilmed secrets); Thornhill cleverly began to make erratic low bids, question the authenticity of the art works, and heckle the auctioneer so that the police would arrest him (and he could safely escape from the evil spies)
  • the shocking scene at the Mount Rushmore Monument cafeteria when Eve pulled out a gun (loaded with blanks) from her handbag and fired two shots at Thornhill - appearing to critically wound him, so that jealous lover Vandamm wouldn't suspect that she was working against him
  • afterwards, the romantic reunion between Thornhill and Eve in a cool forest setting filled with ponderosa pines, when they kissed passionately
  • the cliff-dangling episode at Mount Rushmore near Rapid City, South Dakota, after Eve (who had been revealed as a double agent working undercover) and Thornhill (now recruited to help the government and continue pretending he was Kaplan for 24 hours, to prevent Vandamm from taking microfilmed government secrets out of the country) were clinging for their lives from the carved rock with Presidential faces, and he quipped: "They (two previous wives) said I led too dull a life"
  • the final, clever transition as Thornhill tugged on Eve (hanging on the immense carved stone face) and - CUT - pulled her up into a berth in the interior of a Pullman sleeping car (that headed into a tunnel)
















Nosferatu, Eine Symphonie Des Grauens (1922, Germ.) (aka A Symphony of Terror/Horror)

In this influential German expressionistic film by director F.W. Murnau:

  • the scene of the appearance of hideous Nosferatu (undead) vampire in his castle in Transylvania in the Carpathian Mountains - a bald-headed and cadaverous creature with claw-like/skeletal fingernails, long teeth (or fangs) and bat ears
  • Count Graf Orlok (Max Schreck) was seen glimpsed at a long distance, but then approached quickly (through dissolves) toward the horrified, visiting real estate agent Johannes Hutter (Gustav von Wangenheim) until he was completely in the curved, pointed doorway with a Gothic arch, revealing his ugly, scary figure
  • the similar scene of Count Orlok rising straight up from his earth-filled coffin in the cargo hold of the double-masted "death ship" Empusa - causing the crazed first mate (who was hacking into the coffin) to run on-deck and hurl himself into the water
  • the low-angle image of the predatory creature's walk across the prow of the ship (looking like a spider spinning his web in the rigging) transporting him to his new home in the north German town of Wisborg
  • the shadowy approach of the vampire's elongated hand as he climbed the stairs and reached out to a door and toward his stalking victim - an awaiting possessed Ellen Hutter (Greta Schroeder) - who had read in his book that "Deliverance is possible by no other means but that an innocent maiden maketh the vampire heed not the first crowing of the cock - this done by the sacrifice of her own bloode"
  • and finally, the scene of Orlok's death-fading away scene by exposure to sunlight at her window after the rooster crowed signaling the dawn







Nostalgia (1983, Soviet Union/It.) (aka Nostalghia)

In Andrei Tarkovsky's drama:

  • the character of village lunatic Domenico (Erland Josephson) who was attempting to cross through the waters of a mineral pool (in an ancient spa town in Tuscany) with a lit candle (without extinguishing it), in order to save his family from the end of the world
  • the death of Domenico, who immolated himself in the town square to the accompaniment of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony
  • the "candle in an empty pool" sequence - the eventual attempt of befriended Russian writer Andrei Gorchakov (Oleg Yankovsky) to fulfill his promise to Domenico - to walk across the mineral pool with a candle - although when he approached the mineral pool, he discovered that the water had been drained; he repeatedly attempted the walk and finally succeeded, placed his candle on a ledge - and then collapsed (off-screen)



Not Wanted (1949) (aka The Wrong Rut)

In this daring and tragic melodrama about a major social issue (a taboo subject matter), the film's co-producer and co-writer Ida Lupino took over the reins of directorship when original director Elmer Clifton suffered a heart attack on the third day of shooting - it was Lupino's first directorial effort, but she didn't take screen credit:

[Note: When the original release was a financial disaster, enterprising roadshow producer Jack Lake acquired the rights and revised the film to be more exploitational and sensational, with unrelated, inserted color Caesarian childbirth footage, and different beginning and end credits. It was re-released under new titles as a traveling roadshow movie, such as Shame, Streets of Sin, and The Wrong Rut.]

  • the film's title introduction: "IDA LUPINO Introduces"
  • the fixed shot under the opening scrolling credits, coming to rest on the face of the protagonist, unwed mother Sally Kelton (Sally Forrest), as she was walking up a city street's sidewalk toward the camera; and then a close-up of her worried face - it was not known until a closing parallel scene what the source of her anguished, trance-like disposition was, and what had led up to her plight
  • the sight of her picking up a baby in an unattended baby carriage, her quick arrest, and her incarceration in jail, where the story about her unhappy life was told, in flashback, after a blurry transitional dissolve
  • high school drop-out Sally's social issue - an unwed pregnancy due to a one-night hook-up with uncommitted, wandering, dance-hall piano player Steve Ryan (Leo Penn, Sean Penn's father!) under the stars in a park, and her subsequent stay at a home for unwed mothers managed by Mrs. Elizabeth Stone (Ruth Clifford)
  • the memorable scene when she struggled about her decision to give up the baby boy for adoption: "I only want to do what's right for him. What could I give? Love, and love. That's all. No money, no future, nothing...I don't want him to grow up without a father. I don't want him to look at me and despise me"
  • after a return to the opening scene, Sally claimed to the Assistant DA (Larry Dobkin), after being charged with kidnapping, that she only wanted to hold the baby in her arms: ("I didn't mean to kidnap him. I just wanted to hold him for awhile. I thought he was like mine"); after hearing Sally's story, the parents dropped the pending charges
  • in the final scene after leaving the DA's office, Sally was confronted by disabled, gimp-legged veteran and helpful, nerdy nice guy Drew Baxter (Keefe Brasselle) who had always shown an interest in her that she rejected -- she ran from him, threatened to jump from an overpass into the path of an oncoming train below, and from another railroad trestle; he attempted to stop her but eventually collapsed; she decided not to commit suicide, turned back, and found herself in his caring arms, as the film concluded







Nothing Sacred (1937)

In director William Wellman's great screwball comedy:

  • the comic lady-beating scene between reportedly-dying Hazel Flagg (Carole Lombard) (of radium poisoning) and hotshot newspaperman Wally Cook (Fredric March) to make Hazel look properly bruised and terminally ill, ending up with Hazel knocked out with a terrific punch

Notorious (1946)

In this vintage Alfred Hitchcock, noirish suspense thriller and spy-story:

  • the opening sequence of the trial and conviction (for treason) of Nazi spy John Huberman (Fred Nurney) in April of 1946 in Miami, Florida; the sentence was 20 years in prison (and soon after, Huberman committed suicide by taking a poisoned capsule in his jail cell); his daughter exited from the proceedings - a promiscuous, alcoholic, play-girl socialite Alicia Huberman (Ingrid Bergman), who was quickly hounded and questioned by reporters
  • the developing romantic relationship between manipulative American CIA agent T.R. Devlin (Cary Grant) and Alicia - beginning with her self-destructiveness at a party by overdrinking: ("The important drinking hasn't started yet") - and her drunken 80 mph drive with Devlin as a passenger: ("I want to make it 80 and wipe that grin off your face. I don't like gentlemen who grin at me") before being chased and stopped by a motorcycle cop, and he had to reveal himself as a government agent
  • the longest kiss in film history (to date) - in order to bypass the Production Code's restriction on a screen clinch beyond three seconds long - a passionate three-minute kissing scene between Devlin and Alicia that began on a Rio de Janeiro balcony, moved inside to the telephone where Devlin took a call, and ended at the front door -- with them all the while talking and kissing
  • their ploy - to fool WWII Nazi agent Alexander Sebastian (Claude Rains), one of a number of Brazil-based Germans living in Rio (and Alicia's former rejected suitor), by having Alicia reluctantly serve as sexual bait in order to marry him; afterwards, she spitefully told Devlin her attitude about being used: "You can add Sebastian's name to my list of playmates"
  • the incredible, long and unbroken crane shot beginning on the second floor balcony (above the guests mingling below), in Sebastian's Rio de Janeiro mansion during a tense formal champagne party -- the camera swooped down and zeroed in on the purloined key clenched in Alicia's hand (in closeup) that could unlock the wine cellar - where the film's MacGuffin was located; shortly later, when Devlin arrived, she passed the key to him when he kissed her hand
  • the wine cellar sequence where uranium ore dust (looking like black sand) -- was found by Devlin and Alicia in one of the broken bottles - uncovering a dastardly conspiracy by the Nazis to stockpile the material for future use in atom bombs; when they were discovered kissing in the unauthorized location by Alex, Devlin and Alicia pretended to be having a love tryst, and Alicia blamed their romance on the drunken Devlin: ("Alex, don't be foolish. I-I came down because he threatened to make a scene...I couldn't stop him. I tried"), and Devlin also added: "For what it's worth as an apology, your wife is telling the truth. I knew her before you, loved her before you, only I'm not as lucky as you"
  • the scene of Alex's humiliating confession shot from a top-angle ("I am married to an American agent") after he discovered the broken wine bottle, to his domineering and authoritarian mother Mme. Konstantin (Leopoldine Konstantin in her sole US film) in her bedroom, and his mother's curt reaction: "We are protected by the enormity of your stupidity — for a time"; and her plot to silence and eliminate Alicia by slowly poisoning her to death with arsenic-tainted coffee - and later, the scene when Alicia suddenly realized that she was being drugged (visiting Dr. Anderson (Reinhold Schünzel) reached for Alicia's poisoned cup and was simultaneously and hesitantly warned not to drink by both Madame and Alex)
  • the exciting and nerve-wracking finale - Alicia's rescue scene - with Devlin's ascent of the stairs to the weakened and sedated Alicia on her deathbed; after they confessed their love for each other and he admitted: "I was a fatheaded guy full of pain. It tore me up not having you", he carried her down the staircase in full view of the Nazi enemy and out to a car - reportedly to take her to the hospital; he locked the car door on Sebastian, telling him: "No room, Sebastian"
  • the conclusion - Alex received a final summons, the final line of dialogue, by one of his sinister, renegade Nazi agent superiors inside the front door: Eric Mathis (Ivan Triesault): "Alex, will you come in, please? I wish to talk to you"












Now, Voyager (1942)

In director Irving Rapper's great romantic tearjerker:

  • the transformation of Charlotte Vale (Bette Davis) from misfit, neurotic, ugly duckling spinster from Boston to vibrant beauty
  • psychiatrist Dr. Jaquith (Claude Rains) flipping through Charlotte's old photo journal/album
  • the balcony scene with Jerry Durrance (Paul Henreid) - the first time he lit two cigarettes simultaneously and gave one to Charlotte who confessed: "I'm immune to happiness" but then shed tears of gratitude
  • the confrontational scenes between tyrannical mother (Gladys Cooper) and victimized but changed daughter (including her death scene)
  • Jerry and Charlotte's sensitive scene at the Back Bay Station as he prepared to board a train
  • the final famous tearjerking scene between them, including his cool question: "Shall we just have a cigarette on it?", the lighting of two cigarettes, and the final closing line as Charlotte gratefully looked up at the night sky while Max Steiner's score swelled, realizing that she will be happy taking care of his 12 year-old daughter Tina - "Oh, Jerry, don't let's ask for the moon...we have the stars"



The Nun's Story (1959)

In director Fred Zinnemann's religious drama:

  • the scene of the Belgian Congo native attacking and beating to death the nun in the hospital
  • the final silent fadeout as Nun Sister Luke (Audrey Hepburn) removed her nun's habit, and slowly walked away from the convent out into the sunlit street, totally alone and without her nun's habit for the first time in many years
 

The Nutty Professor (1963)

In this farcical comedy written, directed, and acted by Jerry Lewis - and over three decades later remade by Eddie Murphy as The Nutty Professor (1996) - now obese - with Murphy playing most of the roles of the Klump family in the film:

  • the Jekyll-Hyde character in the film: buck-toothed, whiny-voiced, nerdy and naive scientist Professor Kelp, who was found in the smoky rubble of his lab after a violent and destructive explosion in the film's opening scene
  • the first appearance of hip, greasy-haired and obnoxious ladies man alter-ego Buddy Love in the hip Purple Pit hang-out (a dance nightclub) - who sang "That Old Black Magic" at the piano under subdued lighting - bringing stunned reactions from onlookers

The Nutty Professor (1996)

  • the opening credits scene of the release of hundreds of hamsters on the campus of Wellman College from the laboratory of overweight Professor Sherman Klump (Eddie Murphy), a biochemistry researcher
  • Klump's first meeting with pretty graduate student, Carla Purty (Jada Pinkett), and his bumbling first words to her about chemistry that she was going to be teaching: ("WeII, thank you very much. I'm fatter - uh, fIattered that you, you've been foIIowing my work the way you have. A chemistry teacher. Chemistry sure is important to have... chemistry... to have and use it. ChemicaIIy. Chemistry. WeII")
  • the Klump Family's dinner scene (five characters - including Professor Klump, his father Cletus, mother, brother and grandmother - all played by Eddie Murphy), when they first discussed obesity and ex-overweight black celebrities: ("What are ya talkin' about, where all the fat and calories is? You know where that come from? Watchin' that damn TV. Every time you turn it on, ya got somebody there talkin' about lose weight, get heaIthy, get in shape. Everybody lookin' all anorexic, talkin' about that's healthy. I know what healthy is. And I'll tell ya somethin' else. I don't know why everybody tryin' to lose weight in the first pIace! Ain't everybody supposed to be the same size. We're all different. Big, small, medium, midgets. You supposed to have all that. I don't know if I want to be the same size, like that Oprah Winfrey. She's gonna lose her weight. Wasn't nothin' wrong with her. She was fine. Oprah was a fox! She lose all that weight, her head Iook all big, skin hangin' all over. And Luther Vandross. Nigger used to be the black Pavarotti. Lost all that weight, lookin' all ashy. Oprah and Luther need to keep their ass one weight, 'cause I'm confused")
  • the continuation of the dinner scene when Sherman's ravenous father Cletus began to pass gas ("coIon cIeansin'") - and ended up soiling himself when he broke wind - and everyone began tooting: (Cletus: "Oops. Now see what you made me do? Goddamn it, I messed up my pants")
  • also the two scenes of Sherman's fantasy nightmares (spoofing well-known films From Here to Eternity (1953) and King Kong (1933)), kissing Carla on a beach (but with his tremendous weight buried her under the sand) and then terrorizing the city as a monstrous giant Fatzilla: ("It's Fat-ziIIa! Boy, you look Iike King Kong with titties"), and then a passerby cried out a warning: "Oh my God, he's gonna blow!" - and Sherman's gargantuan expelled fart caused massive destruction, although Cletus congratulated him: "Way to go, son! That's my boy!"; a bum lighting a match ignited an H-bomb-like explosion
  • and the attempts in a Rocky-styled montage by Klump to work out, including a failed acupuncture session with thousands of needles
  • after taking a massive dose of genetic weight loss formula, Klump's transformation when he stood in front of a mirror and saw himself: ("Oh! Oh! I'm thin! I'm thin! Look at my cheekbones! I have cheekbones! Yes! Look at my chest. Look at my breasts. I don't have breasts. I'm an 'A' cup. I don't need a bra anymore. Oh, God! I'm thin! I'm thin! I'm thin! Nothin' but air there. Nothin' but air there. My ass is gone now. I'm sIim, sIim, sIim. WeII, I'II be damned! I can see my dick! My dick! My dick, my dick, my dick!"); however, he was also transformed into an obnoxious, testosterone-driven alter-ego Buddy Love (Murphy again)
  • the scene of Buddy's apology to Carla for being late in front of The Scream nightclub: ("Let's just have a meaI together. Why you Ieavin'? Hey, what you want? You want me to beg you? I'II get down on my knees. I'II beg you in front of aII these peopIe. Think I care if these peopIe are watchin'? I'm sorry! I'm sorry! I want the worId to know that I was Iate! And I'm sorry! My car ran outta gas. I needed fresh drawers. My mother's sick. The car broke down on the street...I don't know why this is happenin' tonight. Of aII nights this has got to happen to me tonight.... Why!? Why!?...Why?")
  • Buddy's fat jokes, told in merciless revenge against stand-up comedian Reggie Warrington (Dave Chappelle), deriding his mother's weight and other insults: ("Ok, fat jokes! You wanna do fat jokes? Alright! Your mother's so fat, the bitch needs Thomas Guide to find her asshole! Alright! Wait, wait, wait, your mother's so fat, after sex I roll over twice, and I'm still on the bitch! Your mother is so fat, she fell in the Grand Canyon and got stuck! Reggie's mother's so fat, that the bitch gets her toenails painted at Earl Scheib!...Reggie's mama is so fat, her blood type is rocky road! Last one! Reggie's mother's so fat... HER BELT SIZE IS EQUATOR!")
  • the embarrassing conversation at the Klump dinner table when Sherman brought Carla there for dinner, and they made inappropriate comments about the two having sex and getting married: ("Sherman has never had reIations...I hope you got a strong back. When you get aII that man, and reIease aII that that's been buiIt up for 35 years. Just wantin' and wantin' and wantin'! Whoo! Might make your head bIow off...I got my own seIf hot teIIin' that story")
  • the scene of Buddy explaining in "rich-dummy" terms the secret of his weight loss plan to wealthy alumnus Harlan Hartley (James Coburn) at the hotel restaurant The Ritz: ("I'll break it down for all the rich dummies in the room, listen up! If you gonna eat nasty stuff like this. I know it looks good and some of you all like porkchop. But this greasy, nasty porkchop, do you realize that there's a gene in your DNA that routes this straight to your fat cells, and it causes all sorts of unsightly conditions. Case in point, this woman is sufferin' from what I like to call jello arms. You notice the arm has taken on a gelatin sort of vibe, and it's quite nasty. Now to my left, this gentleman has turkey neck, and to my immediate left, this woman is sufferin' from what we like to call saddlebag syndrome. And to my extreme left, this young lady is suffering from what I like to call tank ass... I'm your brother, I'm your brother. Like I was sayin' everybody, where there's a will, there's a way, and there is a way we can turn these genes off, and I'm not talkin' about usin' exercise or diet, I'm talkin' about by takin' a simple solution that helps reconstruct your metabolic cellular strands, thus giving you the appearance of, as they say in medical terms, gluteus minimus, or in layman's terms, an extremely tight, wonderful ass. Let's give a big round of applause for the woman with the nice ass, huh? It's so nice, don't you agree? She's worked so hard. Have a seat, have a seat. Oh, are these girls with you? Everyone has a nice ass at this table. Is this the nice ass section?")
  • and the final scene, when the two alter-egos: Buddy Love vs. Sherman "fought" against each other as he gave a demonstration on stage of the effects of the miracle serum












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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