Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments




Take the Money and Run (1969)

In co-writer/director Woody Allen's early crime-related comedy (Allen's first feature that he acted in, directed, and wrote):

  • the sight of neurotic cello player Virgil Starkwell (Woody Allen) playing in a marching band and his cello flying out the second-story window of his house
  • the scene of Virgil's gunfight with police when his self-made soap gun melts in a sudden rainstorm
  • his many failed escape attempts from prison; the many compulsive, unsuccessful attempts at bank robbery by the nebbish crook - including his handwritten illegible stickup note for $50,000 (and the subsequent discussion with two bank tellers: "Does this look like "gub" or "gun"?)
  • the interview with his embarrassed parents (with Groucho Marx disguises)
  • the scene of Virgil agreeing to an experimental vaccine in order to be paroled and being temporarily turned into a rabbi
  • Virgil's last line when interviewed in prison: "Do you know if it's raining outside?"

A Tale of Two Cities (1935)

In director Jack Conway's interpretation of the classic Charles Dickens story of the French Revolution:

  • the epic scene of the storming of the Bastille
  • the unforgettable image of the evil Mme. Defarge (Blanche Yurka) who cackles and knits as victims are condemned
  • the final scene of Sydney Carton's (Ronald Colman) self-sacrifice to the guillotine in order to save another life, holding hands with another victim, a seamstress (Isabel Jewell) as they ascend the scaffold
  • Carton's noble delivery of his last words: ( "It's a far, far better thing I do than I have ever done. It's a far, far better rest I go to than I have ever known...")

The Talk of the Town (1942)

In George Stevens' romantic screwball comedy:

  • the comedic situations of a trio of characters in a love triangle in a summer house rental
  • the scenes of schoolteacher Nora Shelley's (Jean Arthur) attempts to cover up and hide wrongly-convicted arsonist-fugitive and ex-boyfriend Leopold Dilg (Cary Grant) from law professor, Supreme Court nominee and fellow boarder Professor Michael Lightcap (Ronald Colman)
  • the explanation that his loud snoring is actually her adenoids, proposing that he is Joseph the gardener, and covering his picture in the paper with fried eggs
  • the trial scene when the mob threatens to take over
  • Lightcap's assistance to clear Dilg of his crime, defend his rights, and uncover a frame-up with a stirring speech: "His (Dilg's) only crime was that he had courage and spoke his mind...This is your law and your finest possession. It makes you free men in a free country. Why have you come here to destroy it? If you know what's good for you, take those weapons home and burn them - and then think. Think of this country and of the law that makes it what it is...The law must be engraved in our hearts and practiced every minute, to the letter and spirit. It can't even exist unless we're willing to go down into the dust and blood and fight a battle every day of our lives to preserve it, for our neighbor as well as ourselves"
  • the ending scene in the long Supreme Court corridor in which Nora follows Leopold and finally gets her man

Talk to Her (2002, Sp.) (aka Hable con ella)

In writer/director Pedro Almodovar's Oscar-winning Best Original Screenplay film (told in flashback) about solitude, sickness and madness:

  • the relationships of two strangers with their unconscious would-be loves, one of whom was young male nurse Benigno Martin (Javier Camara), who has been attentively caring for comatose ballerina Alicia (Leonor Watling) at El Bosque Clinic
  • the disturbing dream sequence (a 7 minute B/W mock silent movie titled "The Shrinking Lover" within the film) in which Benigno finds himself (metaphorically) shrinking while trying to make love to a beautiful woman (Paz Vega) - after he explores her naked body, he enters into her vagina

Tarzan and His Mate (1934)

In this excellent sequel to the first film (with Weissmuller and O'Sullivan), co-directed by Jack Conway and Cedric Gibbons:

  • with many great action sequences and jungle adventures, featuring Jane (Maureen O'Sullivan) appearing throughout in a daring halter top and skimpy loin cloth
  • the early sequence of a nakedly-silhouetted Jane trying on a lovely Parisian dress in a tent
  • her incredible swan dive into Tarzan's (Johnny Weissmuller) arms and extended nude underwater swimming scene with Tarzan
  • the additional scenes of Tarzan's attacking an old phonograph player
  • the headhunter attack and the boulder-hurling gorillas
  • Tarzan's many rescues of Jane - fighting a lioness, a rhino, a leopard, a 14 ft. crocodile, and two more lions
  • Tarzan's come-to-the-rescue with elephants and apes in the exciting finale

Tarzan the Ape Man (1932)

In this first film of the Tarzan series starring Johnny Weissmuller, directed by W.S. Van Dyke:

  • the introduction of ape man Tarzan's (Johnny Weissmuller) famous trademark jungle call: "aaah-eee-aaah" as he swings on vines through the tree tops and then peers down at the explorers
  • his abduction of Jane (Maureen O'Sullivan)
  • the first appearance of pet chimpanzee Chetah
  • the classic introduction scene: "Jane... Tarzan... Jane... Tarzan..."
  • the lion-wrestling scene
  • Jane's extended and flirtatious scene - swimming in a jungle river with Tarzan and floating along in his arms as she carries on a loving monologue with him
  • the attack and capture scene by ferocious pygmies
  • Tarzan's jungle call and rescue with stampeding wild elephants and a fight to the death with a giant gorilla to rescue Jane
  • in the film's final image -- Tarzan and Jane in the distance running along the top of some huge boulders, and then standing side by side on a large rock on the hillside waving, as Tchaikovsky's Theme from Romeo and Juliet plays

Taxi Driver (1976)

In Martin Scorsese's visceral and feverish masterpiece:

  • the unforgettable images of the squalid side of New York City with its hard-core porn houses and Times Square pushers, pimps, and prostitutes
  • the performance of Robert De Niro as neurotic, insomniac loner Vietnam vet/cabbie Travis Bickle
  • the scene of Travis' abortive date with pretty blonde campaign worker Betsy (Cybil Shepherd) when he takes her to a porno theatre
  • the surrealistic taxi cab rides including the psychotic passenger (director Martin Scorsese) who plans to kill his adulterous wife with a .44 Magnum
  • the indelible "You talkin' to me?..." scene belligerently delivered (to the camera and an invisible enemy) in front of a mirror as Travis practices quick-drawing with his guns in his squalid walkup apartment (ending with the conclusion: "You're dead")
  • the many scenes of Travis writing in his journal about his dis-satisfaction with his life
  • the breakfast scene with teenaged runaway/prostitute Iris (Jodie Foster) who dines on toast topped with jelly and sugar
  • the scene of Iris' pimp Sport (Harvey Keitel) dancing with Iris
  • the scene of the Palantine political rally with Travis' Mohawk
  • the vigilante bloodbath killing of Sport ("Suck on this"), and the brothel gunfight's aftermath with Travis putting his bloody finger to his temple and saying "Pgghew! Pgghew! Pgghew!" as a mock-suicide - followed by an incredible crane shot from above viewing the carnage
  • the rescue of Iris, and the ironic heroic acclaim given to Travis

10 (1979)

In Blake Edwards' comedy classic about having a mid-life crisis:

  • George's (Dudley Moore) pursuit of Jenny (Bo Derek), a beautiful "10," to Mexico
  • the classic scenes of his fantasies and attempts to get close to his dream girl
  • the image of a nubile Jenny with corn-rowed, beaded hair and skimpy bathing suit running on the beach
  • the seduction scene to the sounds of Ravel's "Bolero"

The Ten Commandments (1956)

In Cecil B. De Mille's three and a half-hour Biblical epic classic:

  • Moses (Charlton Heston) and the Burning Bush sequence
  • the Egyptian prince Moses being told by Pharaoh's wife Nefretiri (Anne Baxter) the oft-quoted phrase: ("Oh Moses, Moses, you stubborn, splendid, adorable fool")
  • his many confrontations ("Let my people go") with the stubborn Pharaoh (Yul Brynner)
  • the plagues, especially the Nile turning blood red
  • the magnificent, enormous crowd scene of the liberation and exodus of the Hebrews as they throng together to be led out of Egypt
  • the spectacular parting of the Red Sea scene (in the pre-digital and CGI-era) by Moses' outstretched arms
  • the creation of the 10 Commandments scene - fiery engravings upon rock
  • the orgiastic Golden Calf scene

The Terminator (1984)

In James Cameron's original science-fiction film, the first in a series:

  • the opening future-world sequence of machines warring against each other in post-apocalyptic Los Angeles AD 2029
  • the materialization in Los Angeles of 1984 of two time travelers: the "Terminator" (Arnold Schwarzenegger) Model 101 cyborg and resistance fighter Kyle Reese (Michael Biehn)
  • the characterization of the relentless, villainous, and almost wordless killing machine
  • the scene of the shootout in the Tech-Noir bar/nightclub and Reese's statement to Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton): "Come with me if you want to live" and human resistance leader Reese's warning to a resistant Sarah Connor as he struggles with her in their car while being pursued: "It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead..."
  • the Terminator's two surgeries upon himself (his damaged forearm and his left eye) after crashing a stolen police vehicle
  • the Terminator's damaging assault of a police station and his much-quoted "I'll be back" scene (before ramming it with his vehicle)
  • the romance between Sarah and Reese and their affecting love scene (to the accompaniment of piano music) with clenched hands held together - that will ultimately produce a future liberator named John Connor
  • the scene of the Terminator's pursuit in a tanker truck - and his fiery burning down to his red-eyed exo-skeleton
  • his final crushing end in a factory's hydraulic press

Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)

In director James Cameron's action-oriented sequel:

  • the T-800 Terminator's (Arnold Schwarzenegger) time-travel arrival and entrance into a biker's bar to borrow clothes and cycle transportation
  • the suspenseful chase scene in the LA storm drain channel - a showdown between a mini-bike, a semi-tractor-trailer big-rig cab and a Harley Davidson motorcycle
  • the innovative special effects of the single-minded T-1000 (Robert Patrick) - a technologically advanced cyborg made of "morphing" liquid metal (e.g., his morphing into a black and white tiled floor) during the exciting scene of the rescue of young John Connor's (Edward Furlong) mother Sarah (Linda Hamilton) from a mental institution
  • the Terminator's continual humorous ability to pick up slang (e.g., "Hasta la vista, baby," "Chill out, dickwad," and "no problemo") and to feel some emotion
  • Sarah's continual visions of an apocalyptic "judgment day"
  • the laboratory sequence at Cyberdyne in which the Terminator holds off hundreds of police officers while Dyson meets a heroic death by destroying the artifacts from the future
  • the film's many battles between the two killer cyborgs (including the finale in the steel foundry when the T-1000 emerges from a flaming liquid nitrogen truck crash and reconstitutes itself from shattered frozen (and melting) droplets)
  • the "thumbs up" self-sacrificial scene by the T-800 in the film's final sequence

Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)

In Jonathan Mostow's follow-up sequel:

  • under the credits, the naked arrival of the sexy new terminator (T-X or Terminatrix) (Kristanna Loken) who appropriates a rich woman's silver sports Lexus ("I like this car") in Beverly Hills on Rodeo Drive
  • the amusing moment when T-X, stopped by a police car for speeding and running a red light, inflates her breasts to impress the arresting officer, after seeing a Victoria's Secret billboard ad for "WHAT IS SEXY?"
  • the arrival of the outdated, monosyllabic, and obsolete protector Terminator (T-850) (Arnold Schwarzenegger) - who demanded the clothes of a leather-clad male stripper (on-stage and mid-performance) during a cowgirls' Ladies Night "Pleasure Men Fantasy Show" at the Desert Star bar
  • the action-filled multiple vehicle-chase sequence in which the Terminator clings from the end of a massive construction crane mounted on a truck that smashes him through buildings
  • the SWAT team shootout at the mausoleum with the Terminator's escape in a bullet-riddled hearse
  • the climactic scene of SkyNet's activation by Lieut. Gen. Robert Brewster (David Andrews) and its computer viral takeover of global networks - initiating a massive nuclear holocaust
  • the one-on-one battle in a hallway, men's room and storeroom (within the USAF's CRS building) between the two Terminators (a parody of them having sex)
  • the finale in which both Terminators are "terminated" by a hydrogen fuel-cell explosion ("You are terminated")
  • and the awe-inspiring nuclear annihilation of the world (initiated by the rogue artificial intelligence SkyNet) - a finale reminiscient of the ending of Dr. Stranglelove, Or...: (1964)

Terms of Endearment (1983)

In James L. Brooks' Best Picture-winning signature tearjerker film:

  • the memorable theme song
  • the persistent womanizing by raunchy ex-astronaut Garrett Breedlove (Oscar-winning Jack Nicholson) of his neighbor - Texas widow Aurora Greenway (Oscar-winning Shirley MacLaine)
  • their first lunch date ("You need a lot of drinks") and his wild car drive (steering with his feet) into the ocean
  • the scene of Aurora learning of her daughter Emma's (Debra Winger) pregnancy -- she screeches: "Why should I be happy about BEING A GRANDMOTHER?"
  • Aurora's hospital scene when she panics and shrieks over her 30 year-old daughter's terminal cancer and demands that the nurses give her dying daughter her overdue shot of morphine ("I don't see why she has to have this pain....It's time for her shot, do you understand? Do something...My daughter is in pain! Give her the shot, do you understand me? GIVE MY DAUGHTER THE SHOT!!")
  • Emma's hospital goodbye scene with her children in which youngest son Teddy (Huckleberry Fox) tells off his bratty older brother Tommy (Troy Bishop) ("Why don't you shut up, shut up!")
  • the nurse's words to Emma's awakened husband ("She's gone")
  • the final scene of Garrett providing support to the older boy following Emma's death

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)

In director Tobe Hooper's seminal horror film:

  • the sudden appearances of Leatherface (Gunnar Hansen) wearing a butcher's apron and a mask stitched out of human skin wielding a roaring chain saw
  • his first appearance in the farmhouse from behind a sliding door when he sledge-hammers Kirk's (William Vail) head
  • the shocking moment that Pam (Teri McMinn) is hung by her upper back on a meat hook
  • the scene of sole surviving Sally Hardesty (Marilyn Burns) being held captive at the cannibals' dinner table (and having her finger cut as an appetizer for the weakened, withered, vampiric and patriarchal Grandfather (John Dugan))
  • the film's climax as Sally escapes in the back of a pickup truck and leaves the buzzing, chainsaw-wielding killer standing on the highway behind her, spinning and twirling in the golden light

That Hamilton Woman (1941)

In Alexander Korda's historical epic:

  • the scenes of the passionate, romantic, but tragic and forbidden love affair between British naval commander Lord Admiral Horatio Nelson (Laurence Olivier) and the beautiful Lady Emma Hamilton (Vivien Leigh) (Olivier and Leigh, both with recent divorces that allowed them to marry in 1940, were a newlywed couple at their most romantic time together when the film was made)
  • Nelson's memorable speech about how the English have always fought tyrants and dictators

That Obscure Object of Desire (1977, Fr.) (aka Cet Obscur Objet du Désir)

In director Luis Buneul's final surrealistic film:

  • the revolutionary, interchangeable use of two actresses to portray two different sides of the personality of one of the main characters: - elusive, 19 year-old former chambermaid and working class dancer Conchita Perez -- as both
    (1) a voluptuous, tantalizing and beautiful lover (Spanish actress Angela Molina), and as
    (2) a cold, aloof and unattainable female (French actress Carole Bouquet)
  • the story of sexual politics told mostly in flashback as a series of vignettes, as successful Spanish businessman and male-chauvinistic widower Mathieu Fabert (Fernando Rey) is obsessed with her
  • his sexual frustration and anguish clearly demonstrated when the alluring, carnal, teasing and erotic side of her personality enticed him for favors, but then changed to a disinterested, unobtainable female wearing a full, elaborately-laced pelvic corset (that was similar to a chastity belt and impossible to remove) who refused his lustful advances

(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
| 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

Previous Page Next Page