Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments



T (continued)
Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

Tootsie (1982)

In director Sydney Pollack's cross-dressing comedy:

  • the scene of obnoxious and unemployed actor Michael Dorsey (Dustin Hoffman) with agent George Fields (Sydney Pollack) who insisted no one would hire him: ("Nobody in Hollywood wants to work with you either. I can't even set you up for a commercial. You played a tomato for 30 seconds - they went a half a day over schedule because you wouldn't sit down..YOU WERE A TOMATO. A tomato doesn't have logic. A tomato can't move")
  • the first appearance of Michael dressed in drag as Dorothy Michaels on a crowded street (seen in extreme telephoto) to get cast on the daytime soap opera Southwest General
  • the scene of 'Dorothy's' screen test when Rita (Doris Belack) asked: "I'd like to make her look a little more attractive, how far can you pull back?" and the cameraman responded: "How do you feel about Cleveland?"
  • and Michael's continuing marvelous cross-dressing impersonation of the no-nonsense, alter-ego female hospital administrator Dorothy Michaels
  • Dorothy's yelling with a man's voice at a cab: "TAXI!"
  • and his droll playwright roommate Jeff's (Bill Murray) many one-liners: (ie. "You slut!")
  • also Michael's many ad-libbed edits to the soap opera script, like hitting leading man co-star John Van Horn (George Gaynes), dubbed "the tongue", over the head with folders to prevent him from landing a kiss
  • the scene of Michael when caught by insecure casual girlfriend Sandy Lester (Teri Garr) dressed in nothing but skimpy black briefs when he attempted to try on her clothes, and then pretended he wanted to have sex with her ("Sandy... I want you"), although she thought he must be gay
  • the outburst of Sandy to Michael when he revealed he loved someone else: "I never said I love you, I don't care about I love you! I read The Second Sex, I read The Cinderella Complex, I'm responsible for my own orgasm, I don't care! I just don't like to be lied to!"
  • the scene of soap actress April Page (Geena Davis in her film debut) startling Dorothy by wearing nothing but skimpy underwear
  • later, in a classic moment, Dorothy made a funny Freudian slip and told April: "What kind of mother would I be if I didn't give my girls tits... tips?"
  • the dining scene of 'Dorothy' coming onto his unsuspecting, confounded and dismayed agent George Fields at a restaurant and then revealing himself as Michael: "It's Michael Dorsey"
  • and the character of Les (Charles Durning in an against-type role) - the widower father of beautiful co-worker and soap star Julie Nichols (Jessica Lange), who fell in love with Dorothy, and spoke about his view of the sexes: "I can remember years ago there was none of this talk about what a woman was, what a man was. You just were what you were. Now they have all this stuff about how much you should be like the other sex, so you can all be more the same. Well, I'm sorry, but we're just not, you know. Not on a farm, anyway. Bulls are bulls, and roosters don't try to lay eggs....You know, my wife and I, we were married a lot of years. People got it all wrong, you know. They say your health is the most important thing. But I can lift this house off the ground. What good is it? Being with someone. Sharing. That's what it's all about"
  • the near-'lesbian' kiss and love scene between Julie and Dorothy
  • the final, live-taped TV episode performance when Michael revealed his true identity by tearing off his wig and eyelashes to prove it - to the stunned shock of almost everyone (including Jeff's comment: "That's one nutty hospital")
  • his final confession to Julie: ("I was a better man with you, as a woman, than I ever was with a woman as a man")

Top Gun (1986)

In director Tony Scott's jingoistic action film:

  • the dogfights of fliers with enemy MIG planes over the Indian Ocean, and arrogant, hot-shot fighter pilot Pete 'Maverick' Mitchell's (Tom Cruise) boasting about flying upside down in order to give the enemy pilot the finger: "I was inverted"
  • the many sensational aerobatic flying sequences as part of the training of the US Navy's elite (Top Gun) Fighter Weapon School, Miramar Naval Air Station near San Diego
  • Maverick's famous catchphrase: "I feel the need, the need for speed"
  • the scene of Maverick's buzzing the tower
  • his competition with Lt. Tom 'Iceman' Kazanski (Val Kilmer), who assured 'Maverick': "You can be my wingman anytime"
  • Maverick's love affair with pretty civilian consultant-instructor Charlotte 'Charlie' Blackwood (Kelly McGillis), highlighted by the Best Original Song recorded by Berlin: "Take My Breath Away", while the entire film was basically about male bonding and machismo (high-fives, shower scenes)
  • the emotional scene of the death of Lt. Nick 'Goose' Bradshaw (Anthony Edwards) in Maverick's arms following a tailspin and botched ejection

Top Hat (1935)

In director Mark Sandrich's Depression-Era musical/dance classic (with an Irving Berlin score) - a tale of mistaken identity:

  • the early scene of Jerry Travers' (Fred Astaire) disturbing hotel room tap-dance "No Strings" - in which he slapped the walls - that upset sleeping Dale Tremont (Ginger Rogers) in a room below
  • his ability to put both Dale and Horace Hardwick (Edward Everett Horton) back to sleep
  • the delightfully dreamy song-dance: "Isn't This a Lovely Day (To Be Caught in the Rain)?" in a sheltering band shell during a rain shower
  • the backdrop of an art-deco Venice with fabulous sets
  • Jerry's firing of his cane as a gun to creatively shoot down his chorus during "Top Hat, White Tie and Tails" (Astaire's signature number)
  • the most memorable Astaire-Rogers duet ever -- Gershwin's "Cheek to Cheek" (with the famous opening lyric "Heaven, I'm in Heaven...") with Rogers dancing in a gown made of shedding ostrich feathers

Topaz (1969)

In Alfred Hitchcock's political/spy thriller:

  • the thought-provoking epilogue sequence - the headlines of a newspaper proclaiming the end of the Cuban Missile Crisis, then a superimposed montage of characters followed by the final image of the newspaper discarded on a park bench near the Arc de Triomphe

Torn Curtain (1966)

In Alfred Hitchcock's mid-60s political/spy thriller:

  • the lengthy murder sequence in a farmhouse kitchen involving the difficult killing of a Soviet agent - German "bodyguard" policeman Hermann Gromek (Wolfgang Keiling) by American physicist and secret double agent Prof. Michael Armstrong (Paul Newman) - involving a thrown soup kettle, strangulation, a butcher knife, and finally a cast-iron gas oven to asphyxiate him to death

Total Recall (1990)

In Paul Verhoeven's big-budget, violent science-fiction action thriller based on Philip K. Dick's story We Can Remember it For You Wholesale:

  • the amazing special effects, production and art design
  • the scene of construction worker Doug Quaid (Arnold Schwarzenegger) taking a vacation through a strange travel agency named Rekall, Inc. - a 'virtual' trip to the planet of Mars - with the sales pitch from Bob McClane (Ray Baker) that actually revealed the film's plot ("By the time the trip is over, you get the girl, kill the bad guys and save the entire planet")
  • the early scene in which he defended himself from his treacherous, attacking agent wife Lori (Sharon Stone)
  • the scene of the subway shoot-out in which widescreen scans showed skeletal shapes and weapons
  • the segment in which Doug extracted a large bugging device from his brain via his nostril
  • the scene on Mars in a sleazy red-light district bar when confronted by mutants and a three-breasted hooker named Mary (Lycia Naff)
  • the later scene in which Doug mercilessly shot his conniving wife in the head - with the one-liner: "Consider that a divorce!"
  • the scene in which Quaid appeared to be killed by gunfire from evil mercenary Vilos Cohaagen's (Ronny Cox) thugs - but he laughed and was revealed to be only a deceptive hologram as he shot them from behind
  • the film's ending when Cohaagen, Quaid, and beautiful brunette love interest Melina (Rachel Ticotin) were spewed out into the airless atmosphere of the reddish planet of Mars - and their eyes bulged and faces swelled due to the lack of oxygen
  • the film's ambiguous ending in which the scene faded to a brilliant white as Melina and Quaid kissed -- was everything part of the VR dream vacation implant, or was what he experienced real? Did he get lobotomized, to bring him back to reality?

Touch Of Evil (1958)

In Orson Welles' masterpiece (considered the last classic film noir):

  • the continuous-action, spectacular 3-minute and 30 second tracking and panning crane shot - an audacious, incredible, breathtaking, uninterrupted shot following a convertible (with a timed explosive dynamite device placed in its trunk), as it crossed the US/Mexico border in the film's credits/opening (appearing only in the 1958 verson, not in the restored version)
  • the car's route was intertwined with views of a newly-married couple: blonde American bride Susan and Mexico City narcotics investigator Ramon Miguel "Mike" Vargas (Janet Leigh and Charlton Heston) walking to the border crossing; as the inter-racial newlyweds kissed, the sound of the explosion of the detonated car overlapped on the soundtrack, and they turned their faces toward the blast
  • the first appearance (a low-angled shot) of a grotesque, cigar-smoking, candy-chewing bloated local detective Hank Quinlan (Orson Welles) as he rolled out of his car at the scene of the car bombing
  • the image of acid splashed on a peeling poster on a crumbling wall of stripper performer Zita (an echo of her death in the burning car explosion)
  • the appearance of cigar-smoking Mexican gypsy and brothel manager Tanya (Marlene Dietrich in a memorable cameo), the femme fatale, who engaged in verbal foreplay with Quinlan: (To Quinlan: "I didn't recognize you. You should lay off those candy bars....You're a mess, honey")
  • Susan's scenes of sexual terror - first in a dark motel room in town by a peeping tom with a flashlight that shone on her as she removed her cashmere sweater, and then in a deserted and remote motel room on the outskirts of town where she was attacked by thugs (members of the Grandi gang)
  • the character of the weirdo, nervous and twitchy motel manager/night watchman (Dennis Weaver)
  • the scene of planted evidence in a bathroom (in the film's second, long unedited scene)
  • Quinlan's chilling strangulation-killing of Uncle Joe Grandi (Akim Tamiroff) in a hotel room next to a semi-unconscious Susan
  • the gripping climax when Quinlan heard the echo of his own voice as it was recorded on a transmitter held by Mike under a bridge, and realized he had been taped and everything about the frame-up had been revealed by his partner Sgt. Pete Menzes (Joseph Calleia)
  • the sequence of the death of Quinlan (shot by a dying Menzes to protect Mike Vargas)
  • the final image of Quinlan lying dead and floating whale-like in dark and stagnant gutter-canal water and garbage
  • Tanya's epitaph for him in the film's final line: "He was some kind of a man. What does it matter what you say about people?...Adios!"

The Towering Inferno (1974)

In John Guillermin's and Irwin Allen's Best Picture-nominated disaster film classic, an epic film about the world's tallest 138 story Glass Tower - a San Francisco skyscraper - on fire:

  • the all-star cast - with the prescient words of SFFD Fire Chief Michael "Mike" O'Hallorhan (Steve McQueen): "You know we got lucky tonight, body count's less than 200. Someday you're gonna kill 10,000 in one of these firetraps"
  • the exciting scene of the rescue of the trapped occupants of the stalled exterior glass-walled scenic elevator

Toy Story (1995)

In the landmark CGI Pixar-Disney film from director John Lasseter - the first feature film made entirely by computer-generation:

  • the bedroom setting of a boy named Andy Davis (voice of John Morris) where toys came to life when humans weren't there, including all the old favorites: Mr. Potato Head (voice of Don Rickles), Slinky Dog (voice of Jim Varney), Hamm the Piggy Bank (voice of John Ratzenberger), the cowardly Rex the Dinosaur (voice of Wallace Shawn), and Shepherdess Bo Peep (voice of Annie Potts)
  • Mr. Potato Head's joke after rearranging his face: "Hey, Hamm, look, I'm Picasso...You uncultured swine. What're you lookin' at, ya hockey puck?"
  • the instant jealousy and dislike that once-favored, pull-string cowboy toy Woody (voice of Tom Hanks) had for a neophyte toy - the egotistical space-suited action figure Buzz Lightyear (voice of Tim Allen), introduced on Andy's birthday: ("The word I am searching for, I can't say because there's pre-school toys present")
  • Buzz's catchphrase as he jumped into the air: "To infinity, and beyond!"
  • non-flying Woody's continued insistence that Buzz couldn't fly while Buzz took an amazing flight around the room (without actually flying) and remarked: "Can!" -- with Woody's muttered jealous retort: "That wasn't flying! That was falling, with style!"
  • Woody's realization that Buzz was only a toy: "You Are A Toy! You aren't the real Buzz Lightyear! You're - you're an action figure! You are a child's plaything"; Buzz responded: "You are a sad, strange little man"
  • the scene of Woody and Buzz getting trapped inside the house of the neighboring character of mean-spirited, braces-wearing toy abuser and torturer Sid Phillips (voice of Erik von Detten): ("He tortures toys -- just for FUN!"), where they encountered Sid's vicious dog and "mutant" toys in his room (Buzz: "They're cannibals!") - Woody feared: "We are gonna die!"
  • Sid's come-uppance when the toys were animated and came to life to surround him and scare him: ("We toys can see everything" Woody: "So play NICE!")
  • Woody and Buzz's use of a firecracker to catch up to the moving van, when Woody again commented on Buzz' flying skill: Woody: "Hey, Buzz! You're flying!" Buzz: "This isn't flying, this is falling - with style!" Woody: "To Infinity and Beyond!"

Toy Story 2 (1999)

In director John Lasseter's superior sequel to the CGI classic:

  • the amazing opening sequence in which Buzz Lightyear (voice of Tim Allen) flew through an alien world, defeated thousands of robots at once but then was blasted by his Darth Vader-like arch-nemesis, Emperor Zurg (voice of Andrew Stanton) -- all revealed to be in a video game that dinosaur Rex (voice of Wallace Shawn) was playing
  • Woody's (voice of Tom Hanks) nightmare of being discarded and thrown into the garbage after having his arm torn
  • the scene of Woody's theft by greedy Toy Barn owner and toy collector Al McWhiggin (voice of Wayne Knight) during a garage sale
  • the scene of Woody's fellow toys watching the theft and attempting to safely cross a busy street to rescue him
  • Woody's finding that he was a collector's item - part of a set of toys called the Roundup Gang, that included a cowgirl named Jessie (voice of Joan Cusack), a horse named Bullseye, and a prospector named Stinky Pete (voice of Kelsey Grammer), and the fact that he was an historic TV star - he had appeared in a black-and-white TV puppet show in the '50s called Woody's Roundup
  • the enchanting sequence in which toy repairman, Geri The Cleaner - who was hired by Al - restored Woody to pristine condition ("Just like new") - he told Al: "You can't rush art"
  • the appearance of dozens of Barbies partying, when Tour Guide Barbie (voice of Jodi Benson) introduced herself: "I'm Tour Guide Barbie! Please keep your hands, arms, and accessories inside the car, and no flash photography. Thank you" - and Mr. Potato Head muttered to himself: "I'm a married spud, I'm a married spud..."
  • the scene of Buzz's visit to the "Buzz Lightyear" aisle in Roy's Toy Barn, where hundred of Buzz Lightyears were packaged for sale
  • Jessie's heartbreaking story - told in flashback - of being abandoned under a bed by former owner Emily (with the Oscar-nominated ballad "When She Loved Me" sung by Sarah McLachlan)
  • Woody's difficult choice - to live forever as an exhibit in a Tokyo toy museum or to face inevitable death as a child's toy -- with his decision made when his television counterpart sang: "You've Got a Friend In Me"
  • the resolution to Stinky Pete's villainy when he was stuffed into a little girl's Barbie backpack (retrieved at an airport baggage carousel) by Andy's toys to teach him a lesson
  • the scene of Woody's rescue of Jessie from an airplane bound for Tokyo, by riding on Woody's horse Bullseye in pursuit of the baggage truck
  • the finale in which the penguin squeeze toy Wheezy (voice of Joe Ranft) belted out, Vegas and Sinatra-styled (with Robert Goulet's voice): "You've Got a Friend In Me", accompanied by a trio of Barbie backup singers

Trainspotting (1996, UK)

In Danny Boyle's independent film - an urban drama about slum-dwelling Edinburgh, Scotland junkies with thick accents, adapted from Irvine Welsh's 1993 cult novel:

  • in the film's opening, nihilistic heroin addict Mark 'Rent-Boy' Renton's (Ewan McGregor) "choose life" voice-over diatribe as he raced away from pursuing security guards: "Choose life. Choose a job. Choose a career. Choose a family. Choose a f--kin' big television. Choose washing machines, cars, compact disc players, and electrical tin openers. Choose good health, low cholesterol and dental insurance. Choose fixed-interest mortgage repayments. Choose a starter home. Choose your friends. Choose leisure wear and matching luggage. Choose a three piece suite on hire purchased in a range of f--kin' fabrics. Choose DIY and wondering who the f--k you are on a Sunday morning. Choose sittin' on that couch watching mind-numbing, spirit-crushing game shows, stuffing f--kin' junk food into your mouth. Choose rottin' away at the end of it all, pissin' your last in a miserable home, nothing more than an embarassment to the selfish, f--ked-up brats that you've spawned to replace yourselves. Choose your future. Choose life...But why would I want to do a thing like that? I chose not to choose life. I chose somethin' else. And the reasons? There are no reasons. Who needs reasons when you've got heroin?"

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948)

In Best Director-winning John Huston's tale of avarice among gold prospectors in Mexico (based upon B. Traven's novel):

  • in Tampico, drifter Fred C. Dobbs' (Humphrey Bogart) thrice-asked request to a white-suited American (an early cameo by director John Huston): "Hey mister, could you stake a fellow American to a meal?"
  • old and grizzly prospector Howard's (Walter Huston) recounting of tales of gold-seeking to greedy gold seeker Dobbs at the flophouse
  • the scene of gleeful Howard's dancing of a jig upon the discovery of gold and his exclamation: "Up there!"
  • the scene of Mexican bandits confronting the gold-seekers when Dobbs asked where their Federales badges were - and Gold Hat's (Alfonso Bedoya) answer: "Badges? We ain't got no badges! We don't need no badges. I don't have to show you any stinkin' badges!"
  • the demise of the crazed and paranoid Dobbs - his confrontation with the bandits and his death scene
  • in the conclusion, crazy Howard's ironic, last bitter but boisterous laugh with youthful Curtin (Tim Holt) as he recognized the cosmic humor in how the gold dust blew back into the desert sand; he exclaimed: "The gold has gone back to where we found it!..."

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1945)

In director Elia Kazan's coming of age drama (his first feature film):

  • the scene in a tenement window in turn-of-the-century Brooklyn in which improvident Irish singing waiter Johnny Nolan (Oscar-winning James Dunn) told his young 13 year-old daughter Francie (Special Oscar-winning Peggy Ann Garner) that she needn't worry that the neighbors had killed a tree nearby, with an optimistic tone: ("They didn't kill it, why they could cut that old tree right down to the ground and a root would push up someplace else in the cement. You wait until springtime, my darlin', you'll see")
  • the Christmas-time, bedtime scene when Johnny - a loser due to his drinking and irresponsibility - encouraged Francie's aspirations to grow up and be a writer, then watched her fall asleep, faced the truth and decided to go find a real job - and never came home again

The Trial (1962, Fr/W.Germ/It.) (aka Le Procès)

In Orson Welles' psychological drama - an adaptation of Franz Kafka's novel:

  • the stunningly directed, visually-rich, imaginative and surreal nightmare surrounding a persecuted clerk named Joseph K (Anthony Perkins) - confronted by police and told he had been placed on trial for an undefined, never-explained crime

Triumph of the Will (1935, Germ.) (aka Triumph Des Willens)

In Leni Riefenstahl's influential yet infamous propagandistic documentary film that glorified Hitler and his regime:

  • the spectacular scenes of the Nazi leader's 1934 Nuremberg rally/convention held for his political party
  • the remarkable visual scene of the god-like descent of Hitler's plane from the clouds
  • his climactic speech to cheering throngs of followers
  • the final image of a swastika super-imposed on marching soldiers

TRON (1982)

In Walt Disney Production's visually-astonishing, state of the art (at its time) landmark film with Wendy Carlos' unique score, the first true CGI-animated film:

  • computer programmer/hacker Kevin Flynn/Clu (Jeff Bridges) literally transported ('digitalized'), by malevolent Master Control Program or "MCP" (voice of David Warner), into the grid-lined, neon-glowing, 3-D pixelized world inside an evil corporation's mainframe ENCOM computer where programs lived and worked
  • such astounding scenes as the breathtaking, gladiatorial competitive race in the arena - the light cycle sequence between curved racing pods
  • the startling, brain-spewing death of evil overlord Sark (Warner) killed by gladiator/hero Tron (Bruce Boxleitner) in a duel
  • the dramatic kiss between Flynn and feminine computer programmer Yori (Cindy Morgan) before Flynn sacrificed himself by jumping into the MCP beam
  • the final liberation of the system (causing landscapes to burst out in full luminous intensity and color)

True Grit (1969)

In Henry Hathaway's classic modern-day western:

  • the image of fat, US Marshal "Rooster" Cogburn (Oscar-winning John Wayne) with a patch over one eye
  • the memorable scene of his encounter with 'Lucky' Ned Pepper (Robert Duvall) - challenging him with his reins in his teeth: "Fill your hand, you son of a bitch" after being called a "one-eyed fat man"

(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

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