Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

Moonstruck (1987)


Written by Tim Dirks

Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

Moonstruck (1987)

In Norman Jewison's quirky romantic comedy based on John Patrick Shanley's Oscar-winning screenplay:

  • the Brooklyn-Italian Castorini family, including repressed 37 year-old Italian widowed bookkeeper Loretta Castorini (Best Actress Oscar-winner Cher), her parents: a cheating father Cosmo (Best Supporting Actor nominee Vincent Gardenia) (with mistress Mona (Anita Gillette)) and philosophical mother Rose (Best Supporting Actress winner Olympia Dukakis), and her crusty Italian-speaking, dog-loving Grandfather (Fiodor Chaliapin)
  • the scene of widowed Loretta being formally asked for her hand in marriage by Momma's boy Johnny Cammareri (Danny Aiello), while having dinner together in the fancy Grand Ticino restaurant; she insisted that it be done right: "It's for luck. A man proposes marriage to a woman, he should kneel down...You propose marriage to a woman, you should offer her an engagement ring" - she allowed him to use his "pinky ring"
  • the revelation by Johnny that he hadn't spoken for five years to his younger brother (Loretta's future brother-in-law) - the never-married, one-handed bakery operator Ronny Cammareri (Nicolas Cage); Ronny blamed Johnny for indirectly causing the accident that maimed his hand; with the marriage planned for a month in the future (because Johnny had to visit his dying mother in Sicily), at the airport, Johnny requested that she invite Ronny to the wedding, telling her: "There was some bad blood"
  • the scene of Loretta informing her father Cosmo that she was engaged to be married and his response: "You did this once before. It didn't work out...Bad luck...Don't get married again. It don't work out for you" - because her husband was accidentally struck by a bus and killed; he cautioned her about marrying Johnny: "He's a big baby... I don't like his face. I don't like his lips. When he smiles, I can't see his teeth. What is he hiding?"; Loretta even admitted that she only like Johnny, but didn't love him
  • Loretta's first encounter with the sweaty and spiteful Ronny in front of the hot bakery ovens, when Ronny expressed how tortured he was that his brother was getting married: "I have no life. My brother Johnny took my life from me...And now he's gettin' married. He has his. He's getting his, and he wants me to come. What is life?...They say bread is life. And I- I bake bread, bread, bread. I sweat and shovel this stinkin' dough in and out of this hot hole in the wall, and I-I should be so happy, huh, sweetie? You want me to come to the wedding of my brother Johnny? Where's my wedding? Chrissy, over by the wall, bring me the big knife.... I'm gonna cut my throat!...I want you to watch me kill myself so you can tell my brother Johnny on his wedding day, okay? Chrissy! Bring me the big knife!"
  • the climax of their meeting when the tormented Ronny screamed: "I lost my hand, I lost my bride. Johnny has his hand! Johnny has his bride! You want me to take my heartbreak, put it away and forget? (pause) Is it just a matter of time before a man opens his eyes and gives up his one dream, his one dream of happiness?"
  • the scene of Ronny sharing a bottle of wine with recently-engaged Loretta; she offered unsolicited advice to him about his life: ("The big part of you has no words, and it's a wolf...And now, now you're afraid because you know the big part of you is a wolf that has the courage to bite off its own hand to save itself from the trap of the wrong love. That's why there's been no woman since that wrong woman. Okay? You're scared to death of what the wolf will do if you try and make that mistake again"); their conversation ended with accusations (Ronny: "A bride without a head!" Loretta: "A wolf without a foot!"), the toppling of the kitchen table, and a very passionate kiss between the two of them - he then carried her to his bed for more kisses and an overnight stay (and tryst)
  • the next morning - after - Ronny's proclamation and confession of love to Loretta - but her immediate reaction was that she regretted sleeping with him: she delivered two tremendous slaps across the face and screamed: "Snap out of it!"
  • after seeing La Boheme at the Metropolitan Opera with her, Ronny's declaration of his cynical views on love: ("We're not here to make things perfect. Snowflakes are perfect, stars are perfect. Not us! Not US! We are here to ruin ourselves and...and to break our hearts and love the wrong people and...and DIE") and his pleading to Loretta to come upstairs with him: ("Now I want you to come upstairs and...and GET in my bed...")
Ronny's Proposal to Loretta ("Will you marry me?")
Sealed With a Kiss
Confused and Stunned Family Onlookers
  • in the climactic breakfast proposal scene, Loretta's angry remark when Johnny returned to break off their engagement (due to his dying mother's recovery) and then reassured her: ("In time, you will see that this is the best thing") and her retort back that she agreed with him: ("The engagement is off... In time, you'll drop dead and I'll come to your funeral in a red dress!")
  • then, after Ronny immediately proposed to Loretta ("Will you marry me?"), she told her mother: "I love him awful" and Johnny uttered a stunned "WHAT?!"

Johnny's Formal Marriage Proposal to Loretta

Loretta's Father Concerned About Her Impending Marriage ("Bad luck")

Spiteful Ronny at the Bakery - Threatening to Kill Himself with a "Big Knife"

"I lost my hand. I lost my bride"

Shouting at Each Other

Passionate Kiss Between Loretta and Ronny

Loretta: "Snap out of it!"

Ronny: "Get in my bed!"


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