Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments



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

Wedding Crashers (2005)

In director David Dobkin's R-rated romantic comedy:

  • a bawdy R-rated film about two intrepid Washington DC bachelors and lifelong friends John Beckwith (Owen Wilson) and Jeremy Grey (Vince Vaughn) who invited themselves to nuptial receptions to pick up on women and bridesmaids
  • Jeremy's fears of the 'perils of dating', after Janice (Stephanie Nevin) offered to set him up on a date: "I've got the perfect girl for you" - he responded: "Janice, I apologize to you if I don't seem real eager to jump into a forced, awkward intimate situation that people like to call dating. I don't like the feeling. You're sitting there, you're wondering, 'Do I have food on my face? Am I eating? Am I talking too much? Are they talking enough? Am I interested? I'm not really interested. Should I play like I'm interested? But I'm not that interested, but I think she might be interested. But do I want to be interested? But now she's not interested.' So now, all of sudden I'm, I'm starting to get interested. And when am I supposed to kiss her? Do I have to wait for the door? 'Cause then it's awkward, it's like 'Well, good night.' Do you do like the ass-out hug? Where you like, you hug each other like this, and the ass sticks out because you're trying not to get too close. Or do you go right in and just kiss 'em on the lips or don't kiss 'em at all? It's very difficult trying to read the situation and all the while, you're just really wondering, 'Are we gonna get hopped enough to make some bad decisions?' Perhaps play a little game called 'Just the Tip.' Just for a second, just to see how it feels, or 'Ouch Ouch, You're on My Hair.'... And thank you. Hey, Janice. Great talk"
  • the sped-up, raucous montage sequence of the two scammers seeking free love at various wedding receptions, and flopping around in bed with partly-clothed and naked women from the weddings - including Brunette (Rachel Sterling), Ivana (Ivana Bozilovic), Hindu woman (Naureen Zaim) and Vivian (Diora Baird), to the tune of the Isley Brothers' "Shout"
  • the objectives of their 'wedding crashing' - including two sisters: Claire Cleary (Rachel McAdams) (with a hotheaded, unfaithful boyfriend named Sack Lodge (Bradley Cooper)), and Claire's "stage-five virgin clinger" sister Gloria (Isla Fisher)
  • Jeremy's insistence to John, at the Cleary's wedding reception, that there were specific rules for 'crashing weddings' - there's no overtime and they had to leave right away: "John, this is completely against the rules. You have a wedding and a reception to seal the deal. Period. There's no overtime" - they both argued: "You lock it up!"
  • the Cleary dinner table scene when Jeremy was touched in his crotch area (to bring him to orgasm) under the table by nymphomaniacal Gloria, as a serious discussion about venture capitalism was being conducted: "Well, there's the company that we have where we're taking the, the fur or the wool from sheep and we turn it into thread for homeless people to sew. And then they make it into cloth, which they in turn sew then, um, make some shirts and pants for other homeless people to sell. It's a pretty good deal"; Jeremy struggled to add that he was relieved: "People, people helping people... Terrific, it was terrific!"
  • the protective warning of presidential wannabe, William Cleary (Christopher Walken), the US Secretary of the Treasury, to Jeremy about his daughter: "You know, she's not just another notch on the old belt...I'm a very powerful man"
  • the racy scene of Jeremy being seduced by sexually-insatiable, and "social alcoholic" Kathleen "Kittycat" Cleary (Jane Seymour) - the socialite wife of William Clearly who requested that he personally rate her recent breast implants
  • the 'motorboating' scene, when John admitted: "Claire's mom just made me grab her hooters"; Jeremy tried to calm him: "Well, snap out of it! What? A hot, older woman made you feel her cans? Stop crying like a little girl...Why don't you try getting jacked off under the table in front of the whole damn family and have some real problems? Jackass. What were they like, anyway? They look pretty good. Are they real? Are they built for speed or for comfort? What did you do with 'em? Motorboat? You play the motorboat? Ppppt! You motorboatin' son of a bitch. You old sailor, you!"
  • words of wisdom by Chazz Reinhold (Will Ferrell), Jeremy's former wedding crashing mentor (but who was still living with his mother), about how to pick up women - at funerals, where he met his latest female conquest: "I got her yesterday....I rode my bike over to a cemetery nearby. Her boyfriend just died...The dude died in a hang-gliding accident. What an idiot! Ha, ha, ha. 'Oh, I'm hang gliding! Honey, take a good picture... I'm dead!' Ha, ha. What a freak!...Yeah, I'll throw in a wedding every now and then, but funerals are insane! The chicks are so horny, it's not even fair. It's like fishing with dynamite....Yeah, crazy horny...Grief is nature's most powerful aphrodisiac. Look it up"

The Wedding March (1928)

In director Erich von Stroheim's stately drama:

  • the extended flirtatious sequence of the meeting of dissolute Prince Nicki (director Erich von Stroheim) (on horseback) and commoner Mitzi (Fay Wray) outside St. Stephens as he prepared to participate in the Corpus Christi procession
  • their courtship under an apple-blossom tree with a romantic kiss
  • the film's controversial and notorious orgy scene in a brothel populated by an assortment of Chinese, Nubian, and Polynesian women
  • the wedding march itself when Nicki must marry crippled rich heiress Cecelia Schweisser (Zasu Pitts) for money instead - witnessed by a tearful Mitzi from the side

Week End (1967, Fr.)

In director Jean-Luc Godard's prescient and politicized black comedy and road movie - a philosophical and confusing critique of the bored and selfish bourgeoisie; it was an allegory about the breakdown of society; its title derived from the time-frame of the film involving an upper-class, bickering murderous Parisian couple on a weekend trip; the film was controversial for displaying many taboos, including patricide, rape, immolation, animal cruelty, and cannibalism:

  • the introduction of the two main detestable, bickering characters on an outdoor apartment balcony: affluent, shallow, and self-centered Parisian Corinne Durand (Mireille Darc) and her greedy husband Roland (Jean Yanne); both had contempt for each other - the two venal marrieds both had other lovers and were secretly plotting to murder each other; and both were about to take a weekend car trip to her parents' place in Oinville to visit her dying father and ensure the acquisition of inheritance money from him (they had been slowly poisoning his food for five years)
  • the parking lot accident sequence (viewed from above), when a cheaper blue car and an expensive red car had a minor collision; the incident escalated into a major fist-fight and confrontation between the two drivers
  • the lengthy sequence of a sexually-graphic "orgy" or "menage a trois" monologue (with loud organ music accompaniment often drowning out the most provocative and offensive words); Corinne was obscured by being silhouetted and dressed in her panties and bra and sitting on the edge of a desk, offhandedly and monotonously describing to her fully-dressed husband a recent bizarre orgiastic sexual encounter; he was play-acting a counselor/analyst as she presented her story with a disinterested tone; it was a threesome between a couple (Paul and his wife Monique) and Corinne that was explicitly detailed (as the camera shifted left and right, and zoomed in and out); she hesitantly described the perverse sexual encounter involving food and sex (foreshadowing a more depraved sex act of rape in the film's finale); she described the three ending up in the kitchen, with instances of oral sex, masturbation, intercourse, the cracking of an egg between buttocks, and the act of sitting naked in a cat's bowl of milk; afterwards, she was asked by Roland: "Is this true, or a nightmare?", Corinne responded: "I don't know," and he replied: "I adore you, Corinne. Come and work me up"
  • the additional sequence of a minor car accident, titled "Scène de la Vie Parisienne," when Roland and Corinne's black Facel convertible backed into the parked Dauphine of a young boy's parents in a nearby house, and dented the bumper; dressed as a Native American chief (with a toy bow and arrow), the boy immediately protested the crash (but pocketed a bribe), soon followed by both of his parents, including his mother who was hitting tennis balls at the couple (fended off with a paint-gun), and his father who wielded a shotgun; the boy shouted: "Bastard! Shitface! Communist!"
  • the sequence of their blockaded weekend journey that began on Saturday morning with a bizarre, mammoth traffic jam on a two-lane roadway littered with battered, wrecked burning cars, and mangled, mutilated bodies and bloody casualties (it was famed for its lengthy almost 8-minute long tracking shot, the longest of its kind at the time, moving in a parallel track along the roadway); there were views of people card playing, engaged in a chess match, tossing a ball, book-reading and listening to a radio, sleeping, and urinating; also, there was a view of a traveling menagerie of caged monkeys, lions, and a llama; they passed a bus, a horse and carriage, a sailboat and a gigantic red and yellow Shell Oil tank truck; there were surrealistic and nightmarishly apocalyptic images and examples of social unrest and catastrophe, as the unfazed and uncaring couple non-chalantly passed by on the open left lane and turned onto a rural road
  • the class struggle, presented with the image of the body of handsome, but dead young rich man Paul in the front seat of his Triumph sports car that had crashed (off-screen) into a working-class man's tractor; his surviving companion, a blood-soaked, green-sweatered young bourgeois woman named Juliet (posing before an advertising billboard), was devastated, and she chastised the farmer with insults: "You killed the man I loved! Why didn't you stay in your stable?"; she was reprimanded: "Why drive so fast? This isn't St. Tropez!"; she yelled back to him and a group of lower-class workers standing in front of a wall plastered with posters: "You can't bear us having money while you haven't, can you? You can't bear us screwing on the Riviera, screwing at ski resorts. Can't bear us chucking cash around all year while you can't!"; when Corinne and Roland refused to help them and drove off, Juliet yelled after them: "Jews! Dirty Jews!"; the worker and the bourgeoisie woman and other onlookers united for a portrait-photo (including Roland?), after which the French national anthem was played - the title screen read: "Phony-Graph"
  • the scene of the hijacking of Roland and Corinne’s car by a pretty, red-rain-coated female hitchhiker, and gun-brandishing Joseph Balasamo ("The Exterminating Angel"); jammed into the back seat, he claimed to be the product of sex between God and Alexandre Dumas; the obnoxious hitchhiker exclaimed: "I'm here to inform these Modern Times of the Grammatical Era's end, and the beginning of Flamboyance, especially in cinema" - an apt description of the film itself; Balasamo offered Corinne and Roland whatever they wanted in return for a ride to London, and to prove his miraculous powers, he magically conjured up a white rabbit under the dashboard ("Oh s--t, a miracle!"); to absurd heights, Corinne and Roland offered their materialistic wish list: a big Mercedes sports car, an Yves Saint-Laurent evening dress, a Miami Beach hotel, a headful of natural blonde hair, a squadron of Mirage IV aircraft, and a weekend with James Bond, but the hitchhiker refused their requests ("You creeps, I'll give you nothing") and called them "assholes"; Corinne grabbed the gun, and the two hitchhikers were chased across a field, with the miraculous appearance of a flock of sheep (a reference to the end of Luis Bunuel's film The Exterminating Angel (1962, Mex.)
  • the shocking scene of the fiery crash of the couple's car after instances of reckless driving, when the film jumped its sprockets, and the two were caught in the car engulfed in flames and smoke; Corinne cried out: "My Hermes handbag!"
Surreal or Unusual Occurrences
A Live Rabbit Pulled From Under a Car Dashboard
A Yellow Telephone Booth Conversation Sung in Intoned Verse
A Squirming Earthworm
  • and their unusual encounters with:
    - a young man (Jean-Pierre Leaud) in a yellow phone booth singing his conversation, who defended himself when the couple tried to steal his car
    - the two literary figures of Tom Thumb and English poetess Emily Bronte (looking like Little Bo Peep) reading a book - a whimsical sequence; horrifically and violently, however, they set her dress set on fire and she burned to death on the ground, as Roland spoke: "It's rotten of us, isn't it?...Can't you see they're only imaginary characters?")
  • the image of an earthworm squirming on the ground, as Roland and Corinne mused self-analytically: "We know nothing...We're totally ignorant of ourselves. We're totally ignorant of what this worm is. We're both enigmas. Anyone who denies it is the most ignorant of all"
  • the scene of the outdoor piano-recital/concert at a farm courtyard where the circular camera turned 360° around a farm courtyard, twice one way then the other, as a pianist (Paul Gégauff) played a Mozart sonata on a grand piano (with a conspicuously displayed brand name - Bechstein)
  • the sequence of two sandwich-chewing trash collectors, both immigrant workers - one from the Congo and one an Arab (Laszlo Szabo), who delivered a boring lecture about Marxist philosophy, and denounced oppressive Western imperialism in Africa (as each spoke, the other individual's face was on camera)
  • once arriving in Oinville, the prudish in-joke scene of Corinne discreetly taking a bath below an erotic painting - the breasts of the painting's female were clearly visible, but Corinne's real breasts weren't in plain view
  • the film's brutal outdoor strangulation and murder on the terrace of Corinne's mother who was carrying a flayed rabbit from the butcher shop; (Corinne's father had died and left everything to the wife, and she refused to split her 100% share); the murder scene that paid homage to Hitchcock's famous Arbogast murder scene in Psycho (1960) with knife-wielding stabbing; it was juxtaposed with the sickening and gruesome view of the rabbit being doused in her blood - followed by their criminal plot ("the perfect crime") to hide the cadaver by stashing it in a crashed vehicle (and plane) along the road and setting it on fire
  • the hostage-taking of Roland and Corinne by a group of gun-toting revolutionary, hippie terrorists led by Le Chef du Front de Libération de la Seine et Oise (Jean-Pierre Kalfon), the FLSO, who believed in radical Marxist politics; at the group's outdoor base camp where the hostages were brought, the cook Ernest (Ernest Menzer) (with a blood-stained white gown and a large butcher knife) was told: "You can screw her before eating her, if you like"; the anarchists communicated by radio with film title code names, such as: "Battleship Potemkin calling The Searchers"
  • the sequence of the sexual torture and rape of one of the stripped, captive female hostages, an English tourist, before the cook planned to prepare her for the meal; with her open thighs before him, he ritualistically cracked two eggs onto her crotch (as a garnish) and inserted (off-screen) a large dead fish into her vagina (it was regarded like a pig's mouth with an apple) instead of his phallus; it was a nightmarish re-enactment of the film's earlier kitchen-counter sex orgy
  • Roland's murder (off-camera with a slingshot) when he tried to escape, and his subsequent disembowelment: ("The horror of the bourgeoisie can only be overcome by more horror")
  • the disturbing unsimulated sequences of Ernest's gross slaughter of a pig and a live goose
  • the scene of the murder of the group's girlfriend Valérie (Valérie Lagrange), who was fatally injured in a shootout; with blood streaking down onto her face, she sang a childish song about being isolated as she perished: "How happy I'd be if you knew, You, who I'm leaving tonight. That though it seems everything's through, To others it seems it's all right. A smile, though the heart may be torn, Pretend that it's not past mending, Write the last word, so forlorn. Just a novel with an unhappy ending"
  • the film's last scene after Corinne had joined with the leader following Valerie's death; she feasted and chewed on the meaty stew, created by Chef Ernest from Roland's flesh/bones and the remains of other hapless hostages: (Corinne: "Not bad." Le Chef: "Yes, we mixed the pig with the remains of the English tourists." Corinne: "The ones in the Rolls?" Le Chef: "That's right. There should be left-overs of your husband in there, too." Corinne: "When I'm finished, Ernest, I wouldn't mind a bit more")
  • the film's ending title card: "The End--Of Cinema"

Weekend at Bernie's (1989)

In director Ted Ketchoff's summer sleeper hit black comedy:

  • the memorable scenes involving the murdered corpse of boss Bernie Lomax (Terry Kiser) who was propped up to appear alive - pretending to be the host of a weekend beach party in the Hamptons over Labor Day weekend
  • the scene of the two insurance company employees: slacker Larry (Andrew McCarthy) and uptight workalcoholic Richard's (Jonathan Silverman) speedboat departure that dragged Bernie's body into buoys
  • the off-screen scene of the visit of NY moll Tina (Catherine Parks) to his bedroom for sex (without noticing his unresponsiveness)

West Side Story (1961)

In co-directors Jerome Robbins and Robert Wise's Best Picture-winning adaptation of the popular Broadway musical:

  • the opening prologue with aerial shots of Manhattan
  • the remarkably energetic Jerome Robbins' choreography (filmed in New York's Hell's Kitchen district) especially in the opening balletic sequence, demonstrating the rivalry between the Caucasian Jets and the immigrant Puerto Rican Sharks - and the dance-song "The Jet Song"
  • the dance at the gymnasium during the first meeting of star-crossed lovers Maria (Natalie Wood) and Tony (Richard Beymer), and Tony's subsequent singing of "Maria" about his newfound love
  • the Romeo and Juliet balcony scene re-enacted on a tenement fire escape with the singing of the duet "Tonight" by both Tony and Maria
  • the scene of Anita's (Oscar-winning Rita Moreno) passionate skirt-tossing dance with other Puerto Ricans on the rooftop in the singing of "America"
  • the biting satire of "Gee Officer Krupke," Maria's "I Feel Pretty" dance in a bridal shop, and Tony and Maria's sensitive exchange of love vows during a make-believe wedding between them in "One Hand, One Heart"
  • the action-oriented rumble/dance sequence leading to the killings of two rival gang leaders Riff (Russ Tamblyn) and Bernardo (Oscar-winning George Chakiris)
  • the melodramatic finale when Tony died in Maria's arms as she knelt by his side (singing a reprise of Somewhere: "Hold my hand and I'll take you there")

The Westerner (1940)

In director William Wyler's A-list western:

  • quick-thinking Cole Harden's (Gary Cooper) sweet-talking of Jane-Ellen Mathews (Doris Davenport) for a lock of her hair
  • the drinking bout between Hardin and hanging Judge Roy Bean (Oscar-winning Walter Brennan)
  • the exciting scene of the devastating cornfield fire set by the Judge's men to run off homesteaders
  • the scene of the theater curtain's opening revealing deputized Hardin standing on stage and ready for a gunfight with Judge Bean (the sole audience member) rather than a performance by British actress Lily Langtry (Lilian Bond) - 'the famous Jersey Lily'
  • the Judge's wide-eyed, backstage death scene as he glimpsed the fantasy woman of his life - she blurred in his vision as he fell dead

Westworld (1973)

In writer/director Michael Crichton's futuristic sci-fi thriller (his directorial debut film), with many similarities to Halloween (1978), The Terminator (1984), The Magnificent Seven (1960) (Yul Brynner's Gunslinger character), and Jurassic Park (1993), with its story of an amusement park with malfunctioning attractions - remade as a TV series beginning in 2016:

  • the opening interviewer promo for three attractions at the Delos theme park, all for only $1,000 a day: "Hi. Ed Renfrew for Delos again. If there's anyone who doesn't know what Delos is, well, as we've always said, Delos is the vacation of the future, today. At Delos, you get your choice of the vacation you want. There's Medieval World, Roman World and, of course, Westworld. Let's talk to some of the people who've been there"
  • the various announcements to elite Delos visitors just as their hovercraft arrived at their destination, where guests took color-coded trams to the resort of their choice: "Expensive and unusual, Delos is not for everyone. But for those that choose it, it is truly a unique and rewarding experience... (the female announcer's ominous words in the background) Welcome to Delos. Please go to your color-coded tram which will take you to the World of your choice. We are sure you will enjoy your stay in Western World. While you are there, please do whatever you want. There are no rules. And you should feel free to indulge your every whim. Do not be afraid of hurting anything or of hurting yourself. Nothing can go wrong"
  • the role-playing experiences of first-time nerdy visitor Peter Martin (Richard Benjamin) and his pal John Blane (James Brolin) at Westworld, acting out archetypal 'western' fantasies: a mock saloon ("new-in-town" Martin ordered a "vodka martini on the rocks with a twist of lemon, very dry" rather than a whiskey) and a quick-draw shootout with the Magnificent Seven's cold and mechanical gunslinger (Yul Brynner) (with authentic blood splatter); then their bedding down of a pair of honky-tonk prostitutes (one showed signs of defectiveness in her eyes), an escape-breakout from a sheriff's jail-cell, a cyborg rattlesnake bite, a rollicking bar-room brawl, and another showdown at high-noon with the gunslinger in the middle of the dusty town (resulting in Blane's actual death!)
  • the behind-the-scenes views of white-coated scientists speaking into primitive computer monitors to control the programmed robotic humanoids, and their repair efforts each night (after a van picked up malfunctioning, broken-down, damaged or dead robots) to rehabilitate them; ultimately, the scientists died of oxygen deprivation when the entire resort's computers began to spread breakdowns (like a viral disease) among the androids (who became disobedient and began harming guests) - and the scientists became locked in the control room after they shut down the park's power
  • the lengthy, relentless almost dialogue-less chase sequence of the beserk, rogue Gunglinger pursuing and stalking Peter, first on horseback and then into Medieval World; the robot was doused in the face with hydrochloric acid, resulting in the robot using its heat-seeking, infra-red senses to locate Peter (this was the first use of computer digitized (pixellated) images in film history, to simulate the robot's red-tinted POV); and then the gunslinger was set on fire with a flaming torch and eventually was charred to a smoldering crisp and suffered a lethal short-circuit
  • the ironic words that ended the film (resonating inside sole surviving Peter's head) - a replay of promotional words from a male voice: "Why don't you make arrangements to take our Hovercraft to Medieval World, Roman World and Westworld. Contact us today, or see your travel agent. Boy, have we got a vacation for you, vacation for you - for you, for you, you you you you you you you you (echoing)"

What Dreams May Come (1998)

In director Vincent Ward's artistic, visually-astonishing after-life drama (a cross between Ingmar Bergman's films and Stairway to Heaven/A Matter of Life and Death (1946, UK)), an adaptation of Richard Matheson's novel:

  • the opening scene of vacationing pediatrician Dr. Chris Nielsen (Robin Williams) meeting and falling in love at first sight with future wife Annie (Annabella Sciorra) in Italy: ("When I was young, I met this beautiful girl by a lake") and their picnic
  • and after their marriage, the tragic scene in which he and artist wife Annie lost their two children Marie (Jessica Brooks Grant) and Ian (Josh Paddock) in an off-screen car crash after he waved goodbye, with his melancholy narration: "It was the last time Annie and I saw them alive"
  • and then four years later, the scene in which Chris, now also deceased and in the afterlife but lingering on Earth - after another multi-car crash in a tunnel - attended his own funeral and attempted to console still-living, grief-stricken Annie
  • his attempts to have despondent Annie acknowledge his continued existence (after whispering in her ear "This is Chris. I still exist," he made her scrawl the words: "ISTILEXST" in her diary, and then tried to contact her at his gravesite: "Don't worry, baby, I'm not leaving you alone. I'm not goin' anywhere") -- and her violent sobbing reactions, forcing Chris to reluctantly leave her and Earth and journey to the afterworld
  • the appearance of a blurry mentor-guide Albert Lewis (Cuba Gooding, Jr.) with advice urging him to depart: "The reality is it's over when you stop wanting to hurt her"
  • the scenes of an Expressionist painting world in Chris' imagined heaven (using surreal Oscar-winning CGI effects) modeled after Annie's paintings, when he was told: "Nice place you got here...You're making all of this. See, we're all pretty insecure at first, so we see ourselves somewhere safe, comforting. We all paint our own surroundings, Chris, but you're the first guy I know to use real paint"
  • the moment when Albert helped him create a "real" afterlife by carving a hole in his dreamhouse's wall
  • "soul-mate" ("sort of like twin souls tuned into each other") Annie's despairing successful suicide foreshadowed by the death of the purple-flowered tree in her 'heavenly' painting and then her afterlife in Hell: ("You never see her. She's a suicide. Suicides go somewhere else...The real Hell is your life gone wrong")
  • Chris' quest to bring her back - to rescue her lost soul from the torment with the help of the dark-cloaked Tracker (Max von Sydow)
  • the view of a vast and dark Hell (Tracker: "In Hell, there's real danger from losing your mind")
  • the Sea of Faces where dozens of pale and tortured souls were buried up to their necks in sand
  • the moment of Chris' discovery of the location of Annie in Hell, his delivery of a sentimental apology to her for all the things he couldn't give her: ("I'll never buy you another meatball sub with extra sauce -- that was a big one! I'll never make you smile..."), and his decision to share his wife's insanity rather than abandon her in Hell (she had earlier told him: "Sometimes, when you lose, you win")
  • the re-uniting of wife Annie with him and their dead children in his heavenly afterlife during the 'feel-good' finale: ("Travel here is like everything else, it's in your mind. All you have to do is close your eyes if you know where you're going. Looks like we did")
  • the final scene of their spiritual reawakening in the bodies of two young children by a lake ("When I was young, I met this beautiful girl by a lake")
Annie's Death and Hell

What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962)

In Robert Aldrich's Grand Guignol classic horror film:

  • the two legendary screen rivals dueling onscreen - with the many scenes of ex-child actor and sister 'Baby' Jane Hudson (Oscar-nominated Bette Davis) terrorizing wheelchair-bound, hungry, crippled ex-movie star sister Blanche Hudson (Joan Crawford)
  • Baby Jane driven insane by feelings of jealousy (Blanche's success as a movie star while her career fizzled) and guilt (thinking she had crippled Blanche by running the car into her in an early scene)
  • her petty tortures including the servings of "din-din": a dead pet parakeet and roasted rat
  • the scene of a grotesquely made-up Jane practicing "I've Written a Letter to Daddy" while dressed in a baby-doll suit (with her hair in golden curly locks) to corpulent gigolo pianist Edwin Flagg (Oscar-nominated Victor Buono in his film debut) in a demented attempt at a comeback as Baby Jane
  • Blanche's excruciating attempt to make her way down the staircase to phone for help - when Baby Jane unexpectedly arrived home
  • Jane's response to Blanche's helplessness in her wheelchair: ("You wouldn't be able to do these awful things to me if I weren't still in this chair") - retorting: "But-cha ARE, Blanche! Yah ARE in that chair!"
  • the concluding beach scene in which a dying Blanche revealed the truth, with her final words, of the accident years earlier (Jane hadn't crippled her after all) with Jane's astonished reply: "Then you mean, all this time we could've been friends?"
  • the film's end in which a totally insane but deeply happy Jane (shot in soft focus) purchased two strawberry ice cream cones, then danced and spun as a crowd gathered around her, as two policemen located Blanche's body (with an ambiguous fate) in the sand

What's Eating Gilbert Grape (1993)

In Swedish director Lasse Hallstrom's family drama:

  • the heartbreaking scene of brain-damaged brother Arnie Grape (Leonardo DiCaprio), a day after his 18th birthday, discovering his dead, morbidly obese mother Bonnie (Darlene Cates) in her upstairs bedroom ("Momma, stop it now")
  • his decision with his brother Gilbert Grape (Johnny Depp) to empty the house and set fire to it, to avoid having her removed by a crane - which would cause a crowd and make them a joke in the town

When a Woman Ascends the Stairs (1960, Jp.) (aka Onna ga Kaidan wo Agaru Toki)

In Mikio Naruse's insightful yet grim 'women's picture' melodrama - a critique of Japan's patriarchal society in the post-war country, in the person of an aging, 30 year-old geisha girl supervisor, working in a disreputable, competitive business in Tokyo's Ginza district that catered to married male industrialists ("to show them a good time"):

  • the opening (voice-over) narration: "An afternoon in late autumn. Bars in the daytime are like women without makeup"
  • the resourceful, independent heroine protagonist: a widowed, middle-aged, virtuous supervising bar hostess Keiko "Mama" Yashiro (Hideko Takamine) - known for her high ideals, discreet and stoic behavior, integrity and vows of celibacy to her dead husband's urn; although always appearing beautiful and calm, she was struggling to make ends meet in the competitive Ginza district - to lure customers inside to supply them with drinks, companionship, and sometimes sexual favors; she worried about her growing age and health: ("I feel my youth fading day to day")
  • Keiko's many regular and determined ascents of a narrow staircase up to the bar - dressed in a traditional kimono to her limited and disdainful occupation each evening: (voice-over) "Night fell. I hated climbing those stairs more than anything. But once I was up, I would take each day as it came"
  • Keiko's voice-over musings about her profession: "Between 11:30 and midnight, the Ginza's 16,000 hostesses head home in droves. The best go by cab, the second-rate take the train, and the worst go off with their customers...My rent is 30,000 yen, a lot for one person. But for us Ginza hostesses, an apartment's a fashionable accessory, just like expensive clothes and perfume....Women working in the Ginza fought desperately for survival. It was a battle I couldn't afford to lose."
  • the devastating scene in a dirty industrial slum - the sequence of Keiko's conversation with an impoverished, overworked Mrs. Sekine, who admitted that her husband Mr. Sekine (Daisuke Katoh) was a "hopeless womanizer" at Keiko's geisha bar - she confessed: "He lures them in with marriage proposals. I can't count how often I've had to straighten things out. This time, he borrowed the neighbor's car and hasn't been home in a week. I'm not even jealous anymore, but our neighbor is angry...He's not bad at heart. He just loves to show off. He lies and then begins to think it's all true. That's just how he is" - while they talked, the mother's two young children rode a tricycle (towing a noisy tin can) in circles around them
  • the last sequence when she agreed to sleep with married client Mr. Fujisaki (Masayuki Mori) in her apartment, when he confessed his love: "I love you. I always have"; apres-sex the next morning, she told him about her "strange dream" she had about her "late husband" returning from a business trip; Fujisaki responded: "Even when a woman's in your arms, you can never tell who's she really thinking of"; she expressed her dissatisfaction about their arrangement: "I love you but I'd prefer a husband. Someone always by my side. I don't want to see you just once in a while. I'm happy now, though....But I'm worried about one thing....When my husband died. I placed my picture and a letter in with his ashes. I vowed I'd never love another man. I wrote that down and asked the priest to put it in with him. I'm a strange woman, aren't I?"; then, he dropped a bombshell - that he was departing the next day for good, due to a job transfer to Osaka: "I won't forget you. Call me if you ever come to Osaka. All I can do now is help when you open your own place. I promise you that"; she repeated: "I really do love you" - and he reciprocated, but admitted that he couldn't break up his marriage: ("I don't have the courage to break up my home. It may be selfish of me, but it's the truth"); as he departed, he left her a monetary parting gift - stock certificates worth 100,000; she was left devastated, especially moments later when her manager Kenichi Komatsu (Tatsuya Nakadai) realized that she had broken her vow of celibacy - and forcefully asked for her hand in marriage - a request that she vehemently denied
  • in the conclusion, facing emotional and financial setbacks and defeats, and succumbing to drinking, absence from work, growing anxieties, and a peptic ulcer (throwing up blood), Keiko ascended up the stairs one more time - although her world was in a tailspin; she narrated (in voice-over) - ever hopeful: "It had been a bleak ordeal, like a harsh winter. But the trees that line the streets can sprout new buds no matter how cold the wind. I too must be just as strong as the winds that gust around me"; when she entered the upstairs bar's glass doors, she greeted everyone with a welcoming smile: "Ah, welcome! It's been so long! Welcome!"

When Harry Met Sally... (1989)

In Rob Reiner's popular romantic comedy from Nora Ephron's script:

  • the various vignettes of elderly couples reflecting on their relationships (with one-liners such as: " know a great melon")
  • the film's premise: can a man and a woman be friends without sex becoming an issue?, and the eleven year friendship/relationship between journalist Sally Albright (Meg Ryan) and political consultant Harry Burns (Billy Crystal)
  • the roadside cafe scene of fussy Sally ordering apple pie and ice cream during a 1977 car trip from Chicago to NYC: ("I'd like the chef salad, please, with the oil and vinegar on the side. And the apple pie a la mode....But I'd like the pie heated, and I don't want the ice cream on top. I want it on the side. And I'd like strawberry instead of vanilla if you have it. If not, then no ice cream, just whipped cream, but only if it's real. If it's out of a can, then nothing." Waitress: "Not even the pie?" Sally: "No, just the pie. But then not heated")
  • the scene of Harry describing his recurring sex fantasy dream to Sally: "I had my dream again - where I'm making love and the Olympic judges are watching? I've nailed the compulsories, so this is it: the finals. I got a 9.8 from the Canadian, a perfect 10 from the American. And my mother, disguised as an East German judge, gave me a 5.6. Must've been the dismount"; then it was Sally's turn to describe her 'embarrassing' sex dream: "Basically it's the same one I've been having since I was 12...OK, there's this guy...He's just kinda faceless...He rips off my clothes...That's it...Sometimes I vary it a little...What I'm wearing"
  • the "high-maintenance/low-maintenance" split-screen phone discussion between Harry and Sally, while they were both watching the conclusion of Casablanca from their respective beds: Harry: "There are two kinds of women: high maintenance and low maintenance...You're the worst kind; you're high maintenance but you think you're low maintenance....You don't see that? Waiter, I'll begin with a house salad, but I don't want the regular dressing. I'll have the balsamic vinegar and oil, but on the side. And then the salmon with the mustard sauce, but I want the mustard sauce on the side. 'On the side' is a very big thing for you..."
  • the crowded New York deli-restaurant scene of Sally's fully-clothed, simulated orgasm with table-beating and ecstatic moans and gasps ("Ooooh. Oh, God. Oooooh. Oh God!..."), foot-noted by an elderly patron (director Rob Reiner's mother Estelle) exclaiming to the waiter at a nearby table: "I'll have what she's having"
  • the scene of the simultaneous, split-screen four-way phone call, when Harry called his friend Jess (Bruno Kirby) and Sally called her friend Marie (Carrie Fisher) to tell them that they had just had sex - and when the call was finished, Marie asked Jess: "Tell me I never have to be out there again"
  • the last scene in which Harry frantically ran down a New York street (to the tune of Sinatra's "It Had to Be You") toward a hotel's crowded New Year's Eve party where he finally reached Sally and expressed his love to her ("...I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible")

When Worlds Collide (1951)

In producer George Pal's disaster picture - a follow-up to Destination Moon (1950):

  • the Oscar-winning special effects including a great fireball - a sun-sized body called Bellus - hurtling toward earth
  • the rocket-propelled spaceship built on a ramp
  • the film's catastrophic climax in which New York was struck by a tidal wave

Whiplash (2014)

In writer/director Damien Chazelle's musical drama about a psychological battle of wits and talent:

  • the growing tension between talented and determined young jazz student Andrew Neiman (Miles Teller) and his perfectionist, relentless and abusive Terence Fletcher (Oscar-winning J.K. Simmons), a notoriously tyrannical jazz music instructor at New York City's prestigious Shaffer Conservatory
  • the final confrontation between Fletcher and Andrew (pushed past his breaking point) at the JVC Jazz Festival, when Andrew asserted himself and performed a magnificent drum solo of "Caravan" to defy Fletcher and force his teacher (and the band) to follow his lead

White Cargo (1942)

In director Richard Thorpe's melodramatic remake of the 1929 original:

  • tight sarong-clad, sultry, and exotic, dark-haired half-breed (Hollywood's code name for a non-white temptress) - an African, tan-skinned native girl named Tondelayo (Hedy Lamarr) seductively announcing herself with the popular catch-phrase in one of filmdom's greatest entrances: "I am Tondelayo"
  • the concluding scene of her poisoning

White Heat (1949)

In director Raoul Walsh's exciting Freudian-tinged gangster film:

  • the opening mail-train robbery sequence in the High Sierra at the California border
  • Arthur "Cody" Jarrett's (James Cagney) mother-fixation, exemplified by sitting on his crooked mother's - "Ma" Jarrett (Margaret Wycherly) - lap when he described the feeling of pain in his head during debilitating headaches: "It's like having a - it's like having a red hot buzzsaw inside my head"
  • the instances that Cody shot people through objects (a car trunk, an apartment door)
  • the 'accident' scene in the prison's machine shop
  • the screeching of the machines that portrayed Cody's mental state
  • the 3-minute prison dining-hall sequence when Cody passed a question about his mother ("Ask him how my mother is?") down a long line of prisoners sitting at a table; the camera panned to the left as each prisoner whispered the question to the next guy; word of Cody's mother's death ("She's dead") was then passed back (prisoner to prisoner) and when it reached Cody, he had a beserk, epileptic reaction - standing on and sprawling across the table, and then attacking the guards and making gutteral sounds before being dragged away
  • Cody's final cry: "Made it Ma. Top of the world," and his fiery ending atop the globe-shaped gas tanks as they exploded in the climax
  • the film's concluding words, spoken by undercover agent Hank Fallon (Edmond O'Brien): "He finally got to the top of the world... and it blew right up in his face"

Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988)

In director Robert Zemeckis' award-winning animated-live action tribute and parody of detective noirs of the 40s:

  • the end of the opening toon cartoon (Tummy Trouble) that remarkably combines animated characters and live actors
  • whiskey-voiced Toon-star Baby Herman
  • the character of luscious sexpot Jessica Rabbit (Kathleen Turner's voice, but Amy Irving's voice for singing), including her sexy and seductive swaggering performance near down-and-out, hard-boiled private detective Eddie Valiant (Bob Hoskins) of "Why Don't You Do Right?" at the Ink and Paint Club
  • her famous line: "I'm not bad, I'm just drawn that way"
  • the incriminating game of "Patty-cake" played by gag factory head and Toontown owner Marvin Acme (Stubby Kaye) and sexy Jessica
  • the characters of the Toon Patrol
  • the cab trip to Toontown
  • Judge Doom's (Christopher Lloyd) threat to 'dip' Jessica and Roger but his own demise in the bubbling acid
  • Eddie and Roger's noisy wet kiss
  • the joyous conclusion with Porky Pig delivering his famous "That's all folks!"

(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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