The Cord Picks: Favourite Movie Scenes

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Madeline McInnis – Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End

The opening scene to Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End will forever give me chills.

This scene is so complex and well-crafted that I was able to write a 4000-word essay on it last year, and I still notice new elements each and every time I watch it.

It’s one of those infamous songs that basically tells you the entire plot of the movie in the first five minutes, you just don’t know it at the time. It sets forth several motifs and leit motifs that truly tie the movie together.

It sets up the film as a puzzle narrative, but instead of having multiple perspectives and playing with time like in Inception, it’s a web of politics and motivations which you can only truly understand after dozens of watches.

Once you’ve done that, everything starts to connect.  While the guard says “suspended,” the pirates become “suspended,” and my heart suspends as well.

 

 

Michael Oliveri – Mulholland Drive

When I think of my favourite movie scene I often think to the “Club Silencio” scene in the film Mulholland Drive. This film by David Lynch focuses on two women in Hollywood as they search for the identity of one. Lynch’s films often heavily feature surreal situations and this film is no different.

Towards the end of the film the characters go to Club Silencio and watch a series of odd acts on stage. Unknown to the characters, the truth of the nightmarish scenario they are in is revealed.

This scene functions as a centerpiece for the movie and is striking for its visual composition and atmospheric feeling.

The club itself exudes a sense of dread and mystery; as soon as the characters arrive we can tell all is not well. This scene has always been memorable for the sense of wonder it creates and terror it creates.

 

Shyenne MacDonald – Batman Begins

Before I start this, it needs to be said that I love Batman. Like a lot. Because of this, I hate, with an unbridled passion, the Dark Knight trilogies. That being said, one of my favourite movie scenes is born from the Dark Knight trilogy. Specifically, Batman Begins.

There was one scene – literally one scene in the entire trilogy that I liked – dubbed the “Swear to Me” scene. Wherein, a common criminal who had helped smuggle drugs casually walks down a darkened alley – because all of Gotham is alleys.

Then, inexplicably he’s dangling in the air and Batman is there, demanding he tell him what he needs to know. The criminal swears he doesn’t know a thing and in desperation says: “I swear to God.”

Batman brings him close and, with barely contained anger, responds: “Swear to Me.”

Then the wire that’s holding the criminal drops. He plummets to the ground but zips back up in a nick of time. Now, he gives all the information he has to Batman.

Until, finally after one final terrifying plummet, the Bat gently drops him on to the rain soaked pavement before disappearing into the night.

Emily Waitson – Mad Max Fury Road

George Miller’s Mad Max Fury Road (2015), is a fantastically crafted action film and a personal favourite of mine. The first chase scene between Immortan Joe and Imperator Furiosa is a standout in the movie overall, as it – literally – sets the plot in motion and establishes the unwavering survivalist theme that defines it so well.

The practical effects used in the entirety of the movie are impressive and they are expertly highlighted during these moments in particular.

It’s hard to believe that very little CGI was used, as your eye jumps from one impressive element to the next; from the uniquely roughened wasteland cars, to the expansive Australian desert that they’re tearing across in a haze of flames and smoke.

The tribalistic drumming from the painted War Boys and the oddly fitting guitar riffs courtesy of the unnerving blind musician in red set the tone incredibly well.

I felt like a teenage boy that just drank an energy drink during the entirety of this sequence, completely pumped up by the stellar visuals, endless action and dramatic soundtrack.

 

Kurtis Rideout – Drive

As soon as Shy said “favourite movie scenes,” I instantly knew what I would write about.

The movie Drive features a number of long, intense shots that are uninterrupted by dialogue – this seems to play right into one of lead actor, Ryan Gosling’s biggest strengths.

The scene in particular that always sticks out to me is the infamous elevator scene. Fans of the movie will probably instantly recognize the one I am talking about.

In the scene, the unnamed driver played by Gosling, and co-star Carey Mulligan share an intense, silent interaction with a hit man – whose goal is to kill Gosling.

Before brutally stomping the hit man to his apparent death, Gosling grabs his co-star and kisses her passionately in the elevator, evoking a juxtaposition of intense feelings.

When they reach their desired floor Mulligan exits the elevator and shares an intense few seconds of eye contact with Gosling before the door closes between them.

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