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tiny film moments


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Did anyone ever see "Paths of Glory" with Kirk Douglas? At the end a bunch of French soldiers are being entertained by a young German Woman forced to sing in a tavern. At first they are mocking and laughing at her. They turn when she begins singing a song ( German I think) in a sweet and innocent voice. Their attitude change and they begin to sing along with her and some even start to cry. It is quite a moment and stays with you.

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Nice Thread, all.

 

Another moment from Now, Voyager:

When Bette Davis blurts out to her mother emphatically that she's "not afraid" after her Mom, (Gladys Cooper), has threatened to cut her off financially. Davis has surprised herself and pauses briefly, murmuring to herself, that, no, she's not afraid...great stuff, as though the character has just encountered her true self for the first time and is becoming self-aware.

 

The Last Hurrah:

At the beginning of the film, when Spencer Tracy's character pauses before his late wife's portrait, removes the wilted rose from the day before, replaces it with a fresh flower, and then silently steps back and bows his head for a moment. No words are needed to convey to the audience that this is a small ritual practiced daily by the character.

 

The Big Sleep:

Most of the plot is incomprehensible to me, but what is conveyed beautifully throughout the film, is the rapport between Bogart and Bacall. In one scene in a crowded room where Bacall is singing, Bogie enters, and is escorted by a dishy little cupcake who's working in the joint who seems to be attracted to him, (which seems to be de rigeur for all female characters in this movie). As Bacall spots Bogart giving the young lady a once over, he leans against the wall, looks back at Bacall and, raising an eyebrow and giving her an insolent nod, lets her know that yes, he's aware what's happening, including Bacall's irritation and gives the cupcake an elaborately appreciative evaluation with just his amused expression.

 

Pickup on South Street:

Thelma Ritter's expression of weariness, resignation and disappointment is marvelous in the scene in which Richard Kiley--as a kind of angel of death--confronts her in her shabby little room.

 

Dodsworth:

At the end of the film, when Mary Astor gradually focuses on the little motorized sailboat making its way across the bay in Italy. As she realizes that it is Sam (Walter Huston), she begins to light up inside, and her joy erupts. She had a long career, but that moment always stands out for me among her many and varied parts.

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> Another moment from Now, Voyager:

> When Bette Davis blurts out to her mother

> emphatically that she's "not afraid" after her Mom,

> (Gladys Cooper), has threatened to cut her off

> financially. Davis has surprised herself and pauses

> briefly, murmuring to herself, that, no, she's not

> afraid...great stuff, as though the character has

> just encountered her true self for the first time and

> is becoming self-aware.

 

Thanks, that's a great take on that scene. I'd never noticed her pause before, I'll definitely be watching that scene closer next time I see it. I love all the insights on this board.

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Bartlett,

That moment in Paths of Glory when the tender sweetness of the singing by the nervous young woman restores the humanity of the raucous soldiers for a time must've made quite an impression on the director as well. Appearing in that film as Susanne Christian (real name: Christiane Harlan) the singer later became the wife of Stanley Kubrick for five decades.

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Yes, that was a great scene. It was well acted, directed, filmed, and edited.

 

For those who haven't seen it, a bunch of French soldiers in a pub start harassing a young German girl, trying to get her to sing some kind of bar song. She finally got up in front of them and shyly started singing some kind of old folk tune in German. None of the French could understand the words, but the way the girl sang was as if she suddenly became like the French soldiers' sweethearts or sisters back home. The rowdy boys finally settled down, and some of them began to cry as others tried to sing along with the girl.

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I was just surfing here and saw this thread and remembered it was 7 years ago this day that Madeline Kahn passed away. So in honor of her memory I will give her absolutely best tiny moments in her films.

 

 

What's Up, Doc?-The scene where she is helping Howard with his tie and she goes on about trust and all that stuff.

 

Paper Moon-Without a doubt the scene on the hill with Addie. So hysterically funny and yet so real and touching. She should have got the oscar for that scene alone. She looked one of the stars of the golden age in that scene too, with that beautiful black and white photography.

 

Blazing Saddles-Singing I'm Tired of course. So great she got her second and last Academy Award nomination.

 

Young Frankenstein-This was a hard one to pick, but I so much love Frederick and Elizabeth in the bedroom scene. She looked so beautiful there and was so sexy and no tongues. Just wished she had a bigger role in that film. But she was signed to play Inga but asked for Elizabeth knowing it was the better role in a way, because she made it her screen trademark with her comedic charm.

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> Another Groucho moment:

>

> He and Margaret Dumont walking up a ramp to get on a

> ship in "A Night At The Opera". He is carrying a

> suitcase or two.

>

> Dumont: Do you have everything?

> Groucho: Haven't had any complaints yet.

>

> Cut to next scene.

 

Did anyone see the Groucho/Dick Cavett interview? He said that line was cut in about 37 states! LOL!!!

 

And please, nobody talk about Dead End. I'll start crying. It's just about the most perfect movie ever made :(

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Keeping in mind that "tiny" means relatively brief, and therefore shorter than, say, a musical number, and that is also implies being not particularly prominent and obvious, here are some classic tiny film moments from comedies:

 

Great Comedy Scenes:

 

1. Annie Hall: ?I can?t. I still need the eggs.?

2. Brazil: ?Care for a little ****??

3. Duck Soup: ?Gentlemen, Chicolini here may talk like an idiot and look like an idiot, but don't let that fool you. He really is an idiot.?

4. Harold and Maude: Harold?s mother fills in the dating questionnaire for him, without the slightest consideration that her nearby son might have his own views, while Harold toys with shooting himself.

5. His Girl Friday: ?The last man who said that to me was Archie Leach just a week before he cut his throat.?

6. Love and Death: ?Wheat! Wheat with Feathers!?

7. Manhattan: ?Not everyone gets corrupted?you?ve got to have a little faith in people.?

8. The Man with Two Brains: The identity of the elevator killer is revealed.

9. Monty Python and the Holy Grail: The Scandinavian subtitles.

10. The Princess Bride: ?Inconceivable!? ?You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.?

11. Stranger than Paradise: ?It?s not always frozen,? as the trio see the white wasteland that is Lake Erie in the winter.

12. The Thin Man: ?Yes, it?s the best dinner I ever listened to.?

13. Time Bandits: ?Champagne please?with plenty of ice.?

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And here are some film moments from foreign language films:

 

Great Foreign Film Scenes:

 

1. The Confession: The listing of the Defendants in the Slansky Trial, with the sinister addendum ?of Jewish descent.?

2. Fanny and Alexander: The ghost of his stepfather confronts Alexander.

3. Forbidden Games: Michel?s father calls him to leave the church. He races out, almost stumbles, then turns around, kneels and quickly crosses himself.

4. L?Age d?Or: The true identity of the unspeakably vile and depraved Duke of Blangis.

5. Last Year in Marienbad: The ?husband? introduces the game. Also, there is the introduction of the shooting gallery, and the scene in the gardens where the landmarks do not cast a shadow.

6. The Leopard: The climax of the passion of Alain Delon and Claudia Cardinale.

7. Mr. Hulot?s Holiday: A wife keeps pointing out and passing seashells to her husband, who nonchalantly tosses them aside.

8. The Music Room: The opening shot as the chandelier swings in the darkness.

9. Red Desert: The depressed female protagonist tells her son a story about a young girl living on an enchanting island. The waves on the shore make the strangest sound.

10. The Seventh Seal: Literally looking death in the face, a cuckold introduces himself and his wife.

11. Shoot the Piano Player: The hood who says may his mother die if he?s lying, and she does!

12. The Young Girls of Rochefort: As the main characters go about their business, bystanders start breaking into dance.

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And here are some from dramas:

 

Great Drama Scenes:

 

1. Dead Man: ?My name is William Blake. Have you read my poetry??

2. Death on the Nile: Colonel Race points out an apparent problem with Poirot?s logic and Poirot responds ever so smugly and cleverly ?Precisely.?

3. The English Patient: ?I can still taste you.?

4. Europa (also known as Zentropa): Max von Sydow?s final countdown.

5. Full Metal Jacket: One particular line by R. Lee Emery about lacking common courtesy that can?t be fully reprinted here.

6. Henry V (Kenneth Branagh version): ?May I with right and power make this claim??

7. L.A. Confidential: Jack Vincennes? last words.

8. The Man Who Knew Too Much: (fifties version): The final shot.

9. The Pianist: The Pianist notices that his brother has with him a copy of ?The Merchant of Venice.? ?How appropriate.? ?Yes, that?s why I brought it.?

10. Reversal of Fortune: ?And a bottle of insulin please.?

11. The Shining: ?You have always been the caretaker.?

12. Tess: The way Angel Clare?s flute slowly segues into a buzzing fly.

13. Twelve Monkeys: ?Jones, in insurance."

 

Also, Madeleine Kahn in Clue, good choice

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> Keeping in mind that "tiny" means relatively brief,

> and therefore shorter than, say, a musical number,

> and that is also implies being not particularly

> prominent and obvious, here are some classic tiny

> film moments from comedies:

>

 

"Tiny" is in the eye of the beholder. It's Like "Jumbo Shrimp" ;)

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skimpole

 

I enjoyed your posts so much!

 

3. Duck Soup: ?Gentlemen, Chicolini here may talk like an idiot and look like an idiot, but don't let that fool you. He really is an idiot.?

 

*lol* Did I mention I love those guys? ;)

 

Since you mentioned Thin Man, I have to say another moment I just thought was hilarious. It's when Powell walks in and the butler comes up to him barely able to walk... "Walk this way, sir." And Powell goes "I'll try," and proceeds to stumble into the next room!

 

Since you also mentioned The Pianist, I have to say one of my favorite scenes in that was when they sat at the dinner table all together. Brody's brother in the film says something about his tie. I always thought if they showed a scene at the Oscars, this should've been it. Adrian Brody was amazing...

 

bhf1940

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A "bit" I didn't catch for a long time in His Girl Friday -

 

In the press room at the jail where all the reporters are playing cards,etc. there is a window to the left of the door that looks out on to a staircase. Roscoe Karns sits there and everytime a woman walks up the stairs outside of the window, he is bending around and craneing his neck to look out the window and up the skirt of the woman on her way upstairs. It happens more that once and is easily overlooked as it is often going on in the background while the dialogue / main action is taking place in the foreground. To me, this is as hilarious as any of the priceless dialogue in the film.

 

Will have to check if that was in The Front Page also.

 

Kyle In Hollywood

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moirafinnie6,

 

The scene you picked from "Dodsworth" is one of my favorite moments from any movie I have watched. The perfect ending to the best movie of the 1930s. I fell in love with Mary Astor the first time I watched the ending of "Dodsworth"...and remain enchanted with Mary...to this day.

 

A couple of favorites.

 

"Raiders Of The Lost Ark". East meets West and West wins when Indiana Jones has the encounter with the twirling sword fellow. I understand the scene was not scripted as presented, but Harrison Ford was ill the day of the shoot and he was near to passing out. Instead of another big fight sequence, Ford suggested the bullet versus sword scene. I applaud Stephen Spielberg for filming Ford's suggestion and putting it in the movie. Turns out to be the best scene of a movie filled with great moments.

 

"Amelie". Amelie and the audience discovers the WHO of the mystery man and WHY of his torn photos. A perfectly logical solution to the mystery. And while watching the scene, I said aloud, "yes, of course...what a great solution". I won't spoil the movie moment by writing details.

 

"Spartacus". The look of defiance on Spartacus' (Kirk Douglas) face after Crassus (Laurence Olivier) loses his temper and smacks Spartacus forcefully. Poor Crassus, never could get Spartacus to submit to Roman authority...ah well, next the cross.

 

Rusty

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skimpole,

 

I love your "Love And Death", "Wheat!..." quote. A couple of months ago, my wife and I watched some Russian movie (I forget the name of the thing) featuring many, many scenes of wheat and wheat fields. The moment wheat appeared on the television screen we yelled, "wheat!...wheat!". We yelled ourselves hoarse. Of course, all the bellowing was in honor of the Woody Allen joke. Uhm...one way to make watching a Russian movie fun.

 

Rusty

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In addition to being such a great film, Casablanca has many wonderful tiny moments. Things like Cuddles Sakall pulling Bogie's drink back and then having Bogie look at him, pushing it forward again. Or a tiny moment that has become a well-remembered moment, "I'm shocked...shocked...to find that gambling is going on in here!" Haven't we all used that "shocked...shocked" in some conversation somewhere, lol?

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> Another favorite Madeline Kahn moment: Clue -

> "I hated her SO much ... Flames. FLAMES on the SIDES

> of my face ... HEAVING BREATHS ..."

>

> Hilarious!

 

What about Madeline Kahn in Paper Moon. Her killer line to Tatum O'Neal: "You're going to ruin it, ain't you?" It's heartbreaking & so subtle.

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I don't mean to make anyone angry with this but if there is anything I hate, abhor, and cannot abide, it's stupidity, I don't mean people who are born stupid, but intelligent people who act stupidly. Maybe that's why I have a hard time finding a comedy I like. but the couple in Dodsworth, made me so angry at their stupidity, the movie made me agry for hours after it was over. In the first place, the wife couldn't accept getting older, yet her husband still loved her, he even took her on a 'second honeymoon'. So she starts flirting and messing round with younger guys who make her 'feel younger'. The husband lets her go on and do her thing until finally he has enough ( the time to put a stop to it was in the beginning, not wait for problems to occur ). So, then he starts retaliation, then she decides she wants him back, but its too late. The whole thing was so irritating to me. They could have lived out their lives in peace and harmony but she had to have her admirers like she was single, and 21. The funny thing bout the whole episode, is it was 70 years ago, and here we are, and the circle has come around. Everybody wants to be young, it's a crime to have grey hair, or wear bifocals. Will the human race ever reach the finish line without repeating itself?

 

Sorry to have gotten off the subject, but I just read back a little.

 

Anne

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Anne,

 

Just keep repeating to yourself..."It's only a movie." Besides, since it is a movie, if she had not done the things she did, and he had put a stop to it at the beginning, there wouldn't have been a film. Like the people who go into a haunted house, if they hadn't and just said on Page 1, "Let's not go in there" and stuck to that, the story would have stopped at page 1.

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Anne,

 

I always thought of "Dodsworth" as a film very true to the era and people it was portraiting.

 

In the era of "Dodsworth", divorce was not as common as it is today. People were more inclined to work out their differences or live with their differences rather than divorce. Marriage was something to be worked at rather than the alternative.

 

Dodsworth loves his wife, foilbles and all. She is a silly woman but, because Walter Huston does such a great job with the character, we believe that somewhere in her past she must not have been so self-absorbed for Dodsworth to have fallen in love with her. Or maybe she was and he was just amazed that such an equisite creature would fall in love with him.

 

Either way, he loves her despite her faults. Divorce is not an easy option for him. We have to see him struggle with that decision. And struggle he does. His wife is not just vain, she is one of those women who believes that she is nothing without her looks. (Which today we would attribute to self-esteem problems, call Dr Phil and get her on the road to recovery). She has to be reassured every waking moment that she is attractive and that men do want her.

 

Dodsworth has to make the painful decision to live the rest of his life with her or compromise his long held belief in marriage is for life so that he can have a better life with Mary Astor's character.

 

It is a wonderful character study of man who wants so to be a good husband no matter what and discovers that sometimes being a good husband doesn't mean you have failed.

 

He has to go on the journey of traveling alone so that he can rediscover the life he can still have.

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MrsL,

Societal morals and behaviors change, but human nature never will, which is why a story about intelligent people behaving "stupidly" has continued to resonate from Aeschylus to Shakespeare to the present day. Each generation and each individual has to learn our lessons about the finite nature of life through our own experience--but dramatic stories and comedies are one way that we can learn a bit of wisdom and help to keep things in perspective, as well as understanding that there really is nothing new under the sun about humanity's struggles--especially when the tale is told so skillfully by writers, directors and actors of the calibre found in that 70 year old chestnut, Dodsworth.

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