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Acts Of Heroism In The Movies


Palmerin
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In OUTLAND, one of my favorite films, Marshall O'Niel (Sean Connery) is chasing drug smuggler Spota. After a chase through the entire mining station, O'Niel corners Spota in the kitchen of the dining room. S tries to destroy the amphetamines he is carrying by throwing them into a vat of frying grease, whereupon O, without a moment's hesitation, dips his left hand into the grease. Naturally he burns himself badly, but he manages to prevent the drugs from melting in the grease. That was so heroic, how the character faced down one of the most basic fears of humans and animals: the fear of getting burned!!!

What other equally impressive acts of heroism do you recall?

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Heroic acts of self sacrifice.

 

"Armageddon" (1998)   Harry Stamper stayed behind to detonate the nuke to save Earth.

 

10-of-the-most-selflessly-heroic-acts-in

 

 

 

"Star Trek II The Wrath of Khan" (1982)    Spock getting the main power to warp back on line to save the ship.

 

10-of-the-most-selflessly-heroic-acts-in

 

 

 

"Independence Day" (1996)    Russell Casse kamikaze attack on the city killer to save everyone.

 

10-of-the-most-selflessly-heroic-acts-in

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  • 2 weeks later...

ALIENS: Lieutenant Gorman and Private Vasquez blowing themselves up with a grenade in order to give Ripley, Newt, and Corporal Bishop the chance to escape the monsters that are pursuing them.

 

No offense to the two, since they weren't in a position to choose their own death.  But both had been severely wounded and they were about to be killed by the aliens.

 

Clearly Lawrence of Arabia is one of the movie's most profound meditations on heroism.  Lawrence thinks that by sheer will he can become the perfect ally to the Arabs, and thereby the perfect solider of his empire.  And as his travels through the desert, he has no shortage of physical courage.  But will isn't enough and it can't be.

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In FAT MAN and LITTLE BOY:

 

Michael Merriman(John Cusak) picking up a radioactive element by hand to prevent a mass disaster.

 

In THE BOYS OF COMPANY C:

 

Alvin Foster(James Canning) jumping on a live grenade to protect some Vietnamese children watching a soccer game.

 

 

Sepiatone

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I'm a bit disconcerted at the emphasis on violent, destructive acts of heroism.  There are more subtle kinds:  like the climax of Nostalghia.
Tarkovsky-Nostalghia-kozepso.jpg

 

The protagonist must carry a lighted candle across the length of a drained pool without it going it out.  If he does, he will save the world (which in 1983 is threatened with nuclear destruction).

 

 

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So, in the context of a non-violent, non-self destructive act could Barbara Stanwyck's final scene in "Stella Dallas" be considered "heroic"?  I'm not certain; opinions?

I would definitely say yes, as the essence of heroism is self-sacrifice.

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I'm a bit disconcerted at the emphasis on violent, destructive acts of heroism.  There are more subtle kinds:  like the climax of Nostalghia.

 

 

Okay then. How about the very first guy who came to my mind when one mentions a "non-violent hero"?

 

THIS guy...

 

maxresdefault.jpg

 

 

The guy on the left here, of course.

 

I mean, he wouldn't even punch the guy on the right's lights out after that freakin' little bigoted cracker spat in his FACE, and if THAT isn't "non-violent" then I don't know what IS!

 

(...I know I WOULD'VE coldcocked the SOB if he did that to ME, anyway!!!)

 

;)

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In the finest act of cinematic heroism ever recorded, this guy takes one for the chorus because they need a soprano.

 

faster-pussycat-kill-kill-tura-satana-ki

 

HEY RICH!

 

The guy doin' the kickin' here. Yeah, the one you can't quite see his face. THAT wouldn't by any chance be the one and only....

 

death-once-had-photo-u1.jpg

 

...WOULD IT???

 

(...nah, probably not, huh)

 

;)

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I'm a bit disconcerted at the emphasis on violent, destructive acts of heroism. 

 

Well, I thought the two I mentioned were non-violent.  At least the HEROES didn't use violence to be heroic.  But one hero's END RESULT was violent, at least to HIM.

 

 

Sepiatone

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I'll go with Gene Hackman in "The Poseidon Adventure".  He gives his life near the end of the movie to save the remaining passengers by falling to his death into boiling, toxic water to open a valve to ensure everyone's survival on their last push to a possible rescue.

 

And I would be remiss if I didn't say..."Dargo and scsu1975---you guys kill me!!!!" :lol:

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I'll go with Gene Hackman in "The Poseidon Adventure".  He gives his life near the end of the movie to save the remaining passengers by falling to his death into boiling, toxic water to open a valve to ensure everyone's survival on their last push to a possible rescue.

 

And I would be remiss if I didn't say..."Dargo and scsu1975---you guys kill me!!!!" :lol:

 

Yeah, midwesty. Good pick with Hackman here.

 

(...and thanks for the positive response about me and that other guy's shtick around here...ya see, I've been thinkin' we two ought'a take our act on the road, but I'm not too sure about what the billing should be...I'm thinkin' "Rich and Good Looking" has a better sound to it, but I'm not sure I wanna give up first billing?!!!)

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Yeah, midwesty. Good pick with Hackman here.

 

(...and thanks for the positive response about me and that other guy's shtick around here...ya see, I've been thinkin' we two ought'a take our act on the road, but I'm not too sure about what the billing should be...I'm thinkin' "Rich and Good Looking" has a better sound to it, but I'm not sure I wanna give up first billing?!!!)

How about this..."Good Looking...and Rich Too!"?  I could be in the market as a post-retirement booking agent.  We'll have you guys perform at every Starbucks in North America.  I say we start small, like say....Medicine Hat, then Lethbridge, then two--yes two shows in Saskatoon!  I hear if you can make it in Canada's Prairie Provinces, you can practically write your ticket to Halifax and beyond!

 

Then again, a friend of mine likes to tell me I ought to be on stage...the next one out of town!  :rolleyes:

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How about this..."Good Looking...and Rich Too!"?  I could be in the market as a post-retirement booking agent.  We'll have you guys perform at every Starbucks in North America.  I say we start small, like say....Medicine Hat, then Lethbridge, then two--yes two shows in Saskatoon!  I hear if you can make it in Canada's Prairie Provinces, you can practically write your ticket to Halifax and beyond!

 

Then again, a friend of mine likes to tell me I ought to be on stage...the next one out of town!   :rolleyes:

 

Funny, my own mother used to tell me that too! Ah, good ol' Mom.

 

And, ah, the Canadian Prairie Provinces, ya say, huh..err.."eh"?! I suppose that's as good a starting point as any, huh..err..EH?!

 

And ya know, I was just thinkin' here that if all goes well, Rich and I could maybe do a remake of this Hope and Crosby road picture while we're there...

 

220px-RoadToUtopia_1946.jpg

 

(...now, I dunno about Rich, but I can croon a tune pretty well, and so I'll take Bing's part...I get the girl at the end of the picture that way, ya know)  ;)

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