just for fun

What a Scene: Favorite Movie Scenes

Summer is in full force here. That means temperatures in the hundreds. Really, you can’t be expected to set foot outside in weather like this. Not when you have air conditioning and brownies indoors. The only thing a reasonable person can do is stay home and watch movies.

And, since I’d rather not trek to the theater to see a new one (at least until the temperatures drop below 95), I might as well watch a few old favorites.

Sometimes, what makes me want to re-watch a movie is not so much the whole movie but a single spectacular scene. Here are a few of my favorites:

Kill Bill

It’s next to impossible to pick just one favorite scene from the Kill Bill series. But, if you held a katana to my neck, I’d have to pick the one where O-ren Ishii (Lucy Liu) collects Boss Tanaka’s (Jun Kunimura) head for bringing up a taboo subject. The only taboo subject, in O-ren’s opinion.

*Note: You may already know this, but this scene might not be safe for work. But only for a little violence and language. 

Lucy Liu is absolutely perfect in this scene.


Sadly, I wasn’t able to find clips for the following scenes. Youtube let me down on this one. But, if you haven’t seen the films, I highly recomend them.


This is one of my all-time favorite movies. It’s surprisingly well written and has a few truly touching moments (something I love in a horror film).

My favorite scene takes place just after Diane (JoBeth Williams), the mom, has rescued her little girl Carol Anne from the Beast on the other side. Carol Anne (Heather O’Rourke) isn’t breathing. Diane is holding her close in the bathtub and everyone is begging Carol Anne to breathe.

“Breathe, baby, please!” They plead.

There’s a good, long moment when it seems like the child is gone, then she breathes. And we can too.


Quentin Tarantino is the undisputed master of dialog, pacing and entertaining violence.

I love this quiet scene in Desperado: El Mariachi (Antonio Banderas), recovering from a wound inflicted by an assassin hired by his nemesis Bucho (Joaquim de Almeida), has taken refuge in a bookstore owned a by a woman named Carolina (Salma Hayek). When Bucho makes a surprise visit to Carolina’s store, El Mariachi  hides behind the counter. While Bucho chats Carolina up, El Mariachi quietly, so very quietly, loads his gun in case Bucho discovers him. Every movement is subtle and ratchets up the tension delightfully.


This final scene comes, not from a movie, but a show. Some of you might consider this an old show, as it premiered twenty years ago. But it’s still one of the greatest shows of all time.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer – Can We Rest Now, Buffy?

Some of you may be Team Angel but I’ve always been Team Spike. I’m a sucker for a good redemption arc, and Spike’s is fabulous.

Here, Spike’s (James Marsters) returned to town and Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) considers the possibility she may have to dust him. Then she realizes something is very, very different about him.

Joss Whedon is another master of dialog, and this is a brilliant example.

Hmm, I’d like to see Tarantino and Whedon duke it out in dialog. Who’s with me?

What are your favorite movie scenes?

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