Saturday, March 7, 2009

procrastination am fun!

because what am i doing this morning instead of writing my historiographical essay? well, y'see, i saw this post earlier in the week and, while i didn't think about it particularly at the time except to acknowledge the obvious wisdom of the first entry (although i might have refined it down a bit and given han his due in making the scene work), it suddenly came to me the other day that one of the things missed in the list was

  1. from predator 2. which is not one of the great (action) movies of all time or even a particularly good sequel, but. towards the end of the movie when our hero, danny glover, is chasing our villain, the predator (duh), through l.a., the predator breaks through the wall of an apartment building, ending up in the bathroom. a quick cut reveals the tenants to be an elderly couple watching "jeopardy" or something -- the husband is snoozing, but the wife hears the commotion in the bathroom. the husband refuses to wake up and investigate, so she grabs her trusty ol' broom and goes herself. after doing some immediate first aid -- which involves liquidizing some portion of the bathroom wall, setting it on fire, turning it green, and spackling it on his leg with concomitant howling in pain -- the predator bursts out through the inner door of the apartment, throwing the old lady back against the wall but not, note, killing her. he then takes off through the main door into the rest of the building. danny glover follows within minutes, practically collapsing at the woman's feet and, when she shrieks and starts to whap him with the broom, hauling out his cop i.d. and waving it at her: "it's okay, i'm a cop, i'm chasin' that guy--"

    at which point the lady looks at him, leans in, and delivers one of the great lines of the '80s: "mister, i don't think he gives a shit."

  2. ripley and newt are trying to escape from the hellhole the atmosphere processing plant on lv-426 has become; they take the wrong turning and find themselves confronted with the alien queen, surrounded by dozens, perhaps hundreds, of eggs, and the threat of dozens of drone warriors in the offing. the queen and ripley come to an agreement -- after due demonstration of flamethrower -- and ripley and newt begin to back away. as they do, an egg cracks open, the legs of the facehugger come into view as it begins to crawl up prepatory to springing on whatever is nearest. ripley looks up at the queen and tilts her head. no-one says anything. the moment is as close to silent as you're likely to get in an early james cameron movie. and the communication between ripley and the queen is absolutely clear: we had a deal. you broke it. fuck you.

  3. without wanting to spoiler anything for anyone (particularly since i intend to write something about night watch later which will just spoiler the hell out of it), the end of pitch black. basically from of monsters to the closing credits.

  4. pirates of the caribbean. i could just wuss out here and say, basically the whole first movie. it works so well and geoffrey rush leaves just about enough scenery for johnny depp to chew with a few fragments left for knightley and bloom, but i love the ending. the last few moments just before the snap to black. it's timed so beautifully with the score. and while it's totally sequel-hunting, it deserved to be sequel-hunting!

  5. and, while i thought about doing it, i really can't avoid putting star wars on here in some shape or form but, since the original post covers one of the great explosions of all time, i don't feel like either copying that or going for the jedi battle or explosion. so, instead, i'll plump for a moment from the final fight sequence between luke and vader. not the whole thing -- i love it, but it looks a little antiquated, particularly in comparison with menace and sith -- but just after vader has been driven back onto the little catwalk space. luke basically just beats him into the ground (there isn't a lot of finesse here but there's plenty of suppressed anger and frustration), cuts off vader's hand -- then very clearly realises what the hell's going on and steps back. the emperor has been applauding him and coming down the steps from his throne and now urges him to go ahead, kill vader, be done with it. there are a few moments of consideration -- then luke steps back, throws his sabre hilt to one side (i remember being able to hear it hit the floor, but i find that sound effect isn't on either of my dvd editions -- perhaps i imagined it?), and refuses: "i am a jedi like my father before me." it's great. a wonderful moment. he is about to get his ass kicked on a monumental level and i'm sure he's aware of that -- i mean, if he has any brain at all, he probably thinks he's about to die, but he does it anyway.

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