So we’ve waited until all ya’ll had a chance to catch up on all the big films that hit theatres last year (if you haven’t done that by now then go back to Mount Sinai)
*In James Earl Jones’s voice* And now it’s time to take a look back at the year in movies that has passed us by, and highlight the top 10 moments that we will forever carry in our hearts.
Just to Be Clear: This list is not just comprised of movie moments that we deem “the best” or even “the worst”; it simply is a list of movie moments that may have shocked, angered, awed, frightened, disappointed or otherwise did SOMETHING to make a lasting impression.
That said, let the list begin:
10. Pistol Throating – Spring Breakers
Aside from the half-naked ex Disney stars and exploitative sequences of teenage tom foolery, there’s a moment somewhere in the middle of Spring Breakers where two of the girls (Vanessa Hudgens and Ashley Benson) flip the script by forcing James Franco’s character, Alien, to deep-throat a couple of loaded pistols.
Filmmaker Hormine Korine certainly likes to push buttons and this (brilliant? Disgusting?) reversal of gender roles certainly did that.
One thing is sure, we’ll never look at Franco the same way again…(not a chance in hell)
9. The Forgot-Me-Sword – Pacific Rim
We could take out an entire month to discuss all the plot holes, beneath average storyline, the inconsistent (or incomprehensible) accents of the lead actors, or the overall silliness of this “Monsters vs. Robots” movie.
…But that moment when the Gypsy Danger crew finally remembered that they had a big ass sword up their sleeve, popped that sucker and cut that flying Kaiju monster in half? Yeah, that’s pretty much the ‘epicness’ that movie geeks paid to see.
Pacific Rim wasn’t perfect – but by God that moment was.
8. Round of Applause – The Conjuring
People say horror movies aren’t even scary any more, these days they play jump rope between disgusting and just unnecessary, but director James Wan pretty much murdered that theory with his throwback horror flick The Conjuring, proving that good horror just requires creativity and precision, not CGI monsters and viscera.
Using a simple children’s game based on sound location and handclaps, Wan led Lili Taylor’s Carolyn Perron on not one, but two rounds of clap-game frights, culminating in a chilling moment that required no blood or gore to make everyone in the theatre almost poop their pants.
7. Hangin’ Around – 12 Years A Slave
While some may favour the brutal scene of iconic slave girl Patsey (Lupita Nyong’o) being beaten by a coerced Solomon Northup, the scene that stands out to us as exceedingly brutal is when Solomon is left partially hung from a noose for an entire day –
Director Steve McQueen let the camera linger on the scene for so long it eventually made us feel like WE couldn’t breathe! The sight of Solomon desperately dancing on his tip-toes as onlookers pass by (either too indifferent or too scared to help) pretty much wraps up the ugliness, absurdity and injustice of American slavery in a way we will never forget.
6. Reverse Khaaaaan – Star Trek Into Darkness
Now did anyone see this coming? The reversal of Star Trek II’s most iconic quote was quite an oozy doozy.
Some people loved it, others really, really, REALLY hated it – and some just didn’t know what the hell all the commotion was about. Regardless, the good people behind Star Trek Into Darkness chose to boldly go where others had already gone, and the reaction was a strong one – for better or for worse
5. The last scene in “Captain Phillips”
Even those who had mixed opinions about the movie sung the praises of Tom Hanks for his performance in the last 10 minutes of the movie, when the title character is in shock after being rescued. His wide-eyed, largely wordless reaction spoke volumes about the trauma he survived, and the woman who treated him was the perfect counterpart, which makes sense since she’s actually in the Navy. A harrowing ending to a gripping film.
4. Super Quaaludes – Wolf of Wall Street
Thanks to the unexpected onset of some powerful quaaludes, Jordan Belfort’s (DiCaprio) short drive home becomes a grotesque struggle to stop his inebriated friend Donnie (Jonah Hill) from spilling the beans to the FBI over a tapped phone.
Even Hithcock would be proud of Scorsese’s creation of dramatic tension using a telephone, a short distance, and two characters who are bat-crap wasted on drugs. It’s arguably one of Wolf of Wall Street’s grossest and most depraved moments – but it also happens to be a hilarious, horrifying and clever sequence – and one of the most impressive bits of physical acting we saw all year.
3. Opening Sequence – Gravity
Like Gravity? Wondering what all the hype is about? Well, really few things come even remotely close to matching the awe-inspiring opening sequence of Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity. One-take tracking shots have become the director’s signature, but a nearly twenty-minute, one-take 3D sequence set in outer space pretty much out-classed anything we’ve seen in cinema in the last couple of years.
It is so rare these days to see something that makes us remember the magic of movies as opposed to a checklist of technical tricks and cliches – but right from the outset (and on through the conclusion) Gravity had our jaws drooping as we kept asking ourselves, “niggerwhat?”
2. That’s Not the Mandarin – Iron Man 3
It’s been talked about so much we’re almost sick of saying it now, but once again it must be acknowledged.
Ben Kingsley wasn’t the real Mandarin; it was all just a subversive fake-out by director Shane Black and writer Drew Pearce; and depending on your level of experience with Iron Man comics, it was either a deal-breaking betrayal by Marvel Studios, or a hilarious twist that made the movie more enjoyable.
You’ve probably already debated with friends and enemies alike; veins popping from your face, pimples breaking out, mammary glands revealed – all we’re saying is that if nothing else, it was memorable.
1. R.I.P Zod – Man of Steel
The climatic moments of Man of Steel had a profound effect on viewers, and started a debate that has extended well beyond the borders of the cinematic or comic book universe.
It doesn’t matter if it happened the same way in Superman II or in Superman comic books; seeing the Man of Steel kill General Zod challenged people’s core beliefs about who this character was, is, and who he will be going forward into modern times.
And that debate will probably never end…
Wanna tell us what you think? Any shocker that didn’t make the list? Sound off in the comments.