RSS Feed

Tag Archives: Gone With the Wind

11 People You Don’t Expect to See in Classic Movies

Posted on

Tell me if you’ve had this experience. You’re watching a classic film, really enjoying it, when suddenly – BAM! – some celeb pops up completely at random, in a minor role. Throws you off a bit, doesn’t it? In that spirit, here are 11 examples of folks who have no business distracting us from our viewing pleasure.

JOHN RATZENBERGER IN “THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK”

I have to say, seeing Cliff from “Cheers” in the best film of the “Star Wars” saga doesn’t leave me with a good feeling about the Rebel Alliance, upon repeat viewings. His big line has to do with closing the Hoth base shield doors, I believe. Here’s something even more surprising: Mr. Ratzenberger also appeared in “Gandhi.” How do you go from India and a galaxy far, far away to a barstool in Boston? Gotta be the ‘stache!

CARL ‘ALFALFA’ SWITZER IN “IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE”

Any fan of “The Little Rascals” has to raise an eyebrow at the classic “swimming pool” scene in “It’s a Wonderful Life.” There’s good, old Alfalfa, causing trouble by opening up the indoor swimming pool underneath the high school gym, as a way to get back at Jimmy Stewart. You half expect to see Spanky and Buckwheat crash the party in a homemade go-kart. Say, what’s the big idea?

SAMUEL L. JACKSON IN “GOODFELLAS”

You KNOW something is amiss when gangster Joe Pesci pays a call on a low-level hood and Samuel L. Jackson opens the apartment door! What happens next is an even clearer indication that this classic Scorsese flick was shot before Jackson became a big star.

DON RICKLES IN “RUN SILENT, RUN DEEP”

This photo says it all. Burt Lancaster! Clark Gable! Don Rickles! Wait, what? Rickles has always dabbled in drama, but it was never so jarring as his turn in the great submarine war story, “Run Silent, Run Deep.” It’s a good part for comedy’s “Mr. Warmth,” but he didn’t get to call anyone a hockey puck even once.

ROBERT DUVALL IN “TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD”

Duvall never has a problem with the occasional bit part. Yet his appearance as Boo Radley in “To Kill A Mockingbird” remains truly memorable, decades after the fact. He does as much with this haunted, halting shadow of a man as he later would do with swaggering soldiers, singers and cowboys.

KATHY GRIFFIN IN “PULP FICTION”

Luckily, the oddity of seeing comic Kathy Griffin show up as a bystander in “Pulp Fiction” seems to fit right in with the edgy vibe of the movie. The only thing that would make it better is if she started riffing on John Travolta’s hair or Uma Thurman’s outfit.

WILLIAM SHATNER IN “JUDGMENT AT NUREMBERG”

You may have asked yourself, “Did the Shat ever work with Spencer Tracy, Judy Garland and Marlene Dietrich?” Well, he did. Long before “Star Trek” and Priceline.com came along, Shatner emoted alongside those Hollywood Giants in “Judgment at Nuremberg,” a 1961 movie about a military tribunal in Germany after World War II. And! He! Didn’t! Overact!

RICHARD DREYFUSS IN “THE GRADUATE”

Tiny part here, but Dreyfuss gets some decent face time in the second half of “The Graduate.” He plays a student living in the same rooming house as Dustin Hoffman, when landlord Norman Fell begins to suspect that Hoffman is one of those “outside agitators.”

MARILYN MONROE IN “ALL ABOUT EVE”

Here’s an amazing, 1950 film about an ambitious young actress trying to supplant an older, highly successful actress, played by Bette Davis. But is the iconic Marilyn Monroe playing the ruthless young woman? No. She’s a side character, totally irrelevant to the plot. It’s amazing how Monroe’s later status completely changes the way you take in the movie now.

GEORGE REEVES IN “GONE WITH THE WIND”

Folks of a certain age will understand how utterly distracting it is to watch the first part of “Gone With the Wind” and discover that one of Scarlet O’Hara’s suitors is none other than Superman! George Reeves, the tragically typecast star of TV’s “Superman” in the 1950s, also appeared in “Knute Rockne All American” and “Rancho Notorious,” before Metropolis consumed him.

TED KNIGHT IN “PSYCHO”

This one is my absolute favorite. Here, you’ve been on the edge of your seat through all the visceral, creepy shenanigans of Hitchcock’s “Psycho” – including the shower scene – and you’re ready for the big finish. Anthony Perkins is cooling his heels in the local lock-up, waiting to give you one last surprise. But then, who steps out of the doorway? Ted Baxter from the “Mary Tyler Moore Show”!? Wow. Didn’t see that one coming.

I’m sure there are some other great examples. I’m all ears.

25 Great Movie Exit Lines

Posted on

Like the last bite of pie or the end of a great novel, the final line of a movie can be a beautiful thing. It sends you on your way satisfied and just a little sorry the experience is over. Here are some of my favorites.

SHANE (1953)

“Shane! Come back! Bye, Shane.”

As you might guess, this line is shouted by a little boy as gunslinger Shane rides off in the distance, never to return. Is the kid’s plaintive cry annoying? Yes. But it absolutely works because you know how he feels; you feel the same way.

THE WIZARD OF OZ (1939)

“There’s no place like home.”

In a timeless classic full of timeless lines, this is one of the best. Corny, but great.

THE CANDIDATE (1972)

“What do we do now?”

Here, the final sentence of the film is also the whole point of the story. It’s as true now as it was in ’72.

BABE (1995)

“That’ll do, pig. That’ll do.”

This oddly beguiling movie, full of fun, fantasy and food for thought, ends in the perfect way: A heartfelt affirmation between a man and his pig.

EVERYTHING YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT SEX (BUT WERE AFRAID TO ASK) (1972)

“Attention, gonads, we’re going for a record.”

Unquestionably, the winner of the “Unlikeliest Final Words of a Movie” sweepstakes. Also, the best pairing of Tony Randall and Burt Reynolds EVER.

INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS (1956)

“You’re next!”

By the time Kevin McCarthy gets all up in your grill with this warning, the movie already has worked its terrifying mojo. Be sure to check the basement for pods before bed.

GONE WITH THE WIND (1939)

“After all, tomorrow is another day!”

Confession time, folks. This makes the List for me not because I love it, but because I’ve always been amazed at the nerve it took to end such a sprawling, high-profile film this way. Kind of like the end of “The Sopranos.”

APOCALYPSE NOW (1979)

“The horror. The horror.”

Nothing is easy about “Apocalypse Now” – not the lighting, not the sound, not the surreal dialogue. Yet the cumulative power of the whole experience, including the final words, is immense.

THE SEARCHERS (1956)

“Let’s go home, Debbie.”

What’s remarkable about this ending is that you’d never have predicted it.

THE PRINCESS BRIDE (1987)

“As you wish.”

The great Peter Falk delivers the goods with a perfect twinkle in his eye. I have serious questions about anyone who doesn’t like this movie.

THE PRODUCERS (1968)

“We open in Leavenworth Saturday night!”

A zany movie HAS to end with a big punchline. Thanks Mel. Thanks Zero. Thanks Gene.

THE PLAYER (1992)

“Traffic was a bitch.”

The biting satire of this last line wraps up the movie in a sarcastic little bow.

SUNSET BOULEVARD (1950)

“All right, Mr. DeMille, I’m ready for my close-up.”

Matched with the visual of Gloria Swanson in full nutjob mode, the final line is wonderfully creepy.

TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD (1962)

“He would be in Jem’s room all night, and he would be there when Jem waked up in the morning.”

This one’s kind of a cheat, because of the incredible source material. It doesn’t get better than Harper Lee.

ARMY OF DARKNESS (1993)

“Hail to the king, baby.”

I love this line. It’s got that Elvis-kicks-an-alien’s-ass-in-the-parking-lot kind of vibe, just like the rest of the film.

MAGNUM FORCE (1973)

“A man’s got to know his limitations.”

Fittingly, this has become one of Clint Eastwood’s many iconic lines. It’s both spare and ironic.

SOME LIKE IT HOT (1959)

“Well, nobody’s perfect!”

How do you finish one of the wittiest, most absurd blockbusters in film history? With a line that’s witty and absurd, naturally.

THE CIDER HOUSE RULES (1999)

“Goodnight, you princes of Maine. You kings of New England.”

Hokey, to be sure, but you have to admit this recurring line has a certain lilt.

BACK TO THE FUTURE (1985)

“Roads? Where we’re going, we don’t need roads.”

In this case, the last words pull double duty. They need to leave you wanting to see the sequel. Mission accomplished, Doc.

KING KONG (1933)

“It was Beauty killed the Beast.”

Who knew Fay Wray could have this kind of effect?

(500) DAYS OF SUMMER (2009)

“Nice to meet you. I’m Autumn.”

Of course this is the last line of this smart little movie. How could it not be?

THE APARTMENT (1960)

“Shut up and deal.”

Looking back at this one through the lens of “Mad Men,” the end line is exquisite – all about longings that find their expression in loaded language.

THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION (1994)

“I hope.”

I could listen to Morgan Freeman’s concluding narration a hundred times. Oh, wait. I already have.

THE GRAPES OF WRATH (1940)

“And we’ll go on forever, Pa, cause we’re the people.”

What’s important to me is that even though the film ends much differently than Steinbeck’s brilliant novel, it still carries the same message of faith in human perseverance against all odds.

CASABLANCA (1942)

“Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.”

Does that line sing or what? Not only is it true to Bogie’s character, it pretty well sums up a whole generation of tough, duty-driven people. Compared to “Casablanca,” most movie exit lines aren’t worth a hill of beans.

That’s my two cents, ladies and gents. Feel free to add yours.