Sunday, August 18, 2013

Five Classic Movie Entrances

Clark II

In my new ebook, ABOUT WESTERN MOVIES, I discuss the importance of the entrance of key characters, using the example of “Frank Miller” in High Noon. So much is said in the movie about the character, when he finally appears he’d better not disappoint.

What are some of the best all-time movie entrances? Here’s five:

1.) ORSON WELLES in The Third Man (1949).

In corrupt postwar Vienna, Harry Lime is presumed dead—until glimpsed in a shadowy doorway with a cat at his feet!

2.) EDWARD G. ROBINSON in Key Largo (1948).

Evil gangster Johnny Rocco first seen smoking a cigar while luxuriating in a bathtub behind a large fan! Characterization created with a single shot.

3.) JOAN CRAWFORD in Rain (1932).

Her hands, her feet—then La Crawford herself appears with garishly made-up face. Again, character created in an instant via the magic of film.

4.) CLARK GABLE in Gone With the Wind (1939).

As with Orson Welles, a grand way to enter a movie is with a Cheshire-cat grin on your face. Gable appears not from an alleyway, but at the bottom of a staircase.

5.) JOHN WAYNE in Stagecoach (1939).

I have to get a Western on the list. John Wayne blocking a road while twirling a rifle about made him a star.


What have I missed? Are there other more recent movies where an important character makes a grand entrance? If so, let me know.

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