The one scene that sullies an otherwise good film

The are a number of things about Sergio Leone’s “The Good the Bad and the Ugly” that qualify it as being probably the best the spaghetti western genre has to offer. Great cast, iconic theme song, good cinematography, interesting story…but there is one scene that totally gets it wrong. I’m talking about theinterrogation scene, where Lee Van Cleef’s character roughs up Tuco while trying to find out where gold is hidden. Confederate soldiers are ordered to play music to drown out the sounds of the interrogation…and the soldiers are supposed to be crying out of sadness for some stranger getting beaten up. I’m sorry, but that’s always struck me as hitting the wrong chord.

What about you; are there films you enjoy a great deal but contain one scene that somehow just ruins it for you?

I could see that if the soldier had been early into his cups.

Any scene with Mickey Rooney in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.” I think there are only two or three but they are painfully cringeworthy and they ruin the entire film.

That scene in the Dark Knight where Batman ran off from a party and left the Joker behind to kill all the guests.

Huh - I always saw that as them crying because it wasn’t the first time, nor would it be the last time, that they had to play to cover up the sounds. They weren’t crying for Tuco, they were crying for their fellow soldiers who had been through the same.

I took it that they weren’t crying for Tuco specifically; but for a fellow soldier, a comrade.

Even when watching Pulp Fiction the first time while in the theater, I wanted… needed… to fast-forward through the taxi cab scene with Bruce Willis and the cab driver.

Django Unchained.
Not the oft-mentioned Tarentino Aussie cameo, but the first shootout – with a huge bodycount and absurd amounts of blood flying all over the place.
I understand it’s deliberately OTT but it just didn’t work for me.

The “Can you read my mind?” scene in Superman.

Disney’s original Alice in Wonderland. In the Mad Tea Party, the March Hare is trying to repair the Mzd Hatter’s watch (with sugar, jam and butter), and the watch explodes. At the moment of the explosion, the picture goes to black and white, and the animation looks all screwed up.

Jaws - death of Quint. Really can a shark eat you with half its body out of the water?
Rocky III - Mick’s heart attack just before the first Lang fight
Godfather III - surprisingly it’s not Sophia C’s acting but the death of Joey Saza (up to the hospital scene.)
Rambo II - Rambo’s last lines

But never mind specific instances. I hate any scene showing a desperate struggle through thick, visible rain, or against lashing waves.

I’ve considered that as well. Even if that was the intent, the scene still doesn’t wash for me.

YES! Talk about hitting the brakes in the middle of a film. The dialogue sucked, and the entire scene was completely unnecessary in terms of advancing the plot.

Any time Dennis Weaver, as ridiculously bumbling milksop, appeared in Touch of Evil.

Several mind-bogglingly, implausibly dumb scenes in The Last Seduction.

Dancing at the party in Blue Velvet. That was so dragged out, Kyle and Linda snogging away, ad nauseam, PLUS the “and kiss for-eh-eh-verrrrrr” choral singing to go with it - holy shit what a fucking painful scene that was. Yeah I know it’s Lynch and he’s weird, but manoman it bogged down the flick for a bit, there.

The inexcusably dumb three-way offing at the end of Reservoir Dogs.

I might have chuckled slightly at first viewing of the fast-motion sex scene in A Clockwork Orange, but it definitely doesn’t stand up to repeated viewings.

Sex scenes in the otherwise transcendant Space is the Place.

Debauched pool scene in The Last Picture Show (jeez am I starting to get all schoolmarmy, here?)

“Trippy” Stargate sequence in 2001.

Grandpa in Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

The dinner scene in My Dinner with Andre. :stuck_out_tongue:

Any of the musical bits in The Ruling Class.

The combat half of Full Metal Jacket.

Prodigy had several.

The scenes where counselor guy is talking to the creepy girl are great. But the scenes where he is out of the room and talking to creepy girl’s handlers are cheesy and poorly written.

Dennis Weaver is one of the best things in Touch of Evil. He is delightfully weird, though I can understand how it can be off-putting on first viewing. But his creepiness is perfect to bring out Janet Leigh’s unease and terror.

Personally, I thought that Heat (Michael Mann) could have been a better film just by rearranging some stuff. They build up how hard these guys are working to pull off a great heist and how much it means to their personal lives and so the big moment of the film is when it all falls apart.

Except the strongest scene in that vein is when Val Kilmer has to leave his wife, and that’s like 30 minutes before the end of the movie and, between that point and the actual end there’s a whole sequence where De Niro is tracking down the one trouble-maker and successfully rubbing him out, so the movie ends with a victory just before what should be the big ending, and the final downer point doesn’t come across as well as Val Kilmer’s scene from 30 minutes earlier. You want a film with a downer ending to be, really, in sort of an overall arc shape where everything gets better, better, better, peaks, and then goes down, down, down, tragedy. Rearranging it to be better, better, peaks, down, tragedy, better, down…just sort of doesn’t work emotionally.

Removing the scene where they get the trouble-maker would have helped quite a lot, since it at least removes the small win in there at the end.

It probably would take more to make the film fully work; for example having De Niro work to protect and save his crew, failing at each step, rather than running off on his own and doing whatever. As is, we’re never shown him doing anything terribly decent or worthy of caring about, except being very professional at his job, and that’s not enough to make his end matter as much as the ends that come to his crew. Yet, it’s presented as the ultimate tragedy. Minus redemption: No tragedy. He needed something to redeem himself, and taking out a rapist killer wasn’t that. He didn’t do it because the guy was bad, he did it because the guy mucked their job up. That is still just him being a professional, not a man redeemed.

Ah well. The movie starts great, but you may as well turn it off after Kilmer drives off, 30 minutes from the end.

It’s not a whole scene, but there’s one camera shot that always bothers me at the end of The Princess Bride. Westley has killed Rugen and reunited with Inigo. When Buttercup jumps out the window into the waiting arms of Fezzik, there’s a shot of her jumping that’s just gorgeous; white dress billowing against the midnight dark sky. And then it cuts to a shot of Robin Wright’s face and it’s just painfully obvious that it was done on a soundstage with her pretending to fall and a fan blowing her hair. In a movie with so many great action pieces, that one clumsy shot just jumps out at me every time.

TGtBatU is a study in contrasts; Blondie and Tuco think they’re alone in the wilderness, and suddenly they’re in the middle of a huge Union Army encampment, that sort of thing. I think the interrogation scene was supposed to be in that vein, the contrast between Tuco’s brutal beating and the mournful music. And doesn’t one of the soldiers outside tell Blondie that all of them had been through a similar session with Angel Eyes? It wasn’t just theoretical sympathy they felt for Tuco. They all remembered their own beatings in that room.

If there’s a scene in that movie that seems out of place to me, it’s Tuco’s scene with his brother at the monastery where Blondie is being nursed back to health. I’m not sure we need a scene to humanize Tuco. He’s already perfect as a craven conniving bandit.

There’s always the ending scene where Westley, Buttercup, Inigo, and Fezzik are all riding away on horses. It’s blatantly obvious that it’s a stunt double in place of Andre the Giant on the horse.

I always think of two sequences that bugger up the whole film:

The actually rather fun The Shadow starts with a scene showing Lamont Cranston’s past in the opium fields of China. It would have been far better to have started with a scene showing The Shadow in action, and let the background stuff emerge as flashbacks later (or maybe never :wink: ).

And of course, the very very bad decision to start Dark City with a voiceover explaining the whole damn plot.

The music video for “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head” in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.