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5 Great Movie Gunfights

By Wyatt Earp | August 24, 2005

I’m in a movie kind of mood today, and I’ve been thinking about some of the more entertaining film gunfights. (After all, this blog is called Support Your Local Gunfighter.) I have a few favorites I’d like to share, but I also have a caveat: these scenes are total Hollywood. I did not discriminate between what is realistic or what is pure bunk. Entertainment value is my main concern here. So, fill your magazine and have your eye and ear protection in place. Here we go . . .

Heat, The Bank Robbery – The penultimate gunfight in all of cinema (in my humble opinion). DeNiro and his gang are leaving the bank at the exact moment Pacino and his cops arrive. Mayhem ensues. Strangely enough, a real-life version of this battle took place on the streets of L.A. not too long after.

The Matrix, Lobby Scene – Is there a person alive who hasn’t watched this scene a hundred times? I can quote dialogue verbatim and let you know the exact moment that Carrie Anne Moss walks up the wall. Bonus points for wanton destruction before the elevator bomb goes off!

The Professional, Serving The Warrant – At the end of the film, psycho cop Stansfield (Gary Oldman) takes Natalie Portman hostage and brings the entire NYPD to Leon’s apartment to serve a warrant. Leon, a hitman, plucks off Oldman’s men one by one until they release Portman – just in time for the SWAT team to fire a missile inside the building! Classic!!

Stansfield:Manny, bring me everyone.”
Stansfield: (Screaming) “EVVVRYYYONE!!!

Black Hawk Down, Sniper Rescue – Okay, this whole film is a gunfight, but there is one scene that stands above the rest. Delta snipers Gordon and Shughart volunteer to secure Mike Durant’s chopper crash site as the entire city rains upon him. The snipers know it’s a suicide mission, but they do it anyway. What makes this so extraordinary is that the story is true. Gordon and Shughart lost their lives saving Durant, and were awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor posthumously.

Tombstone, Holliday Versus Ringo – I know. The gunfight at the O.K. Corral was terrific, but I like this showdown better. Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer) and Johnny Ringo (Michael Biehn) finally get the chance “to play for blood.” Although the scene is short, it is totally kickass!

Well, there ya go. I’m sure I missed some great ones, and if I did I’m sure you guys will let me have it.

Topics: Movies | 15 Comments »

15 Responses to “5 Great Movie Gunfights”

  1. The Conservative UAW Guy Says:
    August 24th, 2005 at 10:55 am

    How about “True Romance” with Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette?
    The gunfight at the end in the motel?

  2. The Conservative UAW Guy Says:
    August 24th, 2005 at 10:57 am

    BTW, I like all your choices, and also, FIRST! :)

  3. Steve Says:
    August 24th, 2005 at 12:18 pm

    I loved the Matrix one, probably my favorite, Haven’t seen the professional, need to though. But I am still partial to “Young Guns” although all the blood got a little distracting. Still all those were great.

  4. The Man Says:
    August 24th, 2005 at 3:24 pm

    Show me “Scarface”

  5. Dr. Phat Tony Says:
    August 24th, 2005 at 3:32 pm

    I sort of liked the gunfight at the end of tears of the sun when they did that peel to the left. It just reminded me of times at the live fire range.

  6. Dr. Phat Tony Says:
    August 24th, 2005 at 3:33 pm

    Correction it was a peel to the right.

  7. Wyatt Earp Says:
    August 24th, 2005 at 5:48 pm

    CUG – Great one! I don’t know how I forgot that, sicne I have the movie poster on my basement wall.

    Steve – Estevez shoots Palance to end it. Awesome!

    The Man – I really dropped the ball on that one. “Say hello to my little friend!!!”

    Doc – Haven’t seen it, but anything with Monica Bellucci is interesting to me.

  8. Tyler D. Says:
    August 25th, 2005 at 12:23 am

    The Matrix Lobby scene is the test standard for surround sound.

  9. Cowboy Blob Says:
    August 25th, 2005 at 12:32 am

    My two favorites come from the “Band of Brothers” mini-series. On “Day of Days” Easy Company storms a German artillery battery. Vivid, hard-hitting stuff! Later, in either “Carentan” or “Crossroads” (can’t remember which) Lt. Winters leads Easy Company across an open field to strike a superior German force, only to find out an almost-dud smoke grenade gives him an unfortunate head start.

    I’m gonna rewatch Reservoir Dogs this week and see if that doesn’t qualify.

  10. Tony B Says:
    August 25th, 2005 at 1:15 am

    Cowboy Blob, great choice on that scene in B.O.B. I’d also like to put in my nomination for the end of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

  11. Wyatt Earp Says:
    August 25th, 2005 at 5:59 am

    Tyler – Agreed. It’s the first scene I watched when I set up mine.

    Cowboy – One of my all-time favorites (book and film)! Winters is a PA guy, and Guarnere is South Philly born and bred. As for Dogs, I love when Mr. Pink unloads on the cops (although I probably SHOULDN’T).

    Tony – Good addition – forgot about Butch and Sundance.

  12. Insolublog Says:
    August 25th, 2005 at 5:05 pm

    Some favorites from Clint Lore:

    - Clint takes out the gang of proffesional assassins in Pale Rider.

    - The showdown at the end of Good Bad and Ugly. Nice tension.

    - Dirty harry survives the total swiss cheese House/Cop Car/Bus perforation in The Gauntlet.

  13. Wyatt Earp Says:
    August 25th, 2005 at 5:47 pm

    Insolublog – Pale Rider was excellent! It’s a shame it wasn’t a more popular film.

  14. GunnNutt Says:
    August 25th, 2005 at 7:23 pm

    The opening scene in “Once upon a time in the West” when Charles Bronson shoots the gunslingers at the train station.

  15. Tony B Says:
    August 27th, 2005 at 3:17 pm

    On the Clint Eastwood theme, I haven’t seen enough of his movies to choose the best, but my favorite is in The Unforgiven. The final shootout.