Now, I had never really heard about the blog Hitchcock’s World before today, but I do follow The Cinematic Spectacle, and I found out about this Blog-a-Thon. I’ve never really participated in Blog-a-Thons before, but I thought that I should give it a shot.
The idea is to pick your favorite movie scene, (or scenes) and explain why you love it. Here are the rules as copy-and-pasted from the website.
1.) Each choice must be a specific moment from a film, not the film itself, even if it’s a movie like My Dinner With Andre or Twelve Angry Men.
2.) Since picking out scenes is hard, you can write about as many different moments from as many different films as you like. There are no specific restrictions in what types of films you can draw from, even if it’s one of Godard’s movies or Tarkovsky’s Solaris or any other film I have criticized in this blog. I’ll even try to control myself is you pick a scene from one of Connery’s James Bond films.
3.) I’d encourage you to try and diversify your range of choices as much as you can. In both my lists I cover movies in the science fiction, war, western, comedy, surrealist, and adventure genres with periods ranging from the 1950’s to the present day.
4.) For each film you refer to you can only discuss one scene. For instance if you decide on writing about 2001: A Space Odyssey, you can’t do both the shuttle docking sequence and the scene where Dave disconnects HAL, you’d have to make a choice between one or the other.
5.) For each scene, you should provide a reasonably clear description. I would advise some context regarding what is happening in the scene, (though you are not required to do so depending on the circumstances, i.e. if you want to avoid spoiling a crucial twist that happens here) but the focus should be on what you like about that particular moment.
6.) I would also recommend making sure your descriptions are not too long. I’m not going to give a precise maximum length but try to keep your explanations from being longer than necessary.
Now, I thought about doing multiple movie scenes, but I ultimately decided that many of my favorites were too spoiler heavy. So, I decided on just one. Now, If you’re sick of hearing me go on about How To Train Your Dragon, I’d recommend you stop reading now, because I’m going to talk in depth about “Forbidden Friendship.”
I see the scene as the centerpiece of the film. Set to one of the most beautiful pieces of orchestration in cinema history (see here), the film’s two central characters, the scrawny viking teen (Hiccup) and the mysterious Night Fury (Toothless) become friends. It may sound corny, but the way the scene is executed is flat out brilliant.
As I said in my tribute of the movie, it would have been really easy to make the dragons talk, which would have made this scene pretty stupid. Because Toothless doesn’t talk, it allows the connection between the two to come out in body language rather than dialogue. Hiccup has only two lines of dialogue early on in the scene, and after that, the film lets the character’s actions speak for themselves.
But what makes this scene so great is that in order to bridge the gap between man and beast, we have Hiccup taking on animalistic behavior (eating the fish, recognizing territorial lines), and Toothless taking on humanistic behavior (mimicking Hiccup’s posture, smile, and drawing.)
One of the things that makes this scene (and the whole movie for that matter) so brilliant is that Hiccup and Toothless are really evenly matched. This movie is really about the relationship between man and beast. Hiccup (Man) has the brain, the opposable thumbs, and the ability to create things. Toothless (Beast) has the strength, agility, and speed. And even though we know very little about Toothless’ life before Hiccup, we get the feeling that Toothless needs Hiccup just as much as Hiccup needs Toothless.
When Toothless is giving Hiccup the regurgitated fish, it’s not just to be funny. That’s an act that many animals do, particularly parents towards their young. And Ironically, Toothless is shown to care for Hiccup more than Hiccup’s actual parent. (For the time being, anyway.) This scene is not meant to be comedic nor totally serious, just peaceful and beautiful.