by Jody B. Movie
They’re those moments that made my heart soar, brought a tear to my eye, or maybe even gave me hope for the human race.
(WARNING: this article contains spoilers)
5. Escape to Victory
It stars Michael Caine and Sylvester Stallone, but 1981’s Escape to Victory’s uplifting moment is provided by non-actor and soccer superstar Pele, who scores an amazing goal in this most unlikely story combining soccer and Nazis and an even more unlikely escape plan.
4. 127 Hours
Aron Ralston is a man looking back over a life of inability to connect with people. With his arm wedged under a boulder, Ralston contemplates the decisions and actions that have moulded him, as the water and his chances for survival dwindle. His decision to cut off his arm with a pen-knife is a decision the audience won’t ever have to face, but the movie succeeds in getting us to ask ourselves, “What would I be willing to do to keep on living?” The moment when he finally releases himself is gut-wrenching, stomach-churning and triumphant.
3. Calamity Jane
Musicals are pretty low on my list of favourites, but when the crusty character of Calamity Jane finally softens and Doris Day sings “Secret Love”, dressed in a crisp dress and minus her pistols, I not only believe in love again, I hum along.
Dennis Weaver’s salesman character battles a crazed and seemingly invisible truck driver and is coming off second best after each vehicular encounter. He’s an unremarkable man caught up in a remarkable situation, so when he finally outwits the truck and it plunges off a cliff, roaring like an injured beast, Weaver’s reaction unleashes on the screen with a mixture of relief and exhilaration that still has me cheering for him every time I watch it.
1. The Shawshank Redemption
Andy Dufresne emerges from a sewer pipe to find freedom after years of incarceration for a crime he didn’t commit, and Morgan Freeman’s narration encapsulates the moment: “Andy crawled to freedom through 500 yards of shit-smelling foulness I can’t even imagine.” Sheer poetry.