There’s a theory, held by this writer, that a successful scene should work independently of the film or programme within which it features. You shouldn’t need prior knowledge. It should tell you everything you need to know. Nothing more, nothing less. In light of this, ladies and gentlemen, please find Exhibit A.
Tony Scott’s True Romance finds Vincenzo Coccotti (Christopher Walken) interrogating Clifford Worley (Dennis Hopper) about the…well, to tell would to be disprove the theory.
Worley’s acceptance of his fate at the hands of ice-cool Coccotti leads him to push for one final hoorah. Using Coccotti’s racial prejudice and ignorance against him, the reveal of his ancestral heritage is a “your mum” insult that hits hard for the Sicilian.
So skilful is Walken’s performance that for a moment, even if only briefly, there’s a glimmer of hope for Hopper’s character. With a script so sharp you could slice a cop’s ear off a natural, convincing performance from Hopper, this scene more than steals the movie: it shoots up the place, steals its girl and goes on the run with its suitcase full of coke. What more do you need to know?
Which movie scenes make you want to go all Clarence and Alabama?
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Quentin Tarantino/Tony Scott
STARS: Dennis Hopper, Christopher Walken