Just a few weeks ago I did a Phenomenal 5 list on movies storms. This list probably sounds similar but I’m actually going for something quite different. Today I’m looking at specific movie scenes where the rain helped make it memorable. There are so many great rainy scenes that immediately come to mind. And with so many, I would never consider this the definitive list. Still, I have no problem calling these five rainy movie scenes phenomenal.
#5 – “The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers”
Throughout Peter Jackson’s ambitious and invigorating Lord of the Rings trilogy you will find one memorable scene after another. There is one particular moment taken from the second film that is perfect for this list. Our heroes, a small group of elven soldiers, and a host of innocents find themselves seeking refuge in the fortress of Helm’s Deep. With nowhere else to go, they watch as a huge army of orcs gather outside their walls. In the brief calm before the storm, Jackson uses a brilliant little touch. While panning the massive orc army, Jackson shuts off the music and slowly drops of rain begins to falls. It slowly gets heavier and heavier and we hear the raindrops as they hit the metal helmets and armor. It’s an amazing set up to an epic battle.
#4 – “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”
If there are any of you who haven’t seen the darling “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” you may want to stop reading and skip down to the next movie. This particular rainy movie scene happens at the very end of the film. The adorable Audrey Hepburn runs out in the pouring rain after George Peppard who loves her but is fed up with her behavior. Instead she finds her cat down a wet New York City alley shuttering from the rain. She takes the cat in her arms, turns around, and there stands Peppard. In a true romantic fashion, the two embrace and kiss with the cat huddled between them and the rain pouring down. Simply lovely.
#3 – “Inception”
Christopher Nolan’s science fiction mindbender “Inception” was my favorite movie of 2010. This incredibly unique heist film takes place in the subconscious of different people. In the first level of an elaborate shared dream, Leonardo DiCaprio and his team find themselves on the sidewalks of a busy big city in the pouring rain. We get intense car chases, shootouts, and even a freight train storming down a city street. All of this happens in cool, mood-setting rain. But the real funny bit comes when we find out why the rain was so prevelent in the dream. It’s such a cool sequence laced with a touch of humor.
#2 – “Seven Samurai”
Akira Kurosawa was a brilliant filmmaker who not only told good stories but also used groundbreaking techniques which gave his films a special flare. “Seven Samurai” could possibly be his crowning achievement. Perhaps the signature scene for me is the showdown between the ronin and the bandits in a soaking rain. The battle takes place in a muddy village and Kurosawa uses the rain to create an amazing visual canvas. He incorporates all sorts of cool things including wide shots and jump cuts to capture the intensity of this battle. But for me, the rain gives it a grittier feel and a unique look that I still love to this day.
#1 – “Singin’ in the Rain”
It’s simply impossible to put together a list like this and not include Gene Kelly’s iconic dance sequence from the 1952 classic “Singin’ in the Rain”. After Kelly walks the beautiful Debbie Reynolds to her door he shares a kiss with her under his umbrella. After she closes the door he turns around with a lovesick look in his eyes. He closes his umbrella and begins his memorable dance and song in the rain. I’ve never been a big fan of musicals, but Kelly’s films have always pleased me. This particular number is one of his very best. It’s beautifully choreographed and absolutely unforgettable. Kelly was terribly sick when filming the scene, but you would never know it. It became one of the most well-known scenes in movie history.
So there you have my five phenomenal rainy movie scenes. I know many others will probably come to mind. Please take time to share them in the comments section. I would love to hear your choices.
I’m not sure anyone can argue with your No. 1 pick, it’s in the title of the movie, after all! 🙂 Also, great call with Inception, that movie was so much fun. An onion you can keep peeling layers away from forever. . .
I have to say that when the dinosaurs start busting out of their fences when the power goes out in Jurassic Park, that rain and the darkness raised the hairs on my arms! Loved that moment and the rain definitely dramatized the whole event
Oh great pick Tom! That Jurassic Park rain scene is fantastic. It’s definitely the kind of scene I was looking for!
Have you seen Midnight in Paris? That final scene was one I was also considering.
Tried watching that once but quickly gave up because I was turned off by it’s stuffiness. But I’ve read many a great thing about that so I may have to give it another go. It was the one time so far where I couldn’t stand Woody Allen’s style. Again, I’ll have to give it another shot
Ouch! I absolutely adore that movie! If you do get a chance give it another shot. It definitely gets better as it goes.
Will do man, I try not to write off movies so quickly. I guess I just wasn’t in the mind set that day. . .
Oh man, number 5 and number 3, but mostly 5! That’s like my favourite segment in a film ever!! Excellent work, Keith :).
So you know what I’m talking about, right? It’s kinda subtle the way Jackson does it but it really, really stood out to me. It starts with a drop….
Wonderful set of five, Keith. I might swap out the LOTR one for Clint Eastwood’s decision rainy scene in The Bridges of Madison County.
Guess what? I have never seen “Madison County”. Tell me about the scene (or is it a spoiler). I’m curious about it.
It’s the critical scene of two separate vehicles (and people) in the pouring rain (Meryl Streep and Clint), and their romance coming to a critical decision (by the former forever affecting the latter). I don’t want to spoil too much. BTW, it’s my opinion the film adaptation actually improved upon an overrated and once popular book.
Sounds like it would be good for this list. I like how the rain plays a part in what sounds like a significant scene. I’m not certain why I never saw the movie. I think I need to remedy that.
Great choice with Helms Deep. That whole section is perfect. The sense of dread Jackson creates is thrilling. Great list!
Thanks man. I think you hit on it perfectly. The rain seems to go with the sense of dread. The rain starts the battle and it doesn’t stop until we see Gandolf and the morning sunlight.
Yes to Helms Deep, love that whole section. Haven’t seen Seven Samurai, need to check that one out. Even though the film is terrible, I think the fight scene with Neo and Agent Smith at the end of Matrix Revolutions is pretty cool. Ooh and the end of Shawshank where he breaks out!
I was wondering when someone was going to mention Shawshank! I figured I would hear that one mentioned several times.
Have you seen Raising Arizona? It has a rainy prison breakout scene that happens to be a lot goofier!
I haven’t seen that to be honest, but heard it’s pretty good. Yeah I wouldn’t be surprised if Shawshank gets mentioned a lot, it’s a pretty iconic scene.
Oh that needs to be your official movie watching assignment – to watch “Raising Arizona”. It’s an early Coen brothers movie and it’s a straight comedy. I’ve probably seen it 30 times and I still laugh my butt off every time I watch it.
You definitely need to check that one out buddy!
Well I have a week off work next week so I could potentially watch it then, although the number of films I’ve said I want to watch would probably take about 3 months!
I hear you. I do think that one would be well worth your time though. For me it’s one of the funniest comedies of all time. It’s quirky and goofy which is right up my alley.
Fantastic piece. As long as you got Breakfast at Tiffany’s in there, I’m happy.
Thanks for reading. Really appreciate it. To be honest with you “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” inspired this list. Such a great movie and a wonderful closing scene. Are you a Hepburn fan? I thought she was delightful.
Oh yes, I can’t get enough of her. I just love that film. It never gets old.
Great list. Have you seen the 2011 version of Wuthering Heights? It’s a harsh and brutal version that frequently uses heavy rain to highlight mood. There are some beautifully shot scenes of rain running down faces and battering landscapes. Well worth a watch.
OHHH I have heard some great things about that movie. It’s one that I wanted to see but I completely forgot about. Great one to mention. Who stars in it?
You should definitely see it. It’s pretty harsh for a costume drama but it reflects the book’s location and themes so well. It’s directed by Andrea Arnold and stars Kaya Scodelario, from Skins, as the older Cathy.
I’m definitely sold on seeing it. I really appreciate you bringing it up because honestly it was a movie I intended to catch up with.
Great. Let me know how you get on with it. I’m just writing a piece on it this week so it was completely on my mind when I read your post! How’s that for timing 🙂
Great list, Keith. I would have number 4 higher. But otherwise, it’s hard to argue with any of these. 🙂
Ahh, So you’re a big fan of “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” or is it just that particular scene? Either way you’ll get no arguments from me my friend. I love the movie. I love the scene. I love Audrey Hepburn.
I am a big fan of Breakfast at Tiffany’s. (Were it not for the racist portrayal of her landlord, the flick would be one of my Top 10 favorites of all time.) I am also a big fan of that scene. More importantly, for this list anyway, I think the rain vitally important to it. Without the rain, the characters’ decisions would have different meaning, and the scene would resonate differently.
I can’t decide if I would put Breakfast 1, 2 or 3 on this list. Partially because I haven’t seen Singing in the Rain in entirety. I know the scene, of course (it’s so iconic every cinephile does), but I don’t really know how it impacts the picture as a whole.
Anyway, I do know I’d have the Breakfast scene ahead of Inception. (Which is not to say the Inception something other that remarkable, as well, of course.)
That’s fantastic. I love hearing from others who appreciate classic films. You’re right about the landlord. It’s an incredibly boneheaded decision.
As for “Singin in the Rain”, many of the classic musicals consisted of a storyline and then individual dance numbers that sometimes connected with the story and sometimes it didn’t. This particular dance number K’NEX nicely. After sharing their first kiss, Gene Kelly expresses his love through this dance number. He’s basically so overcome that he doesn’t care if it’s raining or not. I adore the scene.
I get what you’re saying about Inception. But as I alluded to, the comedic element behind the rain still cracks me up. A certain character drink a little too much which led to a fairly full bladder. The result? A very rainy and damp dream. Too funny!
Totally agreed on the Inception scene I don’t like the movie as much as many, but that scene is fantastic and definitely deserves a place on this list. I just personally would have put Breakfast ahead of it. 🙂
I will reserve judgement on whether or not Breakfast should be ahead of Singin’ In The Rain.
And I still can’t decide if I would put it ahead of Seven Samurai, either. Everything you said about the Seven Samurai scene is spot on. I can’t imagine it being nearly as effective (or as visually striking) without the rain. But I’d say the same about the Breakfast at Tiffany’s scene, so — like I said — I’m torn. 🙂
I like hearing that you’re torn. That means we’re dealing with some really good movies and not something like “The Notebook” (which my wife recommended for the list – hopefully as a joke) 😉
God let’s hope. 🙂
Great choices, agree with all of them.
Thanks man! A ton to choose from. Kinda hard narrowing it down to just five.
So glad to see Breakfast at Tiffany’s here, I was hoping you would mention it! The Lord of the Rings and Inception scenes are also brilliant, but Singin’ In The Rain is just superb.
Thank you! I mean how could I not top it with “Singin’ in the Rain”, right? The only one you didn’t mention was “Seven Samurai”. Not a fan? It’s one from this list that my wife hasn’t seen. I’m trying to encourage her to give it a look.
An interesting list. For me the climatic scene between Ford and Hauer in Blade Runner has excellent use of rain. “I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe”.
Ohhhhhhh that’s a great, great scene that completely slipped by me. You’re right, the rain really works well in that scene. Great mention.
Others that I almost mentioned – Raising Arizona, Midnight in Paris, Shawshank Redemption, Road to Perdition, and of course the Spider-Man kiss.
Lol, the great, the infamous Spider-Man kiss scene.
That’s the one! Okay, it wasn’t actually in serious consideration for this list but I was wondering if someone was going to mention it.
Good idea for a list! I love that Two Towers scene, it’s such a brilliant moment when the rain starts falling down, the entire battle is still the best I’ve seen.
Isn’t it great? I love how the rain starts to fall and keeps pouring throughout the battle. Really adds to the scene!
The Inception scene notwithstanding, don’t like that movie or that scene, nice picks. I’m especially happy to see The Two Towers on your list, that entire sequence is still probably my favorite sequence in the entire Tolkien film world.
Thanks for reading and I appreciate the comments.
I think I may be with you on the Helms Deep sequence. Everything about it is dazzling. The action is fantastic and it features some of the best camera work of the franchise.
Not a fan of Inception, eh? I gotta say I absolutely love it. It was my favorite film of that year. But you aren’t alone. My wife isn’t crazy about it either.
Awesome picks Keith! I actually did my Top 10 a while back and I mentioned the one from Two Towers which is phenomenal indeed! The one I haven’t seen is Seven Samurai, but agreed that’s a great scene. Here’s my list if you’re interested: http://flixchatter.net/2012/04/30/wet-blog-a-thon-ten-indelible-rain-wet-scenes/
Oh I remember now! I forgot you had done one too. Great list BTW! You mention some REALLY good ones. We definitely agree on Helms Deep. That scene is incredible from the setup to the finale! I also gave a lot of consideration to “Road to Perdition”. Amazing rain scene there as well.
Here’s another one that didn’t make either of our lists but is quite good – The final scene in “Midnight it Paris”. I love it!!!
Can’t argue with your #1. For me, that’s easily the most iconic rain scene of all time. The rest of your choices are great, too. Some others I thought I might see are the Jurassic Park scene someone commented on earlier, same for The Shawshank Redemption, and Road to Perdition.
I thought of one other, but I knew it wouldn’t be there because it is a scene from a horrible movie. A really horrible movie. The thing is it’s actually a great scene made better because it takes place in the rain. It’s by far the most memorable thing that happens in this particular picture. Yup, I’m talking about the final dance scene from…don’t laugh…Step Up 2 the Streets.
Hey thanks for the suggestions. Some REALLY good ones and all of them I considered….except Step Up! I haven’t seen it but believe it or not I know the scene you’re speaking of!
I also thought about Raising Arizona. Talk about a goofy rainy scene. Oh, and have you seen Take Shelter. The oily rain….
I love Raising Arizona, but it’s been years since I’ve watched it so I honestly don’t remember the rain scene. Haven’t seen Take Shelter.
In Raising Arizona is is the Jailbreak scenes. John Goodman and William Forsythe bust out of the muddy ground in the pouring rain and for some idiotic reason just begin screaming at the top of their lungs. It’s totally absurd but quite funny.
Love the list! I would add the Shawshank Redemption when Andy emerges from the pipe, and gosh, The Notebook. Hard to narrow down to five. Your list is great, Keith. 🙂
Thanks Cindy! It really is hard to pick just five. Shawshank is a really good pick. Gotta love that one. I’m not as crazy about The Notebook although my wife suggested it.
I can’t believe nobody else has mentioned Raising Arizona! 😉
Love the rain, always makes a good scene great 😀
I can’t disagree. There is something cool about how directors and/or screenwriters us the rain. At least sometimes.
I do like writing a good rainy scene 😀
Even in the rain? But the ink will run!
Oh hardy ha 😀
One that stands out for me is Chasing Amy when Holden professes his love to Alyssa, but I’m not sure if I could knock any of your picks off to take its place aside from the fact that I’ve never seen Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
Haven’t seen Chasing Amy. Another one I really wanted to include was from Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. There are just so many great rainy scenes!
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