As the great guys behind Team America (2004) put it there are various kinds of montage…
And here’s my retro romantic montages showing my favourites of from where boy meets girl and leading to an inevitable happy ending.
When Dave suggested the latest Banzai Retro Club collaboration be on our most loved movie montages, there were so many wonderful ones to choose from. These are my favourite part of the film, where usually the musical soundtrack does the talking rather than the actors. And we are shown wee snippets of the film story, where time passes over a number of these shots whereas it normally if shown without a montage would mean more time added to the film.
The montage topics of course can be about anything and everything. They can include training montages (be it dancing, karate or boxing), romantic montages (at all stages of the film romance from falling in love to post break up blues) and simply condensing time (to make a point) so here’s just a few examples of these kinds of montages…
- Training Montages : These usually have our hero learning a skill which in romantic movies will get him the girl. Or he’ll use to fight against the bad guy with and probably win. Usually as some older actor with gravitas aiding his protegé in this quest. Examples of this see Rocky IV (1985), Karate Kid (1984), Highlander (1984), Dirty Dancing (1987) and Footloose (1984).
- Condensing time – to make a point – Montages : As it would take ages to show a scene in full, eg Pretty in Pink (1986) and Pretty Woman (1990). Pretty Woman’s montages tell us that a. that Richard Gere’s millionaire Edward has an abysmal amount of money and b. Julia Roberts can look good in anything as she’s got those extra long legs. In fact you could add footage of the leggy one in a bin bag and she’s still look lovely.
And now to the subject of this post with a few much later honorable mentions. Romantic montages are fantastic in showing what’s been seen the fantastic opening montage for Up (2009) to the what
should could have been, as in La La Land (2016). But as this is a retro themed post (more of these in a later post) and being the romantic soul that I am, here’s a wee guide to those romantic movies. This in my favourite montages from girl meets boy (etc) – and incorporating all kinds of movie montage moments above… but without spoilers!
Boy meets Girl in… Girls Just Want to Have Fun (1985)
Girls Just Want To Have Fun – DTV Practice, Cassie Hill
So setting the scene, Teenage Janey and bound for college, Jeff meet when auditioning for Dance TV, which is a long-standing dream for them both (but not their parents). So with then both making it to the finals, they are paired off to practise and dance,dance, dance. Where the pair inevitably end up in love… This one of my fave montages back in the day, as incorporates a training montage and a budding romance montage in one with that catchy song. And Lee Montgomery was a bit of a teenage crush for me (and others I can’t mention) so Sarah Jessica Parker headed the then lucky ladies in the movies list…
First Date… The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad! (1988)
The Naked Gun | Frank and Jane Montage, The Naked Gun Movies
I love these kinds of montages, and Somewhere in Time (1978) has be one of the most lovely to watch as you see Time Traveller Richard and Elise (the girl he travelled back to meet) on their first date with that haunting score. I love this and during it, you have her looking lovingly on as he gitters animatedly about something which may be a bit of a cliche. But here its so gorgeously lovely. Making you wish you could lip read, but probably f you could you might just find he’s ranting about the state of American politics.
But its best summed up in comedy style by those guys who brought you Airplane and Top Secret. This of course has to be Naked Gun with Frank Drebin’s date with Dallas‘ Jenna Wade, Priscilla Presley as Jane. Parodying the first date montage with catchy tune, running along the beach in slow motion and more.
Falling in Love… About Last Night (1986)
About Last Night 1986 “So Far, So Good” Sheena Easton, BaoziPork
I love love, love Rob Lowe and Demi Moore as lovers, Danny and Debbie in this film, and their flourishing romance in this Chicago for Lovers inspired montage clip, has to be one of the best. With all those soppy moments that get me reaching for the tissues. This cute 80s couple in combination with that great Sheena Easton song makes the singletons yearn for love, and the cynics feel a sense of foreboding. As usually without sounding like a – I’ve seen too many of these films or b – l’m over cynical, means that they are due to split up over something really banal, to make way for that big happy reunion at the end of the movie (yay).
Break Up…. Notting Hill (1999)
Notting Hill | Ain’t No Sunshine | Hugh Grant PictureBox
This although a post break Up montage has him going through the seasons as you do in a sad but effective montage from Notting Hill. And its put together brilliantly,showing the themes and colours of the year, as Hugh Grant walks. And walks. This post break up montage seen in a more positive light in Pretty in Pink where our heroine, Andie basically thinks “Fuck him”. Then makes a frock to show him and the others, what he’s missing at the prom. Condensing time in this way in a post break up scene usually has me in tears (movie depending) as I fervently hope for that big romantic ending.
Does Boy Get Girl (Back)?… When Harry Met Sally (1989)
Frank Sinatra – It Had To Be You, Ricardo Zevallos
I know he technically didn’t have the girl as his girl in this film. Here our hero Harry learns through flashback just how much he loves Sally. Love when realised in a movie, often leads to a whole recap of the film abbreviated into a montage. This perfect if you fall asleep during a date watching those romantic movies. As you can say you’ve seen the whole film.
This video I tried to find in its original form, but couldn’t.. as this particular montage oddly difficult to find . just what happened next But in this clip (above) has many more clips recapping this film have been added and there’s less scenes with Billy Crystal and his amazing spindly legs . As Harry runs to find Sally. And its Frank Sinatra singing that tune, not his wannabe on this films soundtrack, Harry Connick Jnr. So if you want to know if Harry got Sally you know what to do..
And ending with a more random one to end on a happy note…
And finally here’s a feel good one just because, if you are like me – all those girl and boy final scenes get you in tears. This if boy loses the girl for good or we get that happy ending we are craving. And it would mean this a spoiler filled post.
So here’s a wee feel good and happy montage, with Dustin Hoffman as Michael Dorsey as Dorothy Kimberley aka Tootsie (1982) the woman who made him a better man. And this leading him to fall for Jessica Lange’s Julie in that soft focus, montage to Stephen Bishop’s It Might Be You and as seen here… and oh where did I put those bloody tissues.
Tootsie Montage, Chris Fanelli
This post part of a collaboration with Banzai Retro Club click HERE listen to their podcast.