Arrrrgh, ye maties! It be Interrrnational Talk Like a Fucking Pirate Day! In honor of that, I, the Moving Pictures Whore, will make a tribute to all things pirate, beginning with Swordfightin'!
The Five Best Swordfight Scenes
5. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
Sorry, I know it's not a swordfight, buuuuut I had to. I just had to include it. It's definitely the fastest swordfight ever to come into a film, and one of the funniest. I think Lucas was one of the first directors to bank on the fact that death can be made comical (and if anyone knows a much earlier director, please comment! I'd like to know if I'm just forgetting or if there's something I should see- after all, it's what I do). It just speaks the truth, which is never theaten someone who has a gun with a knife. I included this because it just seems very pirate-like, and after all, today is Intl. Talk Like A Pirate Day.
4. The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938)
Again, Errol Flynn (who, if you read about his real-life exploits, was a total pirate). This is a classic scene, and one of the best in my opinion. The shadow-play is spoofed in Robin Hood: Men in Tights, and until I saw this movie I didn't know where that other scene came from. The original is much more epic, I assure you, and even includes the I'm-stabbed-so-I'm-going-to-fall-off-the-balcony bit. Tasteful, exciting, and lots of sweet fight choreography, I would say this one is pretty awesome (even if it doesn't involve pirates).
This is one of the best parts of this movie, probably because it involves piracy that doesn't include massive amounts of special effects (in case you can't tell, I have a love/hate relationship with computer animated stunts that goes back and forth). It involves actual skill, and also ties into the story (young Will learns that pirates don't actually tell the truth). Plus, just when you think the hero of the story is going to die, a jug comes out from behind and knocks out Jack Sparrow. Classic comedy, plus it moves the plot forward.
2. Kill Bill: Volume 1 (2003)
2. Kill Bill: Volume 1 (2003)
Okay, so it's not pirates, but this movie has plenty of Samurai sword action. In particular, the scene between Uma Thurman and Lucy Lu is pretty kick-ass. I mean, Uma Thurman just spent the last fifteen minutes killing 88 people with her sword to get to this fight, so how can it not be awesome? Tarantino knows his fight scenes, I can tell you that much. You want to cringe and cheer at the same time when Lu gets scalped and says simply, "That surely is a Hottori Hanzo sword." Epic.
1. The Princess Bride (1987)
Okay, so as far as swordfighting scenes go, this one is the best in my book. The scene between Inigo Montoya and the Man in Black is so well choreographed that you're not sure if you're watching fighting or art. It's creative, entertaining, and keeps you on the edge of your seat the entire time. Maybe I'm prejudiced because this is one of my favorite movies, but I think it wins as the best swordfight in film history.
Honorable Mention: The Mask of Zorro (1998)
I don't think this is good enough to go on the list, but I really really like this scene. It shows swordfighting as sexy, which, in a way, it totally is. I would watch Antonio Banderas fight Catherine Zeta-Jones any day.
The Movie Mistress