Greatest miniature pyrotechnics in film

Listing films that have the most spectacular miniature pyrotechnics (I.e. model buildings, boats, airplanes or what have you bursting into flames and/or a thousand pieces).

For starters:

One of the best is the tanker explosion at the end of ‘The Terminator’ (1984).

The destruction of Corfu harbour in ‘For Your Eyes Only’. It fits in beautifully with the one shot of the lovely Martin Grace (doubling Roger Moore) gettting blown over by the blast.

The plane into Las Vegas in ‘Con Air’.

The plane crash landing in ‘Cliffhanger’.

The Guns of Navarone ending.

The endings to ‘Thunderbirds Are Go’ and ‘Thunderbird 6’.

The destruction of the tracking station in ‘Goldeneye’.

The police station in ‘Hot Fuzz’.

  • In what sense would you analyse pyrotechnics in film? What would the analysis say about the use of pyrotechnics adding to a film's narrative? – Ryan Errington 7 years ago
  • Ryan is correct in saying that special effects don't have a lot to offer in terms of deep, meaningful insights into human nature, but you can certainly broaden this topic and make it into a retrospective about the history of special effects. You could talk about the major films that contributed to the advancement of movie magic (e.g. 2001: A Space Odyssey and Star Wars for practical effects and Avatar for CGI). You could also discuss how some filmmakers, like Christopher Nolan and Quentin Tarantino, make it a habit to use as many real effects as possible, and only employ CGI if it's absolutely necessary, which could very well lead to the topic of Practical FX vs. CGI. In essence, your topic, as it is, is too broad and lacks depth. But if you, or whoever wants to tackle this piece, finds the time to do a little research, this could very well be a fascinating look into the history of special effects. – August Merz 7 years ago

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