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The Heat Wave: 20 Years of Michael Mann


Stashed in: Are You Not Entertained?, Al Pacino

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Ryan: I know this is really random, and it’s not a set piece per se, but I really love the scene in Heat in which Pacino and Mykelti Williamson brace Ricky Harris at the stolen car lot.

This is such a Mann moment — so immersed in the world in which it’s set, dropping you out of a plane with no parachute. The shot that opens it, with everyone scattering and Harris eating takeout food, and the way Pacino and Williamson do the total cop thing where they approach from different angles, covering more territory. Then there’s the marrow of the scene itself. Who is this guy? What’s their previous relationship to him? He has a meth problem? Mann is such an adult filmmaker. He doesn’t coddle at all. We’re just expected to catch up.

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