Daily Dojo

Friday Fight Scene - Bad Day At Black Rock

Friday Fight Scene - Bad Day At Black Rock:

Most of the times, when it comes to story, to fighting, even to life, simplicity is best… today’s fight scene is from a classic film, BAD DAY AT BLACK ROCK a film that again, if you haven’t yet seen, you must, I implore you.

It takes what is a norm, a stranger in town, investigating a mystery, but it’s much more unique than that.

Spencer Tracy is a WWII vet with one arm, and he’s arrived at a small western town to find out what happened to a friend of his, a Japanese-American who has died and Spencer wants to know what happened and won’t take subtle hints to butt out.

Robert Ryan is up to something, and gets town heavy Ernest Borgnine to try and goad Spencer into a fight, figuring a one-armed old guy will be easy.

What follows is a classic scene and some early karate / judo, only done with one arm. What I appreciate most about this scene, however, is the little things. Ernest taking off his wrist watch before getting to it, Spencer allowing Ernest to catch his breath and attack again, all the time maintaining that this is self defense, Ernest actually getting exhausted and still getting back up… best of all, his speech to Robert Ryan after the fight’s over. The fight is a symbol for the whole movie, and that’s why it’s a classic.

Leave a Reply