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Empire's Review Of The year 2013 CLICK FOR MORE REVIEW OF THE YEAR 2013 FEATURES ›
The 20 Best Set-Pieces Of 2013
Which were the bravura scenes of the year?

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Some films are less than the sum of their parts. Some disappointing films can have great moments. And many of the best films have one stand-out scene that leaves you cheering in your seats. Here are the ones that stuck in our memory this year…

P.S. We're not including out-and-out fight scenes here - we're saving those for our Best Fights Of 2013 piece (surprise, surprise).

WORDS HELEN O'HARA
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THE ATTACK ON ASGARD

The Attack On Asgard

The film: Thor: The Dark World

What happens? The Thor sequel momentarily threatens to become a war movie, as Malekith the Accursed (Christopher Eccleston) leads his ships on Odin’s capital and his cohort Kurse (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje) stages a prison break to distract the guards and, as a bonus, get to the controls of Asgard’s defences to lower its shields.

What’s good about it? In the first film, Asgard seemed serene and untouchable, so to see dogfights in the air overhead and giant flack cannons responding from atop its towers is a definite turn-up for the books. The fact that the Dark Elves have some real firepower doesn’t hurt either, with Asgardian soldiers blasted to nothingness or sucked into strange vortices with disturbing regularity.

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Have Your Say
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Your Comments

1 Not Javert!
Fire the intern who wrote that the hero is named Javert and not Jean Valjean! Hugh Jackman plays Valjean and Russell Crowe is the villian Javert. Sacre Bleu! More

Posted by Enzino on Friday January 10, 2014, 09:34

2 OZ
Not the most popular film of the year, but surely i wasn't the only one who loved the hot air ballon vs the tornado scene in OZ, the great and powerful, a thrilling few minutes of pure raimi-ism in a family film, and the transition from black and white to a full 3d technicoloured oz was breathtaking! He even ends it by throwing us over a waterfall and the camera never cut away - fanstastic!! More

Posted by simonwalk104 on Thursday December 12, 2013, 20:22

3 OZ
Not the most popular film of the year, but surely i wasn't the only one who loved the hot air ballon vs the tornado scene in OZ, the great and powerful, a thrilling few minutes of pure raimi-ism in a family film, and the transition from black and white to a full 3d technicoloured oz was breathtaking! He even ends it by throwing us over a waterfall and the camera never cut away - fanstastic!! More

Posted by simonwalk104 on Thursday December 12, 2013, 20:15

4 RE: Bad year
Not sure if I had a go at Empire anywhere in my comment did I?! I was simply suggesting that because, in my opinion 2013 was not a great year for films, Empire probably didn't have a huge list of set pieces to choose from, hence the inclusion of two rather mediocre set pieces. I have seen both the films in question and both set pieces were only ok. More

Posted by guysalisbury on Friday December 6, 2013, 15:13

5 RE: RE:
L: Mr Saxon L: frankie I hate to be the kind of poster who says "I can't believe you miss out x or y." But to paraphrase Sam Jackson in Jackie Brown, I gots ta be that kind of erm .. poster. So I can't believe you missed Jim Broadbent and fellow pensioners escaping from an old folks home in Cloud Atlas. Hell, as much as I loved Cloud Atlas as a whole, the old folks storyline by itself would be a movie I'd happily pay to see. ou know, I tend to hear the opposite opinion from most people and it's refreshing to encounter someone who actually favors the Broadbent sequence. I thought it was great myself. dmit it! You're really Frankie and you set this Mr Saxon profile up just to back yourself up! More

Posted by rob robbington2 on Friday December 6, 2013, 15:03

6 RE:
L: frankie I hate to be the kind of poster who says "I can't believe you miss out x or y." But to paraphrase Sam Jackson in Jackie Brown, I gots ta be that kind of erm .. poster. So I can't believe you missed Jim Broadbent and fellow pensioners escaping from an old folks home in Cloud Atlas. Hell, as much as I loved Cloud Atlas as a whole, the old folks storyline by itself would be a movie I'd happily pay to see. ou know, I tend to hear the opposite opinion from most people and it's refreshing to encounter someone who actually favors the Broadbent sequence. I thought it was great myself. More

Posted by Mr Saxon on Friday December 6, 2013, 10:13

7
I hate to be the kind of poster who says "I can't believe you miss out x or y." But to paraphrase Sam Jackson in Jackie Brown, I gots ta be that kind of erm .. poster. So I can't believe you missed Jim Broadbent and fellow pensioners escaping from an old folks home in Cloud Atlas. Hell, as much as I loved Cloud Atlas as a whole, the old folks storyline by itself would be a movie I'd happily pay to see. More

Posted by frankie on Friday December 6, 2013, 10:09

8 RE: Poor picks...
L: GrizBe Seriously.. these were the best set pieces you guys could think of? What about the whole Loki betrayal bit in Thor 2? That was more stunning. Or for that matter the world engine kicking in in Man Of Steel. Then what about all the stuff you missed, the Adrenaline hyped Hit Girl in Kick Ass 2? Pacific Rims Kaiju fights. Heck, The 'House Party' in Iron Man 3. And if we're talking animated films, why not Despicable Me 2's Minions going after the kidnapped Gru, or for that matter, the compound assault towards the end? pinions innit. I liked the list. More

Posted by rob robbington2 on Friday December 6, 2013, 10:01

9
Don't mean to be a stickler, but Hugh Jackman played Jean Valjean, not Javert. More

Posted by benthemitchell on Thursday December 5, 2013, 23:35

10 Poor picks...
Seriously.. these were the best set pieces you guys could think of? What about the whole Loki betrayal bit in Thor 2? That was more stunning. Or for that matter the world engine kicking in in Man Of Steel. Then what about all the stuff you missed, the Adrenaline hyped Hit Girl in Kick Ass 2? Pacific Rims Kaiju fights. Heck, The 'House Party' in Iron Man 3. And if we're talking animated films, why not Despicable Me 2's Minions going after the kidnapped Gru, or for that matter, the compound assault towards the end? More

Posted by GrizBe on Thursday December 5, 2013, 21:42

11 RE: Bad year
L: guysalisbury You know its a bad year for films when scene's from Olympus Has fallen and White House Down make it onto the list. On the plus side, that video clip from The Place Beyond The Pines is brilliant. I watched it on a plane and as a result didn't really like it. That has made we wanna get the Blu Ray and do it all over again! his list has nothing to do with Empire's thoughts on the movies as a whole - it's great set-pieces. You're not really going to get a memorable set-piece in a quiet, character-driven drama. Anyway, all I've heard about White House Down is that it was great fun. More

Posted by Whistler on Thursday December 5, 2013, 20:12

12 Bad year
You know its a bad year for films when scene's from Olympus Has fallen and White House Down make it onto the list. On the plus side, that video clip from The Place Beyond The Pines is brilliant. I watched it on a plane and as a result didn't really like it. That has made we wanna get the Blu Ray and do it all over again! More

Posted by guysalisbury on Thursday December 5, 2013, 17:18

13
Really good list, but Django's gunfight at Candieland needs to be there as well. More

Posted by Whistler on Thursday December 5, 2013, 15:28

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