27 Jun 2024

Memorable Lift Scenes In TV & Film

TV & Film are an every day part of our day to day lives, just as much as lifts are. However, what about lifts that feature on the small and big screen? Let's take a look at some of the most memorable scenes.


1. Captain America: The Winter Soldier

A fan favourite entry into the MCU, the Captain America sequel features a tense sequence in the elevator at SHIELD HQ which changes the tone and direction of the film. One by one, Cap (Chris Evans) is joined by his teammates in the lift, who he quickly learns are quite the opposite and are in fact, undercover Hydra agents who have infiltrated Nick Fury’s organisation. The scene is full of well-choregraphed, fast-paced action and since it’s in such a small location, makes it even more impressive. This is arguably a top 5 moment for Steve Rogers in the entire Infinity saga.


2. The Departed

Directed by Martin Scorsese, The Departed features an incredible story with an all-star cast. One of the most shocking moments of the film comes towards the end, Billy Costigan (Leonardo DiCaprio) believes he has corrupt Sergeant Sullivan (Matt Damon) banged to rights. Unfortunately, once the elevator doors open that is not the case as they’re not alone when they reach the bottom. A brief scene that is one of many jaw-dropping moments in a masterful film.


3. The Shining

One of Stanley Kubrick’s most well known and beloved movies, there are a lot of strange yet iconic images that appear on screen. Based on a Stephen King novel, Danny (Jack Nicholson) is having dark and twisted visions whilst he’s the temporary caretaker over a remote hotel, one of which is when he witnesses the elevator open pouring with blood. A precursor of what was to come in the rest of the film, it’s as memorable as it is visually impressive.


4. Only Fools & Horses

The genius of Only Fools was that it could have your sides splitting as well as have the tears flowing. This bittersweet moment arrives in one of the 90s Christmas specials where Del Boy and Rodney get stuck in a lift. Del, seemingly distressed, tells Rodney he wouldn’t know struggles like he’s currently feeling, which prompts Rodders to open up about the recent loss of his child. Only for it to be revealed that Del stopped the lift on purpose so Rodney had no choice but to open up and, wouldn’t bottle his feelings about it any longer. Beautifully performed by David Jason and Nicholas Lyndhurst.


5. Spiderman 2

The Tobey Maguire Spiderman movies are highly regarded for a plethora of reasons however, this humorous moment has been a fan favourite since release. Having recently lost his powers, Spidey has to resort to travelling in an elevator to get around. Here (in full costume) he meets a fellow lift rider who he engages with, in a conversation that I imagine is more painful than taking hits from the Green Goblin. Thankfully, it wouldn’t be long before the friendly neighbourhood Spiderman was wallcrawling once again.


6. Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory

This 1971 classic really is a world of pure imagination, one such part being the great glass elevator known as the Wonkavator. A piece of engineering that I doubt will be possible anytime soon, if at all, shows a lift not just move up and down but, it also flies. We see this magical marvel just after Wonka tells Charlie he has won the factory, the trio of Charlie, Grandpa Joe and Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder) then fly off at the close of the film.


7. Mission Impossible

At the beginning of this beloved Tom Cruise led series of films, we see Ethan Hunt’s team picked off one by one. This prompts the mystery of the film of who is the mole that set everyone up. One team member, Jack, is working in an elevator shaft on top of a lift when suddenly it starts moving. Unable to stop it in time, unfortunately Emilio Estevez’s character meets a gruesome end. A brutal opening that immediately hooks you into the action. Luckily, scenarios that led to Jack’s demise are very rare in real life.


8. Mr Bean

Rowan Atkinson created a British icon in Mr. Bean, a show which sees the strange and mostly mute title character cause all sorts of chaos and havoc during his day to day life. One such episode, sees Bean check in to a hotel. He tries to enter the lift but is too late, prompting him to join a 1-sided race to his room via the stairs and pressing the button to slow down his unwitting “opponent”. It’s a short yet hilarious sequence that I’m sure, some of the more childish of us have thought about recreating at least once.


9. The Big Bang Theory

The long running American sitcom introduced the world to a beloved group of scientists and catchphrases (Bazinga) that are now universally well known. However, one running gag throughout the entire series was the lift in their apartment building. Many scenes took place in-between Penny and Sheldon’s residence and featured a broken elevator that never seemed to get fixed. Towards the end of the show, it was eventually fixed after 16 years of waiting. You’ll be pleased to know that Pickerings turn around time for lift repair and maintenance is significantly quicker.


What are some of your favourite scenes from TV & Film over the years to feature lifts? What did we miss off our list? Let us know!

For over 170 years, we've been your trusted partner for lift maintenance, repair, installation and servicing. Get in touch with Pickerings today!

Find out how we can help