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The 5 best iconic coffee scenes in movies

By the Lavazza Team 2–3 minutes

In the following article we are about to describe five of the most famous scenes including coffee, among the many ones that could be considered when considering history of cinema of all times. Get comfortable and enjoy your flavoured coffee popcorn!

Heat (1995)

While being undoubtedly an action-packed movie, nothing stands out in Heat as the sequence featuring Al Pacino and Robert De Niro in a coffee shop. Despite having previously starred in the same movie, the two acting legends were sharing the screen for the first time. Produced and written by director Michael Mann in 1995, the thriller saw the two actors meet for real when it comes to the renowned coffee scene.

Unlike he was used to, Mann set three cameras pointed at the pair. Two over their shoulders and one in profile, aimed at capturing every single move. This three-angle perspective emerged as particularly essential, since in only a few minutes the scene would have marked film history. Their characters respectively played by Pacino and De Niro, a detective, and a career thief, face each other in front of a cup of coffee for a confrontation that must be seen as one of the turning points of the plot.


Pulp Fiction (1994)

Among the many coffee scenes in Quentin Tarantino’s filmography, we picked the one that may be considered as the most significant and iconic, included in his 1994 masterpiece Pulp Fiction, which in fact features a lot of moments featuring the beverage. We are referring to the sequence in which two of the protagonists – the celebrated characters played John Travolta and Samuel Lee Jackson – are heatedly discussing with Jimmie Dimmick, portrayed by Tarantino himself, about where and how to hide a corpse, while sipping a cup of coffee  and dwelling on how good it tastes! At least that’s how Samuel Lee Jackson is unsuccessfully trying to distract his interlocutor!


Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)

Probably one of the most emblematic movies of all times, Breakfast at Tiffany’s was directed by Blake Edwards in 1961 and focuses on the life facts of a naïve Newyorker named Holly Golightly. Although everything seems unforgettable when it comes to Audrey Hepburn’s performance in this timeless movie, one of the most memorable moments is to be found in the very beginning of this masterpiece, when Holly Golightly herself is enjoying a tasty pastry and a takeaway coffee while daydreaming right in front of the famous Tiffany’s shop windows, as the unforgettable “Moon River” is playing in the background!

Thor (2011)

“This drink, I like it. ANOTHER!” That's how it goes when a god who has just descended to Earth from another kingdom tries coffee for the first time! In case the god in question is Thor, the God of Thunder, it is quite easy to figure out he is going to smash the coffee cup at the diner where he is feeding himself, not understanding at first Asgardian and Earth customs can be rather different!

They say there should have been a follow up scene that was ultimately cut from the film in which the protagonist of Thor (2011), portrayed by the handsome Christopher Hemsworth, returned to the diner to ask forgiveness to the owner, named Isabela, after his vigorous expression of enthusiasm.

The Goodfellas (1990)

The last coffee scene we are including in our review is from one of the most impressive and daring gangster movies of all times. Directed by Martin Scorsese and dating back to 1990, The Goodfellas is one of the most successful movies from the Italian American filmmaker. Tommy DeVito, played by Joe Pesci, in this unsettling yet famous scene has just shot a man – once again we find Samuel Lee Jackson in action – just before addressing to his friend Frankie Carbone, interpreted by Frank Siviero.

“Come on. Make that coffee to go. Let’s go.”, is all the Goodfella gets from his mate, just before leaving the house where the crime has been committed. A striking scene, quick, strong and powerful. Just like a good shot of espresso!

The ones we have selected are some of the best coffee moments among those the big screen has been able to stage over the years. Obviously, there are many others, although those here proposed are to be considered to all effects peculiarly iconic!



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