Baby Falling Down the Odessa Steps


Photo: Library of Congress

Remember the scene in Brian De Palma's The Untouchables (1987), where Eliot Ness, played by Kevin Costner, saved a baby-carriage that went down the stairs while in a shoot-out with Capone's henchmen?

The famous scene is actually a homage to a 1925 The Battleship Potyomkin movie:

The scene is well-known: the sequence of the baby falling down the Odessa Steps in Sergei Eisenstein’s movie The Battleship Potyomkin (1925) is one of the most influential films in movie history (many films pay homage to the scene like Brian De Palma’s The Untouchables).

Although, the massacre on the steps is fictional (it took place in the surrounding streets), the movie has made many people see in the “Odessa Steps” the alleged place of bloodbath. The "Odessa Steps" (now known as the “Potemkin Steps”, by architect Francesco Boffo) got a tourist attraction – the movie has exaggerate the place.

anArchitecture has the movie clip and more on the famous Steps: Link | Wikipedia entry on the Potempkin Stairs


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Remember the scene in Brian De Palma’s The Untouchables (1987), where Agent George Stone, played by Andy Garcia, saved a baby-carriage that went down the stairs while in a shoot-out with Capone’s henchmen?
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i was wondering the same thing cuimhe! i love this movie! (and it brings back fond memories of my soviet film prof screaming at us for not recognizing that the sailors in the hammocks represented MAGGOTS!! ...lol)

i have a friend from odessa, who travels back there regularly, and she says that the steps are in serious need of repair. ...how sad given their importance in cinema history.
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I got the impression from this post that you expect that readers weren't aware that this scene is from Battleship Potemkin or had seen the film. I wonder if this is news to many readers? It's an interesting film from the point of view of an important part of soviet film history at least. So, have you all seen it?
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I want to run up that stair as fast as I can. Especially on the outer edges with the huge steps... it would be interesting to see for how long my knees would survive... too bad I live in a fairly flat place without huge stairs :(
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