3. The Fall from The Princess Bride
I don't like heights, so even if a gentle giant is waiting below my window to catch me, I'm not sure that I wouldn't opt for bed sheets tied end to end. However, when Buttercup smiles confidently down at the giant who'd once kidnapped her and then lets herself be dropped out the castle window, it does make for a good scene, especially with her dress fluttering as she falls. Add to that four white horses for them to gallop away on, and it makes for a great getaway.
It should be noted, however, that fictional women were not the only ones to escape castles. Empress Maud (also called Empress Matilda), during The Anarchy (1100s) in England, was battling for England with her cousin King Stephan when she became trapped in Oxford Castle. On a stormy winter night, she was let down from the castle via a rope and escaped over the snow-covered ground wearing a white cloak to hide her from the surrounding troops.
2. Riding Through the Front Gate: Disney's The Story of Robin Hood and The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh
With disguises, a bold entrance and exit in plain view of the guards, plus the dramatic rush over the drawbridge, it's a great castle escape. I love the daring of a disguise and open entrance or exit as much as the slyness of a secret removal.
|The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh, Dr. Syn.|
Another great example is from Disney's The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh, which tells of a priest (aka, The Scarecrow) in Cornwall who leads his parishioners in a smuggling ring (keeping them safe--they'd get caught if he didn't lead them--and giving money to the poor, of course, to make it right). When some men in his care are thrown into the castle dungeon, the Scarecrow and some trusted friends disguise themselves as a press gang and walk the prisoners out right under the commander's nose. Until realizing who the press gang members were, the prisoners probably preferred the dungeon over the fate of those forced into His Majesty's Navy.
1. Gandalf and the Eagle from LOTR
I admit not liking heights, but Gandalf's escape from Saruman's fortress is breathtaking. He jumps off the top of a tower, seemingly into thin air, and then soars away on the back of a giant eagle. It's a fantastic visual image. Dramatic, unexpected, brilliant.
Bonus: Getting yourself marched out and shot: The Scarlet Pimpernel
|Sir Percy Blakeney|