Can You Really Outrun an Explosion?

By: Chris Opfer

Lots More Information

Author's Note: Can you really outrun an explosion?

Sure, Willis' leap from the Nakatomi Plaza in "Die Hard" was as enjoyable as it was unbelievable. And who doesn't get a kick out of watching the great Nic Cage walk away from a ridiculous, over the top and completely unnecessary blast in just about any of the ridiculous, over the top and unnecessary performances he's turned in over the years. But for my money, the best cinematic portrayal of "outrunning" an explosion is the car blast scene from Martin Scorsese's Oscar-nominated mafia tale, "Goodfellas." As a young Henry Hill (later played by Ray Liotta) explains his early entry into life in the mob, his Mafioso exploits rise from running errands for the bosses to hocking stolen cigarettes and later dropping a couple Molotov cocktails in a lot full of parked cars. The impressive part of this scene is not the explosion itself, it's that Hill sprints away in a suit and a pair of expensive loafers. It's one thing to survive an explosion. It's another to do it without scuffing your Bruno Maglis.

Related Articles

  • EasyCare. "Common Myths About Cars." (Dec. 2, 2012)
  • Failes, Ian. "Hurt Locker Special Effects: Physical Bombs." FX Guide. March 19, 2010 (Dec. 4, 2012)
  • Harris, Tom. "How C-4 Works." (Dec. 2, 2012)
  • Muller, Richard. "Physics for Future Presidents." Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory. Feb. 26, 2002 (Dec. 2, 2012)
  • "Usain Bolt Wins 3 Sprinting Events in WR Time." Aug. 8, 2008.
  • "Outrun the Fireball." (Dec. 2, 2012)
  • U.S. Department of Homeland Security. "Bomb Threat Standoff Chart." (Dec. 2, 2012)