Shoelaces As Seen In Movies

In Movies

Shoelaces occasionally make an appearance on the "big screen", though usually only in minor, supporting roles. Here's some of my collection of shoelaces as seen in movies.

NOTE: Click on any small movie screenshot to view a larger screenshot plus the relevant excerpt of the movie's dialogue (JavaScript required).

Movie Excerpts

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince (2009)

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince (2009)

Ginny (Bonnie Wright), who has always had feelings for Harry (Daniel Radcliffe), meets him on the stairs and, noticing that one of his shoelaces is untied, bends down and re-ties it, bringing them intimately close together both physically and emotionally. View excerpt

Raising Helen (2004)

Raising Helen (2004)

Helen (Kate Hudson) ties the shoelaces of her five-year-old niece Sarah (Abigail Breslin), using the "Bunny Ears" technique that Sarah's mother was in the process of teaching just before she passed away. By the end of the film, Sarah finally ties her own shoelaces. View excerpt

Big Daddy (1999)

Big Daddy (1999)

Sonny (Adam Sandler) offers to take Julian (Cole/Dylan Sprouse) to McDonald's for breakfast. Julian struggles to tie his shoelaces, so Sonny demonstrates how to "Loop it, swoop it and pull". Later in the movie, the "Bunny Ears" method also makes an appearance. View excerpt

The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

Andy (Tim Robbins), who is in Shawshank prison, is negotiating with Red (Morgan Freeman) about getting hold of a small gem-hound's rock hammer. Red warns that if it is found and he is revealed as the source that they will never do business again, not even for a shoelace. View excerpt

Army of Darkness (1992)

Army of Darkness (1992)

Ash (Bruce Campbell), surrounded by medieval villagers and confronted by Lord Arthur (Marcus Gilbert), uses the old "Your shoelace is untied" trick to regain the offense. (I guess it wasn't yet an old trick in the middle ages!) View excerpt

Doc Hollywood (1991)

Doc Hollywood (1991)

Mayor Nick Nicholson (David Ogden Stiers) and other prominent town members try to convince Dr Ben Stone (Michael J Fox) to stay on in their small town as resident medical practitioner. One of them has even noticed that Ben double-knots his shoelaces, which is seen as being "Excellent credentials". View excerpt

Back to the Future Part II (1989)

Back to the Future Part II (1989)

Marty (Michael J. Fox) is given a pair of Nike sneakers with self-tightening laces. Although futuristic at the time the film was made, decades later Nike made self-tightening shoes a reality, barely in time to coincide with the future date depicted in the movie (21-Oct-2015). View excerpt

Coming to America (1988)

Coming to America (1988)

Prince Akeem (Eddie Murphy), who has just turned 21, is arguing with his father, King Jaffe Joffer (James Earl Jones), that he should now be allowed to do things for himself, including toileting, tying his own shoes, and in particular, choosing a wife. View excerpt

Cocktail (1988)

Cocktail (1988)

Flanagan (Tom Cruise) and Jordan (Elisabeth Shue) are sitting at a tropical cocktail bar discussing ordinary objects that have likely turned their inventors into millionaires. Flanagan contemplates the plastic ends of shoelaces (aglets), which Jordan suggests are probably called something weird like "flugelbinders". View excerpt

Short Circuit (1986)

Short Circuit (1986)

Newton (Steve Guttenberg) is trying to figure out how Number Five (a robot) has re-wired its own circuits. When Newton gets up to walk off, he trips and falls over because Number Five has tied his shoelaces together. View excerpt

Back to the Future (1985)

Back to the Future (1985)

Biff (Thomas F. Wilson) uses the old "Your shoe's untied" trick to whack George (Crispin Glover) under the chin. This occurs twice in the movie – once with Biff and George as teenagers and once with them as adults, indicating that this bullying has been long standing. View excerpt

Fletch (1985)

Fletch (1985)

Fletch (Chevy Chase) is searching a house when he is bailed up by a watchman with a gun (Joe Praml). He uses the old trick of pretending that the watchman's shoelaces are untied to distract him in order to make his escape. View excerpt

Les Compères (French) (1983)

Les Compères (French) (1983)

Tristan (Stephane Bierry), a troubled teenager, who is wearing a cast on his broken arm, announces that he is heading off. Jean Lucas (Gérard Depardieu), who thinks he is the boy's father and has become attached to him, ties one of Tristan's shoelaces (which was hanging loose). View excerpt

Stripes (1981)

Stripes (1981)

Captain Stillman (John Larroquette) wants to keep it under wraps that some of his men were captured in enemy territory with their top secret "Urban Assault Vehicle", so opts to send the rest of his men to rescue them. Sergeant Hulka (Warren Oates) argues that those men aren't even capable of tying their own shoelaces. View excerpt

Dirty Harry (1971)

Dirty Harry (1971)

Scorpio (Andy Robinson), a psychopathic killer, is standing on a rooftop looking for a potential target. As he rubs the toe of one boot against his other trouser leg, we briefly see that they are black Doc Martens with white Ladder Lacing, indicative of either military or white supremacist leanings. View excerpt

The Odd Couple (1968)

The Odd Couple (1968)

Felix (Jack Lemmon) arrives at the guys' card game feeling suicidal. As the guys leave, they each whisper advice to Oscar (Walter Matthau). Murray (Herb Edelman) suggests confiscating Felix's belt and shoelaces. A delightful scene – and movie – in spite of the grim connotations. View excerpt

The Gold Rush (1925)

The Gold Rush (1925)

The Lone Prospector (Charlie Chaplin) and Big Jim (Mack Swain) are stuck in a cabin during a blizzard. Desperate and out of food, Chaplin cooks and dishes up an old leather boot, separating the shoelaces and eating them like spaghetti. View excerpt


If you know of any other movies in which shoelaces make a notable appearance, please Contact Ian.

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