A Cable-Car Action Sequence is a fight scene or other tense Action/Adventure moment that take place aboard a gondola, preferably while it is moving along its cableway.
This has some similarities with the Elevator Action Sequence
, in that it forces a fight within enclosed quarters, while moving to another place. Amongst the differences is that it relies on acrophobia (fear of heights) rather than claustrophobia, as it has much more of a scenery. It also tends to be much longer a sequence, a cable-car ride taking more time than any ordinary elevator ride. It can also involve more people, and of course adds the danger of someone falling from a great height.
More often than not, the fight will take place on the roof of the cable-car rather than the cabin, to increase the chances of a Literal Cliffhanger
or Disney Villain Death
. This variant is closer to a Traintop Battle
, though not as speedy.
Any such sequence might involve the antagonist trying to sabotage the cable-car and making all occupants of the gondola fall to their deaths, adding more pressure to the protagonist trying to stop this. If two cable-cars going in opposite directions cross, a character may jump from one roof to the other.
A subtrope of Interesting Situation Duel
. Compare Elevator Action Sequence
, Traintop Battle
. Contrast Stuck on a Ski Lift
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Anime & Manga
- Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo, from Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo, uses a special attack called "Gondola Tour". It involves him riding a cable-car to the ceiling and then dropping it on his opponent's head.
- During the Ruby & Sapphire arc of Pokémon Special, Sapphire battles Team Aqua Admin Ark/Matt inside a stalled cable-car filled with water. N also forces White to battle him inside a Ferris wheel cabin during the Black & White arc.
Films — Animation
- In Hoodwinked, Red Puckett gets taken hostage and is put into a cable-car cabin that is loaded with dynamite and padlocked.
Films — Live-Action
- James Bond
- In Moonraker, a fight between Jaws and James Bond happens aboard the gondola leading to Sugarloaf Mountain in Rio de Janeiro.
- A non-action but still nail-biting suspense scene involves Bond's escape in On Her Majesty's Secret Service. Bond is locked up in the cable-car room, and the only way out is by crawling out over a sheer drop along the cable, and then dropping onto the roof of a cable-car just before his fingers are severed.
- Toward the end of the movie Where Eagles Dare, a lengthy fight inside and on top of a cable-car happens, complete with jumps between two crossing gondolas.
- At the climax of Night Train To Munich (1940), there is an exciting escape that is nearly the same.
- Campbell's Kingdom
- Hannibal Brooks
- A Woman's Face
- Ten Little Indians
- The end of the Chuck episode "Chuck Versus the Fear of Death" has a fight aboard a gondola.
- The climax of the episode "Sanctuary" of Human Target also has a gondola fight.
- The MacGyver episode "Cease Fire" has MacGuyver dispose of a bomb on a gondola.
- In an episode of White Collar, Neal Caffrey jumps from one Roosevelt Island tram car to another to avoid arrestation.
- Mission: Impossible: In "The Tram" the IMF must infiltrate a Syndicate financial meeting — held at a mountain resort only accessible by aerial tramway — to discover the group's Swiss bank account number. Naturaly the eponymous tram features heavily in the action.
- Indiana Jones And The Emperors Tomb features a cable-car complete with a mounted machine gun, and a bunch of Mooks to use it on.
- Resident Evil
- Twice in Halo 2, first with the two gondolas on the Lake of Regret, and the gondola ride to the Library in the Quarantine Zone.
- Return To Castle Wolfenstein has a short cable-car battle after escaping the castle.
- In Snakes Revenge, one of the later stages forces the player to ride atop a series of cable-cars in order to get from one place to the next. The game switches to a side-view perspective, where the player must avoid being discovered by the guard inside the gondola.
- In The Punisher video game, Grand Nixon Island has a gondola ride to a Boss Fight, while sniping bad guys along the way. Don't find all the snipers? They'll plug the machinery and you are going for a fall to the bottom of the valley.
- Haze has the player ride a cable-car at one point, but most of it consists of listening to a recording talking about the boring scenery. A few soldiers do show up halfway through, but half of them walk off the car and plunge to their death.
- Double Oh Seven Legends: An interactive example in the second On Her Majesty's Secret Service mission. Bond uses a piece of chain to ride down to a cable-car, blows up a helicopter with an RPG and jumps across to a second car before the first one falls off the track.
- Duke Nukem Forever has one in a dumpster suspended from a crane.
- The escape from the Boiling Rock in Avatar The Last Airbender involves an epic fight over a steam-powered gondola lift.
- In Wakfu season 2 episode 7, the heroes ride on a Clock Punk cable-car and are attacked by flying pirates above a sea strait. The fight scene is a bit more extensive than usual, since the gondola is the size of a house and armed with a cannon, and the pirates have magical flying steeds.
- The Simpsons: When the family goes to Brazil and Homer gets kidnapped, they decide to do the hand-over on two cable-cars. Naturally throwing the money over is a lot easier than Homer jumping over; when he does the cable snaps. The kicker is that it turned out to be Homer's idea in the first place.