5 Best Auction Scenes in Movies

If you aren’t familiar, an auction is an event where you can sell or buy things through a bidding process. Everyone has a chance to bid on what they want and the highest bidder takes the item home. Auctions mostly contain antiques, collectibles, and other things with sentimental or monetary value. Hollywood and Bollywood have many exciting auction scenes in their movies. There is always such fun to be had at auctions and the film industry captures this very well.

It is hard to narrow down the best auction scenes from movies because there are so many great ones. Every auction scene brings curiosity as well as suspense to the audience. The audience may forget to breathe like we often do while watching bidding wars unfold. Many movies add life to the auction scenes with suspense, humor, and other raw emotions. When done correctly, the plot, dialogue, and cast create a beautiful scene that cannot be forgotten. They speak for themselves. Have you ever been to a live, in-person auction before? If not, make sure to watch these action scenes from these movies to get a glimpse into the auction world. (If you’re close, we welcome you to check out one of our auctions in Kansas City)

 #5 – “First Wives Club” (1996) 

The First Wives Club steals the show with its amazingly witty auction scene. The plot of this auction scene has a wild backstory. Three wives all catch their husbands cheating on them with ‘Shelly’ and they want revenge. This scene shows how these three friends take a step of revenge on Shelly for stealing their husbands. Shelly is a “gold digger”, trying to fit in with the elite class New Yorkers by placing a bid at an upscale auction. This scene shows the friends Anne and Brenda bidding against Shelly for a Japanese plate. They bid until it reached $145,000 and Shelly continues bidding and ends up winning it. The friends high-fived each other and successfully achieved their goal. Sweet revenge. 

#4 – “North by Northwest” (1959)

In this auction scene, Thornhill was surrounded by thugs that had been out to get him. He knew that he was safe at this public auction but did not want to leave without a police escort. To remedy this situation he disrupted the entire auction with outrageous bids so that the cops would be called. He placed a bid for an antique piece for $1500 when the bid was already at $2250. The auctioneer then corrects him and says that the price is already higher than his bid and moves on. He calls for any bids above $2250 and then Thornhill bids $1200. This was just the beginning of his shenanigans. When the next item up for auction comes out he yelled “How do we not know its a fake, it looks like a fake”. He proceeds to bid on this item as well. He bids all the way up to $1200 and then says his next bid is $13. Not $1300. The auctioneers are in disbelief at this point and not taking him seriously. He then bid over double the current bid. They then asked him to leave. He knew he couldn’t leave safely so he insisted on making another bid. This refusal to leave made them call the police to take Thornhill away. He wanted to get arrested because he had no other way to escape from the thugs at the auction. When he seen the officers had arrived, he punched the man trying to get him to leave in the face. This was to ensure that they would take him downtown. Once they finally arrested him he asked them what took them so long to get there. This was very funny. Must see! He got what he wanted – a police escort out of this unsafe environment. This is one of the best auction scenes in history. 

#3 – “Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory” (1960)

We all know Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory. This amazing movie makes us all want to be a child again. The factory owner, Willy Wonka, distributed 5 golden tickets hidden in chocolate bars. The lucky finders of the tickets get to visit the magnificent factory and get free chocolate bars for life. The demand for these chocolate bars became outrageously high. Once they were pretty much all bought up there was one huge box of unopened bars that went to auction. This auction scene is a very small part of the movie but it has a huge impact. This scene shows us how sought after these bars were. This was the last unopened box in the United Kingdom. Within seconds, the box price reached unimagined heights. Even the auctioneer was surprised when it reached £4500 in a matter of seconds. You should have seen the look on his face!

#2 – “Batman and Robin” (1997)

This auction scene seemed more like a party than an auction! It was botanical-themed with music being played in the background. This set the mood for an interesting scene. Batman and Robin were standing with the auctioneers when suddenly ‘Poison Ivy’, Batman’s enemy, appears. Everyone looked stunned by her beauty. She used her powers to make Batman and Robin fall in love with her.  She wore the necklace up for auction on her neck and had people bid for it (she said a night of her time would also be included). Everyone started bidding wildly. The crowd bid up to $500,000 and Batman and Robin stepped in to bid higher. They bid all the way up to 7 million dollars against each other. Robin didn’t have enough money and he said he would borrow it from Batman (Haha). They couldn’t resist her because of her powers. Batman pulled out his credit card (which expiry date was forever) to pay and then Mr. Freeze, Batman’s enemy, busted through the window to steal the necklace. This scene is action packed!

#1 – The Magic Christian (1969)

This scene is truly a cult classic. The way that this Sotheby’s auction was portrayed is hilarious. The auctioneer had to have major patience in this scene. There was an Edwin Landseer victorian style painting of a dog and a cat being auctioned off. There was a serious buyer and a not so serious buyer. What made this scene so hilarious is that the not so serious buyer was bidding in unorthodox ways. He played a harmonica, flashed a flashlight at the auctioneer, fired a toy arrow at the forehead of the auctioneer, waved flags, and much more to indicate his bid. You need to watch it to appreciate the comedic value. This scene steals the show. We bet you can’t control your laughter watching this.

So many fun auction scenes in movies. Let us know your favorite. If you have any fun stories about auctions in Kansas City we would love to hear them as well! Call us with any comments here: (816) 820-1124!

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