The moment consists of the three shots, which I like to think of as three shots trying desperately to be one shot. Pacino's Sonny tries dislodge the weapon he's not-so-cleverly disguised in a long gift box to begin a bank robbery, and like everything else in the robbery it doesn't go as planned.
Most of the time we think of cuts in a film as happening on instinct and rhythm and not carrying any particular meaning. In this case, the fact that the action which began in the first shot is still awkwardly taking place in the third is the whole film in a nutshell. Pacino's Sonny pictured that gun coming out of the box in one smooth motion. But what was clean and efficient in his mind became sloppy and overly complicated in execution with the box clinging stubbornly to the barrel the gun.
While witnessing his current mannered hamminess it's easy to forget what a force of nature Pacino could be in his prime. There are many such moments like this where Pacino goes big, but we don't think for a second about scenery chewing, or acting at all really, because Pacino so thoroughly sells it with the overwhelming ferocity of his conviction.
Last week when I published my all time ballot for Best Actor I could have named any one of dozens of intense method performances from DeNiro in Taxi Driver to Brando in Last Tango in Paris. But in my mind the phrase "Best Actor" is inextricably linked with Pacino's work here. He burned the connection into my psyche when he tried to pull that shotgun out of the box.