25 Cinematic Cliches I Never Wanna See Again

And I hate every last one of them.Those of you that know me fairly well know that I adore making lists. I get a serious thrill out of it. In that light, here are “25 Cinematic Cliches I never wanna see again.” Enjoy!

25. That in period pieces, vintage cars are always freshly polished, painted, and clean. They never have scratches, dents or any signs of use.

24. Every time we’re introduced to a police precinct house, one or more colourfully dressed prostitutes are being brought in while bickering with their arresting officer.

23. Chinese food takeout in a movie always comes in those little white boxes, which I have never, in my life, seen chinese food arrive at my door in. I desperately want it to, but it never does.

22. If a bar or clubhouse has a pinball machine, it’s gonna get fucking trashed during a fight scene. (I’ve ALWAYS wanted my own pinball machine, so this one makes me wince)

21. That it’s only after the detective has been suspended (and obligatorily forced to place his badge and gun on the lieutenant’s desk) that he can properly crack the case.

20. That in war, only the enemy (usually the Viet Cong) were ever low-down enough to stoop to using booby traps.

19. People being chased by a car who run top speed down the middle of the street instead of simply ducking somewhere where a car can’t follow, which happens to be pretty much anywhere except the middle of the street.

18. Young gorgeous women constantly falling in love with men much, much older than they are. In other words: Fuck you Jack Nicholson and Clint Eastwood.

17. Chess players are always always brilliant, charming, upper class people, while card players are always sneaky, foul mouthed, and prone to cheating.

16. When an innocent cough is always a symptom of terminal illness.

15. Women that never have enough sense to keep running while being chased by an enemy unless a guy is pulling her along by her hand or wrist — despite the fact that this takes them far below the speed either one could go on their own.

14. That somehow singing in a moving vehicle always makes something terrible happen.

13. If someone dies with their eyes open, someone will close them by effortlessly moving their hand over the deceased face — and they will remain tightly shut.

12. If our protagonist goes to a sporting event, no matter who he is, his face will always end up on the fucking jumbotron.

11. Women that don’t sweat during sex.

10. That every helicopter shutting down emits the chirp-chirp-chirp sound, in spite of the fact that only the Bell 47G (the chopper on MASH) actually makes this noise.

9. If a hero is divorced (and most are), that he’ll have some contact with his ex-wife who will still have strong feelings for him even if she’s remarried.

8. All computer keyboards or control panels have thousands of volts just underneath their surface, and their malfunctions are indicated by a puff of smoke and a cartoonish shower of sparks.

7. That Native Americans invariably have mystical knowledge that can obtusely predict the future, or have a fundamental understanding of all things in nature .

6. That when a phone line is broken unexpectedly, someone will always frantically press the phone cradle button and yell “Hello? HELLO!?” with an emphasis on the second hello.

5. A splash of cold water in face will render the most inebriated person stone cold sober in a faction of a second. I’ve tried it. It doesn’t work.

4. When someone yells “You never backed away from everything in your life, now fight!!” while giving someone CPR or working to resuscitate a stopped heart.

3. Girls are always instantly attractive to every male if they take off their glasses and/or let down their hair, never mind that they were totally gorgeous actresses failing to physically portray a nerd in the first place.

2. Children or retards that are wise beyond their years/capabilities and that humble the adults around them.

aaaand: (Drumroll)

1. Dogs who always know who is evil, and bark at them.

116 replies »

  1. The Hollywood Hangup:
    After a few seconds of receiving pertinent information over the phone, the actor hangs up without saying good-bye regardless of how close the persons relationship is with the character. Usually the length of time to get the information is far shorter than the amount of time the actor uses to relay the information.


  2. You should read Mike J. Nelson’s “Movie Megacheese.” It goes through a lot of these sorts of things. Such as how stupid it is that chick flicks almost always require girls dancing around a table, listening to motown, singing into their hairbrushes.


  3. Not sure if anyone got these:
    – no one usually has morning breath (which is a good thing)
    – when a major character is out of a job, it takes less than a week to get one – usually without a resume
    – rattlesnakes usually pause for a two minute close-up, or long enough for the hero to get a stick/rock/gun to kill it with
    – in sci fi movies (which may be a category of its own), everyone can eat alien food without getting sick (usually eaten by characters who don’t even get their chinese food in white boxes!)


  4. In regards to #16, it is called FORESHADOWING. It is a very subtle way of showing what will happen; a subtlety not realized in most modern cinema.
    This method of showing someone has a terminal disease is over-used (and still used), but it was good for whoever first came up with the idea.
    Otherwise, the list is spot-on. It is hilarious. Somethings I didn’t even realized happened in movies until I read this list.


  5. I have only seen my father, and my mother-in-law die (Cheers on the latter!), and in both cases their eyes wer closed. Their mouths, were however open, and despite repeated efforts, I could not keep their mouths closed,
    I have a furthur beef: Why are the stars of all movies/TV shows all good looking? What ever happened to people like me – Not beautiful, Not ugly, but always in a supporting role rather than a lead role?


  6. 23. “Chinese food takeout in a movie always comes in those little white boxes, which I have never, in my life, seen chinese food arrive at my door in. I desperately want it to, but it never does.”
    I get the impression that the writer of this list is Canadian. And perhaps it is so that in Canada Chinese takeout does not come in those little white boxes. It may be a U.S. thing??? but it is pretty much real. Chinese takeout does and always has come in those little white boxes, eh…


  7. Saw the Movie Inside Man last night and twice Denzel Washington coughed. I kept thinking, uh oh, there’ll be a plot twist of cancer somewhere ahead, but it never came to pass. Kinda bothered me. the SO and I decided this morning that Denzel simply had a dry throat or cold or something and they left it in. Anyway, it is the ONLY movie I have ever seen that didn’t follow the formula. Sort of refreshing, really.


  8. amazingly no-one has mentioned that you can ALWAYS find a parking spot directly outside where you need to go. (and no-one ever puts money in the meter, either)
    ROFL at all the indignation over the chinese food containers. FWIW they only came to australia a few years ago and i’m sure it’s because of some twisted desire that life imitate american films.


  9. When a gun runs out of ammo it gets dashed to the ground.
    I don’t have a gun, but from what I have seen in the movies, they must be really cheap and very easy to replace.
    I do have eight cats and none have ever made that alley-cat fight sound that all movie cats make when you come upon one. In my experience, that sound is made for animals on the verge of killing each other, not being shooed off a chair.


  10. I don’t get how the ship/squad/company is always in demand. You come into a starbase for a rest, or go to Bangkok or something, oops sorry, no time to rest..gotta go onto the next mission because there’s “never” other units/ships nearby…or yours is “The best unit/ship for the job”
    What the hell ever happened to down time?


  11. The thing my father hated more then anything about movies:
    When a Good guy is surrounded by a bunch of bad guys and all of them has guns. The good guys starts fisting fighting and NONE of the bad guys thinks ‘hey…he’s/she’s fighting with his/her fist and we have guns…let’s shoot him/her’ then they all get killed or hurt to the point where they can’t move.
    Notice in Kill Bill she fights all these guys…they all have swords and while she’s kicking butt someone behind her should attack her…and I don’t mean just one person but ALL of them. My father would be like ‘Okay…now ALL should attack her, it’s sad it’s only one person at a time…it sucks’
    ever noticed that now in scary movies there is this one child who sees dead people or has something evil about them. It’s always about some scary child that has this creepyness in their voice or walks slowly with a dead like expression in their face.
    Why is it that in sex scenes the bed looks like it was just made. Or maybe a bit messed up but still it looks neat.
    The hero can’t fight a battle and then when all is lost…he somehow can now defeat the bad guy.
    I hate scenes where two people are about to kiss and suddenly something stops them. It’s like the timing is always bad but at the end when they do kiss the timing is right. LOL
    In Chicago Chinese food always comes in the White Boxes but at some places we won’t have the handles. I have never heard of one that didn’t so maybe the place you go to just plain sucks. Sorry… (grabs the chinese food box and lifts it in front of me) Here…want some? LOl.


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