Saturday 21 April 2012

Yet More Movie Cliches

I’m not mad - I saw it! No, you’re not mad! You’ve been… drugged!

More movie cliches here.

When looking for the illegal immigrant/reluctant witness/murdered man’s brother, the unlikely detective finds him standing on a load of boxes on the back of a lorry. He doesn’t jump down - they hold a long conversation from these positions. (Subtext: this is a noble, trustworthy blue-collar worker. Sometimes he or the brother is a poet or has a PhD.)

The villain gets a potential victim to write an ambiguous “suicide” note.

In any 40s movie involving a concert pianist, someone shoots someone else on a grand staircase. The pianist plays nothing but overwrought romantic concertos.

If someone falls into molten lava they sink slowly (like Gollum). Actually they’d float – but suffer terrible burns.

When a suspect is found in his bedroom, frantically grabbing stuff out of drawers and throwing it into a bag onto the bed, the cops are about to call. Ding dong! Ah! This must be they!

Ageing, ill singer/wrestler/ventriloquist/comedian with drink problem is persuaded to make a comeback. He/she dries out and starts punishing regime of working out/rehearsing. Falls off the wagon but is talked back onto it again by sidekick/confidant who is masterminding the whole thing. They have a sick but somehow touching symbiotic relationship. On the night of the big concert/fight several things can happen: after a painfully unfunny prologue, the comic turns in a performance of stunning brilliance on the violin. (Charlie Chaplin). After a long, maudlin, talky scene the singer performs sitting on the stage because she can’t stand and wows the audience. Are they applauding her just for still being alive? (Judy Garland) After demolishing his opponent, the wrestler collapses in the dressing room and dies of a heart attack. (Night and the City) The comic dies in the wings as his protégé sings/dances. (Probably Charlie Chaplin again.)

A vulnerable protégé gets revenge on a bullying mentor. Bully, The Prophet, Heathers, Othello. (Don’t the bullies ever foresee the possibility? Are they subconsciously inviting death by cop? Don’t they ever see the movies?)

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