Tuesday 2 January 2018

Movie Clichés in Quotes 3

Nick Timothy looks like every aggressive squash-playing businessman who turned out to be the murderer on 
Bergerac. (Michael McAvoy‏ @KillieMeSoftly)

Emma Thompson is Love Actually's resident female-personality-haver, which means that she's totally nice and bland 95% of the time and then every once in a while she'll say something horribly caustic and inappropriate and out of character. You know, like a normal regular human woman who is not a robot! (jezebel.com)

I took mother to the pictures this afternoon. It was a typically British never to be forgotten epic of the 'Keep it up, stick it out, take it on the chin, I knew you'd volunteer, good heavens an orange!, Jack darling, what's happened to us?' school of film. (Round the Horne)

There’s a lot of blame to be placed here on the Hollywood idea of autism giving people a magical power to identify and speak Hard Truths. (@arthur_affect, in the context of Robert Damore claiming to be autistic and using it as an excuse for saying women don’t belong in tech.)

The "tortured artist" trope kills. I want artists to be happy, healthy, and joyful. Stop saying you need to suffer to be an artist. (@tsengputterman)

Montalbano: mysterious beautiful woman, abandoned fish cannery, ageing mafioso in huge villa. (Hugh Pearman)

I don't watch these [memes] nor the video recipes. You know, the ones which visually show the physical preparation of the recipe, only at quadruple speed, usually with annoying music in the background. (Michael Morrow)

Helen was a mildly maverick copper, which means she was a standard-issue TV copper. (Andrew Billen on In the Dark, Guardian)

Any film which has a character replaced by an evil double deserves to be watched, in my book at least. (Imdb commenter)

It is this idea of equating gritty with good, however, that is the pitfall... One of the main reasons that Anne fails is, to my mind, that it is rooted in white feminism and misguided ideas of empowerment at the expense of what makes the books and other adaptations so magical. (Thewalrus.ca on the latest remake of Anne of Green Gables)

In the future you will be able to tell an alien race as they are incapable of using contracted words. (@peasmoldia)

Films like this were very easy and cheap to make - minimal locations, scenery munching, explosions or car wrecks. (Imdb on Green for Danger)

A young music-hall entertainer aspires to stardom on his own terms, but faces a dilemma as to whether he should go it alone or stick with his family troupe. (Ealing Rarities blurb)

Good-natured comic shenanigans follow that pulls the legs of stereotypical northerners and southerners alike. (Imdb on Diana Dors vehicle Follow the Money. Thanks for the warning.)

The Francis Durbridge serials all seemed to inhabit the same universe, that of unexplained happenings, people being not what they seem and the villain being someone close to the hero/victim. (Imdb commenter)

It's very kind of General Von Exposition to name all the characters we just saw. (@adamcreen)

I’ve had a number of emails about our repeated use of a picture of wrinkled hands peeping out from a patchwork blanket to illustrate stories about the over-60s.


As the prophecy foretold.
But at what cost?
So let it be written; so let it be done.
So... it has come to this.
That’s just what he/she/they would have said.
Is this why fate brought us together?
And thus, I die.
Just like in my dream?
Be that as it may, still may it be as it may be.
There is no escape from destiny.
Wise words by wise men write wise deeds in wise pen.

Via Atlas Obscura

Brains: sizzle, crackle
Veins: whoosh, gurgle
Organs: squish
Heart: thump
Digestion: gloop (hair gel, or wallpaper paste and spaghetti)
Straining muscles: squeak
Valves: pop
Growing hair: “creaking sailboat ropes, trees bending in a windstorm”
Bone: crack

In my Room 101 it's just a single speaker, piping in a loop of Radio 4 plays comprised solely of British actors doing bad American accents. (@Andr6wMale)

Radio 4 drama where the characters keep saying out loud what is happening to them: 'Aaaaargh! Now our boat is being swept away!' (@MrRayNewman)

I have been loitering in bed for a couple of days, passing the time listening to drama on Radio 4 and Radio 4 Extra. The quality is excellent but, on reflection, the content has been rather grim. I have been immersed in slavery, a teenage girl being groomed to go to Syria, a person with bipolar disappearing (leaving a partner and young children) and a possible murder by paedophiles. (ABS Where are the thrillers, mysteries and comedies of manners? And the scifi?)

Of course Alexander Nix is not a Bond villain, he's the scientist who helps the villain until he's no longer useful, then he gets shot, blown up, or eaten. (@simonbayley on the Cambridge Analytica boss who allegedly helped Trump into the White House.)

Today I learnt that mad scientists wear bow ties because of lab safety! Dangly ties get caught in Bunsen burners! (@jeannette_ng)

I am quite weary of Hollywood's propensity to depict the lone genius scientist rather than science as a cooperative enterprise. (@KateElliottSFF)

In horror films it’s when you think the thing is dead that it’s most likely to return seeking vengeance.

I just watched the trailer for Covenant. Same reaction with Prometheus and Predator 2 - my reaction, as a SF writer, is 'Don't poke shit.' That thing? Which you just think you offed? Don't poke it. Even with a gun. Especially don't take its helmet off. If it looks squishy and it's opening up and exuding a weird substance, don't put your fingers in there. If there's even the faintest possibility of it shooting out some kind of extension which might be attached to your person, keep several feet back from the get-go. If someone sticks something in your ear, or indeed any non-sexual orifice without your permission, ask them to remove it, if necessary with maximum prejudice, and if they don't do it, run, or punch them. I've applied these basic principles to my own life and it's worked so far: should I find myself on an alien planet, I'll be leaving anything even vaguely biological well alone. (Liz Williams)

Or better still, don't go into creepy crashed spaceships, there was a good reason why they were left crashed and abandoned. (RD)

Yup, don't poke that, don't eat this and never read out loud from the books. (TH)

Here's Roger Ebert's collection.

More here, and links to the rest.


  1. Radio 4 plays - well how are you ever going to know what's going on if someone doesn't tell you? I've always felt radio is ideal for reading a book out, and terrible for drama. I have (of course) been listening to them for 40+ years, and felt that the fault was in myself. But now I think - radio totally unusuited to plays.
    Equally - TV totally unsuited to cooking programmes - you can neither taste nor smell, what's the point?
    We have been brainwashed!

  2. I find genre works on radio, but "naturalism" makes me cringe. Also, I'm so old that I've seen fashions in naturalism come and go. And every generation thinks "That was hammy, but we know how to do it now!"