PDA

View Full Version : 10 Cinematic Clichés That Must Die!



Odysseus
01-29-2009, 12:53 PM
10 Cinematic Clichés That Must Die!

Posted By James Hudnall On January 20, 2009 @ 8:48 am In Media Criticism | 182 Comments

As a writer and consumer of entertainment, I really hate clichés and stereotypes. They’re only useful for misdirection, making readers believe the story is going a certain way so you can fool them. But Hollywood keeps trotting out the following lame tropes over and over again. It’s about time they were called on the carpet for this stupidity. These stereotypes are not only offensive; they’re overused to the point where they must be retired for good. If you really care about not offending people, Hollywood, stop offending me and the legions of people who are sick of this drivel.

[1]

1. The Crazed Vet/Soldier: According to Hollywood, if you’re a veteran who fought in a war or a soldier returning from one, you are insane, dangerous and probably a murderous sociopath. Either that or you’re a pathetic loser with mental problems. An emotional basket case. And of course, only poor people join the military, only uneducated stooges easily fooled by government propaganda. No one joins the military because they believe in something. If they do they will find out how foolish they were and become disgusted with America.

Note to Hollywood: Obviously, reality and research are a problem for you. Here’s a newsflash: People from all walks of life join the military and most who serve during wartime never experience serious combat, or any combat at all. During the Iraq war, it was actually statistically more dangerous to work on a farm or drive a taxi cab than to be a soldier in Iraq. And most vets are stable people. They’re trained to be responsible and orderly. They’re trained to deal with stressful situations rationally. Those who can deal with live fire are more likely to be able to handle stress back home, not the other way around. You’ve created ugly myths that betray the very people who make it possible for you to lead your silly lives. They defend the free speech that you use to defame their good name. They work for little money, often in horrible conditions, away from the people they love, for years in some cases. They risk their lives so other people can be free. People like you. And this is the thanks they get? You should be ashamed of yourselves! This is an insane form of prejudice. Bigotry against people who protect you.
The other nine are just as good. Read the rest here (http://bighollywood.breitbart.com/jhudnall/2009/01/20/10-cliches-that-must-die/).

enslaved1
01-29-2009, 01:19 PM
From one of those flyover losers, I agree with #10.

On a more serious note, these things would not be such a big deal if America wasn't learning 90-99% of it's moral and social values from Hollywood. Dumb Homer Simpson and Al Bundy weren't a big deal until they were only male role models many young boys were interacting with on a regular basis. Hand in hand with that idea, movies and tv are supposed to be entertainment, not the basis for our world view. Too many people are putting their trust in Hollywood to tell them how the world is. And we have DU to show what becomes of that....

djones520
01-29-2009, 01:29 PM
From one of those flyover losers, I agree with #10.

On a more serious note, these things would not be such a big deal if America wasn't learning 90-99% of it's moral and social values from Hollywood. Dumb Homer Simpson and Al Bundy weren't a big deal until they were only male role models many young boys were interacting with on a regular basis. Hand in hand with that idea, movies and tv are supposed to be entertainment, not the basis for our world view. Too many people are putting their trust in Hollywood to tell them how the world is. And we have DU to show what becomes of that....

You can blame bad parenting on that more then Hollywood. They don't force you to view their material.

enslaved1
01-29-2009, 01:53 PM
That was the point. If parents are doing their jobs, what difference do Hollywoods dumb cliches make?

djones520
01-29-2009, 01:55 PM
That was the point. If parents are doing their jobs, what difference do Hollywoods dumb cliches make?

None at all. Though the one about the magic minority does tend to annoy me.

I'm honestly suprised they didn't include token black guy monster bait in there.

noonwitch
01-29-2009, 02:06 PM
The stupid dad is okay for comedy-I don't know if Homer Simpson is all that stupid, considering Marge stays married to him. All the characters on that show are warped, somehow, except maybe Lisa. The teachers are chain-smoking harpies, the principal is the ultimate momma's boy, and so on. Ned Flanders is the butt of some jokes, but I think it's obvious that he is a far better person than Homer or even his minister.

I might be a liberal christian, but I grew up around evangelical and calvinistic christians and I don't like seeing people who were very good to me portrayed in a negative or simplistic manner. They made tough choices daily, like anyone else. I'll never forget watching a friend get the crap beat out of him after school one day when I was in 8th grade-we had people with us who were willing to stop it and dish out what our friend was taking (hockey players and all), and our friend told them not to, because that is not how Jesus taught us to act. I even wrote about that experience for a paper for a church class last year. I babysat for people across the street, who my parents (like Marge and Homer) made fun of because of their religious beliefs, and because they had very strict rules for their daughter (compared to us). They wouldn't let her play at our house unless my parents or I were home if my teenaged brother was home. They didn't drink alcohol at all, and they marked what their kid could watch on tv in the TV Guide. But the mom was always loaning me christian books, and would sit and talk about them with me after I read them. She managed to do this in a way that never seemed like she was pushing religion on me, too. After a friend of mine committed suicide my senior year of high school-well, if I hadn't been involved in Young Life, I would have probably spiralled out of control and gotten into a lot of trouble. YL was something my mom and I fought about constantly, though, and the lady across the street loaned me books because my mom would try to stop me from buying books by evangelical authors.

I know christians are trying to make their own movies, with varying degrees of success. I saw TD Jakes' movie Woman, Thou Art Loosed on BET. It had a strong cast, and it really hit home two messages: 1. Sexual abuse hits multiple generations in a family, and can really screw people up in the head and 2. Forgiveness is for everyone, even people who have done horrific things. It was a good movie, whatever the genre, because it was made well. The classic, "The Hiding Place", starring Julie Harris, was also an excellent christian movie based on a true story about a family who hides jews from the Nazis, because that is what they feel their faith calls them to do, in the face of such evil. But then there's the Left Behind movies, which I caught a few minutes of while flipping channels recently. The movies are just not well-made, and are not going to interest people who are not familiar with biblical prophecy.

Tyler Perry's Madea movies are funny, though, and have a christian theme (putting up with Madea is a test of the other characters' faith). His tv show is one that people with little kids let them watch, because they know it's safe.

Gingersnap
01-29-2009, 03:14 PM
. The Professional Bitch:

I've noticed this one more and more over the last few years: Smart Woman = Vicious Bitch. These women are cold, sarcastic, demeaning, and pointlessly angry. So that we have no doubt that are genuinely angry in a really authentic way, they are also foul-mouthed.

(The example implied in the article isn't really appropriate. Streep's role in the 'The Devil Wears Prada' was designed to say a lot about the fashion industry, not professional women in general. )

I've known a lot of professional women and while a couple really have been psycho bitches, those women had abrupt career derailments because of their behavior. You can't be an effective leader or team member if you are constantly in a state of brittle anger.