Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Movie Cliches

In movies/television, I feel like there are two cliches that rise above the rest (feel free to offer alternatives):
1. A character getting hit by a bus
2. The catching of a bad person by recording them saying something incriminating with a hidden tape recorder.

Examples of the bus: (spoilers ahead)
Mean Girls (the jerk girl gets hit by a school bus)
LOST (I forget who... but it happens... maybe Juliet's sister?)
Closer (Natalie Portman)
Matt & Kim's music video for "Lessons Learned"
Ghost Town (Greg Kinnear)
Meet Joe Black (Brad Pitt)

Examples of the tape recorder:
Michael Clayton (George Clooney)
Green Street Hooligans (Elijah Wood)
The Informant! (Matt Damon)

Now I know there are more examples of both, I just can't think of them.

I wonder if when writing a movie/show/etc, the writer thinks to him/herself, "... and then I could have this person get hit by a bus!" or "... and the bad guy will finally get caught when he opens his stupid mouth and the protagonist tapes him!"? Don't they know they've both been done way too many times before to be legitimately surprising?

I suppose the tape recorder is the more believable of the two. In real life, I'm sure there are more people recorder than hit by buses.

Then again, the "hit by the bus" cliche can used as a comedic device (i.e. Mean Girls) where its aware of its cliche-ness and thus, awesome.

Does this annoy anyone else? Does one rub you the wrong way more than the other? Are there other more cliche, cliches?

1 comment:

Ben said...

Stranger Than Fiction- It's all about how getting hit by a bus is good for Harold Krick (Will Ferrell).