I watch a lot of films. I am, quite unashamedly, a film geek. However, you don't need to be a film geek to notice the often glaringly obvious, not to mention irritating, myths perpetuated by the good ol' silver screen.
Inspired by Dawn Porter's fabulously funny (and oh so true) article on movie sex myths, as well as Total Film's '20 Movie Myths Debunked', I decided to have a bit of a rant about the film scenarios that I find most unrealistic, in the hope that future filmmakers might actually take notice.
I've compiled a list of my top five; I know there are hundreds but I've limited myself to five, 'cause otherwise I'd be here all day quite frankly.
My most annoying movie myths are a bit more general than those on Total Film's list, and (unfortunately for Hollywood) are the ones that I think most people, at some point when watching a film, will have noticed and subsequently responded to by letting out anything from a confused 'Eh?' to a more angry 'Oh my god. Really?? Seriously?? Does the director think I'm an Idiot?' (Note: the more zealous the film geek, the more likely this reaction.) They don't relate to specific movies, but that's the worst bit - they are in sooooo many movies that I'm sure you'll all be able to think of about ten different offenders for each myth.
By the way, I feel I should just state now that I won't be mentioning Live Free or Die Hard in this blog - I think we can all agree that whole movie lies pretty much beyond the realms of reality.
Myth number 1:Female characters waking up in the morning with flawless make up and not a hair out of place.
Don't get me started on this one. I know films are about escapism. I know their purpose is to transport us from the tedium and routine of daily lives. And I'm not saying I want to see Angelina Jolie or Jessica Alba face down in a kebab after 18 shots of Tequila and a night spent playing Take That SingStar. (Actually, what am I saying? I'd love to see that!) But I would like it if, just once in a while, a woman could wake up without perfect mascara, blusher and lip-gloss on, and look just a little bit rough. It won't make us run screaming from the cinema. We can handle it. Honest.
Myth number 2:Being able to get through airport security in about 10 minutes in the 'end of the movie, frantic, tell the girl you love her, airport chase scene' (mainly found in romantic comedies).
I do realise that a film probably wouldn't do that well at the box office if the protagonist spent an hour and a half of it waiting in a queue at Heathrow to have his passport checked and his wallet X-rayed. However, trying to persuade me that the hero arrives at the airport; manages to find the right terminal without driving around for half an hour swearing at his Sat Nav; gets through the soul-destroying security inspections; doesn't get distracted for at least an hour by discounted sunglasses and watches in duty free; arrives at the gate before the plane has boarded (even though he only realised he was in love with the girl, who was so obviously right for him all throughout the film to everyone but him, 10 minutes before her plane was due to take off); and find her in the sea of grumpy/terrified/drunk passengers to tell her she's the one for him; just pisses me off.
Myth number 3:Talking on the phone with someone but not leaving enough time between responses for them to actually say anything!
Now, I know we're meant to suspend our disbelief when watching a lot of films (pretty much every one starring Nicholas Cage), but how am I meant to believe you have been told to save the world/rescue the President of the USA/meet that girl you like for a date if you don't leave more than half a second between your responses?
Just because most films are made for teenage boys, whose attention will wander to breasts and explosions if faced with more than a second of silence (and indeed, even when watching breasts and explosions), it doesn't mean the rest of us will fall into some sort of coma or get distracted by something utterly mundane if a character remains mute for more than...Ooh, I've just spotted a magpie fighting a Cocker Spaniel for a penny...
What was I saying?
Myth number 4:Unlimited ammunition in fight scenes.
I won't pretend I know a lot about guns. But I would have thought bullets were invented for a reason and that it was something to do with firearms not containing magical death pixies, who make sure the action hero can shoot the badly dressed, often foreign sounding (English or German mostly) baddies to their heart's content. Apparently I was wrong. In the movies you can go for hours with nothing but a Glock G22 and a whole lotta rage. Thanks death pixies.
Myth number 5:The hero getting beaten to a pulp and still being able to get up, kick the bad guy's ass, seduce the girl, save the world and look ruggedly handsome, rather than resembling Rocky Balboa post-fight (or pre-fight, really. It makes no odds).
James Bond. Think I've made my point.
Well, I'm off to waste some more of my life getting enraged by films when I could be doing something productive. Which movie myths make you mad?