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May 3, 2017

5 Common Movie Clichés

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Written by: Lee Skavydis
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Part of the attraction to movies, especially ones that are on the lower end of the promotional scale, is taking delight in affectionately absorbing their cliché moments. Ones in which have become so commonplace that we often now half expect them!

Ranging from action heroes walking away from a building exploding behind them in slow motion to the henchman that never speaks, many of them are still used to this day and do not seem to show signs of decaying.

We’re going to check out 5 of some of the most common movie clichés known to exist across many classes of film, many of which are perhaps unsurprisingly some of the most well known.

Horror Film Killer Makes His Entrance Just Before The Final Credits Roll

Horror films are riddled with clichés. In fact, it’s the genre that is possibly the most famous for. Whether that is fair or not is down to you to decide.

One of those that stand out is when the killer has gotten his comeuppance, usually by the “final girl,” only to let audiences know that he is still around just before the end credits begin to roll. The Friday 13th, Halloween and A Nightmare on Elm Street series are most notably guilty of this, although many more obscure horror movies continue to repeat this in a now weak and uninspired attempt to keep audiences interested in any further sequels.

The Obligatory “I’ll be back” Line

As has been mentioned, there are clichés galore when it comes to viewers wanting something frightening to watch.

Another banal moment that has been seen time and time again are the would be victims, especially in slasher movies, telling their friends that they are just popping off to collect some beers or something while reassuring them that they will be back. Unsurprisingly, soon enough they get the point when the killer is standing in waiting to cause carnage.

The original Scream (1996), directed by Wes Craven, was a movie that paid both homage and made fun of the many moments in horror films that became commonplace when one of the characters named Randy , a horror aficionado, discussed how prominent “I’ll be back moments” are while watching John Carpenter’s Halloween on video.

The Scream series spawned a further three sequels and repeated the same formula in making their statements on clichés in inventive ways.

Bombs Defused With Only Seconds To Go

There is at least one explosion, big or small, in almost every action movie. And they are not shy to still attempt to keep audiences grabbing the side of their chairs when our action hero defuses a bomb with just several seconds to go.

The James Bond film Goldfinger (1964) famously had the secret agent defuse a bomb in order to stop Fort Knox from blowing to kingdom come but not before the camera lingered on the timer to reveal his code name, 007!

Infinite Amount Of Ammunition In Firearms

Commando, The Terminator pictures, Die Hard….they all have their moments where reloading was not necessary. Firearms in those universes seem to contain an interminable amount of ammunition. You would think that having to reload would actually increase the tension somewhat, but high octane energetic sequences obviously, and normally, take precedent.

Still, that is what often gives action movies their charm although it is surprising that this particular cliché isn’t often more discussed!

Final Speech Before Death Moments

Mostly confined to our favourite characters, it is quite often that they need to say any supposedly final important words before they dramatically slowly close their eyes. When Trinity died in The Matrix Revolutions (2003), her speech was so long that you began to wonder if she was really going to die at all!

The Dark Knight Rises (2012) contained an unintentionally amusing “speech before death” scene” involving Marion Cotillard’s Talia, but perhaps her lack of experience in acting out a death had a lot to do with it when she gave her obligatory warning speech and then comically snapped her eyes shut ruining any preceding tension the scene had built.

Other cheesy ones include the death of the character played by Bruce Willis in Armageddon, but Alan Rickman’s Hans Gruber in Die Hard (1988) was particularly memorable in that he still attempted to take down New York cop, John McClane just before falling to his death, using action rather than words!

About the Author

Lee Skavydis
Lee Skavydis
I am a die hard movie fan, owning over 500 movies on both DVD and Blu Ray. I try to go to the cinema at least once a week when time permits. My other hobbies include following fight sports such as boxing, travelling around, writing and editing, listening to heavy rock and cook the odd occasional recipe. I used to write for several prolific boxing websites, interviewing some of the most famous names associated with the sport around.



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