Daily Archives: 02/01/2013

The Hollywood Convention Center

I watch a lot of movies.  Like any art form, they tend to follow certain rules.

As I live in the good ol’ US of A, the films I see mostly come from Hollywood.  They have their own set of rules.

So for the Hell of it, here are my favorites, in no particular order:

  • when foreigners get together, they must speak the first few lines of dialogue in their native tongue, at which point they will spontaneously switch to English, even if everyone speaks said native tongue
  • foreign accents are an acceptable substitute for a foreign language
  • anyone with a French accent is a villain
  • anyone with a Russian accent is a gangster
  • ancient Romans didn’t have Italian accents, as one might expect; they actually had English accents (and modern ones, at that)
  • any scene in Canada or Russia must have snow somewhere in the picture
  • if a scene is set in the USA, you must show a subtitle with the city and state, but if it’s in any other country, you only need to show the city and country (or just the country)
  • computer hacking is always performed with a colorful 3D graphical interface that looks like a video game, and if the graphics are still too boring, the computer will talk as well, and its voice will come booming out of even the tiniest laptop
  • even the most brilliant computer geek will use a short password of all lower case letters to protect his computer, and he will base it either on something from his past, or on something in the room
  • passwords from the previous rule will be guessable by anyone who knows that character in three or four tries, but only during a dramatic moment
  • if the hero comes up with a clever plan, he must keep it to himself, even from friends and allies who are directly involved and would certainly benefit from knowledge of this plan
  • the killer in a murder mystery is someone we met, but never the first one the cops interrogate
  • any time there is a prairie scene, a hawk will screech… and it’s always the same hawk
  • when a man and woman are in bed, his chest will be bare and hers won’t be, even though he just saw her naked: corollary, when she gets up to go to the bathroom, she will demurely cover herself with a blanket, even though he just saw her naked
  • all movies must take place in LA or New York, unless there is a compelling reason it be set somewhere else, in which case this is unusual enough to make it into the title; as examples: Last Tango in Paris, Mystery Alaska, Sleepless in Seattle, Chicago Hope, Fargo
  • in every city in North America, all phone numbers start with 555: corollary, even 800 numbers
  • no matter how many people are at a kitchen or restaurant table, they will leave one side of the table open
  • no matter how loud people are or freakishly bizarre their actions in a crowded restaurant, every else will ignore them
  • hospitals only hire young and beautiful doctors
  • in real life, about 90% of adult men have chest hair… in movies it’s zero
  • movie lipstick never smears, movie mascara never runs
  • lasers must be visible and make cool noises
  • no one will show up to interrupt a climactic battle between hero and villain until the battle is all over, no matter how many shots were fired or explosions hurled fire into the sky
  • after the climactic battle in the previous rule, cops will announce their arrival with distant sirens just as the villain is gasping his last
  • World War II didn’t really start until December 1941: corollary, of the five beaches stormed on D-Day, only two had anything of significance happen on them
  • the colonists in the American Revolutionary War all had modern American accents, even though they grew up as British subjects
  • the redcoats in the American Revolutionary War all had English accents, even they were from all over the British Isles, and the modern (non-rhotic) English accent wouldn’t evolve for a century hence
  • semi-automatic pistols have no recoil
  • bad guys are terrible shots, but they do get a lot more ammunition to make up for that

Think of some I missed?  Put ’em in the comments!

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