Hollywood Rules and Traits
Just a few rules that seem to dominate Hollywood lately. I decided to leave out the obvious ones (don’t have sex in a teen slasher movie) because everyone knows them, and so many people have written about them.
Doctor Cain’s Law
If the girlfriend of a doctor/med student dies in the course of a movie involving reanimation, the doctor will use the process to resurrect her. (Named for Dan Cain of Re-Animator, and making appearances in House of the Dead and The Mummy Returns – though it is the son in this instance)
The unique trait allowing a hero to catch a knife thrown at him and throw it back at his attacker. (Named for Jack Burton of Big Trouble in Little China, though seen in The Mummy Returns as well).
Rule of Survival #1
If you are a college kid invited to a really bitchin’ rave on a secluded island, DON’T GO!!!
Rudy’s Forced Foreshadowing
The brutal demonstration of a particular skill that becomes vital later in the movie. this form of foreshadowing has all the subtly of a wooden axe handle. (Called for the incredible bluntness in which House of the Dead character Rudy says of his ex-girlfriend, “she wanted to focus on her fencing. What good is that?”)
Rule of Survival #2
If you are involved in a scavenger hunt, chances are that nothing on your list can be found in the abandoned army base just outside of town.
Unique trait found in many college kids which allows them to be able to use a handgun/shotgun/rifle with marksman skill, even if they have never picked up such a weapon before. This ability is rarely found in anyone who utters the words, “Don’t worry, I saw this in a movie once.”
Rule of Survival #3
It’s okay to be considered a chicken if a dare involves going into a house/school/cemetery where a lot of people were killed years ago… and they never found the killer.
Dominant in the Post-Matrix Hollywood films where fighters (especially unarmed fighters) have the ability to defy gravity while the camera spins to a different angle (not necessarily to get a better shot of the action, mostly just to show they can).
My Brother, My Zombie
When faced with the idea that a relative is a blood-thirsty monster, or will soon become one, the living relative will always insist on finishing it, usually saying something like, “No, I’ll do it. It’s only right.”
My Brother, My Zombie Corollary
The actual incident will go down in one of two ways: a) After great hesitation, the relative will close their eyes, aim the gun (shaking in hand), apologize, and fire; or b) The relative will close their eyes, aim the gun (hand really shaking), and start crying, at which point someone else will finish the job.
Rule of Survival #4
When confronted with the possibility of flesh-eating zombies, locations for supplies should include: A) A gun shop, B) Supermarket (for food), and C) The Medieval history wing of the local museum for chain mail so the damn suckers can’t bite you (in a pinch, any dive shop that sells those metal shark suits will do).
Pet Survival Rates
A pet’s survival rate relies heavily on whether it can be more startling for it to jump out at someone alive, or be found dead. In most cases, cats usually live much longer than dogs.
Sci-Fi to DVD alterations
The only real changes between the movie that debuts on the Sci-Fi channel and the unrated DVD release are: A) A LOT more swearing, B) A slight increase in gore, and C) At least one shot of an unknown starlet topless.
Theatrical to Director’s Cut
Most people cannot tell the difference between what they saw in the theater and the unrated director’s cuts (Notable exceptions: Lord of the Rings and Daredevil)
Similar to skill absorption, except dealing with languages. Usually manifests in one member of a group who just so happens to read Spanish/French/Latin/Sanskrit/cuneiform.