5 Famous Movie Heroes (And Their Stunning Acts Of Cruelty)
If you're like me, movies are how you learned to be a good person. Andy Dufresne taught you how to be brave, John McClane taught you how to be resourceful, and Han Solo taught you how to get your fuck on with your friend's sister. If you're a woman, you probably have different examples, but I have no idea what they'd be.
Except, it turns out, I got some bad news, guys. Turns out a lot of heroic movie characters are actual total turd-monkeys. Real floppy-dicked fuck-waffles. I'm talking full-on taint-faced, stinky-eyed jerkarinos. Oh, you want examples? I got five of 'em. So gather 'round, kiddies. Let's ruin some motherfuckin' memories.
The Force Awakens: Finn Escapes A Life Of Child Soldiering, Immediately Starts Murdering Child Soldiers
In the Star Wars prequels, we learn that most of the evil stormtroopers were clones, but by the time The Force Awakens happens they've abandoned that sci-fi bullshit in exchange for the tried-and-true method of kidnapping children when they're too young to know their own names, brainwashing them into a lifetime of servitude and violence, and ruling over them with threats and intimidation. Basically, it's A Long Way Gone, reimagined in space and as a subplot in a children's movie.
This is the most tasteless thing I've ever Photoshopped.
Our hero, Finn, is a former stormtrooper who panics when he sees one of his buddies die in a firefight, the way a human being would. This affects him so much that, moments later, he decides not to murder a bunch of innocent people, the way human beings do every day. Then, the next day he kills a whole bunch of his former co-workers with a spaceship, the way the overwhelming majority of us never do ever.
I know it's weird to call out a movie hero for killing bad guys. Especially in Star Wars, where it seems like our heroes can't even walk down to Walgreens to buy some toothpaste and contact lens solution without making half a dozen stormwidows. But literally the only thing we know about Finn is that he doesn't like killing. And because he doesn't know his own name, that's the only thing he knows about himself, too. This is what makes us sympathize with him: "Death freaks this guy out?" we say to ourselves, "Why, death freaks me out too! Hey, this guy's all right!"
I guess you can't blame him. Stormtroopers have been wearing the same dehumanizing armor for two different empires now, even though it camouflages with nothing and is vulnerable to the primitive weaponry of tree-dwelling koala-cannibals. But hey, Star Wars: If you're going to design characters specifically so that they can be gunned down without a second thought, maybe don't tell us that they're all a bunch of kidnapped children.
Galaxy Quest: Tim Allen Gambles With The Fate Of The Entire Universe
In Galaxy Quest, the stars of an old sci-fi TV show discover that reruns of their show that were beamed beyond the solar system were received by a space-faring race called the Thermians, who have no concept of fiction and have modeled their entire culture off of these "historical documents." Apparently, every fantastical conceit of this universe's version of Star Trek is scientifically feasible, which is a stretch, but since America decided that The Social Network is a true story this isn't going to trip me up too much. The Thermians even manage to build the "Omega-13," which is a humongous floating puddle of blue CGI sperm with an unknown purpose. The Thermians don't know what it does, the heroes of the movie don't know what it does, even die-hard fans of the show don't know what it does.
This is how I picture the Cracked comments section.
According to Justin Long, who is the character you see right up there, the purpose of the cerulean jizz is the center of a raging nerd debate: "Many believe that it is a matter-collapser, a bomb capable of destroying pretty much everything in about 13 seconds. But myself and others are convinced it's actually a matter-rearranger, effecting a 13-second time-jump to the past."
So if you turn on the Omega-13, it'll either end all of existence or go back in time 13 seconds, which isn't even enough time to do anything important. "It's enough time to fix a single mistake," Tim Allen says. Jeez, Tim, technically, I guess. But no mistake could possibly be worth that risk. This is all of existence we're talking about. It's not possible for our brains to comprehend these stakes. I know the movie makes a big deal out of the existence of this device, so it seems like it's important to the plot, but listen to me, Tim: Do not activate Chekhov's space-cum. I cannot stress this enough.
I didn't just reveal something twisted about my psyche by admitting it looks like semen to me, right?
But he does, of course. At the end of the movie, when Allen and all his buddies are about to die in a horrible spaceship crash, he decides to turn on the Omega-13 for a chance to save himself. That last part is important. He's not saving the galaxy. He's not even saving Delaware. He's just saving himself and a bunch of actors. And for this, he risks the obliteration of everything that has ever existed. Because Justin Long said he should. Jesus fucking Christ, Tim.
Avengers: Age Of Ultron: On The Run From A Murder-Bot, Hawkeye Hides With His Family
After embarrassing themselves by blowing up a huge chunk of Africa, The Avengers decide that the only smart course of action is to hide in a farmhouse and have Joss Whedon time together. But where can they possibly find a farmhouse this quickly? Luckily, Hawk-Guy has a family that lives in just such a farmy-type home contraption, and he's happy to bring all his friends to hide there even though there's a killer monster-bot on their tail and he's putting his entire family in jeopardy to do so. If Ultron catches up with these guys (which seems likely) his wee little babes are in for the most gruesome, James Spader-y death that the Marvel Universe is capable of dishing out.
Normally, it's accepted that any human being will flip their friend headfirst into a meat grinder if the alternative is letting their wife or child die. We don't get mad at Spider-Man for trying to save Mary Jane over a box of kids or Batman for rescuing Rachel Dawes instead of Harvey Dent, and they're not even married. They're not even dating. They're just making eyes at each other, and yet sacrificing the lives of children and/or state prosecutors is still somehow acceptable. But for Hawkeye, we let him put his wee little babies in danger, and our only reaction is to feel proud of him for having sex.
Good goin', little guy.
When was the last time a "safe hideout" in a movie actually turned out to be a safe hideout? The Red Dawn safehouse was abandoned when Chris Hemsworth got shot in the head. In Guardians Of The Galaxy, trying to hide in a safe place resulted in Drax the Destroyer getting drunk and calling up the villain personally, which almost got Chris Pratt space-killed. Last time Chris Evans tried to hide with Nick Fury in a safehouse, in Winter Soldier, Fury was immediately shot. So we know that safehouses are not actually safe, particularly not for Chrises. But we're supposed to think that Jeremy Renner will be fine just because he's a Jeremy? I'm sorry, but that logic just doesn't check out.
On top of everything else, Hawkeye is the only guy who seems to understand how ridiculous this whole situation is. "The city is flying, we're fighting an army of robots, and I have a bow and arrow," he says, making the audience laugh so hard that I can't actually hear what his next line is (THANKS ASSHOLES). His point is that he knows exactly how close he's bringing his family to robo-murder.
And you know what? He doesn't care. "You know I'm proud of your avenging," his wife says, and that's a ridiculous line, but it's not as ridiculous as the fact that no one calls Hawkeye out on the fact that he was totally willing to let his kids get turned into robo-stew. Movie heroes never have to deal with the consequences of their actions. They just expect me to sort it out, here, in this column. I fucking hate movies so much.
Let's talk about two more of them.
Skyfall: James Bond Sexually Assaults A Woman And Then Lets Her Get Shot In The Face
Holy shit, that entry title. Can you believe I just wrote that? I'm dead serious, too.
In Skyfall, Bond learns that a woman he's into was a child sex slave. But, as mentioned, he's into her, so fuck it, and fuck her. Literally they bone in the shower. Sure, she doesn't seem into it at first, but he presses his advantage (he's a large man; she's physically intimidated) and pretty soon they're jack-hammering like slippery muskrats.
I bet you weren't expecting a Captain & Tennille reference.
I'm not just throwing out the term "sexual assault" willy-nilly, like an excitable puppy snapping his teeth at a new toy. I understand that sex can be really complicated without being rapey. But listen: These aren't real people. They are characters created specifically for us, the movie viewers. They exist only to the extent that the movie informs us of their existence. And with this particular woman, the movie tells us only three things: First, she used to be a sex slave. Second, she carries a Beretta, also known as the most badass gun. Third, she doesn't feel safe without it or her bodyguards. With me so far? Cool beans.
Later, Bond approaches her in the shower, and she goes stiff. She panics. Then they talk about how she doesn't have her Beretta. "I feel naked without it," she says erotically, because she's literally naked. Also, metaphorically naked, as in "robbed of everything she finds comforting." Then they put their genitals together.
Is this unequivocally, definitely rape, with no room for debate or discussion? No. We don't know for sure because we can't hear her inner monologue. Maybe she's thinking, "Oh cool, British dick! I've been aching for some British dick!" Or maybe she's thinking, "If I resist he'll probably murder me. Like that time earlier tonight, when he murdered people." Can't say for sure! Why did this happen? Why did the movie tell us that this woman was a traumatized former sex slave if not to make the following sex/rape scene questionable? Why blur that line? Hey, Skyfall: Help me out here.
I literally don't know what this is a picture of.
James Bond has had a lot of unambiguously consensual sexual encounters, and we've never complained about it. And Bond fans will complain about anything. There's an entire website about how Daniel Craig shouldn't play Bond, but I don't think there's even a subreddit's worth of Bond-fanatics saying, "Man, I wish these movies had more maybe-rapes."
Later, Bond stands idly by as she gets shot in the face by the villain. He escapes moments later using James Bond karate techniques that would have been totally applicable when his lover (victim? Fuck, why do I have to wonder that?) was still alive. He lets her die before attacking. Why? Was it because he was worried she was going to prosecute? Maybe, maybe not. Is James Bond a rapist? More importantly: Why don't I know for sure if James Bond is a rapist?
Groundhog Day: Phil Connors Lets An Old Man Die On The Street
In Groundhog Day, Phil (Bill Murray) is forced to relive Groundhog Day over and over again because he never sees his shadow. Then he finally sees his shadow (and seduces Andie MacDowell) and is released from the burden of temporally stagnant immortality. This movie is where the old adage comes from: "Even if you live for 10 years in the same agonizing day, you can never grow old and die until you sleep with a Southern woman."
The saddest part of the movie is when Phil finally decides to get to know an elderly homeless man living in Punxsutawney and learns that, tragically, the man is doomed to die on Groundhog Day. He tries taking him to a hospital, or just giving him a nice meal, but the day always ends the same way. There's nothing he can do about it.
This is the moment that Phil decides to spend his one day helping people. He builds up a rigorous schedule that involves catching this kid out of a tree ...
Note the face Murray makes when he does his own stunts.
... helping some old ladies with a flat tire ...
This was a pretty slow thirty-minute stretch of day.
... and giving the mayor the Heimlich maneuver when he chokes on some steak.
No one else has even bothered to stand up? Punxsutawney is a town of assholes.
This is how Phil breaks the spell and is allowed to return to temporally fluid mortality: He has one perfect, selfless day. The moral is that goodwill and kindness l always pays back more than selfishness and cruelty.
But what about the homeless guy, you ask? Well, we never see him again. But we do know that he dies that night, and on the last of Phil's perfect days, we know he spends his Groundhog Night ...
Let's revise that moral: Kindness and goodwill always pay back, except in the case of the homeless. There's nothing anyone can do to help them, and it's really best to let them die off-screen.
In any sane universe most movie villains would actually be considered the good guys. Find out why a principal just trying to do his job is a villain in 21 Iconic Movie Villains That Were Secretly Good Guys.
Subscribe to our YouTube channel to see why you should never trust giant wizards in Why Gandalf Was the Real Villain in 'The Hobbit' | Today's Topic, and watch other videos you won't see on the site!
Also follow us on Facebook, now with 50% less nicotine.