15 Lies About Firearms Movies and Video Games Told You

There's something about firearms. Regardless of our ideas about gun control, we can't help but admire a sleek, well-honed, lubricated death machine. Guns have two main purposes: First, being cool (and making you look and feel cool by association), and in a distant second place, causing an awful lot of harm. So they're kind of like mechanical cigarettes (and to some people, just as addictive).

And yet, considering how many firearms most people have seen, the average person knows remarkably little about them. We're here to help fix that.


Dramatically cocking a shotgun is a waste of ammo. The cocking is intended to eject spent shells or bullets. If you do it just to show that you mean business, you're throwing away a perfectly good round.

More: 5 Ridiculous Gun Myths Everyone Believes (Thanks to Movies)


Silencers won't turn a gunshot down to whisper. You can't change the fact that exploding gunpowder is really noisy. A silencer will turn a huge bang into a smaller bang, but it will still be loud enough for everyone to hear it.

More: 5 Ridiculous Gun Myths Everyone Believes (Thanks to Movies)


You don't need to cock the hammer (and sometimes you even can't). IN many modern guns, pulling the trigger cocks the hammer for you. Others, like Glocks, don't even have a hammer that you can cock.

Sources: The Truth About Guns, The Truth About Guns


Bullets don't fly in a straight line. Bullets, not being magical objects, are affected by gravity like everything else. Once fired, a bullet will fall to the ground just as fast as if you dropped it from your hand.

Source: Gun Digest


Holding your gun sideways puts you at a disadvantage. Unless you dream of dying looking gangsta AF, you'd better hold your gun upright - the sideways grip makes it harder to properly take aim.

Source: Slate


Sawed-off shotguns aren't worth troubling yourself with the saw. Yeah, chopping off the barrel makes you look more badass and less Elmer Fudd - but these guns are only good at short range, and the recoil is brutal. The main reason to have one is if you can't get a real

Source: Vulture


Machine guns run out of bullets real quick. In movies, machine gun is short for unending hail of bullets -but if you keep firing any fully automatic weapon, you'll run dry in seconds, as there's no cheat for infinite ammo in real life.

More: 5 Ridiculous Gun Myths Everyone Believes (Thanks to Movies)


Getting shot won't blow you across the room. We strongly advise you against getting shot -- but if you ever are, rest assured that no bullet carries enough momentum to sweep you off your feet. Otherwise, the gun would have a monstrous recoil.

Source: Science ABC


Fanning a gun would only make you miss your target. You see it a lot in westerns -- but in real life, you'd be lucky to hit anything with all that jarring. It's unlikely that this was ever done outside of shows.

Source: HistoryNet


Shooting a car won't blow it up. You need fire for an explosion to even be slightly possible- and regular bullets aren't made to set stuff on fire. All you'll get is a hole in the gas tank.

Source: Science ABC


Sniping isn't just about putting your target in the crosshair. Making long shots requires a complex understanding of physics. You need to take into account the weather, the burn rate of gunpowder at different temperatures, and even the goddamn spin of the Earth.

More: 5 Weapon Myths You Probably Believe (Thanks to Movies)


You can't go sniping right after putting your rifle together. Guns that can be taken down to fit in a case need to fire several test shots to properly adjust the scope. Only in recent years has the U.S. Navy built a prototype that doesn't have this issue.

Sources: TechLink, TechLink


Shooting a lock out won't work. Fire your handgun into a lock, and you'll only get a mangled, but still unopened, lock (and if you're lucky, a bullet ricocheting straight into your spleen).

Source: The Writer's Guide to Weapons


Fingerprints are very hard to find on guns. Even if the gun isn't wiped clean, the rough edges and surfaces that allow for a better grip make it difficult for prints to take hold. Only in a small percentage of cases are fingerprints found.

Source: The Writer's Guide to Weapons


A blank can still kill you. Blanks are only safe at a distance. Stand less than a couple feet away, and the expanding gases and wadding can do real harm. Several actors have died this way.

Source: Gizmodo