Sometimes, you come across a movie that is so brilliant it can do no wrong. Other times you come across one so dire that you want to rage about it forever. But whatever polarising side of the coin a film falls on, sometimes, massive gapping holes of logic can't escape your attention. Here, the I'm With Geek team look over five of the biggest lapses in logic that exist in moviedom... or at least the ones that really stick in our craw.
Oh, and careful, there be SPOILERS AHEAD!
Men in Black was a cracking little sf comedy and a solid diversion from the sequels that seemed so prevalent in 1997. In that film, Will Smith plays a New York police officer recruited to join the secret organisation of black-suited agents who act as the Earth's first, last and only line of defence against the scum of the universe. But the Men in Black only accept "the best of the best of the best", so during the screening process we see the elite military personnel and government agents, square-jawed serious types brought in to see if they have what it takes. Now, sure, they select Jay over them all, but Agent K was already impressed enough by his skills in tracking down an alien criminal. And even then he had to convince his superior to allow it... then who the hell let Agent T (Patrick Warburton) slip through the cracks for the sequel? The guy is an idiot and a jackass who displays absolutely zero skill for the job. Even if he is just there to be funny and get rejected, that he was allowed through the door in the first place is what strains the suspension of disbelief in a movie about intergalactic border patrol. And, frankly, this is only the beginning of the movie's problems.
For as long as I can remember, this one has always bugged me. A huge fan of the Lecter series means that I’ve been blinkered about a lot of things, but this one stands out like the fresh-faced chin of the Doctor. With that in mind, why exactly is Hannibal Lecter clean shaven through the entirety of his captivity? This is a man so dangerous and conniving that if he were allowed a paper clip, he would fashion it into a deadly weapon. There is no way that the Baltimore Institute For The Criminally Insane would hand him over a piece of plastic that has a metallic tip so sharp that I can’t even shave my legs without re-enacting the lift scene from The Shining. And if you are thinking “sure, maybe someone shaves him,” remember that a nurse couldn’t even check his pulse without him tearing her tongue out. He should be bushy at best.
The Karate Kid is one of the best movies of the 80s. It’s fun, it has a kick-ass soundtrack, it’s cheesy as hell but that’s what makes it brilliant. It’s the perfect tale of a boy overcoming bullies with the help of a wise old man. It may have had a string of bad sequels (and a surprisingly good remake), but the original is a cultural icon, and of course, it has that 80s Hollywood ending where Daniel Larusso, having just been injured by the previous fighter in the tournament, seems like he’s about to lose and suffer indignity, until he pulls out one final move, and wins the tournament fair and square. Except, he doesn’t.
Warning: This may ruin The Karate Kid for you forever.
So the rules of the tournament clearly state that any touching of the face is strictly forbidden (So it’s a bit like the Anchorman fight). How does Daniel win? By kicking Billy Zabka in the face. Everyone cheers, he’s awarded the prize, and Daniel walks out, a dirty stinking cheater. But does it count as cheating if the tournament officials were too stupid to uphold their own rules? Who knows.....But hey, at least Billy Zabka got the last laugh, with an increasingly funny recurring role in How I Met Your Mother’s final season, whilst Ralph Macchio faded into obscurity.
This one is one of those mistakes that keeps me up at night. I can’t help but find it a massive glaring mistake in an otherwise grand movie. The ending sees Michelle Pfeiffer’s witch Lamia tied up with Yvainne ready to sacrifice her heart. However, as the blade comes down, she sets Yvainne free to be with the gallant Tristan, telling her she’d rather die old without her sisters than be immortal forever. They escape only for it to be a trick, and she starts smashing mirrors and closing doors. Her reason? Because Yvainne needed to be happy and her heart all glowing. However, the prolonged speech about killing her and the tricks she plays surely means the heart would go straight back to being scared. Plus it negates the whole “a scared heart is better than none” from before.
Frankly, you can go to town about logical mistakes, paradoxes and inconsistencies when talking about movies that feature time-travel. It seems that the more effort put into trying to make the chrono-jumping believable has an inverse effect on how enjoyable the movie actually is (which is why the Bill and Ted movies will always be more enjoyable than Primer). However, in Terminator 2, there's another issue that has less to do with conflicting timelines and more to do with one of the series' own rules. In The Terminator, Reese (Michael ) states that the reason the T-800 (Schwarzenegger) needs to look human is that the technology used to send someone back in time can only do so with biological matter, so the killer cyborg needs to be covered in flesh, blood and hair in order to be sent back. Okay, fair enough... then what's up with the T-1000 (Robert Patrick) in the sequel? He is simply liquid metal that is somehow rendered living, so there's nothing biological about him. How did he pass through the time-travel gateway? Perhaps Cameron was wise enough to not even acknowledge the issue in the film, and it moves along well enough that it wouldn't even occur to you whilst watching it, but it's still there.
Pissed off at Lord of the Rings?
Annoyed at Back to the Future?
What other movie mistakes annoy you?
Let us know in the comments!