Holes

I’m not a critical movie watcher.  You’ll guess this when I tell you that my favorites include How to Steal a Million Dollars, Sneakers, Laura, People Will Talk, Dial M for Murder, Sahara, Hopscotch, Moonstruck….  If you can find any pattern here, let me know.

Last week I came across Ghostbusters (the original) and although I wouldn’t call it a favorite, I like it enough to watch it again.  About 2/3 of the way through the movie, Bill Murray’s character shows up for a date at the apartment of the Sigourney Weaver character.  She has been taken over by an evil spirit and is waiting for the “key master”.  Bill Murray calls his ghostbuster colleague and during the conversation he says “I’ve got her whacked up with 300 cc of Thorazine”.  I’ve heard the line before in previous viewings but never thought much about it.  Now I’m thinking “why does this guy have Thorazine on him to go on a date”?  (And, of course, he’s a psychologist, so where would he even GET Thorazine?)

This made me think about other plot holes that I’ve willfully ignored over the years.  In To Catch a Thief, Cary Grant gets dropped off at the beach club at Cannes in swim trunks.  How does he get home with no clothing, no shoes, no money?

In Sneakers, all the bad guys are hanging out at their fake company in the middle of the night but for some reason the head bad guy isn’t hanging out in his office (which the good guys are breaking into).  Why?

In Sahara, the bad guy is about to blow up his solar energy plant and is escaping in his helicopter.  His henchman is left behind and instead of wondering why his boss has abandoned him and trying to get away from the plant, he’s still trying to throw Matthew McConaughey off the tower. Why?

In Dial M for Murder, Ray Milland says to Swann (the man he wants to murder his wife) that they only attended college together for a year, since Milland started during Swann’s final year.  Then Milland pulls a photo off the wall, saying it’s a reunion photo and it shows Milland and Swann sitting at a table together.  Why would they be at the same reunion if they were not in the same class?

Obviously these plot holes don’t keep me from watching these movies (repeatedly); I guess I get more from the movies than the logic of plot.  But I do wonder how many plot holes I’ve missed over the years.

Do plot holes bother you?  Can you watch something after you caught an error?

41 thoughts on “Holes”

  1. I rarely notice such things, since I am ready to suspend reality while I watch a movie. What irks me is when movie plots don’t follow the plots of the books they were made from..

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I have a fairly strict rule about making sure I’ve read a book before I see the movie that was made from it. I’m not perfect but I work pretty hard at it. And your comment is the exact reason why. I would much rather be disappointed by Hollywood then by the author.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Like Renee, I’m ready to suspend reality for the movie. Books and movies are a great escape. So much of entertainment media requires that we accept the unbelievable for awhile. Jeepers! Is that what the past four years has been? Suspension of reality for the purpose of a B movie? Hmm.

    That said, I do notice these holes and I point them out to people who seem to be believing it all a little too much. I know – I’m a wet blanket. I think a little reality orientation can be good for people. It’s only a movie.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. For me, the last four years dramatized how much grief follows from believing something that seems appealing but denies fact. Having seen how destructive the suspension of reality can be I now find it difficult to accept anything not based on fact. Sadly, that means I have difficulty enjoying fiction in books or films.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. why would anyone believe a pussy grabbing liar who drops out of peace accord, planet healing and sells the national land to developers would be allowed to continue?

        they just had a meeting and restated their love

        gop
        grad old pussy grabbers

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    In the Music Man, a musical I enjoy, Marion the Librarian is an employed single women solely responsible for supporting her family. She inexplicably, marries the The Music Man, a grifter, a con man, and an all around dubious character. While this is the main plot of the musical, it is a giant hole in the plot that never makes sense. It simply explains thepressure to get married despite the realities of marrying flawed people unsuited for marriage.

    Why. Would. This. Character. Ever. Do. This? She would not.

    Yet I love this musical, especially the song “Pick a Little, Talk a Little” which explains the heart of small town life with such accuracy.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Not to mention the question of how a single woman working as a librarian in a small town could make enough to support her little family.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Hollywood routinely presents views of life that ignore obvious truths about the demands of the world of work. You don’t see people grinding out extra shifts just to bring in enough money to pay the rent. Hallmark movies amuse me by presenting small town life where everyone seems to enjoy charming homes filled with gorgeous objects without working hard. In these idyllic towns people live middle class lives on the profits from small retail shops.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Not only small retail shops but small retail shops that the owners hardly ever seem to be in.

          Like

        2. Maybe in addition to selling each other things from their shops, they earn extra income by taking in each other’s laundry.

          Liked by 3 people

    2. Now stop right there; you’re talking about perhaps the greatest musical ever written! 🙂
      It was my break into theater in high school theater working on ‘The Music Man’ so I have a pretty fond place in my heart for this.
      There are so MANY implausibilities in this one, but it’s just so darn fun and has such catchy music, I’ll let them all slide.

      Liked by 5 people

  4. As an author, plot holes bother me now much more than they did in my pre-author days. But like most of you, I’m willing to suspend reality for an entertaining story. Nevertheless, I obsess over my own plots to make sure I don’t have a gaping maw of “HUH??” two-thirds of the way through.

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I don’t go to the Renaissance Festival often, but when I do I am aware that many, many people attending there have suspended their reality testing and seem to believe that the Ren Fest is real. Very interesting phenomenon to encounter in that setting.

      Liked by 3 people

  5. I’m willing to suspend disbelief on issues that seem trivial. For example, in Hollywood, guns that hold six cartridges seem to fire 26 times without reloading. I can ignore that kind of thing. But as a writer, I’ve become intolerant of sloppy writing where smart people do dumb things just because the plot needs tension. Prudent people put themselves in great peril for silly reasons. Wise women get drunk and have sex with louts they would not, in real life, touch with a long pole. Honest people decide they can tell a big lie temporarily and own up to the truth at a later time. Canny, self-aware young women marry controlling jerks. Likable, balanced characters suddenly spout extreme sentences that make sensible dialogue impossible.

    All this happens because the writer was incapable of creating believable characters whose credible motivation would naturally lead to an interesting plot. For me, books and movies soar or crash depending on how skillful the writer is, and lately I’ve suffered through a lot of crashing.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Agreed, BiR. And in real life I can understand and even respect people who make mistakes. In fiction, however, I find it difficult to care about people who make huge, obvious mistakes just to introduce conflict into the plot. Good writers can show us characters who make interesting mistakes. Bad writers give us people whose judgement can suddenly become so bad I wonder why I should care.

        This is not a new problem. Jane Austen is an interesting example of a writer who wanted us to identify with characters who occasionally screwed up. Emma is a believable heroine who meddles endlessly in other folks’ lives, and she has a believable comeuppance. It takes great skill to bring that kind of thing off, and many writers lack the ability.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Another example. Downton Abbey’s first season gave us some imperfect but interesting characters. Early on, we sense that Matthew and Lady Mary Crawley could be a couple. Then they do dumb stuff and reject each other. But they do so for very human and credible reasons, and it feels right when they reconnect. Way to go, Julian Fellowes! (He was the writer.)

          Ah, but later in the Downton saga Mr. Bates gets accused of murder, and it seems sure he will hang. He survives thanks to some wild coincidences and unlikely events. Hang your head in shame, Julian Fellowes, for teasing us with such an improbable plot sequence. You are better than that (even though you also dragged up the worst plot device known in literature: the old amnesia thing related to “Patrick Crawley”).

          Liked by 4 people

  6. I just finished a novel by Amanda Eyre Ward where I had to suspend belief for a couple of way too convenient coincidences, but the one that bugged me was when the cocktail waitress seemed to have unlimited funds to go on a lengthy and expensive road trip to find the lost sister. I am usually ready to leave literal reality in some form, but this was just too much. That said, I really enjoyed the writing and will seek out something else by her.

    Common conversation here while streaming movies et al:
    Husband: That couldn’t have happened (He wouldn’t have said that…)
    Moi: It’s a movie, remember?

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I never saw the movie Prince of Tides, but the book made me want to throw it across the room. The family in the book implausibly keeps a pet tiger, despite the fact that they’re poor and can barely feed themselves, and it’s never explained how they manage to feed the tiger. Then there’s a key scene in which the tiger is killed, along with a couple of humans, and the mother of the family decides that the whole violent scene must be kept secret from the father. So the author has a pair of children haul off and bury two grown men and a tiger. Two children do this, in an afternoon, while the mother and the sister mop up about a hundred gallons of blood in their house, and they finish all this just before the father gets home from work. Of course the father never notices anything’s wrong and apparently never misses the tiger. One day, they’ve got this tiger to feed, and the next day, no tiger. And it doesn’t register with him at all. I…can’t…stand it.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. one of my favorite books
      i hadn’t noticed
      pat conroy had a real traumatic childhood and his mother sister father and brother divorce and relationship with his children were included
      tiger schmiger give the guy a relief valve will you

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I’m all for a good relief valve but since he uses this scenario to set up the whole rest of the book, it seems beyond implausible which then causes the rest of the book into implausibility. Just my opinion.

        Like

      1. However maybe Glinda knew that Dorothy had to really want to go home for the tapping to work. Also when you’re talking about a tornado picking up a house and landing it in a land where there are little people and green horses and tin men that talk and flying monkeys, you don’t have to worry about plausibility quite so much.

        Liked by 2 people

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