I took some strategically placed personal days between Christmas and New Years; combined with the paid holidays from my company, I was off for eleven days straight. It was a very low-key holiday with not much going on so it’s not surprising that I watched a lot of tv movies.
Diversity in movies isn’t high on my list of priorities but I did watch a bigger variety than usual, including several films that could be considered “thrillers” – Die Hard, Murder at 1600, Indiana Jones & the Temple of Doom, North by Northwest, several Tarzan movies and pretty much every Japanese monster movie ever made.
You wouldn’t think all of these movies would have much in common but you’d be wrong. The one thing they all had in common was screaming/squealing female characters. In scenes of danger or violence, the women all scream or squeal. The men in these scenes? Silent as the grave (except for the sound of fists smacking flesh). Even in Murder at 1600, which has a very strong female lead (Diane Lane), in the two scenes which qualify, while she doesn’t scream, she makes grunts and exclamations while the male lead (Wesley Snipes) is silent. I will admit that a couple of times Bruce Willis did grunt a bit in Die Hard but when you consider the near-mortal injuries he sustained, you’d think he’d make a bit more noise.
Having never been in any situation even remotely like the ones in these films, I don’t want to speculate as to whether or not I would be a screamer or a squealer. However, based on the fact that language fit for a longshoreman regularly pops out of my mouth almost automatically when I drop something, spill something or even just stub my toe, I’m guessing I might be making noise of some kind!
Do you have any “Pavlovian” responses?