Movie plot elements that are hard for you to watch?

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Poorly crafted stooges, straightmen, and villains. Every protagonist needs an obstacle. Every joke needs a butt. Every hero needs a villain.
But craft the villain to be too simple and the result is annoying.



Star Trek - Admiral or Commodore Dips**t only exists to demonstrate how competent the crew of the Enterprise really is.

Waterboy - They dress a guy up just like Colonel Sanders to set up a joke where our protagonist observes that the guy looks like Colonel Sanders.

The Super-Villainy Villain Guy who is really bad because he's the villain, even though he has no motivation or rational. Pretty much anyone ever played by Paul Gleeson. When things are played for a bit of camp, it's OK (e.g., Gleeson in Die Hard), but in a "serious" film, it's annoying AF.

On the other hand dignify and explain and humanize the Devil too much and everyone follows him to hell (e.g., Walter White).

A challenge of writing is to get the balance right.



Impossible for me to watch any scene that contains cruelty to animals. Or any sign of neglect for that matter. I just can’t do it.
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Poorly crafted stooges, straightmen, and villains. Every protagonist needs an obstacle. Every joke needs a butt. Every hero needs a villain.
But craft the villain to be too simple and the result is annoying.

Star Trek - Admiral or Commodore Dips**t only exists to demonstrate how competent the crew of the Enterprise really is.

Waterboy - They dress a guy up just like Colonel Sanders to set up a joke where our protagonist observes that the guy looks like Colonel Sanders.

The Super-Villainy Villain Guy who is really bad because he's the villain, even though he has no motivation or rational. Pretty much anyone ever played by Paul Gleeson. When things are played for a bit of camp, it's OK (e.g., Gleeson in Die Hard), but in a "serious" film, it's annoying AF.

On the other hand dignify and explain and humanize the Devil too much and everyone follows him to hell (e.g., Walter White).

A challenge of writing is to get the balance right.
I don't think the reason why some guys idolize Walter White is because the show humanized him too much (otherwise, they would empathize more with Skyler, when it's those same guys who are also making the garbage memes about her being the "true bad guy" of the show). I mean, the whole point of the show is that he's an average, everyday man who ends up becoming a tragic antihero, so if we don't feel any sympathy for him, or aren't aided in understanding the character flaws that lead to his moral downfall, then he might as well just be another one of the scumbags on Sons Of Anarchy. I think the real reason why those guys look up to him is that they're just looking for another "badass" alpha male to root for, while completely ignoring all the negative results of his toxic masculinity, just like so many other cautionary tales that came before him:




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I don't think the reason why some guys idolize Walter White is because the show humanized him too much (otherwise, they would empathize more with Skyler, when it's those same guys who are also making the garbage memes about her being the "true bad guy" of the show). I mean, the whole point of the show is that he's an average, everyday man who ends up becoming a tragic antihero, so if we don't feel any sympathy for him, or aren't aided in understanding the character flaws that lead to his moral downfall, then he might as well just be another one of the scumbags on Sons Of Anarchy. I think the real reason why those guys look up to him is that they're just looking for another "badass" alpha male to root for, while completely ignoring all the negative results of his toxic masculinity, just like so many other cautionary tales that came before him:


I dunno. Walt had an arc. We fell in love with him when he was a cowering dork. We felt his pain. We were with him in the car wash when his own students humiliated him. We were there with him when he was diagnosed. He wasn't an alpha male and his villainy was not sudden (no WWE heel-turn was the "White" named "Walter"). We got in his shoes and wore them. We felt for him and cheered for him as he surmounted challenges. He seemed like a good man in a bad time, that is, until Jane...



Skyler annoyed my wife and I don't think she's a misogynist -- she just found her character to be annoying (but well-acted). She's kind of a control freak and is in a running competition for attention/appreciation with Marie. She has a disturbing talent for lying (she's much better at it than Walt) and is ruthless in her own domain (poor Bogdan, poor Ted). In some ways, she is the perfect accomplice for Walt. He really needed her to make things work. I find myself loving and hating her in the same way that I love and hate Walt and Marie and Jessie and Hank. They're all very human. I think what is most annoying about Skyler is that she is stuck on the fence with Walt. She doesn't quite work up the muster to keep on driving when she reaches the 4 Corner's area and she never works up the nerve to call the cops, but she still moralizes as if she does not have a foot in both worlds.



If the story were told from Skyler's point of view, however, I'm certain that Walt would be viewed much less favorably. A lot depends on point of view, and we're riding with Mr. White. We're cooking with Walt. So, Skyler is, by necessity, a source of friction. We had too much fun with the devil.



I dunno. Walt had an arc. We fell in love with him when he was a cowering dork. We felt his pain. We were with him in the car wash when his own students humiliated him. We were there with him when he was diagnosed. He wasn't an alpha male and his villainy was not sudden (no WWE heel-turn was the "White" named "Walter"). We got in his shoes and wore them. We felt for him and cheered for him as he surmounted challenges. He seemed like a good man in a bad time, that is, until Jane...



Skyler annoyed my wife and I don't think she's a misogynist -- she just found her character to be annoying (but well-acted). She's kind of a control freak and is in a running competition for attention/appreciation with Marie. She has a disturbing talent for lying (she's much better at it than Walt) and is ruthless in her own domain (poor Bogdan, poor Ted). In some ways, she is the perfect accomplice for Walt. He really needed her to make things work. I find myself loving and hating her in the same way that I love and hate Walt and Marie and Jessie and Hank. They're all very human. I think what is most annoying about Skyler is that she is stuck on the fence with Walt. She doesn't quite work up the muster to keep on driving when she reaches the 4 Corner's area and she never works up the nerve to call the cops, but she still moralizes as if she does not have a foot in both worlds.



If the story were told from Skyler's point of view, however, I'm certain that Walt would be viewed much less favorably. A lot depends on point of view, and we're riding with Mr. White. We're cooking with Walt. So, Skyler is, by necessity, a source of friction. We had too much fun with the devil.
Totally agree. Whatever her plot function, she is incredibly irritating and has never instilled a drop of sympathy in me.

Anyone’s at liberty to think people rooting for antagonists/villains are “missing the point”, but I feel those who argue in that way are missing the point themselves. All these arcs can be seen as tragedies; even if it didn’t “end well”, the characters did what they felt they had to/wanted to do, and to me it’s perfectly reasonable. Find endings like The Stowaway much more ridiculous and feel that people rooting for self-sacrificing goodies are missing the point. Sacrifice yourself for greater good of society, jump off the cliff, spread communism… Animal Farm, anyone?

Art/entertainment would be so much more, well, entertaining if rooting for egoists like Walter was normalised, because that’s realistic human behaviour - seeking how to maximise one’s self-interest. Not jumping off the cliff in self-sacrifice.

The lesson is obviously that if you fail the evolutionary module of cooperation, you are likely to be ****ed in the end, like Walter - but at least it was a joyride.

But they are not all equivalent to each other. I always preferred Narrator to Tyler because the whole thing is obviously his project and his achievement, he has managed to change his own personality so as not to need an alter-ego anymore. It’s almost like A Beautiful Mind. Tyler is just a coping mechanism, so why would one idealise him? Same with Bateman, he’s just a stock broker who has too much time on his hands, it’s not like one would idealise an actual serial killer.



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I think we all cheered for Donald Draper's best pitches and that we hoped against hope that he would get it together and stop moping around and sleeping around. And when the alternative is Pete Campbell, it's easy to be on Team Don. As the show goes on, Don is less and less likeable, but to be perfectly honest, who is really likeable on that show? They're all rather tainted, toxic, and self-obsessed, aren't they? Brilliant show for about 3 seasons and then it rather wears out its welcome.



I made it only 8 episodes into Mad Men and bailed as Pete Campbell failed to get violently murdered by that point.



I made it only 8 episodes into Mad Men and bailed as Pete Campbell failed to get violently murdered by that point.

You mean, the best character in the whole show?



You mean, the best character in the whole show?
Did he get violently murdered in episode 9? If not, no interest in continuing.



Did he get violently murdered in episode 9? If not, no interest in continuing.

I'm pretty sure he gets punched in the face at least once. Worth the three or four seasons it takes to get there.


So many great Pete moments.


Also, (in regards to that meme above) I don't think there is any 'missing the point' in rooting for Don Draper's character. Unlike Walter White, who was deliberately morphed into the shows villain, Draper is simply a deeply flawed man. The design of Mad Men is not to have the audience align against him. We still wish for him to rise from his moral quagmire. Rooting for this is not a fault in the viewer.



What it often feels like is that general culture can't distinguish between having empathy for anti-heroic characters, and 'rooting' for their anti-heroic behavior. Travis Bickle's charcter arc in Taxi Driver is kind of emblematic of this. Whether it is his obsession with a Presidential candidate, or the pimp of a child prostitute, the pathology that guides his behavior in both situations is virtually identical. But the general public interprets it completely differently, depending on his target. But in both cases, as an audience, we should not be rooting for violence. Yet, we are still permitted to empathize with the tragedy of his life. His criminal behavior shouldn't forbid this.



Also, does anyone actually 'idolize' Patrick Bateman?


I suppose I shouldn't be surprised if some do, but that feels like a particularly weird one since he is essentially a satirical construct we aren't really even meant to humanize.



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I'm pretty sure he gets punched in the face at least once. Worth the three or four seasons it takes to get there.


So many great Pete moments.


Also, (in regards to that meme above) I don't think there is any 'missing the point' in rooting for Don Draper's character. Unlike Walter White, who was deliberately morphed into the shows villain, Draper is simply a deeply flawed man. The design of Mad Men is not to have the audience align against him. We still wish for him to rise from his moral quagmire. Rooting for this is not a fault in the viewer.



What it often feels like is that general culture can't distinguish between having empathy for anti-heroic characters, and 'rooting' for their anti-heroic behavior. Travis Bickle's charcter arc in Taxi Driver is kind of emblematic of this. Whether it is his obsession with a Presidential candidate, or the pimp of a child prostitute, the pathology that guides his behavior in both situations is virtually identical. But the general public interprets it completely differently, depending on his target. But in both cases, as an audience, we should not be rooting for violence. Yet, we are still permitted to empathize with the tragedy of his life. His criminal behavior shouldn't forbid this.

Don is not just flawed, he is a scoundrel. He steals a name, he is a gobsmackingly flagrant philanderer, he is an absentee father and husband, and he's a rather petty with subordinates. He's fun to watch, but I wouldn't pick him to be a friend.



I think you're right on the money in the audience conflating their allegiance with a character with an allegiance with their character (traits) and actions.




Waterboy - They dress a guy up just like Colonel Sanders to set up a joke where our protagonist observes that the guy looks like Colonel Sanders.
This worked so well for Adam that he repeated it in the ****ty remake "The Longest Yard".