5 of the Most Overused Action Movie Cliches You Probably Didn’t Even Realize Were Cliches

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Josh Duhamel and Tyrese Gibson in Transformers - Dark of the Moon (2011) Movie Image

In case you’re wondering, we’re not going to belittle ourselves with the “bad guys can’t shoot for shit” or the “loose cannon cop” cliches. Those are readily obvious and acceptable cliches within the genre. After all, how long would your movie be if the legion of bad guys with .50 caliber machineguns could shoot one dude walking calmly through them, mowing them down like ants? No, these are some of the most overused action movie cliches that have popped up once or twice in an action movie, but you might not necessarily have noticed them. And no, running from exploding fireballs is also not on the list. Like bad guys that can’t shoot the broadside of a barn, you just naturally expect action heroes to evade explosive fireballs. I mean, that’s where the action part comes in, right?

In no particular order…

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Author: Nix

Editor/Writer at BeyondHollywood.com. Likes: long walks on the beach and Kevin Costner post-apocalyptic movies. Dislikes: 3D, shaky cam, and shaky cam in 3D. Got a site issue? Wanna submit Movie/TV news? Or to email me in regards to anything on the site, you can do so at nix (at) beyondhollywood.com.
  • ErickKwon

    If I can suggest one more: We Both Brought Guns To A Gunfight, But–The Bad Guy Who Throws Away His Gun and Decides to Go Mano-a-mano

    Recent examples: “The Raid”, “The Man From Nowhere”, “The Expendables 2″.

    You’re the bad guy whose crimes range from harvesting human organs to butchering cops, but when facing possibly the most dangerous and capable good guy, you decide, “No, shooting you would be too fast and not enough fun. Or maybe despite the horrible things I’ve done in this movie already, I have a tweaked out sense of honor that demands we fight like men, so let me put away this loaded and locked gun and give you a chance to kick my ass.” Now, I’m not going to grudge a movie for fitting in another kickass fight scene, but this gambit almost always goes south for the bad guy. Even if the bad guy wins, it’s not an easy win and he can expect at a bloody nose and maybe a broken finger or two. Even for henchmen, there’s gotta be easier ways to get your cardio in for the day.

    • http://www.beyondhollywood.com/ Nix

      I believe Van Damme ran out of bullets and it was Stallone who decides to go mano-a-mano. But I get your point. I actually don’t mind tis because like running from explosives, this kind of enhances the movie.

      • ErickKwon

        Ah, damn, stand corrected. And you’re right, I can’t begrudge it because in the case of “Man… Nowhere” and “The Raid”, it did lead to probably those movies’ best fights.

  • http://reeltalkonline.org/ Candice Frederick

    ahaha. love it.

  • Debo4735

    The badasss killer from Man from Nowhere really had to test his skills against this uber bad ass killer everyone thought was just a pawn shop broker, and that led to the best knife fight I’ve ever seen in a movie.

  • http://www.beyondhollywood.com/ Dedpool

    GREAT LIST!!! Now lets get a Cabin in the Woods style actioner where they play with all the cliches and make them fun again!!