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RE: What you learn from the Movies.
- To: telecine at alegria.com
- Subject: RE: What you learn from the Movies.
- From: hlehmann at encorevideo.com
- Date: Thu, 12 Aug 1999 09:48:37 -0700
- Resent-Date: Thu, 12 Aug 1999 11:51:48 -0500
- Resent-From: telecine at alegria.com
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Here's the original list. Oddly enough, it still
applies to most of today's movies as well.
All I Need To Know, I Learned At The Movies
During all police investigations it will be necessary to visit a strip club
at least once.
All telephone numbers in America (including 800 numbers) begin with the
Most dogs are immortal.
If being chased through town, you can usually take cover in a passing St.
Patrick's Day parade - at any time of the year.
All beds have special L-shaped cover sheets which reach up to the armpit
level on a woman but only to waist level on the man lying beside her.
All grocery shopping bags contain at least one stick of French Bread.
It's easy for anyone to land a plane providing there is someone in the
control tower to talk you down.
Dinosaurs only eat ugly or immoral people, especially lawyers. A dinosaur
will traverse a brush fire to follow the scent of a lawyer miles away.
Once applied, lipstick will never rub off -- even while scuba diving.
Lipstick will only transfer to the cheek, lips, or other body parts of the
person kissed if that person must subsequently appear to be faithful, macho,
or otherwise lipstick-free.
The ventilation system of any building is the perfect hiding place. Nobody
will ever think of looking for you in there and you can travel to any other
part of the building you want without difficulty.
If you need to reload your gun, you will always have more ammunition -- even
if you had not been carrying any before now.
You're very likely to survive any battle in any war unless you make the
mistake of showing someone a picture of your sweetheart back home.
Should you wish to pass yourself off as a German officer, it will not be
necessary to speak the language. A German accent will do.
If your town is threatened by an imminent natural disaster or killer beast,
the mayor's first concern will be the tourist trade or his forthcoming art
The Eiffel Tower can be seen from any window in Paris.
All single women have a cat.
A man will show no pain while taking the most ferocious beating but will
wince when a woman tries to clean his wounds.
If a large pane of glass is visible, someone will be thrown through it
The Chief of Police is always black. In the case of a precinct in a largely
black neighborhood, the Chief of Police will be Italian.
When paying for a taxi, never look at your wallet as you take out a bill --
just grab one at random and hand it over. It will always be the exact fare.
If you lose a hand, it will cause the stump of your arm to grow by six
Interbreeding is genetically possible with any creature from elsewhere in
Large loft-style apartments in New York City are well within the price range
of most people -- whether they are employed or not. Most landlords give
special preference to artists, bike couriers, actors, musicians, temps,
and/or the chemically imbalanced.
Every apartment ever built has a large mural painted on the wall which
resembles Liechtenstein or Haring and/or contains neon. Painting this mural
will not affect the security deposit.
Kitchens don't have light switches. When entering a kitchen at night, you
should open the fridge door and use that light instead.
If staying in a haunted house, women should investigate any strange noises
in their most revealing underwear.
When kidnapping a rogue special forces unit, it is always standard operating
procedure to lock them in a garage with at least one functioning acetylene
blowtorch, two or more working vehicles which are easy to hard-wire
(including at least one tractor or bulldozer), enough miscellaneous spare
parts to fill an Army Corps of Engineers airplane hangar, a full set of
Craftsman tools, an electric generator, power tools, and lots and lots of
duct tape. The special forces unit should be left alone, conscious,
together, and non-incapacitated in this garage for at least four hours
before returning to kill them.
Word processors never display a cursor on screen but will always say: Enter
Mothers routinely cook eggs, bacon and waffles for their family every
morning even though their husband and children never have time to eat it.
Cars that crash will almost always burst into flames.
Fifteen minutes out of town from the city of Los Angeles is a desolate
highway which is almost entirely populated by wandering jeans commercial
film crews. A chase which begins in the financial district of any city,
including London, will invariably end up on this stretch of road.
Passing outside every roadside diner or gas station there will be at least
one tumbleweed, even in New Jersey.
Inside every roadside diner there will be one waitress, usually of
Mediterranean descent, who is drop dead gorgeous. Each of these waitresses
keep their passports and other valuables in a knapsack behind the counter,
and they are all ready and waiting to leave their jobs and homes forever in
a heartbeat in order to follow a stranger on an adventure.
In order to tell if a baggy of white powder contains narcotics, it is
standard police procedure for an officer to nip the corner of the bag with a
pocket knife and dab a bit of the powder on his or her tongue.
Everyone carries at least one paper clip with them at all times in the event
of an arrest, since nothing opens a set of state police barracks-issued
handcuffs like a twisted paper clip.
Even a fourteen year old hacker is able to type 80 words per minute without
having to look once at the keyboard of his computer.
Wearing a vest or stripping to the waist can make a man invulnerable to
bullets. Even in a withering cross-fire of at least eighteen gunpersons, all
bullets which actually strike the person wearing the vest will be localized
in the upper chest area. No extremities will be hit.
If you find yourself caught up in a misunderstanding that could be cleared
up quickly with a simple explanation, for goodness sake, keep your mouth
The Chief of Police will always suspend his star detective -- or give him 48
hours to finish the job.
A single match will be sufficient to light up a room the size of Wembley
All municipal firefighters, police officers, and emergency medical personnel
recognize each other solely by clothing. In order to impersonate a
firefighter at the scene of a fire alarm (false or otherwise), for example,
one has to do nothing more than to put on a helmet and raincoat. Spare
helmets and raincoats are easy to acquire at the scene for this purpose.
Police officers subsist on a diet made up entirely of doughnuts and coffee.
It is not only possible but quite easy to survive an explosion by running in
the opposite direction of an exploding bomb. Explosions are slower than the
running pace of an average human being, even an out of shape one.
Horses can run at a full gallop for days without needing to stop, rest, eat,
drink, or sleep. Most horses can also keep catch up and keep pace with
speeding motor vehicles and trains.
Horses, like dogs, are completely calm and comfortable around gunfire,
swordfights, screaming, motor vehicles, tanks, explosions, and all other
animals. The only exception is rattlesnakes. The mere sight of a rattlesnake
is usually enough to kill a horse.
Upon needing to traverse a wide chasm on a vine, fall down a mountainside,
roll in front of an airplane, or fall from a great height, all children will
grow approximately one meter in height. Their coordination, reflexes, motor
coodination and musculature all dramatically improve as well. Upon reaching
their destination, they automatically and instantly return to their former
diminutive state and any previously noted awkwardness will be reinstated.
If a killer is lurking in your house, it's easy to find him. Just relax and
run a bath -- even if it's the middle of the afternoon -- then look in your
bathroom mirror and he will suddenly appear behind you.
Medieval peasants had perfect teeth. Most patriarchs, rulers, and monks in
the middle ages lived well into their seventies.
Inbreeding among the royal family has always produced at least one
diabolically sociopathic sibling per generation. This trend continues well
into the present day.
Shooting stars appear immediately after two people involved in a
conversation look up at the night sky, especially if the conversation is
meaningful or romantic.
All grandfathers fish with their grandsons while standing knee-deep in the
water on the shores of lakes and rivers, even in alligator-infested Florida.
Although in the 20th century it is possible to fire weapons at an object out
of our visual range, people of the 23rd century will have lost this
Restaurant bills will always be 15% less than the amount you are holding in
Throughout the galaxy there are both friendly and hostile bipedal life forms
who resemble human beings in every respect (including the formation of
similar types of laws, commerce, rituals, child-rearing, gender politics,
and language) save one: a highly variable assortment of bumps on the
Any person waking from a nightmare will sit bolt upright and pant.
It is not necessary to say hello or goodbye when beginning or ending phone
The most catastrophic damage to a space-going vessel's systems can be
repaired almost immediately once the nearby evildoers are brought to
justice, even if three-fourths of the ship's complement was incapacitated or
killed as a result of the catastrophe.
A person being pursued will always stop and throw something at the person
chasing them -- even though it takes three times longer to stop and throw
the obstacles than it does for the person chasing to jump over them.
Ammunition is interchangeable across every type of firearm, foreign or
Adrenaline has a neutralizing effect upon one's bodily functions. Nobody
ever needs to eat, sleep, or go to the bathroom in the middle of a crisis,
even one which lasts for weeks.
Men only develop five o'clock shadows if they've been held prisoner and
tortured for several days. Otherwise, they remain clean-shaven at all times.
Laser beams can only be deflected by mirrors if used for decorative effect.
The more high-powered laser beams cut through both dull and shiny surfaces
with equal intensity.
Even when driving down a perfectly straight road it is necessary to turn the
steering wheel vigorously from left to right every few moments.
Newborn babies can babble, crawl and hold their heads steady.
A cough is usually the sign of a terminal illness.
All bombs are fitted with electronic timing devices with large red readouts
so you know exactly when they're going to go off.
It is always possible to park directly outside the building you are
visiting, especially in Washington D.C.. In order to be granted an audience
within FBI or CIA Headquarters or the Pentagon, just drive right up to the
front of the building and run in. No clearance or appointment is necessary.
When looking through binoculars, you will always see everything through a
figure eight shape.
At least one of a pair of identical twins is born evil.
In the event of a car chase, there will be two men carrying a large pane of
glass through the streets. Later, someone will drive through it.
Make-up can safely be worn to bed without fear of smudging.
A detective can only solve a case once he has been suspended from duty.
When in love, it is customary to burst into song.
If you decide to start dancing in the street, everyone you bump into will
know all the steps.
When confronted by an evil international terrorist, sarcasm and wisecracks
are your best weapons.
One man shooting at 20 men has a better chance of killing them than 20 men
firing at 1 man.
Creepy music coming from a cemetery should always be investigated more
If being fired at by Germans, hide in a river - or even a bath. German
bullets are unable to penetrate water.
The only sensible reaction to power outages and interruption of phone
service coupled with the mysterious disappearance of at least half of one's
party is to split up and head for the darkest corners of one's dwelling.
If a phone line is broken, communication can be restored by frantically
beating the cradle and yelling "Hello? Hello?"
A gang of highly-trained terrorists will always separate and search for an
intruder on their own -- so they can be killed one by one.
Should you need to defuse a bomb, don't worry about which wire to cut. You
will always choose the right one. When in doubt, try the yellow wire first.
Most laptop computers are powerful enough to override the communication
systems of any invading alien civilization.
Megalomaniacs intent on world domination won't be able to resist telling
their arch nemesis every detail of their evil plans.
Extremely beautiful and intelligent women are likely to become either
prostitutes or welders.
A full moon can occur for several nights in a row.
Freelance helicopter pilots are always eager to accept bookings from
international terrorist organizations -- even though the job will require
them to shoot total strangers and will end in their own certain death as the
helicopter explodes in a ball of flames.
If the person you are chasing has just taken the elevator down from the 20th
floor, you will be able to get to the street quicker than he can by running
down the stairs.
The person you trust most at work is probably the one who is trying to kill
During a murder investigation lasting several weeks it will not be necessary
for detectives to go home at any time to eat, sleep, shave or change their
Most people keep a scrapbook of newspaper clippings -- especially if any of
their family or friends have died in a strange boating accident.
It does not matter if you are heavily outnumbered in a fight involving
martial arts -- your enemies will wait patiently to attack you one by one by
dancing around in a threatening manner until you have knocked out their
In the 19th century, long before sunbathing became fashionable, men and
women already had tan lines and white bottoms.
During a very emotional confrontation, instead of facing the person you are
speaking to, it is customary to either stand behind them and talk to their
back or to walk a few feet away from them and talk while facing the other
direction, preferably while looking out a window.
When you turn off the light to go to bed, everything in your bedroom will
still be clearly visible, just slightly blurred.
All computer disks will work in all computers, regardless of software or
The only courses taught in American High Schools are American History and
Dogs always know who's bad and will bark at them.
When a person is knocked unconscious by a blow to the head, they will never
suffer a concussion or brain damage.
A slight blow to the head is usually enough to cause amnesia.
The most beautiful girl in school will never be able to get a date.
If you think there is an intruder in your house, your cat will choose the
precise moment to leap out at you from inside a cupboard.
Nobody involved in a car chase, hijacking, explosion, volcanic eruption or
alien invasion will ever go into shock.
Police Departments give their officers personality tests to make sure they
are deliberately assigned a partner who is their total opposite.
When they are alone, all foreigners prefer to speak English to each other.
Action heroes never face charges for manslaughter or criminal damage despite
laying entire cities to waste by their actions.
No matter how badly a spaceship is attacked, its internal gravity system is
usually never damaged.
If there is a deranged killer on the loose this will also coincide with a
thunderstorm that has brought down all the power and phone lines in the
You can always find a chainsaw when you need one.
Any lock can be picked by a credit card or a paper clip in seconds -- unless
it's the door to a burning building with a child trapped inside.
In school, teachers will always be interrupted mid-sentence by the
You can tell if somebody is British because they will be wearing a bow tie.
It is possible to sleep with most Europeans (and anyone from France) within
five hours of meeting them. This is not only always possible but always
Every person of even the vaguest Italian descent will have at least a few
mafia ties, including at least one uncle named Lou.
If a person of Irish descent is seen somewhere other than a bar, he or she
is invariably a member of the IRA. The reverse is rarely true.
Every diocese contains at least one priest whose speciality is the study of
dueling with the primeval forces of evil, and who spends all of his time
transcribing arcane passages from a bizarre medieval codex just in case it
Anyone who finds themselves possessed by the spirit of another being will
exhibit not only their personality but their physical skills, including
martial arts requiring strength and flexibility which would ordinarily
require decades of physical conditioning to achieve.
While some children do indeed exhibit strange behavior due to illness, the
majority of those who suddenly start acting strangely do so because of
possession by demonic supernatural forces.
When driving a car it is normal to look not at the road but at the person
sitting beside you or in the back seat for the entire journey.
An electric fence, powerful enough to kill a dinosaur, will cause no lasting
damage to an eight year old child.
Radiation causes interesting mutations - not to your future children but to
you, there and then.
High class strippers with a heart of gold can operate most heavy machinery.
Rather than wasting bullets, Megalomaniacs prefer to kill their arch enemies
using complicated machinery involving fuses, pulley systems, deadly gases,
lasers and man-eating sharks which will allow their captives at least 20
minutes to escape.
Honest and hard working policemen are traditionally gunned down three days
before their retirement.
Dangerous sociopaths only target those who have sex. The virginal are never
Most incredibly brilliant prodigies are also devastatingly handsome and
utterly charming. Adroit mastery of social skills, looks, and brains
routinely combine in similarly intriguing combinations. If you are blonde
and pretty, it is not only possible but highly probable to become a world
expert in Nuclear Fission at age 22.
The more a man and a woman hate each other, the more likely they will fall
Having a job of any kind will make fathers forget their sons' eighth
Turning on the television will instantly reveal a breaking news story, no
matter the time of day. Television news bulletins usually contain a story
that affects you personally at that precise moment.
Guns are like disposable razors -- if you run out of bullets just throw the
gun away. You can always buy a new one.
Any target who cannot be defeated by a full clip of ammunition may suddenly
perish if you throw the now empty gun at the person or entity you've been
It is possible to change the channel from a big game in a crowded bar in
order to hear a news broadcast without threat of personal injury.
A car which is being driven on a deserted desert highway which is no less
than 200 miles from the nearest town will still be able to pick up alerts
regarding an escaped lunatic on the radio.
(c) 1998 Kevin Hollenbeck
Thanks to Complete Post/Bob Blanks for support in 1999
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