All told the movies of summer 2013 would have to get an A … for Average. Well, or maybe a B, for Blah. There were a few high points ("Iron Man Three," "The Conjuring," "This Is the End"), a few low points ("The Lone Ranger," "After Earth," "R.I.P.D."), and a whole mess that landed somewhere in-between.
What seemed to really come in abundance, though, in movies of varying degrees of quality, were head-scratching plot points, the things that made you go, "Hmmm … that was f**king stupid."
Yes, they're movies, STOP PICKING APART THE PLOTS AND JUST ENJOY YOURSELF, we know. But they've been building up all summer, just simmering inside of us, and if we don't get these off our chest soon we're going to explode like we were named Krypton. It'd be messy, and no one would want to clean that up.
So here are our picks for the most egregious plot points of the summer. Oh, and MAJOR SPOILERS abound.
9. 'World War Z': Escape from Philadelphia
Retired United National miracle worker Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt) and his clan are stuck in traffic in downtown Philadelphia when all hell breaks loose. We're talking worse than an Eagles playoff loss. The population is turning into bloodthirsty zombies at a breakneck pace. Gerry acts quick, though, first by steering his way behind a deathmobile truck taking out cops and civilians, then by guiding his family into an abandoned RV. He even has the wherewithal to scoop up his daughter's doll before attempting to steer them out of the center of the city and epicenter of catastrophe. As we see from overhead chopper shots, the city is turning into an inferno, the highways and bridges backed up messes of cars going nowhere. CUT TO: Gerry and family cruising down a rural highway … Wait, what? How did they make it out of the city?
8. 'The Hangover Part III': The Legend of Goodman's Gold
Comedies, for the most part, should be exempt from these lists. They don't take themselves seriously, and neither should we; you won't see any complaints that Satan's junk was too exaggerated in "This Is the End." But occasionally there's a lazy comedic plot point that needs calling out, like this one: If the bounty of gold bars Mr. Chow dispatches Phil, Stu and Alan to retrieve were in fact hidden inside Marshall's (John Goodman) ranch mansion, then how did Chow know a) That they were stockpiled there, b) The precise place where they were hidden inside and c) Exactly how to break in and disable the alarms? Smart (and psychic?) cookie, that Chow.
7. 'Star Trek Into Darkness': The Blood of Khan
We're nearing the end of President of the Galaxies J.J. Abrams' second "Trek" go-at-it, and Captain Kirk, after being exposed to radiation and sharing a quintessentially homoerotic moment with work husband Spock, comes down with a nasty case of deadness. The only solution? Capturing Khan, who possesses some type of magic blood (similar to Magic Johnson, I imagine) that regenerates or cures all ailments and could thus revive The Kirkster. That's fine and all that this little hiccup gives you further incentive to capture Khan, but really did everyone aboard the USS Enterprise forget about the 70 other super-soldiers they had cryogenically frozen aboard the ship with the same blood type? Why not tap into that stash box? Come on, Sulu. Make yourself useful!
6. 'The Purge': Tie Him Up, Leave Him Tied Up
Much of the early tension in this low-budget horror flick revolves around the conflict between James (Ethan Hawke) and his family when it comes to dealing with Bloody Stranger (actual character name), who his young son has just saved from sure death by letting him sneak into the house on the night of THE PURGE (ZOMG). At first Bloody Stranger is in hiding, but when masked Purgers surround the house and demand he be turned over and then he's caught and bound, it's Decision Time for James. And he takes the high road, woot! They'll fight back against these killers, and in turn buck the system itself. Just one thing, though, guys: You forgo t(?) to untie Bloody Stranger, leaving him pretty damn susceptible to certain death. Whoops. (Also, why are the people invading their home wearing masks, if crime is legal and there are no repercussions? Besides to look like "The Strangers" and scare a you a little bit.)
5. 'We're the Millers': The Broke Stripper
I don't claim to be an expert when it comes to the finances or the median income of your average stripper, but I'm pretty sure they do it for the money, not the love. And that money is said to be pretty good. Especially if you're a stripper that looks like Jennifer Aniston. Yet the whole reason why her Rose reluctantly joins Jason Sudeikis' David on a faux family vacation south of the border to smuggle drugs back is because she's facing eviction and badly needs the loot (her dour financial situation being spelled out even before she's forced to quit her day job when her slimy manager demands she start turning tricks). Maybe she was doing it for the love …
4. 'Elysium': Pretty Much Everything
This whole list could be "Elysium"-related, but since not all of you have seen the movie, we'll condense into a single item: Why do they speak with phony French accents in space? Why wouldn't they take Matt Damon's shirt off before they turned him into a human iPod? Imagine how bad that's gonna stank. How'd that gang leader get so smart that he can decipher code to reset Elysium's entire structure in a matter of seconds? Where are all the robocops once these two pirate ships crash on Elysium at the film's climax? With the exception of Jodie Foster's maniacal a-hole, the people of Elysium don't seem outrageously bad, so why wouldn't they just send one of those magical healing machines down to Earth? Dude, it took like five minutes once they were dispatched.
3. 'Man of Steel': The Death of Krypton
So Krypton is being destroyed, as Russell Crowe's Jor-El admits, there's nothing much they can do about it. They're all gonna die. Well, he can implant his personality onto a computer chip so he can later guide his son through life (while not doing the same for his wife … kind of a dick move, but that's the fictional society we watch people live in). Jor-El wisely takes the initiative to save his son by placing him into a small capsule and launching him into space, but here's where it doesn't make a lick of sense: If the functionaries of Krypton can so easily launch Zod and their prisoners into space, why couldn't they do the same to save themselves?
2. 'Man of Steel': Soooo Many Casualties
There was a lot to dislike about Superman and Zod's 40-minute face-punch-fest in the final act of Zack Snyder's Supes reboot. Like, for instance, that it went on for 40 minutes. But the most alarming thing about this clash of the titans was the utter disregard the filmmakers (and by extension, Superman … Zod doesn't give a f**k) show for the civilians of Metropolis, who must've tallied up a civilian death count in the thousands by the time these two stopped zipping through — and into — skyscrapers with reckless abandon while face-punching, strangling and sometimes awkwardly almost kissing. Oh and then there's that whole issue about how for the first time, Superman (knowingly) kills someone.
1. 'Fast & Furious 6': The Neverending Runway
You know how when your plane is in line for takeoff, and it seems like you're just taxiing forever? Like Jesus, how long is this runway? Well, nothing can compare to the much-publicized runway that steals the climactic showdown in the latest "Fast & Furious" campfest. This was serious, people: MATH WAS DONE. A cargo plane speeds down it for a whopping 13 minutes at the film's end; at an average speed of 172 mph, according to Vulture, that would put the runway at approximately 28.8 miles, or more than eight times the world's longest runway. Go big or go home?
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