Raider Wire Staff Discussion: Book and Movie Pet Peeves


Students are perpetually disappointed by the movies and books we are given.

Raider Wire Staff

This month, we are talking about the aspects of movies and books that just annoy us. These are the things that we want to discontinue from all literary and cinematic publications. These are the things we are tired of seeing. We want more and better stores than what we are being given.

Ashton Bruce

One of the most annoying lines that I have ever heard a “strong” fictional female character say is “man up.” I annoys me so strongly because they are taking this female character, one of the few that exist in movies, particularly action movies, and they are calling her strong when she is typically a sexy prop that the male characters use—and then they undermine the strength of that female character by equating strength to masculinity.

Austin McIntosh

My favorite type of movie is loaded with shooting and action, yet my ultimate pet peeve is when someone fires every round in his gun without actually even hitting a single target. In a realistic situation, it would obviously be much easier to just take your time, hold your breath, and aim down the sight, rather than randomly firing every shot, which would lead to a necessary reload shortly after. I recently watched six seasons of the show Sons of Anarchy, and many of the shootouts in that show perpetuated this unrealistic situation, as the characters would just duck behind their car or motorcycle, hold their pistol up in the air, and hope to get extremely lucky.

Austin Gray

We all love movies and books. They bring us to a world of fantasy and imagination; however, no matter what, we all have certain movie/book plots that really just tick us off. Imagine you are watching this great movie, where everything is just peachy, you love all of the characters, the plot is moving smoothly, and then, out of nowhere, one of them dies, and you are just left screaming at the TV, yelling, “What the heck were they thinking, and what kind of writer could make such a theatrical mistake?” Film directors and novel writers should perhaps take a br4eak from the “magic” of movies and those few plots that really have no place in the world of fictional publication.

Ben Bramblett

I have heard the statement, “the book was better than the movie” after almost every book-based movie to date. In my opinion, the rating of the book-based movie is entirely based upon the viewer. The reader might imagine the protagonist as a strong, bold hearted, evil-banishing hero, and the movie might portray a less brash, not as bold-hearted hero. Therefore, my only pet peeve on novel-based movies is that a director cannot portray a hero that everybody can agree upon to hold up the standards of the novel’s hero.

Bim Peacock

Oh, so you can’t survive without the whole world babysitting you? Poor baby. Let’s all pity the hero of the story while they curl up in a ball and wait for someone to save them. In other words, pathetic and dramatic protagonists disgust me. If you are going to whine about how much the world sucks or focus more on petty feelings than riding the rollercoaster of life, then you may a coward. Whatever happened to people who did not care if what they did made them amazing to everyone? I do not want to read about a pathetic hero; I want to read about a hardcore dude who takes the world on with a belligerent smile.

Brandon Moss

It either works or it doesn’t. In theory, turning another form of media into a movie is genius. Bringing a smaller show or book to the masses with a megahit blockbuster sounds great, but there are several setbacks. First of all, even if the movie is somewhat decent, it may leave out a lot of key plot points due to time constraints, (ahem, Harry Potter) but when the movie is just a shameful embarrassment to the source material, that is when I go up in flames. The contest rages on, and the winner in my eyes is The Last Airbender. What a failure and a blow to my childhood.

Cameron Conner

Rather than indulge my rampant desire to constantly bash on everything…I’d like to discuss one of my greatest delights in regards of recent films. (I know. I’m that guy that discusses a totally different topic). If you, like many of us, have lost faith in the state of modern movies, do yourself a favor; watch a Wes Anderson film. Quirky, quaint, and chalk-full of a sort of pseudo vintage humor, these unfailingly witty movies will be sure to enthrall any viewer with their truly unique blend of dark comedy and the highly engaging worlds Anderson creates. The frequent inclusion of legendary actors such as Bill Murray, Edward Norton, Adrien Brody, and Owen Wilson only serve to increase the appeal of Wes Anderson’s masterpieces.

PS: Bill Murray will never die until Anderson ceases his film making…seriously…he’s in every movie…

Colin Bergen

Of all my movie/book pet peeves, there is one in particular that I loathe the most: the third-act misunderstanding. This is when, near the end, one of the main characters (usually lovers) will do something that will make the other angry, resulting in the two splitting up, moping for about 10-15 minutes, and then reconciling just in time for the big finish. Please stop doing this. It completely grinds the plot to a halt in favor of having the characters mope for the sake of some phoned-in conflict. It tries to be emotional and get you to feel sympathetic, but all it really does is make you wonder how much longer the clichéd scenes will drag on. Now, this trope would not be so bad, if it were not done so many times. Seriously, we have seen this in Shrek, Chicken Run, Avatar, and essentially every romantic comedy ever made! And because we have seen it so many times, we know how most of these things end! They get back together, and finish the movie. Now, granted, sometimes they throw in variation to make these scenes a little more worthwhile, but the fact is, too many movies do this and too many do this exactly the same way.

Danielle Stone

There are countless ways I could complain about things that irk me in books and movies, but one particular pet peeve of mine is when a trilogy of books goes from having an interesting and different plot to everything being a government conspiracy. This has become a popular trend among recent novels (we all know which ones) and it is simply unoriginal and overused.

Daniel Snodgrass

Is it just me, or is it annoying when one of the actors in a movie talks in soft voice, and no matter how loud you turn it up, you cannot make out what they are saying, so it seems like they are saying the most important line in the whole movie? For example, in the movie The Escape Plan, the main character talks in a low, gruff voice that you cannot understand.

Alex Rodgers

Movies and books tend to go one in the same category, but specifically, in movie adaptations of books, there are a lot of things that tend to get under my skin. My main pet peeve about novel-to-movie adaptations are the choices about what gets cut from the movies and what is chosen to go into the movie. For example, I read the books before there was even talk about the movies, so when I first heard about the movies, I was ecstatic, but after watching them, I was less than amused. The screen play writers left out a lot of important plot points from the novel. In The Hunger Games at the end of the book, Peta had to get a prosthetic leg because of final blow to it at the end of the games, but that was left out of the movie when the adaptation was made. The plot point was simply too significant for the film to leave behind.


Emma Franklin

I have two big pet peeves in movies and books. One is that instead of writing a strong, interesting character film and novel writers combine a bunch of clichés and tropes, and that is supposed to be a significant character. Clumsy, shy girls in romantic comedies, and jaded cops three days from retirement in action movies I am looking at you. My other pet peeve is incorrect science. The 10% of the brain idea is a myth. In addition, science should not be the villain of a publication just for the crime of not being “natural.” The truth is, science is a good thing, and it helps people. So Hollywood, start using science properly, and start writing real people, not clichés.

Ethan Simmons

One of my biggest pet peeves in books is when the author either does not tell how something happens, or when something entirely unrealistic happens within the plot of the story (within the realm of it perspective universe of course.) Believability and understanding is critical to the reader/viewer of a film or novel. In a modern spy thriller, there should not be dragons swooping in, or overly convenient objects, or bad guys running out of bullets at precisely the right moment, or some untrained kid who magically possesses the ability to outsmart Special Forces. Like, no. You do not escape; you die.

Jack Dalmolin

The biggest book/movie pet peeve I have is when an important event that takes place in the book is completely left out of the movie for the sake of time. Often times, these neglected events help to develop the plot or build characters of the fictional cannon. I understand that movies cannot possibly portray every detail from the book, but it still never fails to get on my nerves.

Jack Kern

I could go on and on for ages about my pet peeves in film and literature, but there is one thing that gets me more than anything else- unoriginality. I swear, if I see another dystopian-themed novel that achieves a huge fanbase, and gets turned into a major film I am going to flip out. I have really come to appreciate original concepts in movies simply due to the fact that the majority of films today are so uninspired. For an example, “Boyhood,” an Oscar nominated film, came out recently and was incredible. I would go as far as to say that it is my new favorite movie of all time. It is an original idea that was put together creatively and appealingly. If only movies like this came about more often.

Jack Scott

What annoys me the most about movies (especially action movies) is that all females are simultaneously slim, tough, good-looking, and skilled in combat. Yet, none of these female characters have any muscles that indicate that they are actually well-trained. In addition, all females in movies are unrealistically model-like in looks. Am I supposed to believe that every female in every movie universe is supposed to be model-beautiful? It is even worse in video games, with laughably unrealistic armor, designed to reveal as much cleavage as possible, but I am supposed to be ranting about movies, not video games. In every fight a female character in a movie walks into, she fights with intense martial arts skills that seem geared to make said character seem sexier. Yet male characters fight logically, using a wrench to brutalize an enemy, or dragging an opponent’s face through a pile of glass shards. Is it too much to ask for some realism with female characters in movies? Please?

Jade Flack

For most romantic books, the endings vary from heartbreaking to heartwarming. Endings like in The Fault In Our Stars by John Green or Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare never fail to leave me in a puddle of my own tears. While I love the plot and the characters, I hate how someone has to die. The author has complete control over the outcome, and they still choose to kill off a main character for no reason, resulting in a very sad pointless conclusion. It is amazing how much a book can make you feel; however, I would rather be sad the book is over than sad that the characters are dead.

Julie Day

Book to movie adaptations can go one of two ways: well executed or poorly done. As a reader, I always have high expectations for movie adaptations for books I have read, but seldom do I find myself satisfied with the movie. Either crucial events are thrown out, or important details are forgotten. If the book takes part in a trilogy or series, those “unimportant” events left out in the movie, will disrupt the rest of the series on screen.  Book-to-movie adaptations are one of my biggest pet peeves.

Kayla Salemi:

I tend to read stories that are based in the middle age era. I hate how naïve they make the females make. Yes, some females are naïve and scared of their shadows, but not every female is! Also, there is way too much “the guy is betrothed to someone else but falls for other girl” or “the lord gets the farmer girl.” There are so many clichés that just drive me crazy.

Now, do not get me started on horror movies. Let me set the scene for you: You are all alone in a house, and you hear a door shut… you do not go walking around the house saying, “Hello!” or “Who’s there?” No one is going to answer like, “Hey, yeah, I’m here. I am about to kill you.” It just does not happen.

Kristin Iler

My personal problem with books and movies is the way most producers enjoy to negatively tug at your heart strings. More often than not, producers are making movies with gloomy endings. You rarely ever come across a new movie with a glorious ending, or a movie that you do not cry in. It is unfortunate that the only things we ever watch are sad, meaningless movies that are written to make us cry. Sure, it is totally acceptable to cry a few pointless tears every once in a while, but crying your eyes throughout every movie is just unacceptable.

Lacy Hamilton

I personally believe that diction is one of the largest hit-or-misses as far as fictitious literature is concerned. For those who can properly and effectively express the accents and mannerisms of their characters through dialogue and narrative, their writing is very successful in my book. (Pun intended.) However, one of my biggest literature pet peeves is the inaccurate representation of characters through diction. Most kids do not call their parents “mother” or “father.” Not every Southerner accepts the pronoun “y’all.” There is a fine line between believable and cheesy when it comes to fictitious writing, and when an author strays into the latter realm, they lose my trust almost indefinitely.

Maddy James

One thing that bothers me in movies is when the characters do not close the door, lock their windows or car doors, turn the shower off, leave full cereal bowls on the counter after not eating…really anything that a normal person would be smart enough to do out of habit. However, people in movies are careless about these habits, because they have to get to the action scenes. While watching these movies, I can’t help but think about all of the repercussions of not doing these simple acts, and sometimes it ruins a film for me. I cannot get over the unrealistic nature of the characters’ everyday lives.

Matthew McFadden

Something that bothers me about movies is when writers try to add tension and emotion by having Character A walk in on Character B at Character B’s worst moment. Character A runs around the corner, screeches to a halt, and stares in disbelief. “Wait, let me explain!” Character B exclaims, desperately trying to save their relationship. However, Character A runs away crying without giving Character B a chance to talk. Of course, Character B doesn’t even think of calling Character A back, even though all of their problems would be easily solved through one conversation.


Megan Hoffman

While watching movies, I always notice the same themes and characters portrayed. Is it really too much to ask film writers to create some diversity in the characters? In movies that are popular among my peers, the girls always seem to have a certain look to them, and the boys are in no way more unique. The film industry has the same patterns of the perfect boy meets perfect girl idea, (with the few exceptions) and it is unrealistic. In reality, you do not find “true love” in a high school where children dance and sing down the hallways. It is impractical. Also, no one uses the slang that most movies have teenagers use. No one.

Morgan Champion

Sometimes, a book or movie comes along that is quite simply defined as “good.” They bring out varying emotions in us as a people because we connect to the characters, events, and plot of the story. Personally, I like books and movies that make me feel something, whether it be happiness, sadness, nervousness, or downright joy. However, often times, film writers and authors forget about this one simple fact. Isn’t the point of entertainment to make the audience connect, and therefore, gain something out of that connection? So, yes, I believe that forms of art, specifically books and movies, should make you feel something, anything, in order to connect to them.

Natalie Wilson

Although I can understand how movie producers must edit out scenes in order to finish in their budget and not exceed acceptable movie times, the worst thing ever is when you go to a movie to fangirl over your favorite character, and you soon discover they’ve cut out his/her entire back story and he/she becomes far less lovable. The whole point of a character is for emotional connection, and some movies have done a horrible job of creating that personal connection that makes you fall for the story.

Owen Wickman

What bothers me most about movies is “stormtrooper” effect. A group of villains with numbers, ranging from 10 to 20 will expend all of 600 bullets, shooting at the hero, and the hero never even gets grazed. He then pops up and shoots off 10 rounds from a handgun, scoring him 10 kills. This is illogical and breaks immersion for me in many cases. Another gun-related problem that many movies have is magazine size. A villain (or hero for that matter) will stand there and unload a fully automatic rifle for about 60 seconds without ever requiring a reload. Revolvers will shoot about 20 times before more ammunition is required. Can cinematographers please get a handle on how firefights should look and add some realism to them? Currently, when two long-range shots with a pistol from a “father of four” destroy the tires on a getaway car and 200 bullets from trained professionals cannot hit the broadside of a barn, I feel disinclined to continue watching.

Perri Rabbitt

My pet peeve in movies is a terrible ending. When there is a lack of balance between predictability and complete madness, the movie is not fulfilling its potential. It absolutely kills me when I get super into a movie, become attached to the characters (this may be a personal flaw), and they all die in the end. Okay, life is hard enough as it is. Can I just watch a happy movie? No, I do not want all of the movies to be sunshine and rainbows, but if everyone dies for no reason then there is no point to the plot in general. It is as if the deaths are just to shock, dumbfound, and depress the audience. Okay, so say that to get the point across that everyone has to die… alright, that is fine. At least there is a reason. At least there is some sort of lesson or purpose or moral question asked or represented, but killing everyone off and crushing dreams is just sad.

Rachel McCord

One thing that bothers me more than anything else in books and movies is when they excuse unpleasant, offensive, or stereotyped behavior. They often do this through repetition or by putting the story in a perspective that praises, rewards, or if nothing else, is passive toward immoral behavior. I have seen far too much profanity, stereotypes, violence, and promiscuity in books and movies. I understand that often times this is only reality. However, it really gets to me when the protagonist in the story is dominated by these characteristics throughout the entire book or movie, and therefore, promotes them to innocent or unknowing minds.

Rayne Crivelli

As a budding film student, I could write for hours on my qualms with the film industry. The lack of roles for women and people of color is ridiculous. Remember, women are 50% of the population, yet women rarely see an equal amount of gender representation in media. One would be hard pressed to find a movie passing the Bechdel Test, and the dissonance extends behind the camera. Only four women directors have ever been nominated for an Oscar, and only one has won. Just this year, Ava DuVernay was overlooked for her direction of Selma, a film that has been praised by even the harshest of critics. DuVernay’s situation also expresses the struggle people of color face in the film industry. Not only are non-white characters few and far in between, but often times, casting directors chose to cast white actors in non-white roles. A classic example is Natalie Wood as “Maria” in West Side Story, but a more recent examples would be Rooney Mara’s role as “Tiger Lily” in Pan (2015) or Johnny Depp as “Tonto” in The Lone Ranger (2013). There are plenty of talented actors of color, seeking work in the movie industry, who are constantly being overlooked in favor of their white peers.

Tiffany Lovell

Books and movies have forgotten the individuality needed to capture and audience. Horror movies are my main issue. Though I love them, they have become dull and repetitive: jump scare after jump scare and no plot. I wish they would bring back the old horror movies in black and white. They serve us the thrilling and natural horror uniqueness. In books nowadays, there has to be some sort of romance or death. A damsel in distress or strong-hearted feminist is the only way to complete a best-selling novel these days.