History Film / BetterOffDead

24th Dec '16 4:30:01 AM Geoduck
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* PropRecycling: Twiki from ''Series/BuckRogersInTheTwentyFifthCentury'' appears in the background of the Christmas scene.
8th Dec '16 4:58:28 AM luberdot
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Added DiffLines:

** And to drink, Peru!
27th Nov '16 1:26:25 AM Geoduck
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* AbhorrentAdmirer: The overweight, socially awkward Ricky has limited experience with the opposite sex, so when he and his mother host Monique during her student exchange, he latches onto her immediately, with encouragement from his mother. Monique finds him utterly repulsive, and simply pretends not to speak English (while Ricky and his mother do not speak a word of French) in an attempt to reduce the amount of time she has to spend around him.

to:

* AbhorrentAdmirer: The overweight, socially awkward Ricky has limited experience with the opposite sex, so when he and his mother host Monique during her student exchange, he latches onto her immediately, with encouragement from his mother. Monique finds him utterly repulsive, and simply pretends not to speak English (while Ricky and his mother do not speak a word of French) in an attempt to reduce the amount of time she has to spend around him. He finds a more suitable match at the very end of the film.


Added DiffLines:

* LoveAtFirstSight: At the very end of the film, Ricky meets a gal who is essentially his female equivalent. They silently smile at each other and walk off hand in hand, leaving his mother squashed in the snow.
21st Oct '16 3:55:25 PM mlsmithca
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* AbhorrentAdmirer: Ricky and his pursuit of Monique.

to:

\n* AbhorrentAdmirer: The overweight, socially awkward Ricky has limited experience with the opposite sex, so when he and his mother host Monique during her student exchange, he latches onto her immediately, with encouragement from his mother. Monique finds him utterly repulsive, and simply pretends not to speak English (while Ricky and his pursuit mother do not speak a word of Monique.French) in an attempt to reduce the amount of time she has to spend around him.



* BracesOfOrthodonticOverkill: Lane's unfortunate but practical blind-date.

to:

* BracesOfOrthodonticOverkill: Joanne Greenwald, Lane's unfortunate but practical blind-date.blind-date, is described by Lane as having antennae growing out of her face. When we see her, she has such a massive and complicated set of orthodontic headgear that she probably can pick up radio signals with it.



* EverybodyHatesMathematics: Inverted, because Mr. Kerber is ''just that good''.

to:

* EverybodyHatesMathematics: Inverted, because Mr. Kerber is ''just that good''. Every student in the class (except the distracted Lane) hangs on his every word, and even though his homework assignments are long enough to require several folders' worth of paper to answer, every student (except, again, the distracted Lane) is happy to do them, and when Mr. Kerber asks for volunteers to write answers on the chalkboard, a forest of hands goes up.



** When Lane enters the house after deciding to douse himself in paint primer and set himself on fire, he throws the cloth he found in the mouth of the jar into the dining room, unaware that anyone is in there. However, his parents and brother are there with the Smiths and Monique. As his mother ushers Lane to his seat for dinner, we see his father rather disgustedly remove the primer-soaked cloth from where it landed on his shoulder.

to:

** When Lane enters the house after deciding to douse himself in paint primer and set himself on fire, he throws the cloth he found in the mouth of the jar into the dining room, unaware that anyone is in there. However, his parents and brother are there with the Smiths and Monique. As his mother ushers Lane to his seat for dinner, we see his father rather disgustedly remove the primer-soaked cloth from where it landed on his shoulder.



* ItIsPronouncedTropay: Lane's mother serves Monique "Frahnch Fries", etc.
* IWantMyBelovedToBeHappy: Of course, [[spoiler: Lane comes to his senses in time.]]

to:

* ItIsPronouncedTropay: ItIsPronouncedTroPay: Lane's mother serves Monique "Frahnch Fries", etc.
* IWantMyBelovedToBeHappy: Monique restores Lane's Camaro and coaches him on how to conquer the K-12, and falls in love with him in the process even though she knows she is actively aiding his efforts to win Beth back. Of course, [[spoiler: Lane [[spoiler:Lane comes to his senses in time.time and goes off with Monique at the end of the film.]]



* MundaneMadeAwesome: Mr Kerber's maths class, wherein advanced geometry is ludicrously popular. (To be fair, Kerber is played by Vincent Schiavelli.)
* MyBelovedSmother: Ricky's harridan of a mother.

to:

* MundaneMadeAwesome: Mr Kerber's maths class, wherein advanced geometry is ludicrously popular. Apart from Lane, who is too busy moping over Beth to pay attention, every student in the room reacts with unbridled interest and fascination to every word that comes out of Mr. Kerber's mouth, and when he asks for volunteers to demonstrate the problems on the latest (very, ''very'' long) homework assignment, every student in the room (apart from Lane, again) raises an eager hand. (To be fair, Kerber is played by Vincent Schiavelli.)
* MyBelovedSmother: Ricky's social awkwardness is implied to be caused by his overbearing harridan of a mother. mother, who is forcibly setting him up with the horrified Monique.



* RuleOfFunny: This movie essentially runs on this, no matter how weird the jokes can get.



* RuleOfFunny: This movie essentially runs on this, no matter how weird the jokes can get.



* StealthPun: The K-12.

to:

* StealthPun: The K-12.mountain Lane hopes to ski down to impress Beth enough to take him back is called the K-12, as in the grades of pre-collegiate education in the USA.
20th Oct '16 10:56:42 PM mlsmithca
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* {{alllowercaseletters}}: The opening and closing credits.

to:

* {{alllowercaseletters}}: AllLowercaseLetters: The opening and closing credits.



-->'''Lane:''' Gee, I'm real sorry your mom blew up, Ricky.

to:

-->'''Lane:''' ** First, Lane tries hanging himself in the garage, only to have a change of heart when he decides he hasn't really lived yet. A pity his mother proceeds to open the back door into him while vacuuming, knocking him off the step and forcing him to grab the noose to keep from getting strangled.
** Then, he tries carbon monoxide poisoning. However, as he passes out, he accidentally puts the car in reverse and backs through the garage door his father has just repaired.
** Next, he tries jumping off a bridge, only to [[TrashLanding land in the back of a garbage truck]].
--->[[AcceptableTargets "Now that's a real shame when folks be throwin' away a perfectly good white boy like that!"]]
** Finally, after seeing a headline about a man committing suicide by setting himself on fire, he wraps himself in his bedclothes and goes into the garage to find a can of gasoline; he has to settle for paint primer, but as he is discreetly dabbing himself with it during a family dinner with the Smiths and Monique as guests, Mrs. Smith drinks a big glass of the primer, mistaking it for liquor. Then she lights a cigarette...
--->'''Lane:'''
Gee, I'm real sorry your mom blew up, Ricky.



* EvilGenius: Badger possibly qualifies.

to:

* EvilGenius: Badger possibly qualifies.is highly intelligent, but seems to put his intelligence to rather sinister uses, such as modifying a toy laser to fire real laser blasts, buying a book on how to pick up trashy women (and it works!), and building a working Space Shuttle that launches through the roof of his family's house during the closing credits.



* HomemadeSweaterFromHell: Jenny wears a reindeer outfit which comes complete with an antler-headpiece, and gives one to her husband which is aardvark-themed. They must not actually be homemade, though, since, when Mr. Meyer goes outside, he sees his neighbor wearing the identical outfit.

to:

* HomemadeSweaterFromHell: Jenny wears a reindeer outfit which comes outfit, complete with an antler-headpiece, and gives one to distribute the family's Christmas gifts.
* ImpossiblyTackyClothes: Jenny's big Christmas present for
her husband which Al is aardvark-themed. They must not actually a coat made with "real aardvark fur", complete with an aardvark head on the hood. She assures Al that everybody will be homemade, though, since, when Mr. Meyer goes outside, he sees his neighbor wearing the identical outfit.one; Al struggles to hide his disgust, but Jenny may be right, as their next door neighbour is also wearing one when they go outside.



--->'''Jenny:''' It's got raisins in it. You ''like'' raisins."

to:

--->'''Jenny:''' It's got raisins in it. You ''like'' raisins."



* MyGirlIsNotASlut: After the break-up, every guy from the [[OneSceneWonder math teacher]] to the rude mailman to [[TheFlintstones Barney Rubble]] is asking Lane if it would be alright to date his ex.

to:

* MyGirlIsNotASlut: After the break-up, every guy from the [[OneSceneWonder math teacher]] to the rude mailman to [[TheFlintstones [[WesternAnimation/TheFlintstones Barney Rubble]] is asking Lane if it would be alright to date his ex.



** Badger's mail-order purchases

to:

** Badger's mail-order purchasespurchases.



* WrenchWench: Monique turns out to be one.

to:

* WrenchWench: Monique turns out to be one. Lane bought an old, non-functional Camaro to impress Beth, but has dragged his feet about actually restoring it for several months. Monique gets it up and running in a matter of days.
20th Oct '16 10:39:33 PM mlsmithca
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* TotallyRadical: Lane's father awkwardly attempts to "connect" with him.

to:

* TotallyRadical: Lane's father awkwardly attempts to "connect" with him. He has to keep glancing at a book about youth psychology and still gets the words wrong, telling Lane to "Mellow off", that he's "really bringing [him] over", and exclaims "Right off!" when Lane finally agrees to date his law partner's daughter.
20th Oct '16 4:35:55 PM mlsmithca
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* AnimatedCreditsOpening



* AnimatedCreditsOpening



* BreakingTheFourthWall: In-universe example: Barney Rubble of ''TheFlintstones'' interrupts a broadcast to ask Lane if he can date Beth.

to:

* BreakingTheFourthWall: In-universe example: Barney Rubble of ''TheFlintstones'' ''WesternAnimation/TheFlintstones'' interrupts a broadcast to ask Lane if he can date Beth.



-->'''Lane:''' ''Gee, I'm real sorry your mom blew up, Ricky.''

to:

-->'''Lane:''' ''Gee, Gee, I'm real sorry your mom blew up, Ricky.''



* {{Cameo}} / PropRecycling: Twiki from ''Series/BuckRogersInTheTwentyFifthCentury'' appears in the background of the Christmas scene.



* DrivenToSuicide
* TheEighties: Identifiable by the [[CrowningMusicOfAwesome catchy pop song soundtrack]].

to:

* DrivenToSuicide
DrivenToSuicide: Lane decides he has nothing left to live for after Beth leaves him for Roy Stalin, captain of the ski team. Unfortunately, his every attempt to do himself in ends in hilarious failure.
* TheEighties: Identifiable by the [[CrowningMusicOfAwesome catchy pop song soundtrack]].soundtrack.



* FunnyBackgroundEvent:
** Look carefully in the cafeteria scene before the basketball team engage in a NoHoldsBarredBeatdown against Lane and you'll see they're all eating baby food.
** When Lane enters the house after deciding to douse himself in paint primer and set himself on fire, he throws the cloth he found in the mouth of the jar into the dining room, unaware that anyone is in there. However, his parents and brother are there with the Smiths and Monique. As his mother ushers Lane to his seat for dinner, we see his father rather disgustedly remove the primer-soaked cloth from where it landed on his shoulder.



* HomemadeSweaterFromHell: Jenny wears a reindeer outfit which comes complete with an antler-headpiece, and gives one to her husband which is aardvark-themed.
** They must not actually be homemade, though, since, when Mr. Meyer goes outside, he sees his neighbor wearing the identical outfit.
* INeedToGoIronMyDog: Lane ditching the paperboy.
-->'''Lane:''' My little brother got his arm stuck in the microwave. So my mom had to take him to the hospital. My grandma dropped acid this morning, and she freaked out. She hijacked a busload of... penguins. So it's sort of a family crisis. Bye!

to:

* HomemadeSweaterFromHell: Jenny wears a reindeer outfit which comes complete with an antler-headpiece, and gives one to her husband which is aardvark-themed.
**
aardvark-themed. They must not actually be homemade, though, since, when Mr. Meyer goes outside, he sees his neighbor wearing the identical outfit.
* INeedToGoIronMyDog: INeedToGoIronMyDog:
** On Christmas Day, Lane is on the phone to Beth, with the tiny teddy bear he has bought her as a Christmas present in the hope of persuading her to return to him. From his half of the conversation, we learn that Roy gave her a giant teddy bear larger than she is. Embarrassed, he mutters, "Beth, I gotta go, the Christmas tree's on fire." Even though he's in his bedroom and the Christmas tree is in the living room.
**
Lane ditching the paperboy.
-->'''Lane:''' --->'''Lane:''' My little brother got his arm stuck in the microwave. So my mom had to take him to the hospital. My grandma dropped acid this morning, and she freaked out. She hijacked a busload of... penguins. So it's sort of a family crisis. Bye! Bye!



* InterruptedSuicide

to:

* InterruptedSuicideInterruptedSuicide: Lane's suicide attempts all end in failure, climaxing when he decides to douse himself in paint primer (the gasoline can being empty) and set himself on fire, only to be hauled into a dinner his parents are hosting for the Smiths and Monique. Mrs. Smith drinks some of the primer, thinking it's wine, then lights a cigarette...



* JerkJock: The villain, such as he is.
** His name? ''Roy Stalin''.

to:

* JerkJock: The villain, such as he is.
**
is. His name? ''Roy Stalin''.



* LethalChef: Hoo boy. Jenny. Lane pokes one of her creations with his fork, and it ''starts moving away''.
-->"It's got raisins in it. You ''like'' raisins."

to:

* LethalChef: Hoo boy. Jenny. Jenny.
**
Lane pokes one of her creations with his fork, and it ''starts moving away''.
-->"It's --->'''Jenny:''' It's got raisins in it. You ''like'' raisins."



* MessOnAPlate / PovertyFood: Lane's mother spoons grey-green goo (with raisins!) directly onto Lane's plate. He pokes it with his fork and it crawls away.

to:

* MessOnAPlate / PovertyFood: MessOnAPlate: Lane's mother spoons grey-green goo (with raisins!) directly onto Lane's plate. He pokes it with his fork and it crawls away.



* NakedFreakOut: The roller-skating cheerleader in the cafeteria in her underwear, due to Lane's accidental slip-up. [[FromBadToWorse To make matter worse]], [[spoiler:ALL of her boyfriends give him a NoHoldsBarredBeatdown]].

to:

* NakedFreakOut: The roller-skating cheerleader in the cafeteria in her underwear, due to Lane's accidental slip-up. [[FromBadToWorse To make matter matters worse]], [[spoiler:ALL of her boyfriends give him a NoHoldsBarredBeatdown]].



* PropRecycling: Twiki from ''Series/BuckRogersInTheTwentyFifthCentury'' appears in the background of the Christmas scene.



* RunningGag: "I want my two dollars!!"
** Also, Lane's drag-race-at-the-stoplight moments, plus the crash into the driver ''behind'' him.

to:

* RunningGag: RunningGag:
**
"I want my two dollars!!"
** Also, Lane's drag-race-at-the-stoplight moments, plus the crash into the driver ''behind'' him.



* SpiritualSuccessor: John Cusack recently traveled back in time to a 1980s ski resort in ''Film/HotTubTimeMachine''. Somebody is even heard shouting "I want my two dollars!" at one point.
** This is despite the fact that Cusack evidently considers this film to be an OldShame.
** Cusack's protagonist in ''GrossePointeBlank'' also grew up in the 1980s and also had a HilariouslyAbusiveChildhood. He ended up becoming a [[HitmanWithAHeart professional assassin]]. We first meet him [[spoiler:shooting a bicycle deliveryman.]]

to:

* SpiritualSuccessor: SpiritualSuccessor:
**
John Cusack recently traveled back in time to a 1980s ski resort in ''Film/HotTubTimeMachine''. Somebody is even heard shouting "I want my two dollars!" at one point.
**
point. This is despite the fact that Cusack evidently considers this film to be an OldShame.
** Cusack's protagonist in ''GrossePointeBlank'' ''Film/GrossePointeBlank'' also grew up in the 1980s and also had a HilariouslyAbusiveChildhood. He ended up becoming a [[HitmanWithAHeart professional assassin]]. We first meet him [[spoiler:shooting a bicycle deliveryman.]]



* TheStoner: Charles. Or he would be, if he could find anything to get stoned on.
-->Greendale is a bodaciously small town, Lane. It's a flyspeck on the map, a rest-stop on the way to a ski resort. I can't even get real drugs here!

to:

* TheStoner: Charles. Charles.
**
Or he would be, if he could find anything to get stoned on.
-->Greendale --->'''Charles:''' Greendale is a bodaciously small town, Lane. It's a flyspeck on the map, a rest-stop on the way to a ski resort. I can't even get real drugs here!



--->This is pure snow! It's EVERYWHERE! Have you any idea what the street value of this mountain is?

to:

--->This --->'''Charles:''' This is pure snow! It's EVERYWHERE! Have you any idea what the street value of this mountain is?



-->And dying when you're not really sick is really sick, you know? Really!

to:

-->And -->'''Charles:''' And dying when you're not really sick is really sick, you know? Really!



* TheVoiceless: Badger.
* TheWorldMocksYourLoss: Lane is constantly reminded of his ex, Beth, because every other guy in town (and [[TheFlintstones Barney Rubble]]) wants to date her.

to:

* TheVoiceless: Badger.
Badger never says a word throughout the film. His book on how to pick up trashy women presumably includes some non-verbal methods.
* TheWorldMocksYourLoss: Lane is constantly reminded of his ex, Beth, because every other guy in town (and [[TheFlintstones [[WesternAnimation/TheFlintstones Barney Rubble]]) wants to date her.
6th Jul '16 9:20:03 PM Geoduck
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* MessOnAPlate: The mother is spooning grey-green goo (with raisins!) directly onto Lane's plate. He pokes it with his fork and it crawls away.

to:

* MessOnAPlate: The MessOnAPlate / PovertyFood: Lane's mother is spooning spoons grey-green goo (with raisins!) directly onto Lane's plate. He pokes it with his fork and it crawls away.



* PovertyFood: The mother is spooning grey-green goo (with raisins!) directly onto Lane's plate. He pokes it with his fork and it crawls away.



* StandardSnippet: Music/MuddyWaters' "Mannish Boy" as Lane's Camaro rolls out for the first time. Gene Autry's "Here Comes Santa Claus" during the Christmas sequence.

to:

* StandardSnippet: Music/MuddyWaters' "Mannish Boy" as Lane's Camaro rolls out for the first time. Gene Autry's Music/GeneAutry's "Here Comes Santa Claus" during the Christmas sequence.
27th Jun '16 7:49:39 AM Mdumas43073
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[[quoteright:217:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/BetterOffDeadPoster_1758.JPG]]

to:

[[quoteright:217:http://static.[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/BetterOffDeadPoster_1758.JPG]]
org/pmwiki/pub/images/better_off_dead_movie_poster_1985.jpg]]



Probably doesn't ''quite'' make it to classic status, especially the ending which veers off into painfully straight teen-movie win-the-athletic-competition territory, but mentioning this film or quoting from it is very likely to bring a smile to the face of Tropers of a certain age. It does have a pretty strong cult following due to the fact that aside from that ending, it has a different sense of humor than most 80's teen comedies and seems far less dated than other films of its type.

to:

Probably doesn't ''quite'' make it to classic status, especially the ending which veers off into painfully straight teen-movie win-the-athletic-competition territory, but mentioning this film or quoting from it is very likely to bring a smile to the face of Tropers of a certain age. It does have a pretty strong cult following due to the fact that aside from that ending, it has a different sense of humor than most 80's '80s teen comedies and seems far less dated than other films of its type.
27th Jun '16 7:44:36 AM Mdumas43073
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''Better Off Dead'' is a 1985 comedy film directed by Savage Steve Holland and starring Creator/JohnCusack.

After being dumped by his utterly-unfaithful girlfriend, luckless teen Lane Meyer makes several futile attempts to kill himself, while wandering in and out of a series of encounters with the residents... inmates of his bizarre hometown. These include his super-genius younger brother Badger; his severely-underachieving best friend Charles; a pair of Korean car-racing enthusiasts, the one who speaks English having learned it by listening to Howard Cosell; and one ''very'' determined paper-boy. Lane's life finally begins to turn around when he meets Monique, a comely French exchange student who has been sentenced to live with Lane's grotesque neighbors.

to:

''Better Off Dead'' is a 1985 teen comedy film directed by Savage Steve Holland and starring Creator/JohnCusack.

After being dumped by his utterly-unfaithful girlfriend, girlfriend Beth, luckless teen Lane Meyer makes several futile attempts to kill himself, while wandering in and out of a series of encounters with the residents... inmates of his bizarre hometown. These include his super-genius younger brother Badger; his severely-underachieving best friend Charles; a pair of Korean car-racing enthusiasts, the one who speaks English having learned it by listening to Howard Cosell; and one ''very'' determined paper-boy. Lane's life finally begins to turn around when he meets Monique, a comely French exchange student who has been sentenced to live with Lane's grotesque neighbors.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Film.BetterOffDead