Scoop is a 2006 American-British romantic comedy/murder mystery written and directed by Woody Allen and starring Hugh Jackman, Scarlett Johansson, Ian McShane and Allen himself. A journalist, an illusionist and a ghost work together to uncover an aristocrat as a Serial Killer. Allen's second film in a row featuring Scarlett Johansson in London, the first being Match Point.
This movie provides examples of:
- All Part of the Show: The audience thinks the apparition of Joe Strombel during Splendini's performance is part of the show.
- Aristocrats Are Evil: Peter Lyman is a British aristocrat and he is suspected to be the Tarot Card Killer. He's actually not, but he committed two murders (while disguising one as the Killer's work) and attempts to commit a third one.
- Bait-and-Switch Comment: Woody Allen's character Sid has an interesting take on optimism:Sondra: You are a cynical crapehanger who always see the glass half-empty!
Sid: No, you're wrong. I see the glass half full ... but of poison.
- Blackmail Backfire: A prostitute tried to blackmail Peter Lyman. He decides to kill her.
- Bookends: The film starts with Joe Strombel going to the land of the dead. It ends with Sid Waterman in the same situation.
- Evil Brit: Peter Lyman, a British aristocrat, is revealed to be a murderer.
- Fanservice: Sondra Pransky (Scarlett Johansson) meets Peter Lyman (Hugh Jackman) in a swimming pool.
- Fatal Attraction: Sondra Pransky falls in love with Peter Lyman, who she suspects to be the Tarot Card Killer.
- Follow That Car: In the beginning of her investigation, Sondra Pransky asks a taxi to follow the taxi of someone looking like Peter Lyman. It turns out to be someone else.
- Foreshadowing: Sid Waterman admits he almost kills himself every time he drives a car in the UK. In the end, he kills himself in a car accident.
- Going for the Big Scoop: Sondra Pransky knows from the start it could be dangerous for her to investigate the Tarot Card Killer. It really is: in the end, Peter Lyman tries to kill her.
- He Knows Too Much: Peter Lyman's secretary thinks she was poisoned because she found a clue that could indicate that Lyman is the Tarot Card Killer. She's right. The prostitute was also killed by Lyman because she knew his faults. Finally, Lyman decides to kill Sondra Pransky and Sid Waterman because they know he killed the prostitute and his secretary.
- Heroic Seductress: Sondra Pransky seduces Peter Lyman because she thinks he could be the Tarot Card Killer and she wants to unmask him.
- Hot Scoop: Scarlett Johansson is Sondra Pransky, an American journalism student investigating the Tarot Card Killer affair.
- Intrepid Reporter: Sondra Pransky, even though she is only a journalism student, is deeply involved in her investigation: she even charms the suspect in order to get an evidence of his guilt.
- Mugging the Monster: When the prostitute starts blackmailing Peter Lyman, she does not know he is capable of committing a murder.
- Offscreen Crash: In the last scene Woody's car swings off the road but the camera stays on the road and all we hear is the shattering.
- Our Ghosts are Different: Joe Strombel is Back from the Dead because he has some Unfinished Business: while dead, he got access to some information that could solve the Tarot Card Killer affair.
- Rescue Romance: The heroine deliberately attract the attention of a guy she wants to investigate for possible murder by pretending to drown so he can rescue her, and striking up a romance afterwards. Later he tries to drown her for real. Good thing she was actually captain of her high school swim team.
- Serial Killer: The Tarot Card Killer. Of course, he uses tarot cards as calling cards. He never appears on screen.
- Shirtless Scene: Peter Lyman (Hugh Jackman) is first seen in the swimming pool of his club.
- Spirit Advisor: The late Joe Strombel appears to Sondra Pransky to inform her that Peter Lyman could be the Tarot Card Killer. He appears several times to her and Sid Waterman to give them advice and additional clues.
- Stage Magician: Woody Allen is "The Great Splendini", a stereotypical stage magician.
- Wicked Cultured: Peter Lyman collects artworks, old musical instruments, and commits murders in his spare time.
- You Are a Credit to Your Race: Spoofed. Allen's character says those exact words to so many people he meets it's practically his Catch Phrase, never mind that all of those people are white, British aristocrats.