[[quoteright:350:[[Film/JurassicPark http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/T-rex2.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:348:Must go faster.]]

Rear-view mirrors sometimes come with a warning: "Objects in mirror are closer than they appear."[[note]]These mirrors are convex, so they provide a wider field of view at the price of making the images of objects smaller, and therefore apparently farther away.[[/note]] This is not reassuring to the character who looks into the rear-view mirror [[Film/JurassicPark and sees a]] ''[[TyrannosaurusRex T. rex]]'' [[Film/JurassicPark running after his car]]. Especially if said ''T. rex'' appears to be disturbingly close as it is.

TruthInTelevision in some countries! Except for the ''T. rex'' part. [[KentBrockmanNews For]] ''[[ScienceMarchesOn now]]''...

Compare DangerTakesABackseat. For a more metaphorical use of rear-view mirrors, see PastInTheRearViewMirror.

An interesting note: some examples of this trope (including the TropeCodifier) show this message on the driver's side mirror. In RealLife, it only ever appears on the ''passenger'' side mirror. In the USA and Canada, the driver's side mirror is required to be flat, so putting the warning message there would be inappropriate. In Europe, the driver's side mirror may also be convex, but the ''warning'' is not required. See Wiki/TheOtherWiki [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wing_mirror#Planar.2C_convex.2C_aspheric for even more detail.]]


* ''Franchise/JurassicPark'' films:
** ''Film/JurassicPark'' (pictured above) is the TropeCodifier.
** ''Film/JurassicWorld'' gives the trope an encore appearance.
** ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory2'' parodies this, using the meek Rex's reflection in the mirror of a toy car. (It also puts it on the passenger side, correcting JP's error.)
* Discussed in ''Film/AceVentura''. A thief is trashing Ace's car after Ace recovers a stolen puppy, prompting Ace to shout "Warning! Assholes are closer than they appear!" The thief, not happy about it, [[BatterUp takes a baseball bat to Ace's rearview mirror]].
* ''Film/TransformersDarkOfTheMoon'': In what may be a nod to the ''Jurassic Park'' scene, Decepticon 'Dreads' are viewed to be in hot pursuit in the (passenger!) side mirror of Autobot Dino (Mirage) (he's the red Ferrari).
* ''Film/TheTerminator'' didn't have the inscription, but Sarah glances at her driver's side mirror just as the T-800 fires at her reflection, shattering it.
* In the 2008 short film ''Film/TheGerman'', a British fighter pilot [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarII in a dogfight]] glances [[RealityIsUnrealistic in his fighter's rear-view mirror]] and spots a German fighter moments before [[AntagonistTitle the German]] fires his guns and blasts the mirror off with a near-miss. The mirror lacks the warning text, but having a machine gun bullet knock the mirror off is as about as close as one can get.

* The ''{{Series/Eureka}}'' episode "One Giant Leap" has a brief closer-than-it-appears shot of a black hole in the mirror of Carter's jeep, right before it gets destroyed. [[ChronicallyCrashedCar Again.]]
* The ''Series/DawsonsCreek'' episode "Sex, She Wrote" (s2ep11) has a closer-than-they-appear shot when Pacey and Andie kiss in her car after admitting their love for each other.
* ''Series/DrakeAndJosh'' has the two sitting in their teacher's car which is [[ItMakesSenseInContext parked in the classroom]]. Drake then uses the rear view mirror to check out a girl behind them while saying, "Objects in mirror may be ''hotter'' than they appear."

* {{Music/MeatLoaf}} inverts the phrase as "Objects In The Rear View Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are," describing [[PastInTheRearViewMirror old memories]] that are nonetheless very vivid.
** Despite {{Rule Of Drama}} it still doesn't sit right.
* Bobby Valentino - "Rear View Mirror": "I see your face and I miss you dear / Images in the mirror, closer than they appear"
* {{Music/They Might Be Giants}} - "She's Actual Size" averts this for the subject of the song: "Squares may look distant in a rear view mirror, but they're actual size, actual size to her."

* Seen in a ''ComicStrip/TheFarSide'' cartoon: The rear-view mirror shows the passenger's eye magnified hugely.

* Bill Kirchenbauer has a bit about this:
--> "We've all seen that message, right? 'Objects in this mirror are a lot closer than they appear.' BUILD THE MIRROR SO THE THINGS LOOK LIKE WHERE THEY ARE!"

[[AC: WebComics]]
* Played with in a strip of ''ComicStrip/ThePerryBibleFellowship''.
* [[http://www.project-apollo.net/mos/mos354.html As per trope]] in ''Webcomic/AMiracleOfScience''.

* "Objects may be less sexy than they appear" shows up on a high-tech clothes shop mirror in ''{{WesternAnimation/Futurama}}''.
* Parodied in ''WesternAnimation/CodenameKidsNextDoor'', where the mirror on a vehicle says "Missiles in mirror may be closer than they appear''.
** Parodied in another episode wherein a mirror said "You don't wanna know how close this is".
* In "[[Disney/{{Hercules}} Hercules and the Gorgon]]", his shield says "Objects are closer '''then''' they appear".
* Used in ''WesternAnimation/RoughnecksStarshipTroopersChronicles'' with incoming plasma artillery in the reflection.
* Spoofed in ''WesternAnimation/UncleGrandpa'', where the mirror says "Objects in mirror may be Uncle Grandpa" It MakesSenseInContext.
* In ''WesternAnimation/AngelaAnaconda'' a character reads this off when their car is being chased by a rabid parent who wants to burn ''Literature/TheWonderfulWizardOfOz'' because it promotes witchcraft. After they realize what it means, they panic more.