Sean Connery Is About to Shoot You
aka: Target The Audience
Watch our movie — or else.
"December 1, 1903: Edwin Porter's The Great Train Robbery debuts. The plot: a wisecracking former cop fights train-jackers at 15 mph. Thrilling audiences with its pioneering realism and papier-mache trains, the final scene — in which the villain turns and fires his gun directly into the camera — was said to have so terrified the audience that they would often shriek in terror, screaming out 'Yippie ky yay, motherfucker!' as one.
When a character points a weapon at the camera so it looks like he is about to attack the audience with it. Sean Connery
is not actually required; this just happens in a number of posters for his movies, such as the one illustrated here; as well as in several Bond
film posters, most notably for Never Say Never Again
The more aggressive Sister Trope
of Pistol Pose
, this trope is frequently used on movie posters, DVD/VHS cases, and book covers. The star of the work is pointing a gun directly at the audience. It's that simple.
Note that while this usually involves guns, other weapons and even fists can also be used. The "Superman
Is About To Punch You!" variant, in particular, is quite common on comic book covers. And certain movies◊
This trope is often used in movies themselves as well, although the MPAA
prohibits its usage in green-band (all ages) trailers. If the character actually attacks the audience, it's The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You
See also Pistol Pose
, Stab the Sky
. Often overlaps with Floating Head Syndrome
. Sword Pointing
is a variation. Not to be confused with Bond Gun Barrel
(which, nonetheless, often features this trope, sometimes literally).
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Anime & Manga
- The Rock: Sean Connery Is About To...well, you know. Or is it Nicolas Cage? note
- Jackie Brown: Pam Grier◊ Is About To Shoot You!
- Man Bites Dog: Benoit Poelvoorde◊ is About To Shoot You! (The original poster◊ looks like an example of this trope at first glance, but turns out to be a bit more gruesome.)
- Shoot 'em Up: Clive Owen Is About To Shoot (Over) You!
- The Bad Lieutenant◊: Harvey Keitel Is About To Shoot You!
- Boiling Point◊: Wesley Snipes Is About To Shoot The Person Standing Next To You!
- Star Wars:
- The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian: Ben Barnes Is About To Impale You On Three Feet of Tempered Steel!
- Rambo (fourth movie◊): Sylvester Stallone Is About To Shoot You [-WITH A BOW AND ARROW]!
- Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves◊: Kevin Costner Is About To Shoot The Person Next To You With a FLAMING Arrow!
- Robin Hood: (2010 film◊): Russell Crowe Is About To Shoot Your Left Ear With a REGULAR Arrow!
- Robin Hood: Men in Tights: Cary Elwes◊ Is About To Shoot The Person Standing Next To You With Six Arrows!
- Hot Shots! Part Deux: Charlie Sheen Is About To Shoot You With A Chicken!
- Stop Or My Mom Will Shoot: Estelle Getty Is About To Shoot You!
- Bad Boys: Will Smith Is About To Shoot You (Martin Lawrence Is Thinking About It)!◊
- Posters for the sequel tend to reverse their poses.
- Pearl Harbor: A Japanese Warplane◊ Is About To Drop A Torpedo On You(r Ship)!
- Iron Man◊: Tony Stark Is About To Blast/Punch You IN A CAVE! WITH A BOX OF SCRAPS!!!
- Batman is going to land a Batpod on you!◊
- You Don't Mess With The Zohan◊: Adam Sandler Is About To... Dry Your Hair Between His Legs!
- Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson And Rupert Grint (and Matthew Lewis in the background) Are About To Turn You Into A Toad!
- Dirty Harry, both the original◊ and its sequel◊ Magnum Force: Clint Eastwood Is About To Shoot You With The Most Powerful Handgun In The World.
- Death Wish: Charles Bronson is about◊ to◊ shoot you!◊
- James Bond is about to shoot you in several movie posters:
- On a related note, the famous Bond Gun Barrel intro involves Sean Connery — or whoever happens to be playing Bond this time — actually shooting at the audience.
- Connery's character in Zardoz also does so right before the opening credits.
- The 2003◊ Hulk: Hulk Smash You!
- Spider-Man Trilogy: (first◊ and second◊ movie): Spider-Man Is About To Shoot Web at You!
- Doom movie: Inverted — YOU are shooting at an Imp!◊
- City of God: Many◊ Drugdealers◊ Are About To Shoot You!
- Pitch Black: Vin Diesel Is About To Shoot The Person To Your Right!
- My Bloody Valentine 3D: The Pyro is about to pick-axe you to death.
- Lucky Number Slevin: Josh Hartnett and Bruce Willis are about to shoot the people standing on either side of you!
- The Brave One: Jodie Foster is about to... prove that looks can kill?
- Patriot Games: Oh, Crap! Harrison Ford is about to shoot you again◊!
- Beowulf (2007): Ray Winstone is about to slit your throat!◊
- Ultimate Force: UFC Fighter Mirko Cro-Cop◊ is about to shoot you!
- Parole Violators: Sean Donahue◊ is about to shoot you, and he has a rifle just in case!
- Black Friday: Gary Daniels is about to chop your head like a watermelon!◊
- Assault with a Deadly Weapon (1976): PC Skullface◊ is about to shoot you!
- Deadly Outbreak: Jeff Speakman◊ is about to shoot you!
- No Way Back: Russell Crowe is about to shoot you!◊ — Gangsta Style!
- Resident Evil: Afterlife: Milla Jovovich isn't wasting any time; she's already shooting you!◊
- Spellbound: Dr. Murchison is About to Shoot You!
- Dead Man: Johnny Depp is about to shoot you!◊
- The Untouchables: Kevin Costner is about to shoot you while Sean Connery watches!◊
- The Expendables: The logo is about to shoot/stab absolutely everything beneath, to the left, and to the right of itself.
- The Punisher is in a war zone and about to shoot you◊.
- In both print and TV ads for Men In Black, J and K really do neuralize the audience to make them forget they've already seen the film, then urge them to go see it.
- The Boondock Saints: Sean Patrick Flannery and Norman Reedus are about to shoot you in the balls!◊
- Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: Harrison Ford, that is, the one riding a horse, is about to shoot you!
- Raiders of the Lost Ark: Harrison Ford is about to smack you with his bullwhip!◊
- Ip Man: Donnie Yen is going◊ to kick your ass.◊
- Hanna: Saoirse Ronan is about to shoot you.◊
- Animal House: The Deltas are flipping you off.
- Carved: Kuchisake-Onna. Crap! Kuchisake-onna is going to cut you with her giant scissors!◊
- Bangkok Dangerous: Nicolas Cage ISN'T about to shoot you!◊
- The Hunger Games: Jennifer Lawrence is about to shoot an arrow at the person to your left!◊
- TheAvengers: With◊ or without◊ his helmet, Robert Downey, Jr. is about to nuke the person to your right ! Oh, and Samuel "Mozafucka" L. Jackson is more commonly about to shoot your left ear (he might miss◊).
- Sin City: Benicio Del Toro is about to shoot the person to your left while◊ Bruce Willis is about to shoot your left foot!
- John Wick does one better, with the title laid in the center of the poster so the barrel of the gun forms the 'O' in "John" while the head and body of Keanu Reeves is slightly out of focus in the background.
- Fate of the Jedi: Vortex◊: Han Solo is About to Shoot You!
- One of the more popular covers for Musashi has him duel-wielding swords at you.
- Men at Arms: The Ankh-Morpork City Watch are About to Stab You!
Live Action TV
- Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha As Portable: The Battle of Aces: Nanoha Takamachi is about to befriend you! And Vita will stab you with the pointy thing on top of Graf Eisen!
- Europa Universalis on the fourth instalment, a musketeer with questionable aim may be about to shoot you
- Pokemon Platinum Version◊: Giratina Origin Forme Is About To Get You!!
- Pokemon Silver Version◊: Lugia is about to eat you!
- Dragon Ball Z Budokai 3: Goku◊ is about to punch you in the face!
- Star Fox Assault: Fox McCloud Is About To Shoot You◊!
- Orphen: Scion of Sorcery◊: Orphen Is About To Zap You!
- Mario Party 2: Cowboy Mario is about to shoot you with his invisible gun!
- Metroid Prime Hunters◊: Samus Aran Is About To Shoot You!
- Naruto: Clash of Ninja Revolution 2◊: Naruto Uzumaki is about to punch you.
- Redneck Rampage◊: A Dirty, Ugly Redneck Is About To Shoot You!
- Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare: Sgt. Jackson is about to shoot you!◊
- In this picture used as a Game Pro Magazine cover: Master Chief is about to shoot you while Samus and a Helgast Soldier watch.
- The cover of Mass Effect 2: Miranda and Thane are about to shoot you and the person next to you, while Shepard glares you both to death.
- Deus Ex: Invisible War: Alex Denton◊ is about to shoot you! In the chest!
- Dirge of Cerberus: -Final Fantasy VII-: Vincent Valentine is about to shoot you, the guy beside you and the guy behind you!◊
- Final Fantasy XII: Balthier Is About To Shoot You! (While riding on a sky motorcycle with two beautiful women no less)
- Outcast: Cutter Slade◊ is about to shoot you!
- Castlevania I: Inverted: Simon Belmont is about to storm Dracula's castle while the vampire count himself leers down at you!◊
- The NATO soldier from Operation Flashpoint is menacingly aiming at you from point-blank range... and about to shoot you with an M16 !◊
- BlazBlue European cover: Noel Vermillion is about to shoot you!◊
- Mega Man 1 US cover: Mega Man would be about to shoot you◊ — if his arthritis weren't flaring up so bad he can't move his wrist, and his cataracts weren't keeping him from seeing you in the first place.
- Red Dead Redemption: John Marston is about to blow your hand off.◊
- Ghostbusters: The Video Game. Peter Venkman is about to trap you while Egon and Winston shoot people floating in the air next to you!◊
- X-COM Apocalypse: An X-Com Agent◊ is about to shoot another X-Com agent who isn't standing anywhere near you!
- Silent Hill 3: Heather Mason◊ is about to shoot you! And hit you with a pipe!◊ And shine a flashlight in your eye!◊
- This may be a stretch, but whatever. SF 20: The Art of Street Fighter: Ryu is about to counterpunch you!◊
- Japanese cover for the PlayStation cover of The King of Fighters '96: Iori Yagami is about to burn you!◊
- True Crime: Streets of LA and True Crime: New York City: Nick Kang◊ and Marcus Reed◊ are about to shoot you.
- Blood II: The Chosen: Caleb◊ has already shot you!
- Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Hawkeye is about to arrow you.◊
- Many of the campaign posters in Left 4 Dead use this trope. Bill, Louis, Zoey, and Francis are about to shoot the zombies behind you.◊ Nick is about to do the same.◊
- Lara Croft has already shot you◊ in Tomb Raider III.
- Tales of the Abyss: Luke Fon Fabre is about to slice you.◊
- Asura is about to punch your face inside out.◊ And or scream at you.◊
- The NES ports of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: In both covers, Indy is shooting◊ at you on horseback!◊
- Snatcher Gillian Seed is about to shoot you!◊
- Policenauts Sega Saturn cover art: Jonathan Ingram and Tony Redwood are about to shoot you!◊
- Cross Edge: York Neely is about to shoot you!◊
- Namco X Capcom OST: Reiji Arisu is about to shoot you!◊
- Several Time Crisis games:
- Several Contra games:
- Metal Slug:
- Lethal Enforcers: A bad guy is about to shoot you while a hijacker is already shooting you!◊
- Dishonored: Corvo Attano is about to stab you!◊
- Operation Wolf: A soldier is already shooting you!◊
- Klonoa: Door to Phantomile: Klonoa is about to fire his ring at you!◊
- Resident Evil: Dead Aim: Bruce MacGivern is about to shoot you while Fong Ling watches!◊
- Before it went Free To Play, Star Trek Online's box art featured a nameless white male human Starfleet captain pointing a phaser in roughly the direction of the guy standing next to the viewer. He got dubbed "Handsome Phaser Guy".
- Thief (2014): Garrett Is About To Steal Something From You◊
- The promotional image◊ for Minecraft version 1.8 shows "Alex?", the Distaff Counterpart of "Steve?" introduced in this version, aiming her bow at the camera.
- The Legend of Korra: Avatar Korra is about to punch...one or two centimeters to the left of your head. Her friend Asami, however, really is about to electrocute you right in the face.
- Up to Eleven with Amor, "announcer" of the films of the German "Erotic note Animation" series. He does shoot at you, often wisecracking jokes like "This arrow is for he who never fapped". (Fourth Wall protects you, though.)
Anime & Manga
- In the openings of most James Bond movies, via the famous Bond Gun Barrel sequence:
- Each of the Eon productions before Quantum of Solace included a variation on the sequence.
- Originally, Never Say Never Again and Casino Royale (1967) were intended to open with gunbarrels - the latter featuring a pop-gun wielding David Niven. These were removed before release.
- The 2006 version of Casino Royale 2006 was the first to actually incorporate the gunbarrel sequence into the plotline, with the audience being treated to the POV of a mook as he is shot by Bond.
- The 1974 French knock-off From Hong Kong With Love opens with Bond attempting to shoot you... but his gun is empty. The camera shoots back, and kills him!
- The Great Train Robbery ends with a bank robber pointing a pistol at the camera and firing. It's the Trope Maker and very likely the Ur Example. Cinema was so new that some audience members ducked. Indeed, it was intended to scare the audience out of the theater!
- Goodfellas ended with Joe Pesci shooting at the audience in an homage to The Great Train Robbery.
- City of God makes very memorable usage◊ of this trope.
- The trailer for Watchmen originally had an assassin pointing a gun at the camera in one scene. After being told by the MPAA that it would need to be removed in order to get a green band, director Zack Snyder digitally altered it into a walkie-talkie.
- The Proposition: Danny Huston, Guy Pearce, and Ray Winstone are all going to shoot you. Or maybe someone just behind you and to your left.
- The movie version of Patriot Games does this during the scene where Sean Miller (Sean Bean) executes Dennis Cooley.
- Zardoz has Sean Connery shooting at the camera, in a red nappy.
- The Killer does this a lot, most famously the scene where Chow Yun-Fat takes out his target at the restaurant during the first major shootout of the movie.
- Not to mention the vision that Jenny has of Ah Jong firing directly at the camera, with a sea of blood behind him.
- In Serenity, both Mal and River point their guns at the camera at different times, and at the end of the movie, River is glaring directly at the camera after slaughtering an entire army of Reavers, looking for all the world like she's about to take those bloodstained blades in her hands to the audience next.
- The Big Lebowski: John Goodman is going to shoot you unless you mark it zero!◊
- Also, one of Maude's henchmen punches you out.
- When performing the theme song to The Three Caballeros, Panchito points one of his guns at the camera and it sings the lyric "and we'll stay so".
- The second shootout (the one not dictated by Steve Buscemi) of Desperado features Antonio Banderas firing two full clips into the camera, and in the extras Robert Rodriguez points out that the force of the blanks and the closeness of the pistols knocked off the flash dampener.
- In House of 1000 Corpses Bill Moseley is going to shoot you! (Pause for about thirty seconds.)
- Once Upon a Time in the West: Frank's first Kick the Dog moment, which abruptly cuts to a train's whistle.
- The Three Stooges even got in on the act during two shorts that were attempts at 3-d, 'Spooks!' and 'Pardon My Backfire'. Moe Howard Is About To Poke Your Eyes!◊
- Happens in-character in Back To The Future Part II, when Marty encounters a holographic The Shark Is About To Eat You! advert for Jaws 19.
- Near the end of The Avengers Loki finds himself confronted by the Avengers, leading to a Team Shot combined with Jeremy Renner Is About To Shoot You With A Bow And Arrow.
- In Grosse Pointe Blank, John Cusack shoots you. At point blank, naturally.
- The Men In Black (especially K) will occasionally neuralize you. Also happens at the end of the theme park ride.
- The Stinger for American Gangster is Denzel Washington shooting you.
- The TV spot for Django Unchained has Jamie Foxx shooting you at near-point blank.
- The Thing (2011) ends with Lars firing his rifle toward the audience, in a Call Forward to the beginning of the original movie, in which the Norwegians were trying to kill the husky-alien before it reached the American camp.
A new poster had suddenly appeared all over London. It had no caption, and represented simply the monstrous figure of a Eurasian soldier, three or four meters high, striding forward with expressionless Mongolian face and enormous boots, a submachine gun pointed from the hip. From whatever angle you looked at the poster, the muzzle of the gun, magnified by the foreshortening, seemed to be pointed straight at you.
- In Ghost Story, there's a graffiti painting on the shutter of Ragged Angel Investigations that depicts a portly, balding angel holding a doughnut in one hand and aiming a shotgun straight toward the viewer in the other.
Live Action TV
- Chris Elliott is about to shoot you in his domestic sitcom/cop drama mashup Action Family where he guns down his teenage daughter's scuzzy boyfriend - not that he's guilty of Chris's partner's death, he's just conveniently there for the wrap-up/happy ending.
- In the Firefly episode "Heart of Gold," Mal levels his pistol dramatically at the camera, and then gets startled by Inara and lets out a very undramatic "Bwa!" of surprise.
- The opening of Sledgehammer ends with Sledge saying "Trust me, I know what I'm doing" and shooting the screen.
- When thugs interrupt Xena's bathing, you get a point-of-view shot of her punching you in the face.
- This camera angle (fist coming at the camera) used to be quite common in 1970s TV, for example in an episode of The Rockford Files in which a thug knocks Jim Rockford out in this manner.
- A Ninja throws a shuriken at the screen, which forms into part of the Deadliest Warrior title.
- In the finale of Assassins, the assassins all draw their guns, walk to the foot of the stage, and fire on the audience.
- Metal Gear Solid 2 has Solidus Snake pointing his P90 directly at the camera.
- Ninja Gaiden: Ryu Hayabusa is about to hack you into bits.
- Street Fighter:
- Super Street Fighter II - Ryu is about to Hadouken you.
- He does this in Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo as well.
- Street Fighter Alpha 2 - Ryu and Ken is about to Hadouken you.
- In the Japanese commercials for the SFC port of Street Fighter II Turbo:
- Guile is about to Sonic Boom you.
- Chun-Li is about to Kikouken you.
- Some victory poses from Marvel vs. Capcom 3 employ this. For instance:
- Dante actually does kick the camera in the intro to Devil May Cry 3.
- And an early trailer for Devil May Cry 4 consists of nothing but him unleashing a complete unholy beatdown on the camera.
- One character's ending in Tekken Tag Tournament shows him delivering a beating to the camera. At the end, the camera arcs around to reveal he's beaten Heihachi and Kazuya Mishama senseless.
- The cover for Mega Man Battle Network 5 Double Team DS does this with both Rockman.EXE and Protoman.EXE, not sure about Colonel.EXE
- Mega Man and Bass opens up with the titular characters shooting King's Emblem. Then they emerge from the bottom of the screen, arm cannons smoking hot, and Bass is about to shoot you! Mega Man is waiting his turn.
- Before all of these, IV for the Game Boy had its intro finish with Mega Man demonstrating his charged shot, straight towards the camera.
- Also the intro of 8.
- And for the intro of The Power Battle.
- In the cartoon, Mega Man now has your power, and is about to blast you with it!
- In the ending of Super Metroid, Samus will shoot the screen (and then, depending on how fast you competed the game, just give you a thumbs up, flip open her helmet, or show off what she looks like under her suit.
- Team Fortress 2: Meet the Sniper: The Sniper has a plan to kill you.
- Fallout: New Vegas: The first thing your character actually sees in the game? Benny is about to shoot you. Justified, because that's the very next thing that happens.
- The intro movie of Parasite Eve 2 ends with the main character Aya Brea doing a quick-draw and pointing her gun at the player/watcher. In the context of the actual game itself, she's pointing it at an army of Elite Mooks.
- In Sengoku Basara, Nobunaga's Victory Pose has him shooting the camera with his Sawed-Off Shotgun.
- ''War of Angels (character selection): Your own friggin' fighter is about to stab you!◊
- Sakura Wars often features images of the Imperial Assault Troupe's resident firearms expert Maria Tachibana pointing her gun at the camera.
- X-COM: Terror From the Deep: The illustration for the Gillman entry in the UFOPaedia shows a Gillman pointing what looks like a Sonic-Blasta Rifle at the screen.
- The Spear Pillar scene of Pokemon Platinum has Giratina lunge at the screen as it attacks Cyrus for denouncing it. Many a player jumped. Giratina also menaces you in the intro video.
- Resident Evil 5:
- God of War: You get to watch as Kratos gouges your eyes out. (You're really watching from Posideon's point of view as he gets the shit beat out of him, but the effect is there.)
- Evander Holyfield's "Real Deal" Boxing: He punches you several times on the title screen.
- Occurs at the climax of Spec Ops: The Line. Take a close look at the angle Konrad's holding the gun in the event that you shoot him- he's not pointing it at Walker, he's pointing it at YOU.
- Every boss cinematic in Sakura Samurai ends with them pointing their weapon directly at the camera.
- Pokémon Platinum: Magmortar has its cannon pointed at the player in its basic sprite, and its animation acts like it fired a shot. Flint's Magmortar gets bonus points for having a Flame Seal on its Poke Ball laid over-top of its cannon, making it seem like it actually fired a shot.