Quotes: Dull Surprise

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    film — live-action 

Neo, The Matrix


Their small-town eyes will gape at you
In dull surprise when payment due
Exceeds accounts received at seventeen
— "At Seventeen", Janis Ian

    live-action tv 

Mal: Fear is nothing to be ashamed of, Doctor.
Simon: This isn't fear. This is anger.
Mal: Well, kind of hard to tell one from t'other, face like yours.
Simon: Well, I imagine if it were fear my eyes would be wider.


"Hard Rain is one of those movies that never convince you their stories are actually happening. From beginning to end, I was acutely aware of actors being paid to stand in cold water."

    Web Animation 

"Aiden and his sister both look at the grave of the child (that is his sole motivation) the way they'd look at a middling-difficult Sudoku puzzle."

    Web Original 

"Its important that you watch Robert Beltran’s performance very carefully in this episode because you can see an actor who has completely given up on the show he is tied to. He doesn’t just sound bored, he’s practically comatose and doesn’t bother to inject any emotion into his (admittedly functional) dialogue. Even when his face turns to goo he barely registers any pain or response...."The Demon class planet! One of our more interesting missions!" — proof that even as a replicant Chakotay still talks absolute bollocks."
Joe Ford on Star Trek: Voyager, "Course: Oblivion"

"Clark and Lois are moving into their new apartment, and we get a limp attempt at banter when Clark reveals that Lois has a pillow she made out of a Whitesnake t-shirt. Lois likes something weird! That’s kind of like characterization, right? ...Instead of Lois doing a Tawny Kitaen impression, though, we just get Clark saying "I can decipher your scrawl," which I think is meant to be cutesy and back and forth, but because of Tom Welling’s deadpan sociopath delivery, it seems genuinely insulting. Maybe do a second take sometimes, guys."
Chris Sims on Smallville ("Dominion")

"I suspect, in fact, that this is why Smallville developed the increasing tendency to exploit the Donner films — they are emblematic, iconic, not perfect but as close as just about anything in this genre has come. Mostly because of Williams' score and Reeve's performance...Tom Welling turned in a lot of strong moments but it turns out to have been a very good thing this show was only ever "about Clark Kent, not Superman" because it strikes me as decidedly unlikely he could ever really have delivered a reliable dual-identity: in fits and starts toward the end, he gave us "mild-manners," but it seemed fairly obvious he wanted Clark Kent to be Superman as much as his version of Clark did. All things considered, he seems only ever to have always been himself, neither really Clark nor Superman."

"By the way, I call him 'Triple H' and not, 'Arlo Jayne' because while watching, not for a second could I suspend my disbelief that the main character wasn’t Hunter Hearst Helmsley. The Game shows less emotional range in this entire film than in a typical promo, displaying approximately three emotions: cool and collected, slightly perturbed, and in physical pain. (And even then, there’s not a whole lot of difference among the three. Quick, try to guess what he’s doing in this scene. Give up? The correct answer is, 'getting shot.')"

"I watched The Other Woman the other day and Kate Upton had the charisma of an ingrown nipple hair and she made the driftwood in the beach scenes look like they were alive and full of emotions. It was so bad that it was performance art."

"When Kristen Stewart isn’t busy mistaking being a badass with being an asshole, she still inexplicably gets acting jobs. The Daily Mail generously described Kristen as “quite emotional” with Sam Waterston on the set of her latest film Anesthesia, which is an apt name since she usually looks like she got into a slap fight with a syringe full of numbing agent and never recovered.

KStew reached down into her acting bag of tricks (that has about as much range as the busted wireless router in a McDonald’s PlayPlace) and pulled out a facial expression that could mean anything from elation to sadness to needing a wardrobe change because she gambled with a fart and lost. You won’t even have to see the film to guess she squeezes out a tear, bites her lip and fights the urge to take that hat off to run her fingers through hair that looks like it was styled with Crisco, all while delivering lines that undoubtedly sound like she’s vomiting up commas."

"Horrible black magic stuff happens to what are either the most unflappable, or possibly just the most stoned, people on earth...two villagers run in, and react exactly the way one would expect after stumbling on a disembodied head eating an unborn baby out of a dying woman's vagina."

"The catch phrase of the movie is Danger is real, fear is a choice. This is a common theme throughout the entire film, though it appears the elder Smith and Shyamalan have unfortunately confused the concept of “fearless” with “emotionless”. As Kitai makes his way across hazardous terrain, he maintains an audio link with his father, who delivers a series of the most monotone motivational speeches you will ever hear. Even during his son’s most horrifying encounters, Will Smith’s voice never wavers from an utterly lifeless tone, and this becomes unintentionally comical after a while."

General Plotdevice: So wait, are you ALL mutants? What about January Jones?
Kevin Bacon: Her too. Her ability is to suck all life out of any line of dialogue.
January Jones: also i read minds and turn to diamond
Kevin Bacon: And let's not forget your power to make sexy lingerie look strangely bland.

In the comments of the previous strip, I said, “In hindsight, the ideal thing would have been to cast Aragorn as a dumb, distracted stoner. He spends about half of the movie blinking very, very slowly. I can come up with a shot of him looking baked or mouth-open stoopid in just about any scene. I should make a “I am so high” montage out of all these shots.“

The amount of screen time he spends in a vacant stare or a prolonged blink is sort of alarming. I’ve come to think of him as Stareagorn.

    Web Video 

"Can someone please tell me what emotion Batman is expressing with that line? Confusion? Irony? Sadness? Anger? Acceptance? Disgust? Surprise? Anticipation? Contempt? Awe? Disappointment? Shame? Sympathy? Rage?! Oh wait, that's me."
Linkara on the "Bees. My God." quote from Amazons Attack

Jay: Dreamer would stay in the new ECW while Mick Foley would move on to feuding with Ric Flair! Wasn't great.
V1: Yeaaahh....The two of them hated each other and they weren't willing to fuckin' sell at all. It was really bad shit.
Jay: You'd think that the promos would be great, you know? At least.
V1: Maybe it was like they were too real. Like, they were just tryin' to fuckin' HURT each other, as opposed to entertain us.
Jay: "Oooooh, what you said in ln. 6 para. 2!"
OSW Review on ECW One Night Stand 2006, Ep. 39


Cost him the title, cost him revenge, cost him his
sixteenth title run—which in WWE continuity would have tied him with RIC FLAIR (which in-storyline, they made a big deal about)? This was huge. His one chance at revenge and Seth Rollins fucked him....The character of John Cena just, like, is this chucklehead. (finger guns) "Ya got me. Woo!" None of it has any weight. This is why you can't take this shit with any kinda gravity. "LOL, this guy!" Can't stand it. "Titles come and titles go."

I remember Andre beat Hogan, I think it was. Andre beat Hogan and it was a complete screwjob, everybody fucked him over, it was the biggest screwjob ever. Hogan was just beside himself. And they interview Hogan—and Hogan never loses, but he got
fucked, Million Dollar Man fucked him—and Hogan, who just lost the Title of the Earth, is weeping like a child. He lost the World Heavyweight Championship! (buries face in hands) "AUUUUUUGH I LET DOWN MY HULKAMANIACS AAAAH BROTHER""

Claudia: We have a tragedy here.
Chick: (in the same dull voice) I flunked acting.

"I also like how Cloud reacts to the fact that his nemesis that he thought he'd killed in the climax of the game is finally back to life. (wiggles eyebrows) That's pretty much the extent of most of the emotions in this movie."

"OK, so, like, the most important thing ever happens: Anakin tells Samuel L. Jackson that Palpatine is a Sith, and that he's gonna get them all!

Then they just start walking at what can't even be described as a "brisk" pace...Umm, how 'bout a sudden swell of action music and the camera follows behind them in a frantic pace to gather their Jedis to go confront Palpatine? I-I dunno. Maybe Samuel was being 'discreet' or whatever?

But the other way just sounds more exciting in a
movie! I mean, we're not making Straight Story right? But they probably just had, like, 30ft of track and green screen to work with and those were the lines that they had to say, I guess. I guess it would've just been a lot harder to film if you had a camera with a steadycam and they're runnin' through the Jedi temple and it's all action-packed and stuff. That would mean Lucas would hafta get off his chair and stop drinkin' his coffee, and they had to move all the monitors and things. "W-whatever...doesn't require me to get off this chair...and move all this crap.""

"You know, everybody in this movie takes really bad news shockingly well in this movie. Did everyone just drink a Xanax cocktail?"

    western animation 

You're not acting hard enough!
—Melllvar from Futurama, "Where No Fan Has Gone Before"