Shoot The Shaggy Dog Film Discussion

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07:23:39 PM May 16th 2013
I removed these not quite OK examples. It can't be yes and no. Also no Natter.
  • A.I.: Artificial Intelligence. The end (the ''last'' one) was much more than a Downer Ending—it was completely pointless.
    • Yes and no. David was trying to become a real boy so he could get his mother to love him. He does not achieve the goal of becoming a real boy. However, it turns out that he did not need to achieve this goal anyway. He does get one day of happiness with his mother and she tells him before she dies that she loves him and always has. He dies shortly afterwards (Why? Well, maybe he ran out of battery juice or maybe by that point he had gotten everything he wanted and so he 'shut down' as a result of this). So the ending does not quite qualify as Shoot the Shaggy Dog, because David got what he truly wanted in the end. Also, he went to "...that place where dreams are born" (i.e. the afterlife). That should be impossible for a robot that is not human to achieve. But the fact that he did indicates that he did become human in a sense. So he ended up achieving more than he set out to do, which is another reason the ending does not quite qualify as Shoot the Shaggy Dog. It does, however, qualify for Fridge Horror when you consider what David has done to his mother to achieve this.

  • Cold Mountain. Civil war soldier ditches the army, travels through adverse weather conditions, and goes through absolute hell just so that he can get home to his girlfriend. Finally gets home to his girlfriend, and then a soldier comes along and shoots him.
    • At least in the movie, they managed to conceive a child before he got offed. So that wasn't a complete Shoot The Shaggy Dog.
    • Of course, there is a lot more to the story than that. It's more of a Bittersweet Ending, really.
07:18:17 AM Apr 26th 2012
edited by UncleSumer
1974 action flick that's a classic example - the road-dust rooster-tailed Peter Fonda vehicle - "Dirty Mary and Crazy Larry" - also starring Susan George — the wham ending is guillotine - abrupt, and nihilisticly karmic but jarringly so — i expect the exact event [SPOILER:] must be a named trope, too ... (maybe: "track crossing detour"? or such...) the robbery spree big getaway is an exhilarating emotional carpet-ride that gets yanked right out from under the wild joyride finale, slam, wham - what does anything mean after all - shock ending that sucker-punches you breathless! . . . a sawed-off-shotgun to the head -brutal case of "Shoot The Shaggy Dog", if ever there was one . . .

((re-edit &, in rePly, to the following comment —> True nuff - maybe this should be entered properly under "Film", or on a page for the Director's Work, yet — still noobing along, myself, happy just to read random tropery lores, eh?))
08:31:12 AM Apr 26th 2012
This is a review, not a trope entry.
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