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* NoEscapeButDown: Thelma and Louise are cornered by the feds on the edge of a cliff. [[spoiler:They decide they prefer pulling a Hail Mary and drive off the cliff than being caught. The movie ends with a freeze frame of the falling car.]]

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* SecondFaceSmoke: Louise blows one to Harlan.

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* CentralTheme: Taking control of your life.


-->'''Young Cop'''(sobbing): I have a wife!\\
'''Thelma''': That's nice. You be sweet to her. My husband wasn't sweet to me and look how I turned out.

to:

-->'''Young Cop'''(sobbing): Cop''' (sobbing): I have a wife!\\
wife and kids, please!\\
'''Thelma''': That's nice. You do? Well, you're lucky. You be sweet to her. 'em. 'Specially your wife. My husband wasn't sweet to me and look me. Look how I turned out.


* BetterToDieThanBeKilled: Rather than risk getting shot by the police, they [[spoiler:drive off the cliff edge into the canyon]].

to:

* BetterToDieThanBeKilled: Rather than risk getting shot by the police, police (or the prospect of a lengthy prison term), they [[spoiler:drive off the cliff edge into the canyon]].



* CerebusCallback: Thelma and Louise take a polaroid photo of themselves at the start of their trip and stick it to the rear view mirror in the car. The photo flies off the mirror just as the car goes plunging into the Grand Canyon.

to:

* CerebusCallback: Thelma and Louise take a polaroid Polaroid photo of themselves at the start of their trip and stick it to the rear view mirror in the car. The photo flies off the mirror just as the car goes plunging into the Grand Canyon.



* ComicallyMissingThePoint: One of the film's most famous exchanges, used in the trailer:
-->'''Thelma''': Louise. Shoot the radio.\\
'''Louise''': ''[shoots the cruiser's stereo]''\\
'''Thelma''': The ''police'' radio, Louise!



* EverythingIsBigInTexas

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* EverythingIsBigInTexasEverythingIsBigInTexas: Subverted slightly, in that they're going out of their way to ''avoid'' Texas, but they're in the same general area. Lots of glorious wide-frame shots show off the beauty of vast stretches of empty desert landscape, the sky, and a highway that seems endless.



-->'''Young Cop'''(sobbing): I have a wife!\\
'''Thelma''': That's nice. You be sweet to her. My husband wasn't sweet to me and look how I turned out.



* LovelyAngels

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* LovelyAngelsLovelyAngels: Thelma and Louise start off as two pretty ordinary women, but the situation they're thrown into gradually reveals how strong and competent they are.



** Louise inadvertantly leads the police to them when she chats to Slocumb on the phone too long, allowing them to trace the call (having earlier warned Thelma that the police will probably trace the call when she phones Darryl).

to:

** Louise inadvertantly inadvertently leads the police to them when she chats to Slocumb on the phone too long, allowing them to trace the call (having earlier warned Thelma that the police will probably trace the call when she phones Darryl).



* PhoneTraceRace: The cops need Darryl to keep Thelma on the line long enough for them to trace the call and encourage him to be calm and loving toward her once he's got her on the phone. However, the moment Darryl greets her with a cheerful "Honey!", she knows something's up and hangs up immediately.
** Later played straight, when Louise phones Slocumb. Slocumb doesn't ''want'' the call to be traced, sensing that with a little negotiation, the women can be convinced to turn themselves in. But another officer traces the call and dispatches the Feds, escalating the situation.



* RedOniBlueOni: Thelma is Blue, Louise is Red (see TomboyAndGirlyGirl below).

to:

* RedOniBlueOni: When the film begins, nervous, naive housewife Thelma is Blue, while independent and adventurous Louise is Red (see TomboyAndGirlyGirl below).below). Halfway through the film, they switch when Thelma [[TookALevelInBadass takes a level in badass]] and becomes more ruthless and reckless, just as Louise begins to have doubts.


* BerserkButton: Harlan's little taunt to Louise sets off hers, and that's why she shoots him.



* ChekhovsGun: Thelma's gun.
* ChickFlick: Albeit a rather violent one.

to:

* ChekhovsGun: Thelma's gun.
gun. She packs it for the trip on the off-chance it'll be needed, and it's the subject of a gag when Louise discovers it in the bag ("Good lord, Thelma!") - but Louise then uses it to force Harlan to let Thelma go, and unfortunately shoot him.
* ChickFlick: Albeit It's considered one, despite not really following the typical formula (a chick flick is normally considered a rather violent romantic comedy that's more obviously tailored towards women). Still, its female-centered story and themes of empowerment have helped its reputation as one.



* NiceJobBreakingItHero: Louise inadvertantly leads the police to them when she chats to Slocumb on the phone too long, allowing them to trace the call (having earlier warned Thelma that the police will probably trace the call when she phones Darryl).

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* NiceJobBreakingItHero: NiceJobBreakingItHero:
**
Louise inadvertantly leads the police to them when she chats to Slocumb on the phone too long, allowing them to trace the call (having earlier warned Thelma that the police will probably trace the call when she phones Darryl). Darryl).
** Thelma leaves the money she and Louise were going to use to start a new life (or at least get them as far as Mexico) in a room with a known shoplifter. And when JD of course takes the money, she robs a convenience store to pretty much seal her and Louise's fates. She also told JD they were headed to Mexico, which he tells the police when they catch him.


* GoodAdulteryBadAdultery:
** Thelma is technically cheating when she dances with Harlan, but because her husband is shown to be a possessive asshole, she's shown sympathetically. She stops short of kissing, and even tries to fend Harlan off with "I'm married". Louise also says this will count against her if the matter goes to court - as a prosecutor would try to paint a rape victim as a liar trying to cover up her infidelity.
** Thelma sleeping with JD later is considered AOK by the narrative because she has symbolically ended her relationship with Darryl - even if not legally.



* HeroAntagonist: Slocumb.

to:

* HeroAntagonist: Slocumb.Slocumb is the antagonist, but he's a detective trying to catch two criminals, and does his best to grant them as much leeway as possible. When Thelma robs the gas station, he chews out JD for robbing their money and therefore forcing them to commit more crimes.



* KarmaHoudini: J.D. Most of the men who cross Thelma and Louise get their comeuppance in some way. J.D. steals all their money and informs the police they're heading to Mexico, but gets away with it.

to:

* KarmaHoudini: J.D. Most of the men who cross Thelma and Louise get their comeuppance in some way. J.D. steals all their money and informs the police they're heading to Mexico, but gets away with it. It's possible the stolen money was taken off him and given back to Jimmy, but that's still getting off light.



* NiceGuy: Jimmy.

to:

* NiceGuy: Jimmy. Especially ironic, considering his actor Michael Madsen is known for playing psychopaths.



* NoodleIncident: Whatever happened to Louise in Texas, it must have been ''[[BerserkButton bad]]''.
** Given Louise's knowledge about the forensics of proving rape, and her statement about not wanting to be caught in Texas after shooting an attempted rapist, the implication is that she was raped there.
* PoliceAreUseless

to:

* NoodleIncident: Whatever happened to Louise in Texas, it must have been ''[[BerserkButton bad]]''.
**
bad]]''. Given Louise's knowledge about the forensics of proving rape, and her statement about not wanting to be caught in Texas after shooting an attempted rapist, the implication is that she was raped there.
* PoliceAreUselessPoliceAreUseless: Subverted. The police figure out very quickly who Harlan's murderers were, where they were headed and eventually where they are. Detective Slocumb also gives them multiple opportunities to turn themselves in.



* RoadTripPlot

to:

* RoadTripPlot RoadTripPlot: It starts with a planned weekend vacation, and turns into running for the border. Most of the film takes place in the car.

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* NiceGuy: Jimmy.


Thelma Dickinson (Davis), a naïve housewife, and her best friend, the independent waitress Louise Sawyer (Sarandon), pile into Louise's CoolCar for a girls' weekend out. Things go downhill [[RapeAsDrama when Thelma is nearly raped]] by a stranger named Harlan, whom Louise subsequently shoots. They hit the road to Mexico rather than face almost certain prosecution; along the way, they are pursued by a sympathetic FBI agent named Hal Slocumb (Creator/HarveyKeitel). As the two experience freedom they never had before, the long arm of the law finally corners them at a canyon similar to the Grand Canyon. In one of the most iconic, and infamous, endings in cinema history, instead of surrendering, the two decide to... [[BolivianArmyEnding well...]] If you read the lyrics at the top of the page, you'll get it.

to:

Thelma Dickinson (Davis), a naïve housewife, and her best friend, the independent waitress Louise Sawyer (Sarandon), pile into Louise's CoolCar for a girls' weekend out. Things go downhill [[RapeAsDrama when Thelma is nearly raped]] by a stranger named Harlan, Harlan (Timothy Carhart), whom Louise subsequently shoots. They hit the road to Mexico rather than face almost certain prosecution; along the way, they are pursued by a sympathetic FBI agent named Hal Slocumb (Creator/HarveyKeitel). As the two experience freedom they never had before, the long arm of the law finally corners them at a canyon similar to the Grand Canyon. In one of the most iconic, and infamous, endings in cinema history, instead of surrendering, the two decide to... [[BolivianArmyEnding well...]] If you read the lyrics at the top of the page, you'll get it.


[[caption-width-right:300:: ''[[Music/BBKing Better not look down, if you want to keep on flying, put the hammer down, keep it full speed ahead. Better not look back, or you might just wind up crying, you can keep it moving, if you don´t look down.]]'']]

to:

[[caption-width-right:300:: [[caption-width-right:300: ''[[Music/BBKing Better not look down, if you want to keep on flying, put the hammer down, keep it full speed ahead. Better not look back, or you might just wind up crying, you can keep it moving, if you don´t look down.]]'']]


[[quoteright:300: ''[[Music/BBKing Better not look down, if you want to keep on flying, put the hammer down, keep it full speed ahead. Better not look back, or you might just wind up crying, you can keep it moving, if you don´t look down.]]'']]

to:

[[quoteright:300: [[caption-width-right:300:: ''[[Music/BBKing Better not look down, if you want to keep on flying, put the hammer down, keep it full speed ahead. Better not look back, or you might just wind up crying, you can keep it moving, if you don´t look down.]]'']]


Thelma Dickinson (Davis), a naïve housewife, and her best friend, the independent waitress Louise Sawyer (Sarandon), pile into Louise's CoolCar for a girls' weekend out. Things go downhill [[RapeAsDrama when Thelma is nearly raped]] by a stranger named Harlan, whom Louise subsequently shoots. They hit the road to Mexico rather than face almost certain prosecution; along the way, they are pursued by a sympathetic FBI agent named Hal Slocumb (Creator/HarveyKeitel). As the two experience freedom they never had before, the long arm of the law finally corners them at a canyon similar to the Grand Canyon. In one of the most iconic, and infamous, endings in cinema history, instead of surrendering, the two decide to... [[BolivianArmyEnding well...]] If you read the lyrics at the top of the page. you'll get it.

to:

Thelma Dickinson (Davis), a naïve housewife, and her best friend, the independent waitress Louise Sawyer (Sarandon), pile into Louise's CoolCar for a girls' weekend out. Things go downhill [[RapeAsDrama when Thelma is nearly raped]] by a stranger named Harlan, whom Louise subsequently shoots. They hit the road to Mexico rather than face almost certain prosecution; along the way, they are pursued by a sympathetic FBI agent named Hal Slocumb (Creator/HarveyKeitel). As the two experience freedom they never had before, the long arm of the law finally corners them at a canyon similar to the Grand Canyon. In one of the most iconic, and infamous, endings in cinema history, instead of surrendering, the two decide to... [[BolivianArmyEnding well...]] If you read the lyrics at the top of the page. page, you'll get it.



to:

[[quoteright:300: ''[[Music/BBKing Better not look down, if you want to keep on flying, put the hammer down, keep it full speed ahead. Better not look back, or you might just wind up crying, you can keep it moving, if you don´t look down.]]'']]



Thelma Dickinson (Davis), a naïve housewife, and her best friend, the independent waitress Louise Sawyer (Sarandon), pile into Louise's CoolCar for a girls' weekend out. Things go downhill [[RapeAsDrama when Thelma is nearly raped]] by a stranger named Harlan, whom Louise subsequently shoots. They hit the road to Mexico rather than face almost certain prosecution; along the way, they are pursued by a sympathetic FBI agent named Hal Slocumb (Creator/HarveyKeitel). As the two experience freedom they never had before, the long arm of the law finally corners them at a canyon similar to the Grand Canyon, driving to the cliff, [[BolivianArmyEnding and...]]

to:

Thelma Dickinson (Davis), a naïve housewife, and her best friend, the independent waitress Louise Sawyer (Sarandon), pile into Louise's CoolCar for a girls' weekend out. Things go downhill [[RapeAsDrama when Thelma is nearly raped]] by a stranger named Harlan, whom Louise subsequently shoots. They hit the road to Mexico rather than face almost certain prosecution; along the way, they are pursued by a sympathetic FBI agent named Hal Slocumb (Creator/HarveyKeitel). As the two experience freedom they never had before, the long arm of the law finally corners them at a canyon similar to the Grand Canyon, driving to Canyon. In one of the cliff, most iconic, and infamous, endings in cinema history, instead of surrendering, the two decide to... [[BolivianArmyEnding and...]]
well...]] If you read the lyrics at the top of the page. you'll get it.


->''"In the future, when a woman's crying like that, she ain't having any fun!"''

to:

->''"In ->''"You've always been crazy. This is just the future, when a woman's crying like that, she ain't having any fun!"''first chance you've ever had to really express yourself."''


* NoKillLikeOverkill: There's a ''lot'' of guns pointed at the duo at the end.



* NoKillLikeOverkill: There's a ''lot'' of guns pointed at the duo at the end.



* ShootTheFuelTank: Not just the fuel tank, but the whole damn truck.



* ShootTheFuelTank: Not just the fuel tank, but the whole damn truck.

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