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Film / No Good Deed (2014)

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No Good Deed is a 2014 thriller starring Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson. It was released September 12, 2014.

Elba plays Colin Evans, a violent convict whose parole is denied. He escapes custody and later ends up in the home of Terri Granger (Henson), a married mother of two. Although charming and polite at first, his true nature soon becomes evident, and Terri must fight to protect herself and her children.

Not to be confused with No Good Deed (2002).

No Good Tropes:

  • Ambiguous Situation: The reveal puts Colin's actions in a new light. Was he there to seduce Terri or was he there to kill Jeffrey and Terri just happened to be at the wrong place at the wrong time?
  • Aren't You Going to Ravish Me?: After showing his true colors, Terri thinks Colin is going to rape her. When Colin finally catches on, he laughs and tells Terri she's not his type, which actually offends her.
  • Complete-the-Quote Title: "...goes unpunished".
  • Cop Killer: Colin kills three police officers in the movie.
  • "Could Have Avoided This!" Plot: Really, all Colin had to do for revenge once he was out of prison was to tell Terri that her husband was having an affair with his ex-wife and sit back and laugh as Terri took Jeffrey for everything he had in the divorce, but unfortunately that's not his character.
  • The Determinator: Colin gets stabbed and bludgeoned multiple times, but still manages to get back up on his feet quickly. It takes a few gunshots and a fall out a window to finally kill him.
  • Disney Villain Death: Colin falls out the window, but only after about six or seven gunshots.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Colin seems to go out of his way to not scare the children. How much of this is genuine standards and how much of this is being pragmatic is ambiguous. Subverted when he decides to kill them along with Terri just to spite Jeffrey since he had an affair with his girlfriend.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • When Colin confronts Alexis after he escaped from prison, he makes it clear that he knows she moved on with another man and plans to visit him later. Turns out that man was Terri's husband Jeffery.
    • Colin asking Terri where her husband is more than once.
    • Colin taking offense to Meg's superficial requirements for a husband. Terri's successful husband was more or less the kind of man she described.
  • Genre Blind: Lets just say Terri doesn't act like someone who used to prosecute violent criminals for a living. Inviting a stranger into her home and freely talking about her husband being out are just two examples. The film tries to justify this by having her talk about how such criminals are supposedly never that clever. Especially hilarious as she's telling this to Colin, before she discovers his true nature. Later in the movie, Colin even calls her out on this.
  • Lifetime Movie of the Week: Follows the same basic formula as a "Woman Against Man" Lifetime movie.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: It's basically the title of the film, right? But subverted, as the reveal shows that Colin never intended to attack Terri. He was after her husband. Making it more a case of being at the wrong place at the wrong time. He still only got into the house as a result of her good will however.
  • Not Quite Dead: A heroic example. Meg is revealed to have survived.
  • Police Are Useless: Averted. When Colin kidnaps Terri and her children, she attempts to get help from a traffic cop. He tries to help her, but Colin shoots and kills him before he can.
  • The Reveal: Terri's husband Jeffrey was having an affair with Colin's girlfriend Alexis, and he found Jeffrey's name and address on the back of a note he left for Alexis, so it was no accident that Colin happened upon Terri's house.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: The reveal that Jeffrey was having an affair with Alexis, whose ex is a psychopathic convict who escaped from prison.
  • Where da White Women At?:
    • Colin's ex-girlfriend Alexis was a white woman. And he and Meg seem to hit it off pretty well until he attacks her.
    • It is revealed in the film's climax that Terri's husband is actually having an affair with Alexis. Colin was aware of this himself and his encounter with Terri is actually part of his revenge against Jeffrey for the affair.