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Film / Parker

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Parker is a 2013 action flick starring Jason Statham and Jennifer Lopez, adapted from Donald Westlake's novel Flashfire.

Parker (Statham) is a professional thief whose code of ethics involves not stealing from the poor or hurting innocent people. After getting stabbed in the back and left for dead by his crew, Parker tracks them down to Palm Beach, Florida in order to get revenge, where he enlists the help of Leslie Rogers (Lopez), a real estate agent who helps him rob his former friends.


Parker provides examples of:

  • Adaptational Attractiveness: In the novel Flashfire, Leslie is a middle-aged blonde Caucasian, running towards plumpness. In the film, she is Jennifer Lopez.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Parker. See Lighter and Softer below.
  • Agony of the Feet: When the hitman is attempting to suffocate Parker with the shower curtain, Parker is able to break his grip by stamping his cowboy boot down hard on the hitman's instep.
  • Bad Habits: Parker dresses as a priest for the first heist.
  • Bavarian Fire Drill: Milander and his crew stage a fake fire at the auction, then turn up dressed as firefighters. This allows them to take control of the situation, exclude everyone else from the scene, and then loot the auction before the real firefighters turn up.
  • The Can Kicked Him: During the fight with the hitman in the hotel, Parker slams the hitman across the head with the lid from the cistern, causing him to fall and smash his head into the bathtub.
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  • The Caper: One in the beginning, second at the end, and a third one to mess with the second.
  • Chairman of the Brawl: Parker uses a stool to battle, knock down, pin and interrogate Hardwicke's brother.
    "...And you'll have the posthumous humiliation of having been killed by a chair."
  • Crazy-Prepared: Parker, to the extent that he breaks into his enemy's hideout and hides his own guns in there in case he needs them later.
  • Damsel in Distress: Leslie Rogers seizes the Idiot Ball by going to the hideout and nearly bollixing Parker's play.
  • Disney Villain Death: The hitman is kicked off a balcony by Parker. A long shot shows him falling, but another building blocks any shot of him hitting the ground.
  • Ear Ache: Carlson gets his ear shot off when Parker deflects Ross' shotgun in the back of the getaway car.
  • Establishing Character Moment: During the opening heist, Parker deals with a panicking security guard by calmly talking him down.
  • Feet-First Introduction: The first shot of Parker is of his feet emerging from his car. The camera slowly moves up his body as he takes a case out of the boot, before finally revealing his face.
  • Flat "What": After Leslie finds out that Parker is up to something and offers to help him with his criminal activities:
    Parker: Take off your clothes.
    Leslie: ....What?
  • Footprints of Muck: Leslie notices that her mother's dog is tracking bloody footprints across the kitchen floor. She has to clean them up without the cop she is talking to noticing.
  • Good Samaritan: An elderly couple see Parker lying by the side of the road, stop and take him to the hospital. At the end of the movie he gives them a lot of money to reward them for it. Since Parker disappeared right after he arrived in the hospital, the couple came to believe that he was an angel sent by God to test them and now they are rewarded for being Good Samaritans.
  • Honor Among Thieves: Parker believes that you stay loyal to your partners unless they try to screw your over. Melander and his crew break that rule, steal his money and try to kill him so he has no problem killing them and taking their money. On the other hand, Leslie helped him when he was injured and did not betray him so gave her a share of the loot even though he could have kept it all for himself with no consequences.
  • Impaled Palm: During the fight with the hitman in the hotel, Parker blocks an attempt to stab him with his hand. The knife goes all the way through his hand and remains there for the remainder of the fight.
  • Informed Ability: The hitman. He should be the best, but we see him killing only a hapless character and he fails to kill Parker after surprising him from the back.
  • It Works Better with Bullets: Parker breaks into Melander's hideout and bends the firing pins on all of the gang's hidden guns he can find. This proves a vital precaution during his final confrontation with the gang.
  • Knife Nut: The hitman sent after Parker and his loved ones.
  • Left for Dead: Parker is shot by the gang, thrown out of moving car and then shot again (twice) before being kicked into a water-filled ditch and left for dead. He survives and comes back for revenge. Melander is furious when he learns that Hardwicke hadn't bothered to confirm Parker was dead before kicking him into the ditch.
  • Lighter and Softer: Parker was a full-on Villain Protagonist in Westlake's novels. The film tones that down greatly, making him a Gentleman Thief Anti-Hero.
  • Lodged-Blade Recycling: During the final fight, Parker stabs Milander in the neck with the ejected clip from his gun. After Milander is dead, he grabs the clip back, slams it into his gun, and uses it to shot Hardwicke.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Leslie, as played by Jennifer Lopez, particularly while in her underwear when Parker orders her to strip so he can check that she's not wired. Parker is loyal to his girlfriend though, and immune to her charms.
  • Mugged for Disguise: Parker knocks out a male nurse and steals his uniform to escape from the hospital.
  • No Honor Among Thieves: Parker refuses to throw in with his partners and pool his share of the loot with them so they can pull a second job. His partners shoot him, take his share of the loot and leave him for dead.
  • Normally, I Would Be Dead Now: Parker gets shot and stabbed to the chest (among other things), but just keeps on going.
  • Race Lift: In the novel Flashfire, Leslie Rodgers is a blonde Caucasian. In the movie she is a Latina played by Jennifer Lopez, with Rodgers being explained as her married name.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: It wasn't the most sane of ideas of his former partners to double-cross him.
  • Scar Survey: Claire conducts a scar survey on Parker's back during a Shower of Love in a flashback while Parker is bleeding to death.
  • Self-Surgery: After escaping from the hospital, Parker uses some of the supplies from his stolen ambulance to patch himself up.
  • Shower of Love: Parker and Clair share an intimate moment in the shower during a flashback while Parker is bleeding to death.
  • Take Off Your Clothes: Parker orders Leslie to strip so he can see she is not wearing a wire.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Arguably Parker; just knocked down an hitman? Forget about him and give him shoulders... Fortunately he is Made of Iron.
  • Unorthodox Holstering: When Parker goes back to visit Norte, he tucks his backup gun into his belt in such a fashion as to allow him to fire it backwards without drawing it. After he allows his main gun to be taken off him, he uses the backup piece to shoot Ernesto in the leg before he can be grabbed from behind.


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