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Film / Stuck

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The theatrical poster should be enough to tell you what you're getting yourself into.

Stuck is a 2007 Black Comedy thriller film directed by Stuart Gordon (of Re-Animator fame). The film's plot was inspired by the true story of the murder of Gregory Glenn Biggs and sadly it was the final film Gordon directed before his death.

Tom Bardo (Stephen Rea) is having a bad day. He's just been evicted from his apartment, had his unemployment checks discontinued, and gotten screwed out of his job interview by Obstructive Bureaucrats. Now homeless, he is forced to go on foot to a homeless shelter far away by a Jerkass cop.

Meanwhile, retirement home nurse Brandi Boski (Mena Suvari) is having a good day. Her hard work at the home has put her up for a promotion, and she celebrates with her drug dealing boyfriend Rashid (Russell Hornsby) by partying, getting drunk, and getting high. While driving home, Brandi crashes into Tom. Though she initially decides to get Tom help, she becomes afraid of being arrested and instead drives home and leaves him in her garage to slowly die, hoping the problem will take care of itself. Unfortunately, Tom won’t die that easy...



  • Alas, Poor Villain: Tom is shown to feel this way towards Brandi after she is burned alive.
  • Asshole Victim: Rashid.
  • Ax-Crazy: Brandi, eventually.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Tom at the end reaches his breaking point after being abused the entire movie when Brandi and Rashid try to kill him.
  • Cosmic Plaything: Tom Bardo, who, over the course of one day, gets kicked out into the streets and is left homeless and jobless. And then he gets hit by Brandi and spends most fo the movie horribly injured and suffering in her garage.
  • Crazy Homeless People: Subverted cleverly by Sam, who is introduced in an ominous manner, but quickly establishes himself as one of the nicest characters in the film.
  • Disposable Vagrant: Deconstructed. Brandi and Rashid use this trope to make it easier for them to let Tom suffer, and later, easier to kill him.
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  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Tom is able to escape with his life and is rescued, and it is implied that, based on the testimonials of Brandi’s Latino neighbors, the police will not arrest him for Brandi and Rashid’s deaths.
  • Eye Scream:
    • Tom'ss right eye is left bloodshot after the car accident.
    • Tom stabs Rashid in the eye with a pen when Rashid attempts to murder him.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Brandi starts out as a good natured, hardworking and responsible young woman, but her immoral choices and inability to take responsibility for her actions causes her to become a murderous and Ax-Crazy psycho.
  • Fatal Flaw: Brandi’s inability to accept responsibility for her actions.
  • Gorn: Tom's wounds are not easy to look at.
  • Guile Hero: Tom uses his ingenuity to figure out ways to call for help, and, when that doesn’t work, comes up with creative ways to escape on his own.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: Subverted. Tom has Brandi at his mercy after she tried to burn her alive, and lights a match to ignite the gasoline she spread as she begs him to help her. However, he reconsiders and blows out the match. Brandi immediately tries to shoot him, igniting the gasoline and causing her to burn alive.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Implied. The Latino man who refused to allow his wife and son to rescue Tom is shown as one of the neighbors rescuing him from the fire, implying that he had a change of heart.
  • Karmic Death: Brandi tries to shoot Tom after he spares her life, and ignites the gasoline she had spread while trying to burn him alive, resulting in her burning to death while Tom escapes.
  • Never My Fault: Brandi places the blame for the accident entirely on Tom, and refuses to acknowledge that maybe the whole mess was caused by her both being heavily intoxicated while driving and talking in the cell phone. She even has the gall to ask Tom why he is doing this to her while she beats him with a wooden plank to stop him from pitifully calling out for help.
  • Nice Guy: Tomis kind and polite to everyone he meets, even those who really don't deserve it. Later, when he has Brandi at his mercy, he decides to spare her life rather than take revenge on her.
  • Obstructive Bureaucrat: The very passive aggressive employees Tom meets at the employment center, who screw him out of a job interview by making him wait in line rather than confirm he has an appointment, and later have him fill out the same form again to get another job interview since they can’t find him in their computer system (it’s implied they lied so they could go home early).
  • Paper Tiger: Rashid is nowhere near as tough and dangerous as he pretends to be. However, he is by no means harmless.
  • Scary Black Man:
    • Subverted with Sam, who is introduced ominously, but proves to be one of the nicest characters in the film.
    • Rashid puts on the image of being a tough gangster with no qualms about murder, but quickly proves to be out of his depth.
  • Shrinking Violet: Tom.
  • Slowly Slipping Into Evil: Brandi does more and more morally questionable things to cover up hitting Tom with her car until she finally Jumps Off The Slippery Slope and crosses the Moral Event Horizon.