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Improbable Aiming Skills / Film

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Improbable Aiming Skills in movies.


  • 9: Scoring a direct hit on the propellers of an attacking robotic bird in flight? With a thrown scissor blade? Respect.
  • In Brave, Merida hits perfect bullseyes every time, not only splitting one of her opponents' arrows straight down the middle, but also piercing straight through the target.
  • Frozen has a villain who can shoot a small chain holding up a chandelier high up using a crossbow that is being held by someone else, and the aiming was done in just a split second.
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  • Kubo and the Two Strings: Beetle proves he can be a valuable asset to the team by performing the Robin Hood arrow split several times in succession, and claims it was the first time he'd used a bow at least since losing his memory to a curse.
  • In Disney's Robin Hood, Robin splits his opponent's arrow. With an arrow he deflected mid-flight with a second shot (after his first was interfered with). With both the deflected and the deflecting arrow being improvised bits of stick half-broken in the middle. And a bow made of a green stick and pieces of skin. And standing on stilts with a giant fake beak strapped to his face. While singing the Chinese National Anthem backwards (actually this last part is not true).
  • Joked with in Treasure Planet, where Dr. Doppler (who doesn't appear to have held a gun before) manages to shoot and hit his mark exactly.
    Captain Amelia: Did you actually aim for that?
    Dr. Doppler: You know, actually, I did.
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  • Zootopia: One of the Big Bad's minions was able to shoot an otter through the open window of a moving vehicle at night, and later was able to shoot a black jaguar standing in a darkened room, through a partially open window, also a night.


In General:

  • Pretty much any Hollywood depiction of Robin Hood, ever.
    • Robin was no doubt relatively handy with a bow, but in reality you can't shoot a hangman's rope with a longbow and wooden arrows from 50 metres away on demand (no, nor can they split an arrow every single time, sorry). The longbow was fearsome as a weapon of war because of its range and armour-penetration, not its accuracy — for that, the English had tens of thousands of peasants shooting at armies of Frenchmen.
    • It's not just Hollywood: several of the ballads have Robin performing feats such as splitting willow wands in two or shooting a fleeing man at a distance of a mile while on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge. He is also depicted as having the ability to fire an arrow at a bullseye, then to fire a second arrow at the exact same spot resulting in the second arrow splitting the first arrow into pieces...At over 500 meters away. Such a thing has been performed by a few people nowadays but only at close range. Anyone who's tried their hand at archery can tell you how difficult it is to even fire an arrow straight, and how improbable it would be to even fire an arrow over 50 meters, let alone 500 meters, or a mile.
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    • Parodied in Robin Hood: Men in Tights when Robin fires six arrows to pin a mook to a tree by his clothing.
  • Ridiculously fast and accurate shooting was one of the standard features of Spaghetti Westerns and one of the things that distinguished them from standard American films. Ironically, Clint Eastwood's ability to Quick Draw a handgun, shoot, and kill any number of men in any fight without missing a shot — or being hit in return — was seen by some critics as making his films more realistic (that is, gritty and rugged) than the plausible shooting skills of a John Wayne, Glenn Ford, Jimmy Stewart, or Randolph Scott film.
    • This was subverted in Unforgiven, where Gene Hackman's character explains that a true gunman must sacrifice speed for accuracy. In the end, Eastwood's character wins only by shooting carefully at close range.
    • Speaking of John Wayne, in his final film he specifically disavows this trope, noting that he owes his reputation as a shootist to an unflinching readiness to kill his opponent, not fancy quickdraw skills or even accuracy.
    • Parodied in Blazing Saddles, when The Waco Kid shoots the guns out of the hands about ten Mooks in two seconds, and sets off a dynamite charge by shooting it from sniper-rifle range.

Specific Movies:

  • Christie in Alien: Resurrection has a knack for ricochets... and spectacularly fails to hit an alien climbing towards him in a straight line.
  • American Ultra doesn't have too many outlandish moments of gunplay, save for one that was featured in the promotional trailer: lead hero Mike Howell hurls a frying pan into the air, fires at it from below, causing it to reflect and hit someone who was standing behind him. Basically shooting perpendicular. "Oh... the old... frying pan-bullet trick..."
  • In The Stinger from Aquaman (2018), Black Manta sits up in an improvised hospital bed, in a Conspiracy Theorist's room, having fought the hero and spent an undisclosed amount of time unconscious on a raft, with one eye covered in bandages, and immediately flings a knife into the middle of a String Theory wall and hits a question-mark silhouette of Aquaman. If he'd had aim like that during the actual fight, the movie could have been considerably shorter.
  • Relentlessly spoofed in the Austin Powers movies. There are some scenes where Austin fires around two or three shots, resulting in around 20 bad guys falling down dead at once.
  • The Joker in Tim Burton's Batman (1989) hits the speeding Batwing...with a handgun with a 3 foot long barrel. In a similar vein, Batman manages to completely miss the Joker while strafing him with twin mounted machine guns earlier in the scene.
  • Beverly Hills Cop III treats us to a masterful display of marksmanship as a character bulls-eyes a gunman in a theme park skyride gondola (with a shot grouping smaller than two feet) at a range of at least 100 feet with at least a dozen rounds - using a 4.5" barreled MP 5K firing on full automatic without stock or bracing.
  • Blackhat: Hathaway is very handy with a pistol for a hacker who has spent the last few years in jail. The film is silent on his previous firearms experience, but even if he was a shooter, he would have missed a lot of range time.
  • The Boondock Saints: Immediately after the Dynamic Entry into the Russian mobsters' hotel room, the Sibling Team happens to get caught up in some rope, and then draw weapons and outfire nine mobsters. Of course, they do this all while dual wielding 9mm pistols, upside down, and spinning, after having a good eight foot drop. And they don't miss. Lampshaded, multiple times, afterwards.
  • The Bourne Series:
    • The Bourne Supremacy features an instantly-fatal shot against a human target at around 200 meters. The target is not only moving away, she's inside a car travelling at about 20 mph, the shot is through traffic and the sniper hits on his first shot from a standing position.
    • In The Bourne Legacy, Cross' skills surpass the aforementioned shot. When he's up against a Predator drone about half a kilometer away, he manages to down it with nothing but a rifle. The drone's operators are rather shocked when they're told that the man they're trying to take out is only armed with a high-powered rifle. Of course, legacy makes it clear that Bounre and the rest of the Treadstone agents, along with the other projects' agents, are explicitly enhanced both physically and mentally via retroviral engineering.
  • Bring Me the Head of the Machine Gun Woman: The Machine Gun Woman displays some incredible aiming skills through the course of the movie. At one point, she casually shoots someone who is behind without turning around: she just points the gun behind her and fires without looking.
  • Spoofed in the comedy Bullshot (1983). "By rapidly calculating the pigeon's angle of elevation in the reflection of your monocle, then subtracting the refractive index of its lens, I positioned myself at a complementary access... and fired. It was no challenge at all."
  • In one of his movies, Charlie Chaplin throws a rock after a fleeing bad guy and knocks off his hat from three blocks away.
  • Yancey Cravat in Cimarron puts a scare in a bad guy by drawing his pistol and, while firing from the hip, grazing the bad guy's ear. Later, he draws and fires from the hip again and kills that bad guy from the other end of a large church tent, while among a crowd of people.
  • In Crocodile Dundee, Mick Dundee can hit just about anything he wants precisely. Shown by his knife throw against one of the punk kids and later killing off a security camera feed with a stone.
    • The knife was a bit risky, but he lined up the stone for several seconds before throwing it. Unusually good, but not magically so.
    • Sue Charlton in the climax of the second film, shooting dead a drug lord from some distance away, on the first shot, when she's probably never touch a gun in her life.
      • In fact, she uses a rifle in the first movie, firing a shot at Mick's feet to show him that she knows how to use it, and isn't afraid to do so.
    • At the end of the first movie, the limousine driver downing a crook with an improvised boomerang
    • He threw a can of food at a purse thief from a full NYC block away, and conked him on the head. On a single try. In a VERY heavily crowded sidewalk. And the thief was zig-zaggily running away at top speed. After throwing the first can, he never even thought about throwing a second can as he knew one would be enough. Cue applause.
  • In the 1954 Davey Crockett On The Mississippi Crockett subverts this. Crockett is challenged to a trick shooting contest in a tavern. Crockett walks around, carefully lining up pans and pictures and other objects, then takes a shot with 'Becky' his famous long rifle over his back with a mirror. It does bounce around until he apparently catches the bullet with his teeth. He later reveals he had the bullet in his mouth the whole time and wasn't really worried about the ricochets.
  • Dawn of the Dead (2004) offers a borderline example with the character of Andy, who proves to be very accurate with zombie-killing headshots. Of course, the man owns a gun store, and is shooting from the safety of his roof using a high-powered rifle with a scope. And there's the fact that there are so many zombies, it's like trying to drain the ocean with a teaspoon... Averted in the original movie, where the two SWAT guys are accurate shooters whereas the civilian helicopter pilot is inaccurate and panicky, until he has time to practise under the tutelage of one of the SWAT men.
  • In the second grade Marc Dacascos movie, DNA, the movie's climax involves the main character diving off a cliff into the water, holding a small rocket launcher, turning around mid-air and blowing the monster to pieces with one single shot. Granted, it was from point-blank range, but considering the circumstances, it's still pretty impressive.
  • In Dragonheart, Brother Gilbert finds out that he is naturally a perfect shot with a bow and arrow. This puts him directly into a moral conflict as he's a priest and abhors killing, but the villagers need to be protected from the evil soldiers. He eventually gets around this by using non-lethal shots and triggering traps.
    Gilbert of Glockenspur: [shoots a man in the rear end] Turn the other cheek, brother.
  • In Elysium, one of Carlyle's bodyguard droids throws a grenade almost carelessly to the side and still lands it under one of the cars Max's crew use.
  • Enemy at the Gates: The Nazi major in particular has some insane skills, including the ability to shoot through a piece of string the hero is trying to use to retrieve his out-of-reach rifle. Also at another point, a few Russians are jumping a hole in a run down building. When one soldier is in mid-air the sniper nails him right in the head! Not only is the shot impossible, but the sniper wouldn't be dumb enough to even attempt it!
  • The Grammaton Clerics in Equilibrium are masters of Gun Kata­­, which the film states is in part a mathematical system for determining aiming angles with the highest probability to hit. Cleric Preston displays this repeatedly, usually taking out a half-dozen or more opponents with robotic precision.
  • The Fifth Element: Major Dallas displays exceptional aim when taking out sundry Mangalores on the flying hotel, starting with a triple headshot from across the auditorium, proceeding on to take out at least seven bad guys with a single burst of full-auto, without harming any civilians, and finishing up with a William Tell style headshot of the lead mangalore, over the head of one of the hostages. To be fair though, he actually appeared to have to aim that last one. And his gun didn't even have a replay option.
  • Friday the 13th: Jason Voorhees tends to prefer melee weapons, but give him a crossbow or something like that, and prepare to be called "Snake" the rest of your life. In Freddy vs. Jason, he actually throws his machete through a guy's chest as he's running away from him (and it somehow travels completely straight, like a Peyton Manning bullet pass, even though it's almost, if not completely, impossible to throw a blade like a football). All in all, it must suck to know you basically got sniped by a literally-retarded zombie.
  • On display at multiple points in Gang of Roses. One particular example is during the rescue of Kim, where a gun belt gets shoot of on of the deputies without harming him in any way.
  • G.I. Joe films:
    • G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra: Quite literally as Scarlett's crossbow has the ability to take video of her opponent, and from that image is able to select where she wants the target to be hit, so that no matter what she aims at, it will hit that exact spot on the target. She doesn't even have to aim in the right direction; they're rocket-powered arrows!
    • In G.I. Joe: Retaliation, Snake Eyes can shoot thrown shuriken with an Uzi without missing a shuriken or hitting the thrower, despite the fact that they're in a straight hallway and Storm Shadow is at best four meters away.
  • In Hitman, the film of the game series, Agent 47 scores an impressive streak of headshots with his pistols during the hotel escape scene.
  • Parodied in Hot Shots! Part Deux, with Topper throwing a grenade right into the mouth of a Mook, and some Mooks carrying marksmanship targets over different parts of their body, and the Robin-Hooded chicken and ...
  • In House of Flying Daggers Jin fires off four arrows in quick succession at the four soldiers attacking Xiao Mei. Not only does each of them hit the target, said target is a spot where the arrow will stick in their clothes without hurting them since the whole thing is a setup for him to earn Xiao Mei's trust. They also all manage to impact at about the same time, which is pretty unlikely. In this movie, anyone who throws the flying daggers never misses the mark. They even went through the trouble of using Wanted style improbable physics.
  • In The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1, Gale and Katniss shoot down two Capitol bombers with nothing more than bows and arrows. Possibly justified in that the bombers are flying at extremely low altitude and are making a second strafing run effectively head-on. That is, they don't have to lead the bombers as much in order to actually hit them. When they did hit, they used the red arrows.
  • Subverted in Inglourious Basterds. One lone Jewish girl escapes the Nazi soldiers who kill her family and starts running towards the hills. Colonel Hans Landa sees her, and aims a small pistol at her. He carefully takes aim, even though by then she's much too far away for him to hit, and just before she runs over the hills and out of sight, he yells BANG!, and puts away his gun.
    "Au revoir, Shoshana!"
  • In the movie version of I, Robot, Bridget Moynahan shoots a robot attacking Will Smith with her eyes closed. He's less than happy when he finds out... but, "it worked, didn't it?" Not to mention Will Smith pulling out two guns and hitting his targets while jumping off the back of a moving motorcycle.
  • In Jack Reacher, the fact that such aiming skills are so improbable is a key plot point - all of the amazing complications super-snipers overcome are things real snipers are trained to avoid. Reacher's investigation of a former Army sniper's shooting spree reveals that he wasn't skilled enough to make the shots, but was skilled enough not to fire from such a difficult position.note 
  • James Bond:
    • Francisco Scaramanga, the Big Bad of The Man with the Golden Gun has his iconic Golden Gun chambered in a caliber of 4.2mm. A caliber that small (.165) has no stopping power to speak of unless you hit a vital point guaranteed to be an instant kill, which he always does.
    • Doctor Kaufmann, a Professional Killer in Tomorrow Never Dies claims to possess this, boasting that he could shoot James Bond from the other end of the room and make the bullet wound look like Bond had committed suicide. Bond outwits and kills him before he has a chance to demonstrate his technique. Kaufmann claims that his experience as a professor of forensic medicine is how he is able to make a far-away shot look like suicide. How that helps his hand-eye coordination is unclear, although, presumably, he could add powder burns after the fact.
    • In Spectre, during the final battle, Bond manages to shoot down and destroy Blofeld's helicopter with only a few shots of his Walther PPK from a few hundred meters away, at night time from a moving boat.
  • In King Kong (2005), Jimmy, who has never handled a gun before, manages to shoot several huge wetas off of Jack, who is moving. With a Tommygun. And he didn't kill Jack either. The characters didn't look nearly shocked enough.
  • Kiss Kiss Bang Bang: In the climactic car-chase/shoot-out (which involves a coffin containing the body of the victim, a delivery truck, and an overpass), Harry, the coffin, and a revolver go skidding over the bridge: the coffin snags on the railings, partially open with the victim' hand hanging out; Harry manages to grab the corpse's hand and save himself, and then, with the other hand, plucks the gun out of midair and shoots the big bad right in the heart.
  • In Land of the Dead, Charlie, the mildly-retarded sidekick, has a "good eye," as he puts it. He can shoot a dwarf in the head behind cover from across a room in the middle of a riot. And he nails a zombie in the face by firing inches past a teammate's head, though he does complain that it was a little off-center. When offered an automatic weapon that can fire 14 rounds per second, he just says "I don't normally need that many."
  • Last of the Mohicans does this near the end of the final battle. Hawkeye charges into a small group of the enemy, shooting two Kentucky rifles simultaneously from the hip — and hitting a separate enemy with each shot.
    • Earlier, he made some highly accurate long-range shots on running Hurons, when protecting the messenger. But of course, he is the "Longue Carabine".
  • Legolas also demonstrates a truly astounding aim with his longbow in The Lord of the Rings — of course, improbable skill with a bow is a feature commonly credited to elves in most fantasy settings, and since they usually live for a long time, with aging not being (much of) a problem, it usually makes some sense. In both the movies and in the novels Elves have spectacular vision: at one point, Legolas apparently has no problem spotting a band of Uruk-Hai which are out of eyeshot for Aragorn (and the viewer).
    • The couple of times he's shown pulling a multishot on screen, it's at point blank range against a large target (presumably because a larger beast needs a larger wound).
    • Subverted during the Helm's Deep siege in The Two towers when he inexplicably fails to kill one lousy Uruk torch-bearer twice, both times hitting his shoulders. The Uruk kept running.
    • This is taken to even greater extremes in The Hobbit. In the second film, one elf is seen shooting another arrow fired by an orc right out of the air
      • In one instance, Legolas resorts to throwing a sword when he runs out of arrows.
    • Faramir, the Captain of the Rangers of Ithilien, never misses his target with his longbow. His more impressive shots include killing a mûmakil rider with a single arrow while the mûmakil is charging, and hitting a Nazgûl-controlled Fellbeast while it's in the air and injuring it at a vulnerable spot. The Fellbeast is in sufficient pain that it immediately flies away from Osgiliath, so Faramir's accuracy prevented a Nazgûl from snatching the One Ring and harming Frodo.
  • In the Disney Channel Original Movie The Luck of the Irish, Kyle is a popular teenager mostly due to his incredible knack at basketball. He never misses the basket even if it's a deflection shot with his fist as he's flying through the air. It turns out he's incredibly lucky due to the fact that he's a half-leprechaun and wears the family's lucky coin on his neck. After his coin is swiped by one of the Big Bad's Mooks, he finds out that he absolutely sucks at basketball... and then he gets better at it by the end without the coin.
    • He also hits a sliotar (ball used in hurling) with the hurley as if he's playing baseball and manages to knock the sliotar into the opposite goal. However, he's wearing the lucky coin during this, so it's justified.
  • Downplayed in Mad Max: Fury Road. Trying to hit a moving spotlight at night, Max uses a long range rifle with a telescopic sight, takes his time lining up two shots and misses both times — Furiosa takes over, uses Max as a brace, instructs him not to move/breathe, and carefully makes the improbable shot.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • Inverted in the Iron Man movie, where a mook in a tank picks off Iron Man while he's engaged in a dogfight. The mooks with firearms are also pretty sharp, if only to demonstrate the imperviousness of Iron Man's phlebotinum suit.
      • Inverted in the other direction as well. Iron Man relies on a super efficient targeting system to headshot multiple badguys holding Human Shields rather than just eyeing it.
    • Played straight in Iron Man 3 with Rhodey nailing some difficult targets using just a pistol, such as a distant light and some cables.
    • Peggy Carter in Captain America: The First Avenger makes some amazing shots. One of them is putting a bullet through the head of a Nazi driving in a car at least a block away. Also Cap himself and his ludicrous ricochet shots with the shield. Done even better in the sequel, which also adds the Winter Soldier and his near-magical knack for sniping well-concealed people accurately—in one case through a brick wall—as well as Black Widow, who shoots the Soldier accurately (though doesn't manage to injure him) based on his shadow.
    • In The Avengers, Hawkeye doesn't need to look at what he's shooting at, hitting flying Chitauri troops while eyeing up something else entirely. He also perfectly arcs an explosive arrow into one of the Helicarrier's rotors...from the opposite side of the Helicarrier. Played for Laughs in Captain America: Civil War, in which he complains that his flawless aim makes golf really boring.
  • McQ. At the beginning of the movie the title character shoots a hitman fleeing from him at an impressive distance with a six-inch magnum revolver, much to the awe of a witness. However this crack shooting is not carried on in other scenes, where admittedly he's being shot back at. However when McQ gets his hands on an Ingram MAC-10, the question of accuracy becomes moot.
  • Mystery Men:
    • The Blue Raja can hit pretty much anything with a fork.
    • Also the Spleen demonstrates his keen sharpshooting. If you want to know what he uses for ammo, just pull his finger.
  • In Now You See Me, when cornered by Rhodes, Jack Wilder fights him off first by flinging burning flash paper at him and, when that doesn't work, throwing playing cards.
  • Subverted in Orphan by the end of the movie when Max picks up a gun that Kate had dropped earlier and aims it at Esther, but ends up shooting the ice they're standing on instead.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean:
    • Norrington shoots a rope to drop Elizabeth into the ocean and stop her coming back into mortal danger. He does this from at least thirty feet away, with an 18th-century pistol, in the dark, and he gets it on the first try.
    • This trait is Jack Sparrow's specialty. While his sword fighting skills are mediocre at best, he's a monster when a gun is put in his hand. Able to shoot men straight through the heart if he wants.
  • Quigley from Quigley Down Under is on the verge. His rifle shots are just this side of impossible, but doable for a highly-trained marksman with a custom-built rifle (which Quigley is).
  • Red Hill: At one point Jimmy performs a Boom, Headshot! on Earl. Earl is on top of a building, behind cover, 50 to 100 metres behind Jimmy, who is on horseback, firing a handgun, in the dark. It takes one bullet to take out Earl.
  • Robin Hood of Robin Hood Czwarta Strzała shoots an apple off his own head.
  • Averted in the original RoboCop (1987). Robo can pull off all kinds of amazing feats of ballistics, including neutering a would-be rapist by shooting through his victim's skirt, but it's all programming — the original Murphy couldn't shoot for beans, and after a Directive 4 malfunction takes his targeting systems offline, neither can Robo.
  • Robot Jox: Subverted: Tex, a retired Jock, is famous for a match where he defeated a technologically far superior Russian opponent with a shot that precisely hit a weak spot he had no way of knowing about. When asked about this, he dismissed it as being pure blind luck. note 
  • Humphrey Bogart reminds how flippin' awesome it is to be an American in the WWII film Sahara (1943), where a German aircraft does two flybys of our heroes, and is unable to hit the broad side of a tank in the middle of the desert, while Bogie, on the other hand, can shoot a single plane down, despite it flying at high speeds at a great distance, with just one shot of his sidearm. Wow.
  • In Seven (1979), Cowboy is shoot Butterfly from on top of a hill using a six-shooter while Butterfly is several hundred yards away, in the ocean, on a surfboard. And kills him with a single shot.
  • Seven Ways from Sundown: Seven is a remarkable shot with a rifle, but Flood is truly extraordinary. In the opening scene, he kills someone with a single shot, despite firing with a handgun, behind him, from the back of a galloping horse, from more than 20 metres, in the dark.
  • Subverted in Shaun of the Dead, where the gang has to team up in order to reliably use a rifle "that actually works". The scene plays out exactly like the earlier one when Shaun and Ed are playing Time Splitters 2 at home. Their aim does improve, though.
  • Sebastian Moran in Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows is called one of Europe's six best marksmen, and makes good on that description. For example, the Meinhart assassination took place at 650 yards, with a 7-8 mph side wind. He also manages to graze a moving man at about 100 yards with an unfamiliar rifle, while at a dead sprint, and kill another at 150 with an open wound in his gut. Watson too. He was able to shoot a CANNON at his counterpart and it saved Holmes' hide.
  • Used heavily in Shooter, especially the helicopter scene. There are snipers good enough to find a target, adjust for wind and drop, and fire in less than a couple seconds, but there aren't any live ones that would try to hit the rotary blade on a helicopter.
    • He was aiming for the engine/motor housing for the rotary blade, a pronounced feature on most heavy helicopters, and after several shots he hit it. It still boarders on improbable but it's closer to reality than the scenario described above.
  • Subverted in Starsky & Hutch when Hutch is held at gunpoint Starsky offers to take a shot at his captor with Hutch's permission. Despite the fact that Hutch vehemently refuses to give permission, Starsky spins around and takes the shot but misses wildly and hits their boss instead.
  • Star Trek:
    • In Star Trek: Insurrection, the crew need to shoot down small and fast flying drones that are teleporting the Baku. They almost never miss. Phasers being directed-energy weapons and thus effectively Hitscan probably helps.
    • Other places in the Star Trek canon have mentions of Federation phaser rifles having various targeting assistance features, such as stabilizers, scanners, and other features (which tend to make them unreliable in extended field service, but are damn sweet for short ops like this one). All that technological aid in hitting the target makes you wonder how they ever miss.
    • Referenced in the reboot when Scotty compares the concept of transwarp beaming (i.e. transporting to a starship moving at warp) to "trying to hit a bullet with another bullet, whilst wearing a blindfold, riding a horse." And Prime!Spock pulls it off, using the equations Scotty developed in the prime timeline.
  • Star Wars:
  • In Sukiyaki Western Django the leader of the Whites hits the leader of the Reds in the torso several times from well beyond the effective range of his revolver. He does it by shooting it well into the wind (he's firing at almost a right angle to direct line of sight) so that the bullets will arc back.
  • In Support Your Local Sheriff James Garner is asked to demonstrate his gun handling skills and manages to both subvert and play the trope straight. He begins by tossing a washer into the air and shooting at it with his pistol, then claiming the bullet went through the hole. The skeptical townsfolk ask him to repeat the stunt, although for the second shot a piece of tape is applied to the washer. Guess where the second bullet goes?
    "(gulp) I hope you didn't take no offense at anything we may have said earlier.."
    • Later on he drives a nail into a board by shooting it.
  • Played straight in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, in which Arnie manages to hold off an entire army of cops... with a minigun... without even injuring one. His kill counter even has a decimal place that shows 0. After all, John Connor told him not to kill anyone.
    • This was ironic, since in the original The Terminator Arnie seemed to have flunked from the Imperial Stormtrooper Shooting Academy; he needed a target-pistol with laser-sighting, just to hit someone at point-blank range; and he took out an entire bar-full of other people with his Uzi while missing his intended target, since his aim was so bad. Of course it was a different timeline, so perhaps the Terminators became more accurate; but still he was exactly the same Terminator to all other appearances.
  • The Blaxploitation film Three the Hard Way has the heroes with glorified cap pistols defeating the Mooks who have fully automatic machine guns.
  • In Tin Cup, Roy has a knack for this; when he's on, he can hit shots that even the best pros think are impossible. Of course, they think that way for a reason, and Roy has learned the hard way in the past that low-percentage shots tend to fail more often than not.
  • In Tombstone, despite most of the fight scenes featuring close range shooting still resulting in misses, on both sides, Wyatt Earp manages a shot to the throat while both are on horseback, Wyatt leaning off his saddle and shooting from under the horse's neck. This is achieved with a single bullet from a pistol that in an earlier scene required six shots to hit one of the Cowboy's once.
  • Parodied in Top Secret! with Scary Black Man Chocolate Mousse, who at one point manages the extraordinary feat of firing a machine gun at full-auto into a melee and hitting only the bad guys.
  • The Arnold Schwarzenegger movie True Lies is full of this trope and enemies who attended the Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy as well. One scene in particular stands out: Arnold's character is escaping down a snow covered hill by sliding down it on his back and using a pistol to take out pursuing enemies on skis, at night; the aforementioned enemy marksmanship can be seen here as well.
    • Commando had a scene when Arnie's storming the villain's mansion and is picking off henchmen with seemingly no effort.
      • Parodied when The Nostalgia Critic reviewed the movie. When covering the aforementioned scene, the Critic demonstrates how this trope is in effect when he joins in with his gun, and continues killing henchmen no matter how random the shots he makes are, even when he's just flailing the gun around wildly. It finally culminates in the Critic putting the gun against his own head, pulls the trigger... and kills another henchman.
  • Wanted. Improbable Aiming Skills: The Movie. How bad? Throwing a curveball with bullets, shooting the wings off of insects, shooting down an enemy's bullet intentionally, and on and on. Bullets fired from guns don't need to go in straight lines. With a flick of the wrist, an assassin can get a bullet to swerve around an obstacle and hit a target directly behind said obstacle. Yes, that means they can shoot around corners without relying on ricochets to change the trajectory. The most egregious example, hands-down, comes in the climax. A member of the Fraternity (a secret society of assassins that decides who to kill by studying textiles) has decided that the abilities wielded by the assassins are too dangerous in the hands of mortals. This rebellious member fires a single bullet that travels around the room in a circular path, killing most of the remaining members, and comes back around, hitting the person who fired the bullet. Rule of Cool and all that.
    • In the original comic series, Wesley is an impossibly good shot beyond any rational measure (it's a superpower). In the first comic he is forced to shoot the wings off of flies, in the end he does so by closing his eyes and shooting wildly around the room. Needless to say he succeeds. His father is also murdered by an unseen gunman who shoots him from "two cities away". Like the movie the plot of the comics is based entirely on Rule of Cool.
    • It's just because Timur Bekmambetov does what he wants. (If you're curious, he directed the movies Night Watch and Day Watch, both of which were also largely founded on Rule of Cool.)
    • This is taken to its logical extreme in the comic. Wesley and his father are literally perfect shots; at the end of comic, Wesley's father forces him to execute him, because a few weeks ago he missed a target (with a pistol) at about half a mile, chalking it up to old age. He can't imagine being less than the absolute best.
  • X-Men Film Series:
    • It's amazing how Cyclops shoots precisely through such a small visor.
    • Agent Zero's main power in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
    • In The Wolverine, Narada hits several running Yakuza at incredible distances during the Chase Scene.
    • In Deadpool (2016), Wade Wilson ends up forgetting his ammo bag. During the bridge shootout, he only has twelve rounds, six in each pistol, and he tells the enemy mooks that some of them "will have to share." He makes good on this, delivering multiple headshots, including two while flipping through the air, another blind and shooting between his legs, two more Offhand Backhand shots where he's not even looking at his targets, and to top it all off, he scores a triple headshot on the last three mooks. In fact, the only time he misses is when he's shooting at one enemy who is riding a motorcycle, who is actually Ajax, and the missed shots are Foreshadowing that he has enhanced reflexes that let him dodge bullets.


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