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Examples of O.O.C. Is Serious Business in film.


Animated

  • BIONICLE 3: Web of Shadows: Matau, Jerkass Plucky Comic Relief whose bickering drove team-leader Vakama to a Face–Heel Turn, gives a serious "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight speech to try to win him back, even dropping the Chutespeek slang he always talks in. Vakama first refuses to believe his sincerity, but eventually gives in and returns to the good side.
  • In An Extremely Goofy Movie, Max is convinced that he wants to transfer schools after being defeated by his own dad at his best event because there's "only room for one Goof." PJ is devastated at the news—temporarily relapsing to the insecure and worrisome personality he'd just broken out of— and Beret Girl tells Max that he can't admit defeat, but nothing helps... until Bobby, the Plucky Comic Relief, in a dead-serious, emotionally-charged tone, gives Max a Rousing Speech.
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    • In the previous movie, Goofy is initially in catatonic shock when he discovers that Max had been manipulating him into going to Los Angeles, which gives way into legitimate anger when Max wastes a second chance to prove himself worthy of trust.
  • Frozen:
    • The difference between Anna, the Plucky Girl and Anna, the Princess. Notice her commanding tone when she demands her horse be brought to her after Elsa runs away. It shows just how important finding and helping her sister is to her.
    • Olaf displays this when he lights a fire to keep a freezing Anna alive. He drops his position as the comic relief (very briefly) to assure her that he knows full well what will happen to him, but that it's worth it for her.
      Anna: Olaf — you're melting!
      Olaf: ...Some people are worth melting for.
  • In Kung Fu Panda, Shifu, after learning that Po can be trained using his Big Eater tendencies, takes him through a series of exercises using food as a motivator, culminating in a long fight over a single dumpling. After Po bests him, he tosses the dumpling right back at Shifu and says, "I'm not hungry."
    • This is actually a very enjoyable example of one and counts as Character Development. Earlier, it has been established that Po binge-eats whenever he was upset (the second movie implying since the trauma with his mother) and thus, his refusal of the dumpling is a sign of his growth in the belief in himself.
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  • In The Lion King, Ed is usually seen giggling and grinning insanely. After Scar turns on the hyenas and is defeated by Simba, Ed is not laughing or grinning. He is visibly pissed. The menacing laugh he DOES let out before the hyenas gang up on Scar only seals the deal.
  • Very notably in South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut, when Kenny takes off his hood to say goodbye after sacrificing himself to an eternity in Hell to Save the World, altering the past to avert a war.
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse: Spider-Ham is considered the Plucky Comic Relief of the group, hailing from a cartoon Spider-Verse, which gives us many moments of him acting, well, just like a cartoon character would. After the team goes to confront him about a recent tragedy and they start talking about similar ones that they've experienced, Spider-Ham is the one to deliver one of the film's most poignant lines, with complete sincerity and tears in his eyes.
    Spider-Ham: Miles, the hardest thing about this job is... you can't always save everybody.
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  • Treasure Planet: When Silver stops trying to sweet-talk The Captain, you know he's serious. She does, too.
    Silver: You heard the boy! Get this blasted heap turned 'round!
  • In Transformers: The Movie, Kup has Seen It All and uses any situation as an excuse to mention some previous adventure of his. When the Autobots see Unicron standing astride the entire planet of Cybertron, Hot Rod asks if this reminds him of yet another one of his war stories. Kup's only response is a quiet, "Nope... Never seen anything like this before."

Live-Action

  • In-Universe in Beyond The Lights. Before deciding to jump off her balcony Noni, a teetotaler, downs an ENTIRE bottle of champagne during the car ride back to her hotel. Disturbingly, her "people" completely miss the huge red flag- and actually seem PROUD that their "girl" is "imbibing"!
  • In Casino Royale (2006), Bond is so pissed off after his initial loss to Le Chiffre in the Poker tournament that he doesn't care if his Vodka Martini is shaken or stirred
    Bond: Vodka Martini.
    Bartender: Shaken or stirred?
    Bond: Do I look like I give a damn?
  • Used to dramatic effect in Deadpool. Wade and Vanessa are both raunchy, snarky goofballs who rarely take anything seriously. When Wade is diagnosed with terminal cancer, Vanessa's switch flips and she immediately takes charge of the situation, rapidly grilling the doctor for options and treatments. Wade, on the other hand, stops cracking wise:
    Wade Wilson: Vanessa's already working through Plans A, B, and C through Z. Me? I'm just trying to memorize the details of her face. Like I'm seeing it for the first time. Or the last.
  • Similarly used in Deadpool 2 to prove there's pure gold buried beneath all that raunchy inane sass. Deadpool's mocking Russel and only barely taking the situation seriously... until he spots the wounds on Russel's neck. He immediately goes quiet, somberly asks "Those guys hurt you?" and goes full Papa Wolf when Russel nods. That's right: Deadpool goes quiet, and it's a clear sign things are going to get out of control very fast.
  • In Downfall, when Speer confesses to Hitler that he never obeyed his order to destroy the country's infrastructure, you'd expect Hitler to start ranting and baying for his blood. Instead, he simply fires him and sends him on his way.
  • In East is East, George is clearly shocked when even The Dutiful Son Maneer sides with the rest of the family against him.
  • Easy A:
    • Marianne is shown to never swear. She constantly uses euphemisms like "rhymes-with-witch", and other gosh-dang-it-to-heck-isms. But when she hears the rumor that Olive gave Marianne's boyfriend Micah chlamydia, Marianne completely loses it, and yells, even screams "That... that BITCH!"
    • Also, Marianne is shown to be a bit snide, condescending, and utterly dedicated to attempting to correct other's supposed sins, but she does it without being out-and-out confrontational. But after she snaps, she full on slaps Olive across the face. Which is most decidedly not a typical Christian value.
  • In Galaxy Quest, Classically Trained Extra Alexander Dane hates being known as a character from a sci-fi series and hates his Catchphrase even more. Every time he says it, he does so in a bored, half-assed monotone. At least, until Quellek, a Thermian who had idolized Dane's character in the show is mortally wounded during the fight against the villains and bleeds to death telling him It Has Been an Honor. In response, Dane delivers his despised catchphrase with complete sincerity for the first time.
    Dane: By Grabthar's hammer... by the suns of Warvan... you shall be... avenged.
  • Gleahan and the Knaves of Industry: Gleahan and Mark have a serious talk about halfway through where Gleahan drops his trademark bravado.
  • In The Great Dictator, Charlie Chaplin opts out of his usual comedic persona in order to deliver a deadly serious speech condemning Nazism and praising humanity's virtues, aimed directly at the audience.
  • Grizzly Man: Werner Herzog's reaction to the audio recording of Timothy Treadwell's death via bear attack. Herzog - a man who, among other things, ate his own shoe as part of a bet, continued an interview after getting shot by a sniper, and threatened to kill both himself and the lead actor of one of his films when the latter threatened to leave the production - is visibly disturbed to the point of tears after listening to it.
  • Harry Potter:
    • In the film of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Harry is running around looking for the diadem. Luna is trying to tell him he needs to ask a ghost, but Harry won't listen. Luna, usually the gentle Cloudcuckoolander, shouts "HARRY POTTER! YOU LISTEN TO ME RIGHT NOW!" Harry, suitably shocked, turns around and listens.
    • In the fifth movie, when Hermione observes that it's kind of exciting breaking the rules, Ron demands "Who are you and what have you done with Hermione Granger?"
  • Tiffany spends almost all of Hellbound: Hellraiser II as The Voiceless. Her only line, when first encountering Dr. Channard in cenobite form, is "Shit!".
  • In the Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen movie It Takes Two (a rip-off of The Parent Trap), the girly girl of the Tomboy and Girly Girl duo is trying her first sloppy joe. After doing so, she claims it's her favorite, "for a durn good reason." After a beat, the camp counselor turns to the girl and asks "Did you just say 'durn?'" Then quickly checks the girl's temperature, clearly fearing an illness.
  • In Kelly's Heroes, Oddball (aptly named) is a tank commander and sort-of proto-Beatnik who goes on about "positive vibes" and sits down for cheese and wine in the middle of a battle when his tank breaks down. The only truly serious moment he has in the whole film is when he's explaining to Kelly just how badly outmatched his tank is against the Tiger tanks.
  • In Kung Fu Hustle, after disposing of the Musical Assassin, the Landlady - who is the loudest and most temperamental person in the movie - wordlessly and calmly threatened Brother Sum with violence if the Axe Gang ever returned to Pig Sty Alley.
  • Manderlay (the sequel to Lars Von Trier's Dogville) features a double-dose of this towards the end. After the freed slaves celebrate their first harvest, they discover that the money they worked so hard to get has been stolen — and it could have only been done with the help of one of the ex-slaves. Following a massive off-screen riot that gets two people killed, Grace finally arrives on the scene to ask questions: Wilhelm, the man usually relied upon to explain things, is too shell-shocked to speak of what happened. This leaves Mark holding the exposition ball; for once, he doesn't bother dithering around with longwinded tangents and provides a straightforward explanation.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
  • In Life With Father, Clarence Day Sr., though well-to-do, insists on economy — he takes the horse trolley to work each day, frequently argues with his wife Vinnie over her casual approach to bookkeeping, and always puts in full days at the office. When his young son arrives to say that Vinnie's cold has become a serious illness, Clarence immediately ends his meeting with a client and shocks his assistant by ordering a cab.
  • In the final scene of Penn & Teller Get Killed, Teller (who has never spoken to this point), finally breaks his silence to ask what the hell is going on.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean:
    • Towards the end of The Curse of the Black Pearl, when Jack shoots Barbossa, Barbossa thinks Jack wasted his shot. Clever viewers can tell from Jack's cold, steely glare that this is not the case; it's the one time in the entire movie that he's not doing something eccentric. As a matter of fact, he's waiting patiently for Will to drop the final piece of cursed gold, with his own blood on it, into the chest.
    • Speaking of Jack acting OOC, it can be hard to tell what is and isn't out of character for a guy whose methods are so mercurial. The only certainty is that anything he does is (virtually) always with the ultimate goal of furthering his own interests.
      Elizabeth: Whose side is Jack on?
      Will: At the moment?
    • Jack gets one at the climax of At World's End after Jones stabs Will through the heart. Jack, who has his self-serving objective literally in the palm of his hand, goes from cruelly gloating over his imminent victory to looking mind-screwed by despair, almost to Heroic BSoD level. It's brief but is big enough to see that his sacrifice afterward makes perfect sense without hefty foreshadowing.
    • In a deleted scene, Jack shows that even he has standards when he solemnly tells Beckett, who is asking about when Jack worked for the East India Trading Company but got on their bad side when he refused to transport slaves, that "People aren't cargo, mate" with none of his usual wackiness.
    • Jack's refusal to turn the ship around to go back for his hat early in Dead Man's Chest is a sign that he's very afraid of the Kraken. When he tells them to leave it behind, his crew looks at him as though he's grown a second head.
      • Jack giving the order to abandon ship when the Pearl is fighting her losing battle against the Kraken. It's well-established just how dearly Jack loves that ship (especially when the compass points back at it when he tries to flee the fight, prompting him to return for a Big Damn Heroes moment). Hearing him declare in a mournful voice when questioned by Gibbs that she's "just a ship" immediately drives home just how dire the situation is and gets everyone moving.
  • Running Scared (1986)
    • A humorous version can be found when the two main characters call for backup. They come out of the building without their pants (having had to give them to the Big Bad of the film), only to find that a huge number of cops — including the SWAT units — have shown up to help.
      Danny Costanzo: I said "one backup"! One!
      Cop: [trying not to laugh] You never called for backup before! We... [barely keeping from laughing] We thought that it was a riot...
    • There's another: When Danny Costanzo (Billy Crystal) soon-to-be-ex gets kidnapped by the Big Bad, Danny (who up until this point has not slowed down the wisecracks for a second) gets a call from the crook letting him know his girl's in trouble:
      Danny Costanzo: (in a dangerous, low tone) You hurt her, you'll never be dead enough.
  • Scrooged: With each of the ghosts, Frank has a moment which causes him to break from his Deadpan Snarker attitude.
    • In the past, he cries when his mother wishes his childhood self a Merry Christmas.
    • In the present, he sees Herman, a homeless man who'd asked him for $2, frozen to death inside a storm drain, and goes ballistic.
      Frank: You moron! You jerk! Why didn't you stay at Claire's? She would have taken care of you! You would have eaten and been warm! You might be alive! You'd be a prettier color, I'll tell you that!
    • In the future, he sees his old flame Claire has become detached and cruel.
      Claire: I wasted years on pathetic little creatures like those. Finally, thank God, a friend said to me, "Scrape 'em off, Claire. If you want to save somebody, save yourself."
      Frank: [to Christmas Future] That was a lousy thing to do.
  • Serenity:
    • When the crew land on Haven and find that it's been razed, Mal loses it. After telling his crew to strap bodies to the front of the ship, threatening to kill any of his crew that gets in his way and shooting dead an Alliance soldier trying to surrender, the crew knows that it's all just hit the fan.
    • Mal invokes this to prove to his crew that a call from Mal's love-hate-love interest is actually her being coerced by the villain to lure them into a trap.
      Mal: Y'all were watching, I take it? [everyone sort of admits it] Did you see us fight?
      Kaylee: No...
      Mal: Trap.
  • In Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, Watson deduces that something serious is going on from the fact that Mycroft is missing an appointment at the Diogenes Club, especially since his favorite dish, potted shrimp, is on the menu that night. Holmes stops his wisecracking during his first meeting with Moriarty once the latter reveals he killed Irene Adler and plans to do the same to Watson and Mary.
  • Emily from A Simple Favor makes a point of never apologizing for anything and attempts to break Stephanie of her habit of apologizing for every other thing she does. The one time she says "I'm sorry" to somebody is right before she drowns Faith in the lake.
  • Evoked in Spider-Man 3 when Peter Parker is slowly being influenced by the Symbiote and is asked for his rent by Mr. Ditkovich. Rather than politely making excuses or asking for more time, he instead harshly snaps at the man and hollers that he'll get his rent when he fixes the door. Mr. Ditkovitch lets it go, concluding Peter must be in some kind of trouble to be acting that way.
  • Star Trek:
    • Most of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan is Ham-to-Ham Combat between Kirk and Khan, each trying to outmaneuver the other into certain defeat amid shouting matches and grand gestures. It's Kirk's Little "No" that stands out.
    • Towards the end of Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, when Spock's body is brought to Vulcan, his father Sarek asks High Priestess T'Lar for the Fal-Tor-Pan ritual to reunite Spock's katra with his body. T'Lar asks "Is this logical?" about Sarek's motives, to which he replies "My logic is uncertain where my son is concerned." To hear this pinnacle of Vulcan control wrestle with his emotions and admit that he cares more for his son than for doing the logical thing is stunning.
    • Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country has a few:
      • A small, but powerful moment. After the Enterprise apparently fires on a Klingon battlecruiser carrying the Klingon Chancellor on a diplomatic mission, the battlecruiser recovers, rights itself, and prepares to retaliate on the unshielded Enterprise. Kirk watches this for a full ten seconds in silent, slacked-jawed horror. He doesn't raise shields, or order evasive maneuvers, or any of the other things that fans expect him to do; he just watches... and then he surrenders. This is the first time in the history of Star Trek that Kirk is ever seen to falter in the command chair, and it's terrifying.
      • Spock, the paragon of emotionless logic and reason, very angrily smacks a phaser from the hand of his protegé, Valeris, who had just been exposed as a conspirator in Gorkon's assassination. He later uses the Vulcan Mind Meld to try and pry the identities and plans of the conspirators, which ends up becoming, based on the reaction of the receiving party, dangerously close to Mind Rape.
    • Star Trek Into Darkness:
      • When Scotty resigns in protest of their mission to Qo'noS, he makes a last desperate appeal for Kirk to reconsider and calls him "Jim" instead of Captain.
      • Spock's reaction when Scotty calls him down to the reactor room. He doesn't even know what happened, only that something terrible has happened to Kirk. He rushes out of the bridge, forgetting to give the legally required order that someone takes command. And as he runs through the halls, there is sheer panic on his face. Which leads to his rage when Kirk dies.
      "KHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!"
    • In Star Trek Beyond, when the Enterprise is destroyed, McCoy and Spock crash land on a nearby planet and Spock is severely injured. As they walk off looking for help, Spock begins openly and honestly discussing his feelings because he believes he isn't going to make it and doesn't care about controlling his emotions anymore. The crowning moment is when Spock loudly and genuinely bursts out laughing at one of McCoy's jokes, and McCoy stares at him with mixed shock and horror.
  • Star Wars:
    • InThe Phantom Menace Qui-Gon Jinn notes that, despite the Trade Federation’s demands during their invasion of Naboo, there is no real logic behind it, and suspects there is something else behind their attacks.
    • What would it take to get quiet, innocent, ancient little Yoda to pull out his lightsaber and suddenly become a living blender? Something really serious, that's what.
    • More pointedly, when the relentlessly optimistic and noble Luke gives in to despair (The Empire Strikes Back) or anger (Return of the Jedi), the entire galaxy hinges on it.
    • When he first appears in A New Hope, Darth Vader, who even when angry normally speaks in a fairly calm tone of voice, shouts at Captain Antilles and Princess Leia. As confirmed by Rogue One, Vader had a really bad day—he had just literally lost the Death Star plans in the most humiliating way possible, and he knew exactly where they went and wasn't taking shit from any Rebel who was ready to lie about the caper.
    • In The Empire Strikes Back, when the Millennium Falcon finally manages to escape, the crew of the Executor visibly soil themselves in fear of Vader's wrath. The fact that Vader simply walks away surprises and shocks the crew.
    • In The Last Jedi, we finally see Luke Skywalker properly for the first time in 34 years - and he's a cynical, broken man who barely believes in the cause he used to champion. Though it's not without reason - in the previous film, The Force Awakens, we learned that when he tried to rebuild the Jedi Order after Vader's death, Luke's own nephew destroyed everything Luke had built, and went on to help grow the First Order from a mere remnant of the old Empire into a genuine threat against the New Republic. In this film, when Rey demonstrates similar power in a plea to get him to train her in the ways of the Force, he's not impressed — he's horrified.
      Luke: I've seen this raw strength only once before. It didn't scare me enough then. It does now.
  • In Steps Trodden Black, Oliver is a meek, mild-mannered, introverted Nice Guy, so when he loses it and starts screaming at Meddler and dares him to kill him, you know he means business.
  • In Sudden Impact, Harry is tipped off to a robbery in the coffee shop that is his usual haunt by the waitress breaking a years-long routine and dumping a large amount of sugar into his coffee.
  • Optimus Prime's first spoken line in Transformers: Age of Extinction? Screaming "I'LL KILL YOU!" to a human, who's just tried to save his life. Later on, when he finds what the humans did (and are still doing) to Ratchet, he goes into an Unstoppable Rage, swearing to kill every human involved.
  • Unforgiven: When William Munny, who'd been sober for many years, starts downing that bottle of whiskey before going after Bill Daggett, you know things are about to get serious as a heart attack.
  • The View Askewniverse:
    • When Silent Bob speaks, you listen. Though this tendency begins to annoy Jay after a while. This tradition is itself subverted in Clerks II when Bob's cue to speak arrives and he can't think of anything to say...
    • Lampshaded in Chasing Amy by Jay, who comments that Bob stays silent so often in order to make people pay attention whenever he does speak, and to make whatever he says sounds deeper because of that.
  • Who Framed Roger Rabbit: Jessica Rabbit is nearly unflappable throughout the movie, but she reacts with genuine terror (and a near Wild Take) when she learns of Judge Doom's evil plot to wipe out Toontown and the Toons with an enormous tanker-truck full of Dip. It's also the only time we clearly see both her eyes in the same shot.
  • X-Men: Apocalypse: Before this film, Professor X had never condoned the slaying of a Big Bad. The worst it ever got was when he reluctantly became an accessory to murder in X-Men: First Class; he had held Sebastian Shaw motionless with his telepathy while pleading with Erik not to kill the man. When Charles is in a Battle in the Center of the Mind with Apocalypse, he isn't strong enough to subdue the god-like mutant, so he implores Jean Grey to summon her Phoenix powers, knowing full well that she will annihilate his enemy. In the Alternate Timeline, Xavier is a touch more aggressive, and this marks a major change for his character going forward.
  • Throughout Apollo 13 Gene Krantz is the cool, calm leader of the Mission Control team. The one moment the facade cracks is when he is informed that there's still a delay in getting the critical power-up procedure for the Command Module, letting the audience know the situation is getting critical.
    Gene: Come on, I want whatever you guys got on the power-up procedures. We've got to get something up to these guys.
    Deke: Gene, they're working on it.
    Gene: I don't want the whole damn bible, just give me a couple of chapters. We've got to give these guys something.
    Deke: They're working on it now.
    NASA Engineer I'll get over there and get an estimate
    Gene: (angrily kicks a trashcan aside) Goddammit, I don't want another estimate! I want the procedure! Now!

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