6 Movies Where Centuries-Old Problems Got Fixed In 2 Seconds

A lot of movies use the plot phase of long-dormant evil forces reemerging to threaten the world. These forces-out can take the form of powerful relics, unstoppable ghosts, or big humen of marshmallow itself. But a surprising number of these ancient, supposedly frightening menaces are easily treated with obvious, sometimes even moronic answers which somebody should have figured out long ago. For example …

6

The Hobbit Movies Quickly Kill Smaug, Accidentally Rendering The Whole Plot Irrelevant

In the book version of The Hobbit , the dragon Smaug has armored his soft underbelly to protect himself from harm, a strategy that had maintained him alive for centuries( hell, he’d been sitting on that heap of gold for more than 150 years ). But using the power of the One Ring, Bilbo Baggins is able to penetrated into Smaug’s lair and observe a tiny gap in the armor. He passes this info on to Bard the Bowman, who fortunately turns out to be a pretty good bowman. Armed with the knowledge of Smaug’s secret weakness, Bard is able to take down the dragon who had terrorized the region for hundreds of years. It’s a really good book.

Despite The Hobbit being a not-too-long novel, it got adapted into three cinemas, each of them quite bad and about 19 hours long. You could have a dwarf play-read the whole of Koyaanisqatsi out loud in the middle of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey , and it would be a welcome explosion of momentum. But despite having enough time for every single extra from Lord Of The Rings to get a 30 -minute cameo and a love interest, Peter Jackson still looked at the book’s very simple plot and chose they needed to attain some cuts.

The Weirdly Easy Solution:

In Jackson’s version, Smaug has still been fucking shit up for hundreds of years, and he still has a weak spot on his belly, but the movies don’t bother with Bilbo finding out about it. Instead, it’s quite obvious, and Bard simply kills the dragon with a special dragon-killing arrow that the men had the entire time. In fact, it’s mentioned that the weak spot was created by Bard’s ancestor, who knocked off a scale using the special anti-dragon arrows.

Um … so why has this dragon been built up as such a huge threat? The dragon arrow clearly runs. There’s lip service paid to how there’s only one left in the area, but still, it does kill Smaug almost as soon as he assaults the town. Was there anyone watching this movie who watched a dragon with a famous weak spot attack a town containing an archer with anti-dragon arrows and thought, “Oh man! How is this going to end !? “

As an added bonus, the cinema also makes Bilbo and the dwarves’ epic mission altogether pointless. They don’t discover the secret to taking down Smaug; they only piss him off and cause the town attack. And in that assault, the townsfolk kill him in like 20 minutes, which it seems they could have done at any point. Jesus, three movies for that?

5

In The Conjuring 2 , An Ancient Demon Is Repulsed By Hollering Its Name

You might have missed The Conjuring 2 , wherein the demonic antagonist and chairwoman of Hell, Valak, expends decades haunting a London home. At the risk of scaring you, this haunting mainly involves moving furniture around.

Warner Bros. Pictures “I genuinely gotta lay off the meth.”

Valak is a giant dick. But we suppose you don’t become president of Hell because person forgot to baptize you. Besides jostle lounges, he orchestrates one of the most chilling murders in U.S. history, the Amityville murders. So viewers likely expected him to be a formidable opponent. And sure enough, the two paranormal examiners who go up against him seemed severely outmatched. They’re taking on a metaphysical ogre without a single nuclear accelerator on their backs.

The Weirdly Easy Solution:

Valak has one very stupid weakness: his name. If you speak his name, he is banished back to Hell. This creates a few questions. Why should this work? Does it work if you scream his Twitter handle? Can you give him a nickname and then scream it? All we know is that a demon should probably never tell anyone his name for any reason. Which, unfortunately, Valak does at the very first opportunity.

Warner Bros. Pictures “Fear me, for I have one-third the strength of Beetlejuice! “

This idiot demon, who patently didn’t read even the first page of his haunting manual, can’t assist but answer the protagonist’s question “Who are you ?! ” by screaming his name out loud. The exchange occurs within a chilling dream sequence, so it’s possible that Valak, Lord of Terror, get overexcited and dropped the ball. Either way, you’d expect a conniving archdemon to have a little more sense.

The protagonist subsequently recites the name and promptly brings Valak’s antics to an aim. This is at the point when Valak has moved from interior decoration to full-on demolition, tearing the haunted home asunder and imperiling its dwellers. But within moments of his name being called out, the reign of terror objective. The dumber-than-dumb demon is defeated and the movie gets a happy ending. We’re maybe not in a position to make fun of someone for who they elect chairwoman, but nice run, Hell. Your chairperson sucks.

4

In The Mummy , The Ancient Evil’s Weakness Is Laughably Obvious( Also, Cats )

In the fun The Mummy ( 1999 ), not to be confused with the miserable The Mummy ( 2017 ), everyone’s favorite ‘9 0s performer, Brendan Fraser, manages to save the world from an insanely powerful evil. He goes up against an undead beetlemancer so deadly that the world had been living in anxiety of him for millennia. There was an army formed specifically to fight against him, but with no real means of defeating him, it was more of a heavily regulated suicide pact.

Universal Pictures Which is also fulfilled by this guy.

Instead, this ancient, unstoppable evil is brought down by Brendan, a spunky librarian obsessed with a lost city, and a drunk moron who won a magic volume key in a card game — a combination of plot shortcuts so effective that they cut 40 minutes off the movie.

As the plot speeds along, we learn that Fraser was part of a lost French Legion patrol that tried to find the lost city. As most anyone could have predicted, sending confused soldiers into a sorcery deathtrap did not go well. The mummy goes on an unimpeded eyeball-tearing, beetle-squirting rampage. This continues for a while before the forces of good ultimately stop him, but … did it have to go that way?

Universal Pictures “OK, so yeah, I know about the lost city where a bunch of my friends succumbed. And a secret army knows where it is too, but they never explored it to learn how to kill the evil creature that lives there. Yeah, I guess it is kind of stupid.”

The Weirdly Easy Solution:

OK, so the Medjai are useless, despite having the truly amazing ability to convince soldiers that ancient mummy sorcerers are real even after thousands of uneventful years. They had an entire brigade of mummy scholars and mummy fighters, and not one of them noticed how they already had the answer to defeating mummies all along. It took a plucky junior librarian to find a detail they all overlooked. Hidden behind a puzzle scarcely complicated enough for a Resident Evil tutorial are some books that take away the mummy’s powers. And worse than that, Brendan Fraser figures out a much dumber mummy answer — it turns out the Mummy is fucking afraid of home cats.

Universal Pictures No one was kidding! The Mummy runs away like a toddler when he assures a home cat! This is a real movie! How? Why !?

3

In Children Of The Corn , You Can Burn Down The Evil God’s House ?

The seminal ‘8 0s horror classic Children Of The Corn is about a group of children who kill all the adults in a Nebraska town to appease He Who Walks Behind the Rows, a demon deity who demands ritual murder. Everyone who reaches the age of 18 is sent to their demise in the cornfield, and yes, it might be a metaphor about graduating from high school and entering the job market in 1980 s Nebraska.

The main plot follows a couple, Burt and Vicky, travelling cross-country for work when they run over a son running out of the corn. They start looking for help and run into an older mechanic. He is not very helpful. Indeed, he has a pact with the cult whereby he renders them with gas and they let him live in terror as the last adult. So he sends Burt and Vicky straight into Corn-Murder Town.

New World Pictures “It’s right down that way. If you get to the end of the road and you’re still alive, you’ve gone too far.”

Burt and Vicky make it to town and run into the spooky kids doing spooky things for their spooky deity, but they discover that not all of the children are down with slaying. Two children with names that are totally not heavy-handed biblical symbolism, Job and Sarah, join the adults in defying the cult. They eventually try shelter in a barn, where Bible the investigations and a clairvoyant vision from Sarah lead them to the conclusion that they must destroy the cornfield and He Who Walks Behind the Rows. Well, yeah. No shit.

The Weirdly Easy Solution:

The vision and the Bible passageway give no special prescription on how to kill He Who Walks Behind the Rows and stop the cult. Because seriously, how do you kill an evil corn divinity? So they figure they’ll defined the cornfield on fire. And here’s what’s crazy: It totally works. That’s it. Burt and Job splash around a few gallons of gasoline and hurl a Molotov cocktail, and BOOM, Corn God is dead.

New World Pictures We’re not advocating for the immolation of children … but if you had to pick one child to hurl a Molotov at …

No incantations or ceremonial knives; simply a regular fire. There’s a man with a gas station living in fear of Corn God and his child slaves, and he never thought to try fire? You might not be brave enough to admit we’re right, but every adult who loses a fight to a cornfield without trying flame deserves to die.

2

In Ella Enchanted , A Magic Curse Is Instantly And Ridiculously Outwitted

Look, we realize that very few people have strong memories of the 2004 Anne Hathaway vehicle Ella Enchanted . It’s a disappointingly unfaithful adaptation of a beloved children’s book about a girl who is placed under a terrible fairy curse which compels her to be completely obedient and follow any instruction she is given. As creepy as it audios, the fairy in question thought it would be a blessing, since Ella wouldn’t stop crying as a baby.

The curse no doubt made several troubling fetishes in our world, but caused some difficulties in Ella’s as well. It applies to even casual remarks — if someone tells Ella to pat herself on the back, she has to literally do it. This makes their own lives a nightmare, although Ella remains fairly upbeat, maybe because when people say “Have a nice day, ” she has no choice but to expend the next 24 hours in lovely contentment.

Walt Disney Studios It helps if you look like Anne Hathaway.

For as long as she can remember, Ella has had to find inventive ways of hiding her affliction, since it would leave her at the mercy of anyone who wanted to control her. She ultimately fails and an evil regent learns about her curse. Ella knew this skin-crawling day would come, but it takes a different direction than you might expect. He orders her to murder her true love. What can she do but kill him and then settle in for a lifetime of unspeakable experiences?

The Weirdly Easy Solution:

When you hear this, it’s going to sound too obvious to be possible. But here we go: Ella glimpses herself in a mirror, and tells herself not to heed any more commands, freeing herself from the curse. It’s nearly something a person might try if this awful curse was all they thought about the working day, every day. Even if Ella didn’t think to give herself commands, why didn’t her mother ever try it? This went on for like two decades. She never thought to tell herself to not be cursed? Her plan was to hope no one told her to do things? Has she never even heard of sexism? The world’s dumbest moron would at least think to blow out their eardrums with air horns and intentionally avoid learning sign language. TRY GIVING ME ORDERS NOW, DICKHEADS.

Walt Disney Studios “Especially when I can tell myself to do cool Matrix moves.”

1

Ancient Civilizations Keep Hiding Evil Artifacts That Can Be Destroyed Really Easily

Let’s role-play this one out. You’re the Shark-King of old Atlantis, and you’ve coughed up a delicate mystic crystal that lets you control the waves. But the power of the crystal is too great, and you worry that the sinister Manta Society plots to steal it for themselves. What can you do to keep the world safe from your deadly creation? If you said “Crush the thing and move on with your day, ” then congratulations! You’re smarter than every ancient civilization in movies ever.

Take the first Tomb Raider movie, in which Angelina Jolie bravely combats both the script and the Illuminati. The latter are hunting an ancient triangle which has the power to control time. It’s was said that the triangle was created by an advanced ancient civilization, but its misuse eventually destroyed their city and they realise it was too dangerous for mankind to possess. So they broke it into two pieces and hid them in Cambodia and Siberia. However, the Illuminati plans to unite them during an eclipse. It’s all very standard stuff.

The Weirdly Easy Solution:

Lara Croft shoots the triangle, destroying it. Severely, it’s broken really easily by ordinary , non-magical weapons. There’s no clear reason the ancient civilization that generated the triangle didn’t do this. They snapped it in two with a big hammer … why not maintain whacking it into powder instead of building huge mystic temples at opposite ends of Asia and hiding the easily reassembled triangle there for 5,000 years? And Croft isn’t the only superhero wasting her hour with easily solved shit.

Paramount Pictures An all-powerful device … so brittle it couldn’t even slow down a bullet.

We’ve mentioned before how in Hellboy: The Golden Army , there’s an unstoppable army of elf-bots controlled by a sorcery crown, and the Elf King transgresses the crown into three pieces to protect the world. When it gets reassembled by his evil son, the Hellboy team gets the crown back and … melts it? Couldn’t the Elf King have done that? It’s stimulated highly clear that he wasn’t willing to use the crown under any circumstances, even as his people were dying out, so why keep it around at all? At least break it into 50 pieces instead of three, Jesus.

Universal Pictures “You know how long that would take? I get king shit to do.”

The same thing happens again in RIPD . According to the Ryan Reynolds trainwreck, the Staff of Jericho is an unbelievably powerful ancient gold pillar which allows the dead to return and conquer Earth. It’s mentioned that the RIPD death cops seized and destroyed it 3,000 years ago. But when they say “destroyed it, ” they apparently meant “broke it into a small number of big pieces and left it scattered all over the Earth.” This is especially inexplicable considering how they completely shatter it by dropping a bulldozer on it at the end of the movie. The phase is, ancient civilizations need to either stop build weapons of mass destruction or actually fucking get rid of them when they get cold feet about destroying the world.

Universal Pictures Or attain them out of materials sturdier than Popsicle sticks and marshmallows.

When E.M. Caris is not writing for Cracked, you can read his food penning over at the spice subscription service allyoucanspice.com. Alex Perry is a freelancer who wrote an adult fiction about time-traveling stalker and a heartwarming kid’s volume about a son and his genetically modified animal/ organ donor. You can follow her on Twitter .

Check out the first Hellboy by Guillermo Del Toro to watch ancient evil get exhaustively wrecked the old fashioned way, and Mike Mignola’s comics because they’re also just great . If you loved this article and want more content like this, support our site with a visit to our Contribution Page. Or sign up for our Subscription Service for exclusive content, an ad-free experience, and more .

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