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Empire's Review Of The year 2013 CLICK FOR MORE REVIEW OF THE YEAR 2013 FEATURES ›
2013's Biggest WTF Moments In Movies
The cinematic moments this year for which there's no reasonable explanation

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THE URSA

The Ursa, After Earth

Film: After Earth

What happens? It’s an alien beast that hunts humans by literally sensing their fear. But how? When Kitai (Jaden Smith) overcomes his fear, he instantly becomes invisible to the beast, despite the fact that he’s been terrified for several days and presumably stinks of terror. While we’re at it, how come everything on Earth has evolved so fast when it’s only been a thousand years? And why are they so vicious to humans when there haven’t been any for a millennium (possibly a Willenium)?

WTF? The ursa really only work as a metaphor and not even remotely as an actual way of hunting people. If the alien civilisation that created them could add the ability to psychically sense fear or whatever, couldn’t they make that an extra sense and not a substitution? How can they know humanity well enough to spot how we get scared and not also spot eyes and ears and useful things like that to work with instead? It doesn’t make any sense on a story level, but as a physical representation of our own weaknesses, it’s a good bit stronger.

The lesson: Emphasise the “sub” in “sub-text” and make sure it all works on the upper level too.

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Your Comments

1 Hangover III Stinger
The Hangover III's extra scene after the credits was great, but there were better stingers in 2013: http://www.mediastinger.com/best-movie-stingers-of-2013 / More

Posted by Pcurtin on Tuesday January 14, 2014, 20:51

2 This list --- WTF?
Cameron Diaz on the windscreen in The Counselor; Alan Partridge getting shot; George Clooney's return in Gravity; the truth behind The Mandarin's identity in Iron Man 3; the shift of narrative focus in The Place Beyond the Pines; David Soul turning up in Filth - all waaaay bigger WTF moments than most of this list. More

Posted by edoinjapan on Tuesday December 17, 2013, 07:11

3 This list --- WTF?
Cameron Diaz on the windscreen in The Counselor; Alan Partridge getting shot; George Clooney's return in Gravity; the truth behind The Mandarin's identity in Iron Man 3; the shift of narrative focus in The Place Beyond the Pines; David Soul turning up in Filth - all waaaay bigger WTF moments than most of this list. More

Posted by edoinjapan on Tuesday December 17, 2013, 07:02

4 RE:
L: SammyH31 The guy below can spell Aether right but can't spell writes. I'm sorry, had to be said. True comic book fan! Damn you lack of caffine! More

Posted by GrizBe on Monday December 16, 2013, 10:36

5 RE:
L: SammyH31 The guy below can spell Aether right but can't spell writes. I'm sorry, had to be said. True comic book fan! :D]] More

Posted by Osric on Monday December 16, 2013, 09:49

6
The guy below can spell Aether right but can't spell writes. I'm sorry, had to be said. True comic book fan! More

Posted by SammyH31 on Saturday December 14, 2013, 12:35

7 Union J in Kick Ass 2
Seriously, what was that? More

Posted by superheromaddie on Saturday December 14, 2013, 00:09

8
This list WOULD BE LOST without that Alice Eve scene in Star Trek Into Darkness!! More

Posted by Darren47 on Friday December 13, 2013, 22:33

9 RE: Not very WTF at all...
L: Helen OHara It's something they've done for the MCU that I actually think is wildly smart: their McGuffins are building to one mega-McGuffin because the Tesseract and Aether are both infinity stones here. Which saves a lot of faffing about later. eah, does make a lot of sense for the movies at least, otherwise you'd still have them all to introduce somehow. Plus, limiting the McGuffins does save having a bunch of artifacts with similar capabilities and the none-comic crowd arguing 'If they've got X, why didn't that use it against Y'. Can see it annoying some fans though, but its nice that they're trying to keep the very confusing Marvel Universe somewhat less confusing. More

Posted by GrizBe on Friday December 13, 2013, 19:10

10 RE: Not very WTF at all...
L: GrizBe Ohh.. okay, I apologise for that. I was going off the comics and what we actually see in the movies. There been zero mention in them of the Aether being an Infinity Stone/Gem. Asked around my friends who run a local comic book store too, seems that nugget about it suddenly being an infinity gem hasn't been widely broadcast yet. t's something they've done for the MCU that I actually think is wildly smart: their McGuffins are building to one mega-McGuffin because the Tesseract and Aether are both infinity stones here. Which saves a lot of faffing about later. More

Posted by Helen OHara on Friday December 13, 2013, 17:10

11 RE: Not very WTF at all...
L: Helen OHara Hi GrizBe, Actually, it IS the Aether. We asked Kevin Feige and he said that the Aether is also an Infinity Stone. It's in our spoiler podcast. Ohh.. okay, I apologise for that. I was going off the comics and what we actually see in the movies. There been zero mention in them of the Aether being an Infinity Stone/Gem. Asked around my friends who run a local comic book store too, seems that nugget about it suddenly being an infinity gem hasn't been widely broadcast yet. More

Posted by GrizBe on Friday December 13, 2013, 15:18

12 RE: Not very WTF at all...
L: GrizBe I seriously think whoever rights these articles for you isn't a comic book fan, or indeed, doesn't watch the movies very closely. The credit sting in Thor TDW.... Firstly, the canister does not contain the Aether. If you know what Gardians of the Galaxy is about and who they are facing, the whole Collector thing makes perfect sense. I don't want to give away any spoilers to people who don't know the comics, but all this is tied together very easily by a single plot point. I'd think that the bigger WTF moment from the movie would be from the previous 'Odin' scene towards the end. That's made far more people wonder WTF and where are they going with it then the credit sting. Okay... The whole W.H.O Doctor thing with Capadli isn't wtf in the slightest. Its just a massive coincidence. You have to remember he would have been cast in the role at least a year before the film was finished, so it was a long time before we even knew Matt Smith would be leaving at theMore

Posted by Helen OHara on Friday December 13, 2013, 14:10

13 Man of Steel
Doesn't anyone remember Superman killing Zod in Superman 2 by dropping him into a void, don't see whats so WTF about this. More

Posted by ryecatcher1967 on Friday December 13, 2013, 13:39

14
The Alice Eve stripping thing was unnecessary, sure, but I really don't know why it bothered people so much. More

Posted by Whistler on Friday December 13, 2013, 12:29

15 brad pitt bolito
brad pitt in 'the counsellor' with that bolito is maybe kind of a WTF moment More

Posted by bill the butcher on Friday December 13, 2013, 12:23

16 Benicio Del Toro!!!
I Thought that was Javier Bardem!!!! I didn't know it was Benicio Del Toro!! More

Posted by rjl3810 on Friday December 13, 2013, 01:03

17 RE:
L: legofilmwhofan6 I wonder where poor old Trevor Slattery is in all this. His character reveal in iron man 3 was so WTF that someone in my theatre almost choked on their popcorn! Good point. That was a heck of a huge WTF moment with everyone expecting The Mandarin to be.. well, The Mandarin. Plus, you had Stark blowing up his suits and everything after that too. Those were pretty big WTF moments also. More

Posted by GrizBe on Thursday December 12, 2013, 23:44

18
I wonder where poor old Trevor Slattery is in all this. His character reveal in iron man 3 was so WTF that someone in my theatre almost choked on their popcorn! More

Posted by legofilmwhofan6 on Thursday December 12, 2013, 20:10

19 Going method
Christian Bale would've gone all method for We're The Millers More

Posted by Dalif on Thursday December 12, 2013, 19:06

20 THE MICHELLE RODRIGUEZ CATCH
You forgot Vin Diesel is powered by a turbo Diesel engine so is able to make impossible feats we mere mortal can't! More

Posted by themaddogmax on Thursday December 12, 2013, 19:00

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