Attack of the Hollywood Cliches (2021) Netflix Review

Directors: Sean Doherty, Ricky Kelehar, Alice Mathias

Writers: Dane Baptiste, Ben Caudell, Sean Doherty

Stars: Rob Lowe, Andie MacDowell, Ira Madison III

RATING: 3.5 Stars

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A special featuring some of the most famous films along with Screenwriters, Academics and Critics as they guide through the funny, weird and controversial clichés which appear on the screens. – From IMDB

This one is specially for us movie buffs. Those of us who have seen way, way too many films and love to point out the obvious, the hilarious and the cliched. This special is about as subtle as a hammer to the head, the narration by Rob Lowe is pretty cringe inducing, and I think there are way too many cliches that it overlooked, but as a huge film lover, I still got a kick out of this quick documentary.

We get interviews with all kinds of industry professionals from Actors to screenwriters to critics, and they all have their ten cents to put in about their favourite and least favourite movie cliches. A few of these I hadn’t actually realised were as rampant as they were until it was blatantly pointed out to me. The Maverick Cop, The Manic Pixie Dream Girl, The last minute declaration of love, they all get their five minutes of fame here.

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And that is actually one of my main criticisms of this documentary. I don’t think enough time was given to each subject before we moved on to the next. I would have much rather had this be a docu-series, where we looked at a handful of cliches an episode for maybe four episodes, and spent some time deconstructing and discussing each cliche, rather than the rapid fire set up we had here.

They weren’t afraid though to delve into some of the more racially and sexually controversial topics. It may be short and sweet, and therefore not discussed to the best of its ability, but the documentary does discuss Hollywoods treatment of Women, Queer and Black people. And how they are frequently either under-represented, or used as a means to further the plot of the white/male/straight main characters plot, never really having their own time in the spotlight. This topic on it;s own could fill an entire documentary, so you see why I have an issue with the meager 58 minutes runtime.

As fascinating as this was, and as much as I enjoyed it, it has left me wanting a more in depth look at the same material. A good starting place, but pretty superficial.

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