Regional film critic: “Like that all-too-common shot of the hero (or villain) walking away from an explosion right behind him, there’s a relatively recent film cliche that’s annoying the hell out of me. I call it the ‘baring intimate secrets in front of a crowd of total strangers‘ scene.
“It occurs in Blinded By the Light when the protagonist reveals his relationship with his father in front of a school assembly. It’s in Rocketman when (if I remember correctly) Elton John tells a packed Wembley Stadium that he’s gay. It’s also in Crazy, Stupid, Love when Steve Carell bares his soul during his son’s eighth-grade graduation ceremony. Plus other soul-baring moments that I’m not recalling.
“No human has ever done anything like this. No. One. Ever. So when did screenwriters think crafting a scene like this makes dramatic sense? Can’t they think of a better way to wrap up a story?”
HE to regional film critic: “Good point. One of the main reasons that I hated Crazy Stupid Love, actually, was that climactic confession from Carell’s character. My blood boiled.
“But there’s one ’emotional confession befire strangers’ scene that definitely works, and I think the world agrees with me. It’s the second-to-last scene in Cameron Crowe‘s Jerry Maguire. (’96). An exhilarated Tom Cruise crashes Renee Zellweger‘s woman-support-group meeting and lays it all on the line, etc. For all I know this scene inspired other screenwriters to try and copy it.
“The thing that Crowe got right and others didn’t, of course, is that Cruise offered his confession in front of six or seven women in a living room, and not to thousands of fans in Wembley Stadium.”