What's wrong with guns in movies?
I love a classic shoot em' up movie, where there are more bullets shot than credible lines delivered. Tales of secret agents fighting in a foreign land wearing a tuxedo, or law enforcement officers keeping our streets safe are always a treat for me to watch.
Regardless of the acting, story, and special effects, most movies get the portrayal of real firearms completely wrong.
Here are seven things movies taught us about guns that are wrong:
1. Muzzle Discipline
I should say lack of muzzle disciple. I understand the actors on the set are carrying props and probably have no formal weapon training, but it's common sense not to point a firearm at someone unless you intend to shoot them. I find it hilarious when Special Forces operators huddle around a map and every one of them is flagging their battle buddy. Always be conscious of where your firearm is pointing.
2. Condition One
Condition One is a term for carrying a round in the chamber. I'm surprised by how many movies portray military personnel creeping through the jungle and when they hear the enemy approaching is when they finally chamber a round. The decision is yours whether you carry with a round in the chamber or not. Just make sure that you are always conscious of what it takes to operate your firearm safely.
3. Only Police, Military, and Villains Have Guns
Have you ever noticed that in film only police, military or the bad guys have guns? If someone is robbing a store, where are the concealed carriers? Does the business not have a store gun? It seems that if you are not one of the said three then you are supposed to be a helpless victim, according to Hollywood. Concealed carrying is at a national all-time high. There are a lot of good guys out there with guns.
4. Shoot First and Ask Questions Later
Too many action scenes in movies show good guys and bad shooting toward their target without respect to what is around them. They could care less if they hit the bank robber and also hit the person walking their dog down the street. Make sure you are always aware of your surroundings and what is behind your target.
More from Wide Open Spaces:
5. Finger On the Trigger
This is a pet peeve for shooters everywhere. It seems to me that it's very rare for an actor to properly index the frame or slide of the firearm instead of resting their finger on the trigger. Make sure you always have safe trigger discipline.
6. Every Shot is a Kill Shot
I always wondered why someone shot in the abdomen dies instantly in movies. Yes, gunshots have a very high potential for mortality, but there is more to the equation than just rounds on target. It all comes down to hemorrhaging, cell degradation, and vital systems failure. Just because someone took a bullet does not mean that his or her wounds are fatal.
7. Every Long Gun is Automatic
This is simply not true. There are plenty of automatic weapons out there for both military and civilian use, but usually the arsenals portrayed as automatic aren't in real life. Not every M-16/AR style rifle a character picks up will be automatic. Military variants will usually only be semi-auto or three round burst. Civilian ARs will always be semi-auto. There are specialty firearms dedicated to being the automatic gunner.
As much as I love movies with some shooting action, these Hollywood scenes need to be taken with a grain of salt. Some are just plain wrong. But that doesn't stop me from watching them!