This is a pet peeve of mine. I tend to think about the movie I'm watching, not just absorb the entertainment. Unfortunately, that makes it a bit harder to enjoy your average movie. I understand that SoD is a key part of most story telling, but there are some places where its use just makes the storyteller look stupid or lazy. I'll use the last two movies I watched to illustrate my point.
The directors cut of Kingdom of Heaven, released in 2005, runs just over 3 hours, and is split into two DVDs. Watching the first DVD convinced me not to watch the second. Orlando Bloom stars as a blacksmith (again) who goes off to Jerusalem during the crusades seeking redemption.
- Body type isn't something I usually notice, but my spouse pointed it out, and I had to agree: Bloom is not built as a blacksmith. He doesn't look like someone who has spent his entire life in grueling manual labor. He made a fine elf, but he shouldn't be cast as a blacksmith.
- Bloom's character, I forget his name, learned to wield a sword, and subsequently survived a gory battle, in about an hour. After that, he was pretty much an expert, besting many more experienced men in battle. This is common enough that I'm usually fairly forgiving, but it is annoying.
- As a blacksmith that has never been a mile from his birth place, Bloom knows how to read... Latin. Please. Peasants can't read, peasants don't know Latin, and peasants certainly cannot read Latin.
- Guess what else he knows how to do: run an estate, dig for wells and build an aqueduct system! Yea, that makes sense... kind of... if you don't think about it... at all.
Stark gets a soup-can-sized cylinder cut out of his chest. What happened to the vital organs and bones that were supposed to be there? How did a doctor manage to do this with little-to-no medical equipment, in a cave? How is Stark still alive? I understand there was supposed to be a magnet there to collect shrapnel and keep it away from vital organs. I don't understand why his heart was apparently removed, and how he was kept alive. Or was his heart underneath the cylinder? Then why did he collapse when the cylinder was removed? They didn't lead us to believe he had internal bleeding from shrapnel. And what was the device plugged into in his chest, anyway?
The war lords demand that Stark make them a state-of-the-art missile. They plan to take over unarmed villages with it. They could have accomplished their conquest with the ample AK47s that they already had. The movie could have made it a little bit more believable by saying these war lords were fighting other war lords, i.e. the Taliban. They didn't. It was just unarmed villagers.
These are little things, but they add up. They weren't vital to the story. They could have been explained, but they weren't. That's lazy storytelling abusing SoD.