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"Seriously!?" Revenge Movies

Raidra November 23, 2014 User blog:Raidra

"Boy, when you hold a grudge, you really hold it, don’t ya?" – Sheriff Andy Taylor, The Andy Griffith Show

Recently I left comments on the Edgar Allan Poe stories "The Cask of Amontillado" and "Hop-Frog".  I noted that I think they are two of the best revenge tales ever written. Now, as far as movies go, there are plenty of revenge films out there. In fact, there’s even a sub-genre of horror called the rape-and-revenge flick. In most of those films, the revenger (and yes, that is a real word) is getting vengeance on a person or group of people for a terrible crime (murder, sexual assault, etc.). However, since I’ve encountered petty people in real life, I started to wonder, "Are there any revenge films in which the reasons for the revenge is so petty that it makes the audience say, 'Really!?'?" I’m talking films in which the reason for revenge was incredibly minor (if not outright imagined), films in which the supposed offense happened so long ago (I’m talking at least five-ten years ago) and was so unimportant in the long run that any sensible person would have forgotten about it long ago, and stories in which the person being attacked as revenge wasn’t even responsible for whatever happened or supposedly happened. I’m tempted to say Oldboy because {SPOILER ALERT} the antagonist kidnapped the protagonist, held him captive for 15 years, and did things that I won’t reveal, because when they were in school the protagonist started a rumor that the antagonist and his sister were sleeping together (I don’t know if it were true or not because I haven’t seen either version of the film myself, but I’ve heard different interpretations). I was going to go into a spiel about this, but then I realized that this probably wasn’t the best example upon remembering that the sister had committed suicide as a result of the rumor, making his quest for revenge more understandable than it would have been otherwise. {END OF SPOILER ALERT} Therefore I won’t include Oldboy. I also won’t include John Wick, in which an assassin comes out of retirement to kill the criminals who killed his dog, because the dog was a gift from his late wife. The dog was a reminder of his wife that brought happiness and stability to his life, and taking it from him in such a senseless way was an inexcusable offense. I will include any ghost story in which the specter is attacking someone for something his or her ancestors did. Cripes, they’re not responsible for what their forefathers did! Give them a freakin’ break! You’re being a jerk, ghost!

So, how about it? Can anyone think of revenge films in which the reason for revenge was so petty and/or stupid that when it was revealed you just said, "Really!?" Try not to give spoilers, but if you have to, please give a warning first.  This is for movies/fiction only. We don't want to hear someone whine about, "Oh, I'm still ticked off about such-and-such that happened when I was in fourth grade!" Nobody cares! That isn't what this is about!

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