Hollywood and Handguns


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Jomax
May 11, 2007, 02:01 PM
Why do you suppose most TV shows and many movies repeatedly fall back upon the .22, the .32, the .38 Spl and the 9mm as being the "murder weapon"?

Is it a throwback to the days of the Saturday Night Specials and cops 'n' robbers? Is it solely an issue of familiarity for the average viewer? Is it out-of-touch writing? Or is it just Liberal-speak for "bad gun, bad gun!!"?

I watch a fair amount of TV and a few current movies and the 10mm, the .357's, .40, .44 Mag, .45 et al never seem to get much play if any.

And, surprisingly, none of the movie victims every get shot by a cap 'n' ball, black powder, musket, etc. ;)

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Windhover45
May 11, 2007, 02:13 PM
I think you're right in theorizing the familiarity with the average viewer being the reason for prevalence of the calibers mentioned. Unless there's a good reason to use an "exotic" cartridge, they'll going to go with the familiar.

And whenever Hollywood tries to work in the "exotic" caliber, they tend to mess it up. Remember the movie "Presidio?" The murder weapon was a Russian Tokarev. Of course the murderer, a supposed spook with years of experience, was stupid enough to use such a weapon. And of course, this guy was the only guy in the military base with a Russian Tokarev. :rolleyes:

DoubleTapDrew
May 11, 2007, 02:33 PM
They probably go with what's familiar and available. I see a lot of Beretta M9 and Glocks in movies since those are popular and standard issue for a lot of PD and Military. The movie prop places probably get requests for "3 handguns" instead of "1 Makarov, 1 broomhandle mauser, and 1 1911" by most directors.
It is neat to see unusual guns in movies though instead of the standard stuff. Shows they put some thought into it and we get to play "What kind of gun did ______ use in ______?" games :)

ArmedBear
May 11, 2007, 02:41 PM
I have another theory to advance.

Look at this page: http://www.westernstageprops.com/miva/merchant.mv?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=WSP&Category_Code=STAGE

Note that the handguns most readily and cheaply available in rubber (no special order required) are the 1911, Glock 17, vintage S&W .38 Special, and Beretta 92. Things are not always what they seem, and most guns tossed around in movies are rubber, except in closeup. Moviemakers don't want to scratch up expensive guns, or be hit by flying heavy metal objects either.:D

http://www.westernstageprops.com/miva/merchant.mv?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=WSP&Category_Code=SPRG

AFAIK .22LR is a VERY common round, though probably not for murder, just attempted murder. A reconstructive surgeon I know from the trap range (he's also an avid pistol shooter) says it seems like most gunshot damage he's had to fix was from a .22LR.

hrgrisso
May 11, 2007, 02:50 PM
While I don't disagree with the comment about unknowledgable Hollywood (I'm still steamed from having to watch CSI last night and their "Hi Cap 9mm Bullets). I think from a realism perspective the reason movies and tv use 9mm, 380, .45 etc. Is because those are the commonly used calibers by the criminal element. I remember seeing an article in Time Magazine a while back detailing an BATFE report on the most commonly used weapons by criminals. The vast majority were .380's (cheap), 38's (common), 9mm (glocks are supposed to be 'cool' to the average hood). So using those more frequently in a movie, that makes a tad more sense.

From the LE side I actually have become accustomed to seeing Glocks and Berretta's. It just irritates me when they "thumb cock" a Glock. I hate it even more when supposedly trained LEO's have to rack their slide before they let loose.

Ah well, I'm going to go fantasize about Jack Bauer. Don't get too worked up by people who are only qualified to work in Hollywood or McDonalds...

Jomax
May 11, 2007, 02:52 PM
Good links, ArmedBear. You may be correct in your theory.

Aside from that, most coroners seem to think that the .22 is the most erratic and therefore the most difficult round to retrieve assuming it's still in one piece. Many believe that it's either going to hurt like heck or be fatal.

Vern Humphrey
May 11, 2007, 03:01 PM
I love it when they find an ejected case from "a .38," or when they refer to a break-action shotgun as a "breechloader." (Pumps, I suppose, are considered muzzle-loaders in Hollywood.)

Big Calhoun
May 11, 2007, 03:06 PM
In the few TV shows I watch, 9mm and .45 are the favored murder weapons. Also noticing recently that Heckler and Koch is becoming the new 'gun of choice' in the hood and replacing Glock, per the latest rap videos and lyrics.

andrewdl007
May 11, 2007, 03:42 PM
Ive noticed that on CSI: Miami .22s are used alot as a murder weapon. And it always seems that is a .22 was used in a crime, atleast one suspect will also own an identical .22.

Ohio Rifleman
May 11, 2007, 04:43 PM
I'm going to say familiarity. But also, have you ever watched "Sword of Gideon?" It's a movie about these Israeli agents travelling all over the world to kill the terrorists responsible for the murder of the Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics. There's one scene where one of the agents is taking out half of the powder from his .22LR cartridges to make it quieter. The killings were done either with bombs or with a .22LR pistol point-blank to the head. Probably because it's cheap and relatively quiet. Maybe it's more of a common assassination/murder weapon than we think?

DoubleTapDrew
May 11, 2007, 04:50 PM
Maybe it's more of a common assassination/murder weapon than we think?

I have read that KGB and some middle eastern asassains used suppressed and non-suppressed .22s for up close and personal pops to the dome in crowded areas because it's quiet and can do the job in trained hands.

glennser
May 11, 2007, 06:06 PM
I thought the majority of deaths were caused by .22? Not even by a small margin either. The majority are accidental rather than intentional but it's pretty high in murders too.
I know it wouldn't be most of our choice but availability must be a big factor. I also thought that the .22 high standard was considered a favourite with professional hitmen also, although that may be due to the fact that it's easily suppressed, if I can find some stat's I'll post them.
Glennser

Eleven Mike
May 11, 2007, 06:09 PM
I have read that KGB and some middle eastern asassains used suppressed and non-suppressed .22s for up close and personal pops to the dome in crowded areas because it's quiet and can do the job in trained hands.Yeah, that's what I use. ;)

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