There is a plague affecting modern blockbuster movies, and I don’t know why:

technobabble, and military shouting.

I watch movies because I want to see impressive visuals, clever plots, acting, witty dialog, emotional moments. But what I get is this:

“Reverse the polarity of the tachyon streams by 17 degrees!”

“All units report in! Advance on my mark! Squad, move out!”

“If we can invert the radiation, maybe we can frogsnarble the waxsplitter!”

“Fire in the hole! Incoming rounds! Three marks at 2.10! Copy that! Roger!”

and on and on. I know plots need macguffins. I know sci-fi needs a smattering of technobabble for plausible deniability. I know action scenes sometimes involve soldiers with guns.

But modern movies go way beyond that, to the point that it’s a relief when characters just shut up for a second and spend some time making eye contact.

Do audiences actually enjoy garbled military/industrial babble shouting?

Or do producers just fetishize it the way they do with vintage cars?

“Military” dialog annoys me when there’s no verbatim repeat-backs in situations where there should be. Not that I’m sure the movie writers should necessarily have put repeat-backs in, but it makes every character sound like a NUB to me.

The most rustled my jimmies ever got was Transformers 1 – there is a very very cool scene where air support is called to deal with a decepticon. Post-battle analysis shows that 40mm grenades from a Bofors cannon had good effect, so in a later battle the soldies are equipped with 40mm grenade launchers.

Now I was neither infantry, nor air force, but I suspect that these:


slowly lobbed from a launcher like this:


Might SLIGHTLY DIFFER from these:


Launched like vengeance and faster than sound from a bofors cannon like this


BUT MAYBE I’M WRONG, who knows, maybe “how big they are around” is the only relevant factor.

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