The story behind the hidden movie references in the romantic action comedy This Means War (2012) is a subtle homage to cinema history.
Film director McG is famous for fun loving action filled Hollywood blockbusters like Charlie’s Angels, Terminator Salvation and for the romantic action comedy This Means War (2012). These are all movies that probably doesn’t attract many film connoisseurs immediatly.
Nevertheless, McG shows in This Means War his cinematic expertise in various scenes, e.g. when he shows on the tv screen in the background of Lauren’s (Reese Witherspoon) apartment sequences of the western classic Butch Cassidy & Sundance Kid.
This movie is about the two outlaws Robert Redford and Paul Newman and the beauty Katherine Ross and a reference to the menage a trois between Lauren, F.D.R (Chris Pine) and Tuck (Tom Hardy) - see this article.
Another movie references can be spotted when Lauren and F.D.R are arguing about the legendary movie director Alfred Hitchcock.
This disput takes place in the video store, where Lauren wants to rent a film and F.D.R tries to flirt and chat up Lauren, with his expertise about the best Hitchcock movie. She tests his taste in films by picking the The Lady Vanishes DVD, a Hitchcock classic from the ‘Criterion Collection’. And what a surprise, this classic movie from 1939 is a British comic thriller about a woman and spy and mirrors somehow the constellation in This Means War too.
Another reminiscene to the film director Hitchcock is the film DVD the Rope from 1948 that stands on the shelf of the video store. It can be spotted between Lauren and F.D.R during their vivid discussion. And again, this is also a thriller about two young men who feel superior and try to commit the ideal murder.
The final of the scene is, that the smart and eloquent Lauren wins over the little arguing with her film expertise and rebuffs the intruder F.D.R, while she grasp cheekily the DVD “Star Wars - The Empire Strikes Back”!
This movie about a little group of rebels who fight and win against Darth Vader’s big army of the dark side is a nice and subtle punchline against the black dressed and superior behaving F.D.R.
Nevertheless, these are just little spots which only movie geeks, like Laura from Miscellaneous Musings, can fully appreciate.
Therefore, I’m pretty sure that the whole scene was an homage to some of McG’s cinema heroes and it’s sad, that only few cinema lover will worship these little details, media references and easter eggs.
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