In not a few action/adventure movies, the heroes are placed in jeopardy by actions they themselves committed. Sometimes they get called on it, but more frequently (at least in the past few years), the audience is implicitly asked to accept the protagonists’ actions are worthwhile for no good reason. This never fails to to piss me off, particularly when innocent characters pay for the heroes’ recklessness or stupidity with their lives.
A prime offender to my mind is Jurassic Park II: The Lost World. How did Nick van Owen (Vince Vaughn’s character) avoid multiple wrongful death lawsuits in this flick? As I recall, Nick
Releases the dinosaurs the InGen party was holding, causing a stampede that destroyed InGen’s communication equipment and made it impossible to call for help, as well as likely injuring or killing a few members of that group.
Brings the baby tyrannosaur back to the Hammond party’s trailer, prompting the attack by the two parent tyrannosaurs, thus causing the death of Eddie (Richard Schiff’s character) and the destruction of the rest of the communication equipment, making it impossible to call for help and necessitating the hike to the center of the island through velociraptor territory.
Steals the ammunition from Roland’s elephant gun, making it much harder to protect the group from the tyrannosaurs, who naturally attack again and kill other people in the group–then shows off his stupidity and arrogance by smugly displaying the bullets on the helicopter. (Admittedly, that gun wasn’t likely to work anyway, given that Roland was inexplicably walking around with its barrel pointed up despite the fact that it was raining–but it’s the principle of the thing.
I’ve always assumed the reason Nick doesn’t appear during the San Francisco sequence is that the Malcolm and Sarah threw him out of the helicopter, as he is clearly too stupid (or evil) to live.
Anybody else have any examples?