Why are there so many movies about hit men?

Preacher

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So this is going to sound far out, but back in the early 90's I think I knew a guy who did "hits" for a living.

I was living in a rural community in OK that was an hour from Tulsa. This guy lived in the trailer park that my wife and I moved into after we got married. He was a loner, lived by himself, drove a pretty nice car, kept his place looking really nice. He was in a spot a few spaces down from my wife and I. I was out taking a walk one day and noticed he was changing the oil in his car so I stopped to just say hi.
He had everything lined up right within reach while under the car but he slid out and greeted me. His name was Paul and he sold insurance.
We had nice chat about his car (it was a mid 80's Camaro) and the modifications he had done on the motor and what not. I am a gear head and appreciate a fine motor car.

So Paul and I became somewhat friendly, if he or I was out in the yard or working on our cars we would chat about what was going on in the world. Paul seemed to know an awful lot about world workings and was always eager to give his opinion on world views. Once I was walking by Paul's trailer and noticed his door was open. He never kept his door open and I had never been in his trailer and he had never been in mine. So I walked over and gave it a rap and said, "hello, anyone home?". No one answered so I stuck my head into the doorway and looked around and said, "Paul, you home?". I heard a muffled "one minute" from the back when I saw the blacked out rifle with a huge scope sitting on the kitchen table. It was apart for cleaning and all of the meticulous methods I saw when he worked on his car were there with that rifle. Paul came out of the back wearing a tank top (something he never wore outside) and I could plainly see the military tattoos on his chest and arms.
I was somewhat startled by the way that he came rushing out of the back so I backed out of the door and let him come to the door. I stammered, "I saw your door was open and I was afraid there was a problem."
Paul stuck his head out the door and looked around to see if anyone else was there and said, "I needed a little ventilation while cleaning that weapon, so I propped the door open. You caught me in the back using the bathroom."
I nodded and said, "nice little squirrel gun you got there" hoping to engage him in conversation.
He said, "it does what it needs to do when it needs to do it."
I thought to myself that was a strange way to respond. I could tell he was antsy so I excused myself and started walking to my house.
Paul called after me and said, "hey, don't let anyone know I have that weapon here. I don't like to advertise what I have."
I said, "don't worry about it, I won't mention it" and went on my way.

A week later the owner of the trailer park calls me and asks if I want to rent a nicer trailer. Apparently someone had decided to move and many times since the trailers were hooked up to gas, water and electric and were expensive to move the owners would just sell it to the trailer park at a reduced rate and the park would use them as rentals. The lady had a new unit and said it was just a few spaces down from my trailer. Of course I had to go look and sure enough Paul's trailer was the one for rent.

I met the landlady down at Paul's trailer and it was immaculate. It was the cleanest rental unit I think I have ever been in. There was not a scrap of trash, every surface was cleaned and it smelled like it was new. I asked what happened to Paul and the land lady told me her story which put a chill down my spine.

Paul had came to her a few days earlier and said that work was making him move to another state. He needed to move quick and would not be able to take the trailer with him so he wanted to sell it to the park. The landlady started gathering the paperwork for him and he said he did not have time for all of that as he needed to be in the other state next week. He was willing to let the trailer go for $3000 cash and he had the title in hand. The lady who owned the park looked at it as a great business deal as she could recoup her money in less than a year on just renting the trailer out. She discussed it with her husband, they gave him $3K cash (she said he would not accept a check and she was put out that she had to go to the bank and get the cash) and he signed the trailer over to them and moved the next day.
I did not even tell my wife about the offer to rent Paul's trailer as I was getting a weird feeling about so I told the landlady I would pass.

About a month later a few guys in suits driving a black Ford Crown Victoria showed up at Paul's trailer. The new renters were out in the front yard talking to the guys when I walked by. One of the guys in a suit turned and caught my attention and asked if I lived around there. I pointed to my trailer a few spaces down. He walked over and asked if I knew the guy who used to live in that trailer. I said I saw him on occasion when I was out for a walk. The dude pulls out a notepad and starts to take a statement from me. "anything unusual you notice?" he asked.
I was now starting to get scared and said, "yeah, he changed his own oil in his car. Who does that anymore?"
The dude doesn't write anything down and says, "anything else?". I said, "nope" and went onto my house.

To this day I am sure that guy was either running from someone or staying just a few steps ahead of the law.
 

1hoofer

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After 32 years as a cop I have no interest in crime movies , hit men movies or any of that crap.
Doesn't mean people shouldn’t make them or watch them, but I can assure you these movies have very little relationship with real life.
 

CharlieO

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In a not unrelated thought - you'd think there'd be more movies about divorce lawyers...
I think you may have hit on something. I bet you could make a long-running television series about divorce lawyers. I am surprised that Dick Wolf, creator of the "Law and Order" shows, hasn't done it yet.
 

Marc Morfei

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When I scan through the movie selections on Amazon, I keep seeing listings for movies about hit men. Why? Are hit men really a big thing?
Lack of imagination. That also explains why half the movies out there involve superheroes of some kind.

There are good movies out there about a whole variety of real-life grown-up subjects, but you have to hunt for them. Streaming services do a very poor job of offering them, since their interfaces all seem to push the same 6 movies no matter what you're looking for.
 

oldunc

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Does seem to be rather an epidemic; there's been a lot on TV too. Same thing with gangsters, I've just never seen the entertainment value. They mostly revolve around a "see how human they are when they're not killing people" type of theme, which was maybe interesting once. Then again. there were all those Gene Wolf books with a torturer as the protaganist...
 

wabashslim

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In a not unrelated thought - you'd think there'd be more movies about divorce lawyers...
There are plenty of courtroom shows on TV to satisfy that fetish. Always with a Black judge/White bailiff or vice-versa. Gotta cover them demographics!
 

Mouth

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So people who don't know what a suppressor(aka "silencer") really does can have the fantasy of their enemies eliminated by thpp, thpp.

If we had some reality there instead of thpp, thpp, the genre would probably lose a lot of appeal.
 

FuzzWatt

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There are plenty of courtroom shows on TV to satisfy that fetish. Always with a Black judge/White bailiff or vice-versa. Gotta cover them demographics!

And none of them anywhere near as good as this...

0452fef0abcfc7a74c6cad8b324af6f080276e6d.jpg
 

String Tree

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When I scan through the movie selections on Amazon, I keep seeing listings for movies about hit men. Why? Are hit men really a big thing? I have zero interest in these flicks, but I guess there must be an audience for them.
I think part of it is that Movies about Me have No Interest at all.
YEP!!!
 

loopfinding

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sure, partly, but these sorts of movies have always been popular among all types of men

"Despite the moral posturing, men are attracted to these characters precisely because they are manly. Bad guys tend to operate in brutal, indelicate, and unmoderated boys' clubs, and they seem to be particularly concerned with the business of being a man. Gangsters are status conscious, aggressive, tactically-oriented, ballsy, brother-bonded men's men. The loner hitmen are portrayed as capable but careful smooth operators who are masters of their dangerous craft. They are not good men, but they are good at doing the kinds of things that have been demanded of men throughout human history. They are not good men, but they are good at being men" - Jack Donovan, The Way of Men

well then i guess i'm not a man, cause i don't have any interest in being or fancying myself that way.

i do like a good/brutally honest mob movie though (e.g. something like goodfellas or casino, not some crap like scarface). but i'm from jersey, so it's not really a glorification/fantasy thing for me as much as it is portraying seedy parts of reality. sometimes you need to do that with art.

i think people in middle america see that stuff or stuff like the sopranos and think it's as fake as a jason statham movie or something...the portrayal may be a little dramatized, but it's not far off and it's totally happening IRL.

OTOH a hitman movie with no social context is just cheap/lame machismo porn. i'll pass.
 
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FuzzWatt

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Real life is not that exciting.

That's how I feel about conspiracy theories. I enjoyed them when I was younger, and they were less harmful back then. But the older I get the more I feel that a lot of it is spun by folks who simply can't understand/believe just how boring and simple the truth really is.
 

Flat6Driver

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well then i guess i'm not a man, cause i don't have any interest in being or fancying myself that way.

i do like a good/brutally honest mob movie though (e.g. something like goodfellas or casino, not some crap like scarface). but i'm from jersey, so it's not really a glorification/fantasy thing for me as much as it is portraying seedy parts of reality. sometimes you need to do that with art.

i think people in middle america see that stuff or stuff like the sopranos and think it's as fake as a jason statham movie or something...the portrayal may be a little dramatized, but it's not far off and it's totally happening IRL.

OTOH a hitman movie with no social context is just cheap/lame machismo porn. i'll pass.


I live near and work in DC. The TV genre is political drama. Compound that with all the.self important people in this town. I'd love to live in middle America for a bit and see what life is actually like.
 

AcresWild

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well then i guess i'm not a man, cause i don't have any interest in being or fancying myself that way.

i do like a good/brutally honest mob movie though (e.g. something like goodfellas or casino, not some crap like scarface). but i'm from jersey, so it's not really a glorification/fantasy thing for me as much as it is portraying seedy parts of reality. sometimes you need to do that with art.

i think people in middle america see that stuff or stuff like the sopranos and think it's as fake as a jason statham movie or something...the portrayal may be a little dramatized, but it's not far off and it's totally happening IRL.

OTOH a hitman movie with no social context is just cheap/lame machismo porn. i'll pass.
your response is why my quote started with "despite the moral posturing..."

You think these movies don't sell in Jersey? Or in all coastal regions? Or in all regions with high rates of organized crime? You don't think those men you speak of currently involved in organized crime and emulated criminals didn't grow up in a city surrounded by organized crime like you did?
 

1293

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When I scan through the movie selections on Amazon, I keep seeing listings for movies about hit men. Why? Are hit men really a big thing? I have zero interest in these flicks, but I guess there must be an audience for them.

C'mon, like you've never knocked someone off for money? If you say no, you're a liar.
 




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