Several months ago Arbogast on Film began the series The One You Might Have Saved, which was picked up by several blogs and became kind of an unplanned, ongoing blogathon. In salute to both the series and October Kill Fest Month here at Cinema Styles I'd like to turn it around and do a post on The One You Might Have Killed. This idea was already hinted at early on by The Dreaded Rhubarb in his response to Arbo in which he saved one and killed one. I'd like to start this one the same way before freefalling into a well of killing mania.
In honor of Arbo, I'd definitely save Private Detective Milton Arbogast (Martin Balsam) and kill Sam Loomis (John Gavin). See, I'd have Detective Arbogast poke around the Bates Motel and then head out. As far as the audience knows, he gave up. Then Lila Crane (Vera Miles) and Sam show up and do their snooping. Lila snoops around the house, finds nothing, and heads back to the motel. There she finds Sam has been knocked out by Norman and revives him. Sam tells her to stay put while he checks out the house. He soon arrives at the house and makes his way up the stairs, just like our disappearing detective did in a former life. When Sam gets to the top - BAM! Mama Bates comes out and slashes Sam down the stairs where he tumbles to the floor, prostrate as Mama kneels over him and finishes the job.
Lila's getting worried. What's taking Sam so long? She goes to the house but no one's there. Mama Bates has already moved the body. Lila now goes to the basement, the one place she hadn't gone before. She sees Mama Bates in the rocking chair. She approaches, spins it around only to reveal - Ahhhhhhh!!!!! It's a withered corpse!!!!!! And now through the door comes Mama Bates, only it's Norman Bates in women's clothes. Oh no!!! She's surely dead now ...
Arbogast runs through the door (God bless him, he didn't give up after all!), grabs Norman and wrestles him to the ground. Psychiatrist mumbo jumbo, blah, blah, blah, the end.
So there's my One I Would Have Saved and One I Would Have Killed. Now let's get into the meat of the post: The One You Might Have Killed.
*Wargames, Malvin (Eddie Deezen). Nothing against the actor personally, but in the movie, the second he starts going on about how much he knows about computers - BOOM! - I'd have a mainframe fall on his head. Sure it'd be a little jarring to the plot momentarily but I assure you, the story would recover in seconds.
*Gone With The Wind, Ashley Wilkes (Leslie Howard). Just 'cause.
*Deathtrap, Helga Ten Dorp (Irene Worth). One of the most annoying characters in movie history. Shortly after she's shows up and starts blathering on about the bad omens she's getting, I'd have Michael Caine grab the chopping block and crush her skull. Throw the whole plot out of whack you say? Trust me, losing her character could only make it better.
*The Goodbye Girl, Entire Lead Cast. I don't know, just feels right.
*West Side Story, Maria (Natalie Wood). Hey, Juliet dies. Why's Maria get to live?
*Dances With Wolves, John Dunbar (Kevin Costner). I'd have him killed in that opening Civil War scene. But then there wouldn't be a movie you say. Exactly.
*Any movie that has ever starred Danny Kaye, Danny Kaye's character. His character dies in the first scene, every time.
*The Lion King, Simba (Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Matthew Broderick). Can't we just make the movie about Scar?
*My Dinner with Andre, Andre Gregory. If only to make him shut up.
*Rocky, the annoying guy who drives Gazzo around that's always giving Rocky a hard time. Screw you pal, you're gone! I'd have Rocky go all berserker on him, mash his face into pulp and dump his body off the pier. Gazzo's like, "Hey where's my driver?" and Rocky's all like, "I don't know. I think he went for a drink."
So there are my top ten choices. I left some off for one reason or another (Jar Jar Binks - Too easy) and some I wanted you to come up with. I don't want to steal them all. So let me know - Who are the Ones You Might Have Killed?