In Skyline, with LA full of alien monsters eating everything that moves, our heroes decide to try and escape in cars with big, growly engines and in broad daylight. Granted, their chances weren't all that good whatever they tried, but at least on foot and at night they had some small hope of evading detection. And let's not even think about the fact that their entire daylight plan was to escape by boat. From flying aliens. Yeah, that will work!
Hartman from Full Metal Jacket. When Pyle is in the middle of a nervous breakdown and holding a rifle, he decides that, rather than call the MPs, he should insult the poor guy. It doesn't end well for him.
Also in general, ANY movie where at least one character stops running to tell the murderous psychopath/monster/demon/abomination/whatever to "wait."
Any horror movie that relies on a bodycount will usually have at least one character whose utter stupidity gets them killed.
Bulk and Skull during the skydiving scene in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Kimberly has to remind them that it's a good idea to skydive with parachutes.
Lampshaded in Scream with Sidney Prescott's assessment of a lot of slasher movies:
Sidney: What's the point? They're all the same -- some stupid killer stalking some big-breasted girl who can't act and who's always running up the stairs when she should be running out the front door. It's insulting.
Also lampshaded at the beginning, when Drew Barrymore's character asks "Who's there?" the killer taunts her on the phone with, "You should never say, 'Who's there?' Don't you watch scary movies? It's a death wish. You might as well go outside to investigate a strange noise or something."
Only about three minutes after uttering the above line, Sidney is attacked by the killer and she actually attempts the front door first before realizing it's locked and she has no time to unlock it, which sends her running up the stairs.
Another character in the movie, Tatum (Rose McGowan) is killed after trying to crawl through the pet door in an automatic garage door. Naturally, she dies when the killer does something she wasn't smart enough to do: open the door.
Not to mention the sheer dumbness of giving something as deadly as a shark increased human brain power in the first place. That was bound to go well.
As Cracked.com put it, "You know what makes a really effective defense against sharks escaping? Hundreds of miles of dry land."
The Northern Water Tribe counts as this in The Last Airbender, since the firebenders need torches to bend fire, Pakku suggests extinguishing all of them to render them powerless and... they never actually do that.
Everybody in Screamers. Two sides are fighting a war on a planet. One side deploys the screamers, small burrowing robots. Ok, not so bad. Said screamers are equipped with an adaptive learning AI. Ok, that's risky, but not suicidal. The screamers are also built in an automated factory, and the screamers design and build newer generations of screamers. At this point, the concept moves from "risky" to "out and out suicidal". But the worst part, the thing that make you suspect the designers of the first screamers had a death wish, is the robots programing. The screamers are programed to kill any living thing they encounter, without any Friend or Foe system. Naturally, the screamers kill every single person on the planet. Its the worst case of this trope and Genre Blindness I've ever seen.
To be fair, the film implies that the Screamers were only set up and let loose by the Alliance after the planet's population had already mostly been killed off with bio-weapons and nuclear strikes by the NEB, and the Alliance was literally at the point of losing the war if they didn't do something crazy and desperate to change the balance of power. It's also pointed out by the surviving Alliance commander that this was a crazy act of desperation, and that there were all sorts of potential unintended consequences. So not quite Genre Blind so much as simply an attempt at Refuge in Audacity that didn't work out so great. Also, the Alliance troops did have an Identification Friend or Foe system they could wear, called a "tab," that was supposed to protect them from screamers.
The IFF system would have been great if it actually worked, but the film makes it clear that screamers looked at the IFF tabs as just a thing that goes "ping".
And the tabs wern't an IFF system. They said "I'm already dead, don't kill me" not "I'm on your side, don't kill me".
Ofelia of Pans Labyrinth surely qualifies in the infamous Pale Man scene. She has been warned by the Faun not to touch any of the food on display, or else; the magic book, just in case she forgot, tells her again... and guess what she does? She apparently doesn't notice the horrific looking creature sitting as still as a statue at the head of the table, never mind hear it springing to life as she takes a bite out of some fruit. The fairies with her even wave their arms and try to warn her not to, but she just greedily swats them out of the way and they end up getting eaten by the Pale Man for their troubles.
To be fair, it's possible that the feast exerted a sort of hypnotizing effect on her. Pan's Labyrinth was influenced by various fairy tales, and such an effect is not unheard of.
Ofelia likes fairy tales, and the movie is set up like one. In some fairy tales (but not all), the main character will fail to listen to advice, or do something they were told specifically not to do. In some cases the tale ends here, otherwise the main character must do something to redeem themselves in the eyes of their quest-giver. So Ofelia is just acting in accordance with the fairy-tale princess that she believes she is.
On a more minor example, during a High Speed chase through a densely packed forest in Return of the Jedi, a Stormtrooper turns around just long enough to see if his target died, and promptly crashes into a tree. Look where you're driving! Or... avoid doing a high-speed chase through a densely packed forest to begin with?
Considering that Luke demonstrated that the speeders can change elevation, racing through the trees at ground level in the first place qualifies everyone involved. On top of that, after Luke had been knocked off his speeder, his foe doubles back to finish him off rather than continuing on to get help, as all of the speeder troopers were commanded to do (and is the reason why they bolted from the scene in the first place).
A reasonable argument could be that, once dismounted, Luke used Force influence to convince the trooper to swing around and try to kill him. If you watch closely, Luke pulls out his light saber before the trooper turns around.
Also, the Imperial ground forces in general in ROTJ deserve this. Locating your sensitive base in the middle of a forest where there's plenty of places for the hostile natives to hide? Oh, and wearing bright, gleaming white armor to a fight in said forest? Apparently, the Empire never invented camouflage.
Hud from Cloverfield may qualify. Whether his friends are being attacked by parasitic creatures or a gigantic monster is hovering over him with a hungry look in its (many) eyes, it never occurs to him to just put the damn camera down and do something! Naturally, another character loses her life to save him from the parasites while his hands are full, and the hungry monster ends up eating him. On the Riff Trax, Kevin Murphy describes Hud as "straddling a fine line between dumbass and inanimate object." There's a reason one of the Fan Nicknames for the monster is "Darwin".
Micah from Paranormal Activity definitely deserves a mention. During the talk with the psychic, Micah asks about using an ouija board to contact the demon. He's told not to contact it at all, as that would constitute "letting it in" and make things much worse. What does he do? He verbally taunts the demon, keeps trying to get in contact with it in various ways, and states repeatedly that he's going to get an ouija board. The crowning point of his stupidity has to be when his girlfriend is freaked out by multiple nightly disturbances, and he tells her that all of the demonic activity is "cool stuff that he has to record". He basically thinks the whole thing is some sort of fun horror game. Pity he's not Genre Savvy in the slightest.
Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds has Melanie going up to a room she knows is filled with birds. The result is that she is nearly killed by dozens of attacking birds. When the actress asked, "Hitch, why would I do this?", he replied, "Because I tell you to."
Ed from Shaun of the Dead takes this to new levels. The characters need to get past a horde of zombies, and do so by acting like zombies to avoid drawing attention. When they are nearly to apparent safety, Ed's phone goes off... and he answers it and starts cheerfully talking on the phone, less than ten feet from dozens of zombies.
Previously, he had "accidentally" crashed their first car, giving him an excuse to drive a Jaguar instead. Following after the cellphone incident, the electricity comes back on and he starts playing a pinball machine, which draw the attention of a zombie in the same building as them.
Although this trope is hardly rare in slasher movies, special mention must be given to the Final Girl from Friday the 13 th. She omitted no less than three times, each time leaving the killer's weapon right there for them when they woke up. There were a bunch of other examples of her stupidity, but that was the outstanding one.
The worst part is that if the girl HAD finished off Pamela any of those other times, she probably would have lived a long life. The only reason she's killed in the next movie is because Jason witnessed her killing Pamela, which he probably wouldn't have if she had killed Pamela before she finally did. Not only that, but since we never get any evidence that Jason killed anyone before Part 2, might this might have even been what drove Jason over the edge.
At one point in a screening of Halloween, Laurie Strode's stupidity is too much for one audience member. When she fails to make sure Mike Meyers was dead after he came back from apparent death the first time, the audience member shouts, "You stupid bitch, you deserve to die!"
Also, she never thought to maybe pick up the knife that Meyers dropped after being killed the second time so that if he did get up she could defend herself.
Of course, to be fair, her friends that do get killed are even worse.
This is especially prevalent in Zombie's films when several people insult and even strike Myers. This wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't for the fact that Myers in those films is A SEVEN FOOT TALL GIANT!!!
On the one hand, he had been pretty docile for about seventeen years, not making a sound or causing anyone any trouble. On the other hand, he was in the hospital for committing multiple brutal murders, and even killed one of the hospital staff for insulting him. Best not to provoke him.
Multiple characters in Burn After Reading more than qualify, but Chad Feldheimer goes above and beyond the call of duty, and definitely earns the title since he ends up getting shot in the head before the second act is even over.
The science fiction spoof Mom and Dad Save The World has a memorably absurd case of this on a massive scale, played for laughs of course: There's a weapon called the light grenade that disintegrates anyone it comes in contact with once the pin is pulled, but only if the victim is dumb enough to actually pick it up. It has the phrase "PICK ME UP" engraved on it. Because the movie literally takes place on a planet full of idiots, one of these left out in the open takes out an entire platoon of evil troops, each one picking it up immediately after seeing what just happened to the last guy who did that.
When last seen, the next-to-last survivor of the platoon is just getting disintegrated, while the last survivor is radioing for more reinforcements to come pick up the grenade.
Still worse is the Light Grenade is commandeered technology, so the troops all know exactly what it is and what it does, and lampshade this with such lines as, "The Earth Man has a light grenade for a head" then when everyone asks what they pick it up, or "Everyone be careful, there is a light grenade on the ground." then responding to "Where" they pick it up and say, "Right Here" before poofing into a flash of light with a moment of sudden realization on their faces.
Of course the irony of this is King Raff, the smartest of the people on the planet, who admits even he himself is an idiot, somehow invented almost all the technology on the planet, including the Light Grenade, a device that is infinitely reusable, and leaves seemingly no waste, just lots of piles of perfectly clean clothes, as well as a beam that can pull a car and safely transport it and its occupants through space from Earth to his planet.
In addition, Todd, while trying on hairstyles, asks "Mutton chops or Goatee" to one of the pair of twin guards, to which the guard responds, "Mutton chops, M'lord"; Todd's response is to tell the Guard, "No... shoot yourself in the head." which the guard does (Too dumb to live, so he killed himself, because he was ordered to do so) then Todd asks the other twin, who without a moment of pause or thought cheerfully responds, "Mutton chops!" then at Todd's stern look draws his gun and shoots himself in the head (Twins, too dumb to live... or maybe not), but wait, after checking himself in the mirror once more, Tod says, "You know, they have a point." Of course the entire planet is essentially TSTL.
Of course that isn't Tod's only TDTL moment. To penetrate the castle and save his wife, Richard Nelson aka Dad in the title, leads the idiot rebels (whose favorite weapons that their leader innovated are large smooth and round rocks which they hurl like shot puts) to build a giant hollow wooden statue of Todd and put it outside the castle. Todd is called to see it, and cheerfully rushes to look, then chides his soldiers on how it looks nothing like him, but instead of having them destroy it, he shouts to open the gates and bring it in to show everyone how much it looks nothing like him... though the rebels did nail the trapdoor securely shut.
Pretty much any attempt the JSDF uses to stop/kill Godzilla falls under this. Most of the time, they only succeed in angering him...which only makes things worse. Conventional weaponry only annoys Godzilla and giant robots and laser cannons only serve as a temporary solution before Godzilla gets back up again and lays waste to them. And, yet they still use them in each film.
The aliens in the Showa era don't seem to fair much better. You'd think they'd learn by now that Ghidorah is just going to be defeated by Godzilla (and whoever Godzilla is teamed-up with at the time). Yet, they don't.
Orga from Godzilla 2000 is a particularly infamous example. He tries to swallow Godzilla only to be killed by Godzilla's Nuclear Pulse. Ok, how dense do you have to be to not realize that trying to eat the dinosaur with extremely powerful radiation-based abilities is a bad idea?
Gabra from Godzilla's Revenge just loves to bully Minya, even though he's well-aware that Minya happens to be Godzilla's son. He learns his lesson the hard way, maybe.
The archangel Gabriel from the movie Gabriel qualifies. From the very first person that he meets onward he is constantly warned that using his powers will attract the attention of every bad guy in the city, letting them know exactly where he is. So what does he do? Why, he seeks out his fallen comrades who are in hiding and proceeds to use large quantities of his powers to "help" them, even when they specifically and emphatically tell him not to and yell at him for it after the fact.
To top it all off, Gabriel is actually shocked and suffers a Heroic BSOD when he learns that he DID, in fact, lead the bad guys to his comrades and they all died because of his stupidity. Asmodeus even points out, "If you didn't want them dead, why did you lead us to them?"
I Know What You Did Last Summer. Helen, a blonde, is running through back alleys. So close, so very close is a crowded parade. Back behind her is the killer, her dead sister, and piles of tires. She hears a sound, stops, turns back; the killer is there and grabs her and drags her behind the tires. Death ensues. Notable in that Helen is played by Sarah Michelle Gellar. AfterBuffy the Vampire Slayer, which was specifically made to subvert the idea of the helpless blonde cheerleader. Good lord.
Many, many, many characters in the Jurassic Park series. Especially in Jurassic Park III, when Amanda is shouting into a megaphone. Towards a forest. On an island she knows is filled with dinosaurs.
That's not even half of it:
Amanda:(on the megaphone) ERRR-IIIC!
Dr. Grant: And tell your wife to stop making so much noise! We're food to these damn animals.
Paul:(yelling) AMANDA, HONEY! DR. GRANT SAYS IT'S A BAD IDEA!
Amanda:(on the megaphone) WHAT?
Paul:(pointing broadly at Alan) HE SAYS IT'S A BAD IDEA!
Amanda:(on the megaphone) WHAT'S A BAD IDEA?
(a roar is suddenly heard)
Jurassic Park II, with the supposed biologist Sarah Harding being one of the worst. She goes alone on an island filled with dinosaurs, and complains that Ian doesn't need to rescue her, then stumbles from one moment of rampaging stupidity to the next like a female Mr. Bean. To make matters worse, she lectures everyone with her about what you should or shouldn't do in a situation before immediately going out and doing what she said NOT to do. And unfortunately, this is a situation where her being Too Dumb to Live results in not her death, but the deaths of nearly EVERYONE she encounters on the island.
Burke: No, no. You're wrong there, Dr. Harding. We'll lose them once we leave their territory.
Sarah: No, don't bet on it. Tyrannosaurs have the largest proportional olfactory cavity of any creature in the fossil record with the exception of one.
So naturally, she continues to wear a vest covered in the blood of the aforementioned tyrannosaurs' infant. It's not like she forgot that it was there--Roland pointed the blood out to her and she explained that it was the t-rex infant's, and even then didn't think that there might be some danger in carrying it around.
Jesse from the second Alien vs. Predator movie. Her companions already killed the Alien in the stairwell, but she runs away and screams, forcing her companions to chase after her through a more heavily Alien-populated section of the hospital. Then she dies when she gets into the path of the Predator's disc blades. The Predator wasn't even trying to kill her, she just runs straight into the middle of a fight between the Predator and Aliens and gets hit by accident. What an Idiot!.
There's also the part near the beginning when the pizza delivery boy and his brother go down into the sewer for his car keys at night and nearly get killed by the Predator. It wasn't even like it turned to night by the time they got to the sewer, they clearly waited until night to go down, presumably so no one saw them doing it. Granted they didn't know that the Alien or Predator were on Earth yet, but still one would think that going into a sewer at night is just asking for some sort of trouble.
Also none of the characters seem capable of realizing that the Predator is fighting the Aliens and that maybe it would be a good idea to just let it go about it's business and not bug it. The main character seems to at least partially notice this near the end, choosing to flee and leave the Predator alone rather then trying to fight it (an action that gets some other characters killed).
Weyland in the first film. He was just spared by a Predator, so he takes it as an insult and attacks it again. You only get mercy once, moron.
Dr. Schneider from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade who, after being told by the immortal knight that the Holy Grail must never cross the great seal, grabs the Holy Grail and starts backing away with it while Indy keeps telling her to don't move and don't cross the seal!
Donovan also qualifies. After being told that "while the true grail brings life, the false grail will take it from you", he pauses, not knowing which one to pick. When he lets Dr. Schneider choose for him, he simply assumes it must be the one. Should have asked for another volunteer.
This is more an example of Distracted By the Shiny, because Dr. Donovan was obviously overwhelmed by the moment, thinking he was holding the legendary Grail in his hands.
Indy himself qualifies: A German officer has a gun to Schneider's head and is threatening to kill her if Indy does not put down his gun. His father tells him that the officer won't kill her, and not to listen to her either. Despite this, and, just as importantly, if not more, despite Schneider's German name and accent, Indy puts down his gun (whereupon Schneider pretty much immediately turns out to be an enemy).
Raymond Cocteau in Demolition Man frees a dangerous psychopath in order to get rid of an enemy, but he has it implanted in his brain that he can't ever harm him. However, he also allows him to bring other criminals inside his home who don't have the don't-harm-Cocteau rule implanted. It doesn't end well for him.
Davis in the 2004 remake of The Flight of the Phoenix; the plane has just crashed in the middle of the desert and it's stormy outside. He goes out, in the middle of the night, to take a leak. Not only does he walk unnecessarily far away from the plane (It's the middle of the night! No one will see you, jeez), he somehow trips and falls down, then rolls ten meters away from where he was -- and gets lost. He fails to find his way back to the plane, and dies out there.
Many of the characters in Gorgo qualify. First, our heroes bring a dangerous animal into a major population center, then disregard the possibility of Gorgo being a juvenile, then disregard the effects of its mothercoming into said population center (confident that modern technology can stop it) to the point where the government didn't even bother to evacuate the city! But the jewel in the crown has to go to a trio of teenage gawkers who got up close to the edge of the river Thames to watch the monster. They watched the army fill the river with gasoline and ignite it, then watch the river burn for a full minute before realizing: Hey, maybe it's not such a good idea to be near the water while it holds burning gasoline. They are promptly, gloriously, incinerated.
Crow: (laughing) Oh, now that just seemed completely avoidable.
Half of Gotham in the 1989 Batman movie seems Too Dumb to Live. It was already common knowledge that the Joker had murdered many people, but that didn't stop them from diving at the cash he offered in public. He even said into a microphone, "Now comes the part where I relieve you, the little people, of the burden of your failed and useless lives," but they're too engrossed to listen. A minute later, many are dead. And some who aren't dead yet still grab for cash.
Batman Returns gives us The Ice Princess who is shown to be a ditz when she can't remember whether the lights come on and then pushes the switch or vice versa, but the real crown jewel is when she stands on the edge of a building; it's no wonder The Penguin so easily got Batman framed.
She wasn't there by choice -- Catwoman took her up there to have a "girl talk" and probably let her go like that in order to set up Penguin's frame. Batman definitely didn't help things by telling her "don't move" immediately before Penguin showed up with the umbrella full of bats.
In The Dark Knight Saga, a guy is still driving towards the Joker at the end of the epic car chase sequence. Joker shoots up the car and the car crashes (the fate of the driver is not shown on screen). As pointed out on the movie's Riff Trax, "If you're still driving towards him at this point, you deserved that!"
An employee figures out that Bruce Wayne must be Batman, and wants to blackmail him. Lampshaded by Morgan Freeman's character: "Let me get this straight. You think that one of your clients - one of the wealthiest, most powerful people in the world - is secretly a vigilante who spends his nights beating criminals to a pulp with his bare hands, and your plan is to blackmail this person?"
The three victims in The Strangers; Kristen doesn't do anything but scream, trip and cry and actually injures herself, James among other things decides to go get a radio (because they were too stupid to have their cellphones on them) leaving Kristen alone and unprotected in the house, where their attackers can breeze in with ease, and their friend has his windshield broken, sees destruction, mayhem and hears loud music playing (which to a normal person would scream DANGER) and goes blithely in. Of course they all die.
Anyone in the 2008 not-remake of Prom Night, especially Claire (Jessica Stroup) who sees the killer coming for her and just stands there and the local police, whose bumbling and ineptitude cause all the deaths in the movie.
Parker in the 2010 Open Water knockoff Frozen. Granted, the guys weren't the brightest bulbs either (especially Dan, whose decision to bring the skiing-impaired, fair-haired maiden on a skiing vacation set the whole chain of events that led to them getting trapped on a ski-lift in motion - on his defense, though, it was at her insistence), but she takes it too far. She is also the sole survivor of the flick due to a gigantic Ass Pull.
Will Stanton in the film Dark Is Rising. At the end of the movie, he and the other Old Ones are forced to retreat into the Great Hall, where their enemy the Rider cannot enter unless invited. Will then proceeds to throw open the doors when he hears his parents and sister calling him only to learn that it was just the Rider who -- oops -- is now able to enter. Evidently Will thought his completely ordinary family was able to somehow get to a mysterious place which seems to be in an alternate time/dimension.
This is based on a very early scene from the book, where he, Merriman, and the Lady are holding a three-person circle of power in the Hall while the Dark tries to beat down the door, and they break his concentration by convincing him briefly that they've got his family captive. He lets go of his new comrades' hands, and the Lady has to temporarily die to save the day. Then Marriman actually explains a little bit, although he has an infuriating habit of explaining nothing, ever. (Will's also only just eleven in the book.)
The only good thing about that movie is it had the Ninth Doctor as the villain.
Both ofThe Incredible Hulk movies. Seriously, will General Ross ever get that shooting ? stopping Hulk, hurting Betty = Hulk turning into Banner? Bruce spends the entire movies trying to lay low and keep things under control. Then the military catches him, tries to perform experiments on him, he turns into the Hulk, and they make things WORSE by hitting him with heavy artillery, making him angrier than before.
In the second film, Ross specifically tries to knock Bruce out with gas instead of making him angry, and orders his men not to engage. If Bruce hadn't seen Betty there being kept away from him, it might've worked. Nice job breaking it, Betty!
Emil Blonsky deserves special mention. He held his own in a battle with Hulk, mainly because of how quick he was, due to the super soldier serum he'd been given. After he and the rest of his military division have thrown everything they have at Hulk, and he is still walking, Ross tells Blonsky to fall back. Blonsky then rips off his earpiece, drops his gun and attempts to stare down the Hulk, saying "Is that all you've got?" Cue Hulk-powered thrust kick to the chest, followed by being smooshed all over a tree.
ANYONE who buried anything in the burial ground in Pet Sematary after seeing the initial results (heck, after the initial warning for that matter). You'd think that after seeing what happened to Church the cat they would have stopped, but the guy then proceeded to bury his hit-by-a-truck toddler son Gage, who then came back and killed his wife. If that wasn't enough yet, he then buried his wife there, and she mercifully put an end to his chain of idiocy.
This is easily explained by the book. The burial ground calls out to people, and at one point the main character mentions that he feels great when going off to bury Church. Besides, the main character is insane with grief after Gage dies and just loses it when his wife and Jud get killed as well.
Then came the movie Pet Sematary Two (yes, there was a second movie), which was more of the same, but with most roles reversed either gender-wise or species-wise, plus a much higher body count, reanimated or not and a MUCH higher "creepy" factor in that the plot dared to bring up the utterly stay-up-all-night-thinking-about-it scientific side of the undead people/animals, courtesy of Dr. Chase Matthews the veterinarian: first the kids Jeff and Drew buried Zowie the dog after he was shotgunned by Drew's abusive stepfather Gus, and upon Zowie's return didn't really feel like there was anything wrong when the dog acted nasty -- Zowie was probably just irritable from being away from home for a bit. Of course more burials took place, including Gus himself and Jeff's actress mother Renee, who is taken from her grave much like Gage in the first book/movie. Interestingly, the undead Gus even does some of the burying, effectively enlisting Clyde the bully (who he killed while undead) as his henchman.
The military, law enforcement, and basically the government in general in the 2008 remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still, though pretty much all of government in all of fiction is guilty of this trope, and it's not an entirely unexpected reaction to aliens being suddenly real. Klaatu comes to Earth and reaches out his hand to the protagonists. Clearly, putting a bullet in him is the appropriate response. Only later do they realize he was able to shut down their defense network on a whim, and so they decide imprisoning and (implicitly) torturing him is a good idea. Klaatu's decision, after consulting a spy on Earth, is naturally that Humans Are Bastards and have to go, so the swarm of nanobots beings devouring every man-made object in its path. The military bombs it to hell and back, only to see it grow larger. The Secretary of Defense at least grows a brain at this point, but the president orders even more bombing as if the opinion of his military adviser isn't worth considering.
Klatuu's people deserve extra stupidity points as well. Consider that their entire motivation for destroying humanity is to preserve the non-human portions of Earth's biosphere. They then set their nanotech-based weapon on "Dissolve Everything", including rocks and trees! In the immortal words of Robert Asprin, "Very inferior as superior beings go."
And then of course he totally ignores the diplomatic mission entrusted to him and spends three months having a fun time. The Humans probably assumed he would have at least told Na'Vi that the humans needed them to move before, you know, the very last day.
"Having a fun time" was actually helping the diplomacy along a bit. For one, Dr. Augustine was allowed back into the village (she had been presumably banished after the school shootout). Of course, he still massively fucked up by forgetting the original mission. One has to wonder how he was even a former Recon Marine...
In Orphan, the two kids never reveal that they've seen Esther committing violence, even though A) the mother clearly believes that she is and needs support and B) Esther keeps trying to kill them.
Zombieland: Wichita and Little Rock ride the rides at Pacific Playland, which light up, make noise, and naturally attract lots of zombies. Many fans think they may have been deliberately suicidal, even.
First averted then played straight with Bill Murray: Using make-up and his acting abilities to blend in with the zombies and avoid being killed? Pretty damn friggin' smart. Pretending to be a zombie in order to scare the unsuspecting jumpy teenager WITH THE GUN? Stupidity of epic proportions, especially when he saw the reaction that he got from the survivors who weren't currently armed with firearms and then trying it again with someone who was...
Its important to remember that all characters involved are literally stoned out of their minds at the time they start thinking this is a good idea.
The girls also get one in their introduction, when they're setting up a scam pretending that Little Rock is bitten and needs to be offed. The whole monty hinges on the mark getting cold feet about shooting a kid and deciding to let Wichita do the deed - all it would've taken was for Tallahassee to say "Okay, I'll put her out of her misery" and a double-tap, and Wichita would've lost her sister. And it would've been entirely her own fault.
The mark getting cold feet was never a necessity of the scam. The ploy was that they had no weapons to do the deed themselves. All Wichita had to do was request to do it herself regardless, with Tallahassee's gun.
The whole race of Romulans in the latest installment of Star Trek. Their whole sun goes supernova thus destroying Romulus in the process? Sorry, but you must be plain dumb in order to let that happen (according to Star Trek Online, they caused it by testing weapons that were banned due to this specific reason). Not only do they possess a whole star empire, which means they have more planets then just the one being threatened by the super nova, they should also have the technological possibilities to detect super novas in time. It's not like they happen as a total surprise. It shouldn't have been a problem at all to evacuate a planet in time. And to let Spock as the only person in the goddamned empire try to prevent it because they were too busy arguing. That's beyond dumb. Maybe more so, since the ship and technology Spock uses were built on Vulcan, which means somebody had sufficient advance notice and time to prepare a response.
Also Olson, not pulling his chute till the last second.
The two dumb kids in Jaws, who decided that, while the town is on high alert for ANY potential shark fins, would do a prank involving a fake shark fin on a piece of wood, and tow it from underwater. Fortunately for the kids, they didn't get shot. Unfortunately, thanks to their distraction, at least one person was eaten and another kid was injured by the real shark, and managed to get away as a result.
The shark himself, for eating an explosive.
Jaws: The Revenge. The widow Brody is convinced that Jaws is still alive and going after her, so where does she go? Nebraska? Oklahoma? Some other place that's far away from the ocean? Nope: THE BAHAMAS.
Clive in Cold Storage.
Several of the children who potentially stand to benefit from the tontine in the British ensemble comedy The Wrong Box grow up to be too dumb to live, as shown in a montage following the opening credits. Just to name two, an army sergeant orders his men to fire a cannon, oblivious to the fact that he is standing directly in its line of fire, and a big game hunter insists on waiting for a rhinoceros to charge before opening fire, and waits so long that he is swiftly gored when it finally does start charging.
The Stepfather remake has the main character's mother debunking all possible theories that her fiancé is a serial killer, from an old lady seeing his face on Americas Most Wanted to her sister telling her that the fiancé quit her company shortly after he was required to fill out certain information that might get him caught.
In traditional horror fashion, pretty much everyone else is just as dim. Everyone who finds evidence that the titular stepfather isn't who he says he is steadfastly refuses to notify anyone of note and putt around with the killer knowledge. Special commendation goes the supposedly Genre Savvy son who, despite being paranoid as sin, ignores several anvilicious clues that he's -right-. The cops at the end may also be considered this, if not 'Too Out of Shape to Live'; They fail to apprehend a man who has been stabbed, beaten, and thrown out a second story window. You could SEE THEIR LIGHTS APPROACHING while he was still sprawled out on the ground recovering.
Goddamn near everybody in the movie Warning Sign. Firstly we have the Biotek employees who unzip their hazmat suits inside a sealed quarantine room - where they're making a deadly Hate Plague - to pose for a photo. Then when the virus is released into the facility, the other Biotek employees apparently have no idea what a quarantine lockdown is, staring at the closing shutters and alarms in confusion and then get upset when they are locked in. They then try to argue with Joanie, the security guard who started the quarantine, to let them go because she was scaring people with the quarantine despite some of them knowing they were working on a hate plague. Then the concerned townspeople and relatives outside the quarantined building try to break their way in, despite being told the spin story that a chemical that would destroy their crops had been released inside. If not for Joanie having more common sense than everyone in the county and sticking to the quarantine protocols, Utah would have been screwed.
Rose in Titanic. From pretty much the moment the ship hits the iceberg, she has the Idiot Ball superglued to her hand. Though Winslet's performance is a little vague, Jack's later dialogue ("When did you realize I didn't steal the necklace?") seems to indicate she DOES believe Cal's frame job, however briefly. We're then given the impression she knows, from what Andrews told her for no discernible reason other than to set this up, that the lifeboats are totally inadequate and it's imperative to get off the ship before they're all gone. She then spends the rest of the sinking running around the boat, trying to save Jack, who convinces her to just GET IN THE GODDAMN BOAT ALREADY, jumps back out, runs DOWN in a sinking ship, and generally slows Jack down. Admittedly he and Cal play hackey-sack with a mini-Idiot Ball throughout this (to the point you wonder what Cal has on him that the valet doesn't just say "Screw both of you" and get on the lifeboat offered) but Jack pretty much sums up Rose when he tells her "You're so stupid!"
The crew and the ship designers that went along for the ride could also qualify. Believing the ship to be unsinkable despite knowing full well that it can only sustain limited damage? Pretty dumb. Putting a small number of lifeboats on the ship that can only house half the people on board tops in case the ship does sink? Really dumb. Sailing full speed into a part of the Atlantic that has icebergs out the wazoo, leaving you little time to react, and coupled with the two previous factors? Congratulations, you're Too Dumb To Live.
Actually, neither The White Star Line or Harland & Wolff ever described -or believed- the ship to be unsinkable. They said that she was PRACTICALLY unsinkable. The press at the time simply did away with the 'practically' and it was never corrected. The number of lifeboats actually exceeded the amount set by regulations -that were twenty years out of date. What's more, all other large liners at the time suffered the same problem -inadequate lifeboats due to outdated regulations. It was just pure Irony that the 'unsinkable' ship needed them.
After the disaster, a U.S. Senate Inquiry discovered -to their shock- that procedures on the Titanic that they thought were negligent, were actually standard practice for the time. The big liners for all the major shipping lines tended to go full speed ahead at almost all times. (Blinding fog was pretty much the only thing they'd slow down for). Maintaining the schedule was regarded as being paramount. As well, Captain Smith was not doing anything different than he'd done throughout his career. For decades, he operated ships in that manner and never had any sort of accident or serious incident. There was, realistically, no reason why he would think to do things differently now. And, as noted, all other captains did the same thing. As Senator Smith noted at the Inquiry, the state of shipping practices meant that a major disaster was BOUND to happen sooner or later. It was just Captain Smith's bad luck that it happened to him.
Not the captain's fault either: it just had to be the day when icebergs decided to go further south. Using navigational charts, scientists have found out that the captain had traveled this route many times, and there were usually no icebergs. What was still surprising was that he actually disregarded iceberg warnings from a nearby ship.
The US Army in Twenty Eight Weeks Later. They allow unsupervised access to an asymptomatic infected, who consequently infects someone. Then they evacuate another one to Europe where the whole thing starts all over again.
The initial mistake wasn't allowing unsupervised access, it was giving a civilian access to 'ALL' areas of the military installation, even the top secret areas--including the place where the asymptomatic woman was.
Even so, they lacked the most basic security measures, such as placing guards around an individual who carries the most dangerous pathogen known to humankind. Nevermind how children were able to sneak past outside of the safe zone as if they were sneaking out of a high school during a lunch break...
Balian (Orlando Bloom) in Kingdom of Heaven. It makes more sense in context and is more like a case of lazy writing, but Balian's inaction is the prime reason behind the Big Battle of the film. His refusal, on many occasions, to kill a blatantly evil and dangerous character (a French Templar named Guy de Lusignan, played by Marton Czokas), is the prime reason behind the siege and the Big Battle of the film. Guy and his conspirators are the ones that provoke the war between Muslims and Christians, and their intentions are made clear (in-story, i.e. to other characters and not just to the audience) from the outset, and yet Balian doesn't make a move, and he refuses to do anything when his advisors/friends repeatedly express their concern. He doesn't come off as noble, more like an idiot and a passive character. Many characters die as a result of his course of action (or, rather, inaction), but he survives the film. In the film's epilogue with King Richard I he should probably say: "I'm the blacksmith, and the main reason you have to retake Jerusalem from Saladin, I'm the one that should be thrown in a dungeon full of Twilight merchandise." This film is not worth watching for this very story element, it's a classic case of a story where if the main hero acted within common sense, there wouldn't be much of a story to be told.
2001 heist film Firetrap. A building is on fire. A guard is badly injured. What's a guy to do to save him? Get on the elevator during a fire, and talk a woman you like into going with you. What do you think happened to them?
Several characters in both the original Dawn of the Dead and the remake. Since they're in the middle of a mass zombie outbreak, most of them die.
The Boogens features an entire cast of this. The titular monsters may actually be smarter than the humans and dog, and they're not actually depicted as anything other than hungry. Sadly, probably the stupidest of the humans are the alpha couple, and thus survive.
Madison, the birthday girl in My Super Psycho Sweet Sixteen. While she and Skye, who happens to be the killer's daughter, are running from the killer, she picks that time to insult Skye again. You can guess what happens.
Don't forget Chloe! She sits around in the dark, abandoned bathroom planning to spray Skye with a fire extinguisher. Can you say "Genre Blindness"?
All the criminals in Hancock, and arguably most of the citizens. The titular superhero Hancock is a JerkassFlying Brick who can and will use his powers to frighten, humiliate, or possibly mutilate anyone who remotely displeases him. He's also totally immune to harm. Despite this, everyone save Ray, the main character and the only one with any common sense, either insults him, try to provoke him, shoot him despite knowing better, and generally seem to fail to comprehend that he will cause them serious harm.
In Waterworld, there is a character named Enola who doesn't know how to swim, when 99% of the planet is covered in water. It's made very clear that she can be taught to swim and that no one ever thought that a child growing up on a planet covered by water should know how to swim.
Though it is not lampshaded, it could be that she was sheltered inside all of her life so that no one would notice her birthmark/tattoo. Wearing a bathing suit or skinny dipping, someone would eventually notice it.
In Lethal Weapon 2, the bad guy who is responsible for killing Riggs's girlfriend and a bunch of their cop buddies is involved in a major shootout. He's a South African diplomat, so when they have him dead to rights, he pulls out his passport and intones, smugly, "Diplomatic immunity!" He gets shot in the head for his trouble by Roger Murtagh, who delivers the immortal line, "It's just been revoked."
And to lay the icing on the Too Dumb to Live cake, just before saying this line, the bad guy in question had just gunned Riggs down, which anyone watching a buddy cop picture knows is going to get you killed no matter which half of the law-abiding/loose-cannon partnership it's done to.
Not to mention that diplomatic immunity does not protect you when you're openly committing crime and your guilt is obvious. If nothing else, your country will revoke it in a heartbeat because they don't want to be associated with your crimes.
Even moreso, diplomatic immunity means immunity from prosecution, not harm. He had just shot a police officer and was still brandishing the gun at another police officer, who would not have to worry about diplomatic immunity since he'd be excused for shooting the guy due to self-defense concerns.
Sure, it's a disaster film (and a pretty silly one at that), but The Day After Tomorrow had this in spades. Hundreds of people are sheltering in the public library, and decide that rather than listening to the son of the smartest climatologist in the country (who just had an extended conversation with his father), they're going to go and do the exact opposite. Of course, they all freeze to death. Had they bothered listening, they would've been uncomfortable, but they would've survived.
Those who do stay in the library, decide to burn books to keep warm. Books that they have to take off the wooden shelves to burn.
Wooden shelves have to be broken up to fit in most fireplaces, and are usually painted/stained with substances that release toxic fumes when burned. Books were the safer alternative by far. The dumb part was in tearing them apart and burning them page by page rather than using some loose pages as firestarters and then burning entire books- that would have been much more effective.
Then there was the scene meant to be a Crowning Moment of Heartwarming in which Frank is dangling from a glass roof. The glass starts to crack and Frank decides to make a Heroic Sacrifice because there is no way the glass can support Jason and his weight. Fridge Logic sets in when you realize Jason is holding onto two steel support beams that could have easily held the weight of the sled, the entire party, and probably an elephant.
The Prison Guard in Con Air. This Prison Guard and FBI Agent Larkin have just found a box labeled "Do Not Open" in the cell of Cyrus Grissom, a criminal genius, terrorist, murderer, and general all-around Complete Monster. Larkin goes to fetch the bomb squad, explicitly ordering the guard to not open the box. Literally the second Larkin is out of the room, the guard sits right down on the bed and opens the box. He is immediately blown to smithereens.
It should also be noted that the other guard with him warns him that Larkin said not to touch anything. That's three separate warnings the guy ignored. Truly TDTL!
The aliens from Signs walk around Earth naked, despite being as much vulnerable to water as we are to sulfuric acid.
In Southern Comfort, the main characters are in the National Guard on a training mission in a swamp, miles from civilization. They see one of the inhabitants from a distance and decide to mess with him... by pointing their rifle (loaded with blanks) at him and "opening fire." Shockingly, the locals have their own rifles, not loaded with blanks. Natural selection ensues.
Vincent Vega of Pulp Fiction. A veteran hitman who really should have showed a little more respect for his weapons, he ended up causing the Trope Namer for I Just Shot Marvin in the Face due to recklessly pointing his weapon in the wrong damned direction, and when he was sent to whack Butch Coolidge for turning around and winning the fight he was paid to throw, he left his MAC-10 submachine gun on the counter while he went to the bathroom, not taking heed to the fact that his intended target might come across it while he was doing his business, leading to Vincent getting blown away.
Vega is more careless than dumb, in large part due to him being a sociopath, as after Marvin gets shot, he doesn't even seem to care one way or the other about it and in Butch's case it seemed so absurd that Butch would actually come back there that Marcellus leaves to get donuts.
The rather logical explanation that Vincent is a moron because he is high on heroin for a good portion of his waking life has been forwarded.
The Last House on the Left: Aw, man, we raped and murdered these people's daughter, and they don't even know! Wow, now the mom is giving me a BJ! This is the best road trip ever!
I'd honestly like to take a poll of women to see how many would continue shaving their legs if the skin started to slough off with noticeable amounts of blood and scraping noises to Squick pretty much anybody out.
100Feet. A woman is being haunted by the vengeful ghost of her abusive husband. He's shown her that he can move anything in the house anytime he wants, so what does she do? She throws her wedding ring in the garbage disposal, then decides to fish it out with her hands. After narrowly avoiding losing her hand, she invites the neighbor boy over for some fun...
Each member of the Mystery Team, but especially Charlie and (later) Jason. Jordy also qualifies.
Coolio's character in Red Water escapes from an exploding boat with a trunk of cash by jumping into a river being prowled by a shark (don't ask why). Instead of ditching the money and swimming for land, he tugs it along. But that's not the worst. When the shark rises out of the water and bites the trunk, what does he do? Instead of swimming away, he tries to pull the trunk out of the shark's mouth until it breaks open, scattering the money all over the water. And of course, he tried to collect every bill in sight, and is promptly eaten.
A nameless Triad thug in Hard Boiled shoots two SWAT officers in the climactic hospital battle, killing one of them. As he goes to finish off the other, Teresa Chang snatches up a pistol and holds it on him. Possibly believing that she was merely a trapped civilian (she was wearing plainclothes) and wouldn't have the nerve to shoot him, the thug slapped her and called her a "fucking bitch!" She promptly shot him about five times in the torso.
David and Jack in the beginning of An American Werewolf in London exemplify this trope by, after being warned of danger, wandering off the road in the middle of the night, presumably without any food. Without the werewolf they still would have been lost for a long time.
The title characters in Yossi And Jagger. One could argue that the film works best as a hour-long PSA about Why You Do Not Have Affairs Within Your Chain Of Command.
In Zoolander, Derek Zoolander lost his friends in a tragic gasoline-fight accident. The only reason he survived is that he spotted his image on the front of a newspaper and went over to look at it.
Judge Dredd. That rookie Street Judge that dies in the beginning. Isn't one part of police training to not run off alone into an unsecured building? In his first attempt to run blindly into combat, he actually cites a training exercise at the academy as giving him grounds to do so, before Hershey admonishes, "This is NOT a training exercise."
In Taken, Kim and Amanda are this. They are 2 American teenagers who go to France by themselves to follow around a band. They take a taxi with a stranger and then tell the stranger their apartment number and that they will be alone in the apartment. No surprise, within the first 30 minutes of the movie they are kidnapped. The criminals that take them could be considered this as well. They run on the premise that trafficking some young, pretty white girls from wealthy countries is the way to go, not realizing that even if Kim's dad Bryan wasn't a former spy who could kick their asses, the families of those girls would ask questions (not to mention Missing White Woman Syndrome).
The behaviour of Kim and Amanda is not that far fetched, as anyone who has been around privileged teenaged girls who have spent their sheltered life in a gated community in suburbia can tell you.
Invoked in the slasher spoof Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the Thirteenth. Everyone agrees that with the recent killings they should hide out at a safe place – but they all think it should be in the middle of nowhere, preferably the dark woods in the pouring rain, and without any adult supervision or police protection in the near vicinity. One even suggests that they should go to a deserted place that's been abandoned ever since a bunch of dorky kids were dismembered there.
Head goon Buddy in Christine, when chased by the possessed big V-8 powered car, opts to run down a long stretch of straight highway, rather than get off-road where a car might have some difficulty getting through at any speed.
Arguably Kalle from The Troll Hunter, who concealed the fact he was a Christian from the crew and the hunter despite the hunter warning them that Trolls will go after anyone with Christian blood. It would have been justified since he didn't initially believe it to be a life or death decision when mythological creatures were involved, EXCEPT for the fact that both he and the crew had two violent encounters with trolls before finding themselves trapped in a cave filled with Mountain King Trolls that led to him getting killed.
Blade Runner. Tyrell, Tyrell, Tyrell. When your angry, vengeful creation is confronting you and demanding you perform a medical procedure on him, the correct answer is not to explain why that procedure would be fatal, it's to perform it anyway. Possibly justified in that his idolization of Roy as his ultimate creation may have been stronger than his self-preservation.
Arguably, the central character Annie in the 2010 film Trust. At the age of 14, she starts chatting online with someone called Charlie whose admitted age over the course of the chats goes up from 16 to 20, then to 25, and when she meets him in person at a mall we see he has to be in his late thirties at least. And what does she do? Instead of walking away, she gets into a car with him. And then goes to a motel room with him. And models in red underwear for him, before he rapes her. Admittedly she is 14, but in this day and age if a 14 year old girl does not even think to let a friend or family member know she is going to meet up with a stranger on the internet, and then ignores the cardinal rule of not getting into a car with a stranger (which hopefully most six year olds know by now) then she is clearly headed for a nasty shock.
Very much Frank of State of Grace. A mafia boss who goes to extreme lengths to kill his own friends and relatives just to satisfy the requests of another gang, against which he fears to lose in case of a mob war. It's really no surprise that he ends up being topped by Terry, his last remaining childhood friend, with even more added irony cause Terry was actually an undercover cop and was having qualms about busting Frank and the others.
A variation (arguably) in The Vanishing--Rex Hofman isn't too dumb to live, per se, as much as he is too obsessed to live. After spending years trying to discover the truth behind his girlfriend's mysterious disappearance in a crowded public place, he finally tracks down Raymond Lemorne, the man behind it. But if he kills Lemorne, he'll never find out what happened; his girlfriend may even still be alive, for all Rex knows. And he can't involve the police because there's no evidence against him. The only way he can ever find out what happened to his girlfriend, the all-consuming question he's been trying to answer for years, is to take a drug-laced cup of coffee that Lemorne offers him. He does. And wakes up in a coffin, the sound of dirt thudding on the lid above him.
EVERY SINGLE CHARACTER in Splice. Their so friggen stupid that when they all get killed or even raped by the monster, it's hard not feel as if they had it coming. When your characters are so stupid that you don't feel bad that they're getting raped and murdered by a horrible genetic monstrosity, something is obviously wrong.
Many of the traps in Saw II required the participants to be terminally stupid in order to kill them. Most of them are therefore effective.
For a more detailed rundown, there's Addison immediately sticking a hand into the obvious bladed trap, and then, instead of keeping her other hand out to free the first one, shoves it in too when the syringe she's going for spills (and commentary reveals that the box had a key already in the back, so if she'd taken a few seconds to assess the situation she would have gotten the syringe with no trouble).
Obi, who walks brazenly into a furnace and seizes the syringe without a second thought. If he'd taken a few seconds to look around first, he would have seen the valve to turn off the gas and wouldn't have been burned alive.
In Star Wars: A New Hope, you'd think Admiral Motti would have known that dissing the faith of the big scary Sith Lord and personal hatchetman of the Emperor, Darth Vader, in his face is a very, very, very bad idea.
While he may have known that Vader was under orders to not kill any of the senior staff, as Tarkin ordered Vader to release him, this merely downgrades his status from Too Dumb to Live to Too Dumb Not to Subject Himself To Pointless Suffering.
Then there's Greedo, a bounty hunter so amateurishly stupid that he doesn't get the most basic line you need to say when you are covering your quarry, "Keep your hands where I can see them."
In Omega Man: Richie subscribes to the popular "Children are Too Dumb to Live" concept. After Neville cures Richie of the plague, Richie asks if he will cure the Family (the bad guys). Neville declines on the reasonable basis that they are homicidal maniacs who worship the plague and prescribe the death penalty for those who are not afflicted by it. So Richie decides, on humanitarian grounds, to walk into the lair of the Family and tell them about how he was cured and they can be too. It is a relief to see Richie exit the gene pool. Too bad he brings down the hero as a result.
Josh Dalton from Insidious definitely qualifies. Not only does he spend most of the movie as the Agent Scully, arguing with his Genre Savvy wife, when he finally does accept the weirdness and go into the Further to save his son, he breaks every rule he was told to follow, culminating in him stopping ten feet from his body to yell at a ghost that's been stalking him since childhood to possess him specifically. The ghost, of course, possesses his body, resulting in the deaths of his family and every other character in the film. And Josh is likely stuck with a Fate Worse Than Death. Nice Job Breaking It, Hero.
Quite a few characters in the film adaptation of Battle Royale. Toshinori Oda probably takes the cake for surviving a burst of gunfire due to his bulletproof vest, then jumping up a few seconds later and loudly proclaiming "I'm alive!"
Towards the end of the the film Utoya, 22 Juli (a reenactment of the Breivik Massacre which happened on the island Utoya at 22. July 2011) Kaja, who until that was quite levelheaded, suddenly leaves her hiding place and goes to the open beach. Upon coming there she discovers four dead people, who all were clearly shot just a couple minutes ago. Rather than retreating or finding a new hiding place, the proceeds to argue loudly with Markus, while standing near the corpses, completely in the open. Predictably, she gets shot and it's a wonder that Marcus isn't killed as well. The whole scene creates an impression that the director was frantically searching for a way to kill her off.