Top 5 Hollywood Gun Myths Revealed

It’s a bit odd that this video fails to include [what I consider to be] the number one firearms-related Hollywood myth: when you shoot someone, they die virtually instantaneously. Unless, of course, it’s the good guy or the really bad guy. Terminator? I just met her! But seriously folks, even if you shoot someone in the heart they’ve got enough blood pressure to keep going for a little while — long enough to kill you. Good to know.


  1. avatar 2Asux sucks says:

    Don’t waste your time watching video

    1. avatar Red in CO says:

      Why not? I’m sure pretty much all of TTaG’s readers already knew all of this, but it’s not bad information, and it’s not badly presented either.

      1. avatar Rick the Bear (now in NH!!) says:

        Why does anyone respond to “2Asux sucks”?

        I had already watched the Mojo video and I agree that it was well presented. This is the sort of stuff that non-PotG will [hopefully] watch and gain a bit of knowledge.

        1. avatar Geoff PR says:

          FYI – “2Asux sucks” is *not* “2Asux”…

    2. avatar RJ says:

      I already knew all of the myths were bullshit but the video was kinda funny though.

    3. avatar Rick the Bear (now in NH!!) says:

      My apologies for my confusion.

      1. avatar Rusty Chains says:

        Trolls are like balloons at a child’s birthday party, full of hot air and easily deflated, but when you do so there will be lots of tears. Additionally it one is not much different from another, since they pull their material from the same threadbare playbook of long debunked fairy tales. All things considered, it is generally better to ignore them, and feeding them makes it 47 times more likely that they will stay.

  2. avatar Mr. 308 says:

    Everything on TV is dumb.

    Watch 24 – Jack must shoot like 50 bad guys per episode. I love how he shoots someone and they always just flat out drop in their tracks like they have been switched off. All the freaking time.

    But it’s not just guns, look at computers. On TV every time you type into a computer there is a digital sounding ‘tickity tickity tick’. When something shows up on the screen it goes ‘woosh’. Plus they can do magic things with them, the nerd on TV gets hold of a computer and can make windows pop up with a quick bit of tickity tickity tick and the window comes up ‘woosh’ and in huge fonts so the audience at home can see it says ‘Access Granted’.

    Yea, it works just like that, let me tell you.

    1. avatar Andrew Lias says:

      How about you just sweep a full auto, and everyone falls down.

      I would even say the availability of guns in a lot of movies that don’t involve the military (even some that do.) It’s difficult to get a full auto no matter how much Hollywood tries to show otherwise.

      Another one is knocking people down. That’s just simply absurd.

      That part in the movies where a .45 ACP vaporizes people’s souls? 100% true though.

      1. avatar jsallison says:

        Only if Chuck Norris or The Duke are shooting it.

      2. avatar Adub says:

        There was a Bruce Willis movie called Last Man Standing where every guy shot with a .45 was flung up and backwards. It was so ridiculous I got annoyed.

        1. avatar Mr. 308 says:

          Yes, and another thing I forgot about people not just dropping from being shot by Jack Bauers pistol – most people shot with handguns in fact survive.

    2. avatar strych9 says:

      My personal favorite is when someone draws a Glock and starts giving orders. When the orders aren’t followed there’s the sound of a hammer cocking on a SA or SA/DA. Makes me giggle.

  3. avatar S.CROCK says:

    I bet no regular ttag reader believed any of those.

    1. avatar samuraichatter says:

      Actually, the last one is or can be true. There are some suppressor, firearm, and ammo combinations that are by any definition “quiet”. Yes, hollywood often gets this one wrong. However, it can be done.

      1. avatar Ing says:

        Even when they get the sound level almost right, they always get the sound itself wrong.

      2. avatar Accur81 says:

        Subsonic .22, .300 BLK, 9mm, and .45 are decently quiet. Heck, .22 short subsonic is more quiet than my Crosman pellet gun. Although the only thing I’m doing with my busted Crosman is waiting for a gun buyback.

        Not arguing that Hollywood gets it right, though.

        1. avatar Kroglikepie says:

          .300 BLK subsonic 220’s with a can FT freakin’ W. A nail gun is louder and almost no recoil. It’s awesome to shoot stuff with my SBR and with no hearing protection on. 🙂

        2. avatar Mmmtacos says:

          True. Subsonic rounds through a good suppressor will be fairly quiet, more so if you have an action that is manually cycled. I’ve shot sub sonic .22LR out of a bolt gun and it doesn’t sound any louder than a BB gun. The DeLisle carbine is so quiet the action is considered louder than the report of the bullet being fired.

      3. avatar Cliff H says:

        What gets me annoyed is not how much they exaggerate the ability of silencers, but how seldom, if ever, they accurately portray how loud a gunshot is. All those cop shows and movies where they fire off a full mag and then continue the dialogue as though they could still hear perfectly fine. Right.

        1. avatar BillC says:

          The cartoon Archer gets it right sometimes. “Mawp”.

  4. avatar Indiana Tom says:

    I still remember the detective TV show Cannon. I had a Prof who was a Combat Infantryman in the Vosges and he used to comment how fat old Cannon would run 100 yards, without being out of breath, and drop a bad guy at 75 yards with one shot of his snub nose .38. He thought it wa just hilarious.
    This is the same guy who faced elite Waffen SS Gebirgsjager and said the closest he came to getting killed was by an American forklift driver in a factory.
    Never mind the Tiger Tank, just look out for the Clark Forklift.

    1. avatar Rick the Bear (now in NH!!) says:

      Garrett on Hawaii 5-0 was being fired on by a guy in a chopper with a scoped rifle. Ol’ Garrett dropped the whole thing with a shot from his .38 snubby. Even back then I thought that it was BS.

      1. avatar Timmy! says:

        This is why I love my Bersa Thunder so much. I seent James Bond shoost down an helichopter with one!

        1. avatar Dave Lewis says:

          Bond took out a helicopter with a .22 AR-7. That’s some shooting!

        2. avatar 16V says:

          Unless that helo is heavily armored, it just takes a few shots with a .22 to effectively ground a Robinson-R44.

          Just sayin’…

        3. avatar Rokurota says:

          Bond used the AR7 to shoot the dude who was about to drop a grenade on him. Instead the grenade fell inside the bird. So that explosion is realistic.

          And Timmy! for f’s sake, everyone knows James Bond shoots a Walther PPK, not a Bersa Thunder.

        4. avatar Julio says:

          Okay–I’ll be *That Guy*: in the 1962 movie Dr No, M ordered Bond to turn in his Berretta in exchange for a Wather PPK from Q. Bond was less than enthusiastic, but was not given a choice in the matter (something about it being underpowered). It was a .25 if I remember correctly (Wikipedia says the 418).

  5. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    Yes, you can put a perfect shot with an expanding bullet through someone’s heart and they still have enough oxygen in their brain and muscles to function for at least 10 seconds.

    If you don’t believe it, look up the story of the Los Angeles female police officer who was the unfortunate target of a gang-banger who decided to steal her car. He had a .357 Magnum revolver and blew a HUGE hole in her heart/chest at point-blank range. Not only did she miraculously survive the gunshot wound, she managed to return fire and kill the gang-banger before going unconscious on her doorstep.

    1. avatar Andrew Lias says:

      Yep one of the police defense books I have tells the story of a perp who was shot through the heart, killed the officer and ran down 5 flights of stairs before dying outside the building. People are both incredibly fragile and incredibly durable for what we are.

    2. avatar anonymoose says:

      What about that burglar that took 5 .357s to the face but was able to drive himself to the hospital, or that guy who got pulled over, pulled a gun, got shot in the chest 5 times with a .357, and still got back up and shot the cop to death?

    3. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      Here is a link to her story:

  6. avatar former water walker says:

    Ever watch Rambo 4(?) from 2008?Shoot the evil Vietnam dudes and SPLAT! they explode with 1 shot. Don’t know what fudd Stallone was thinking’…

    1. avatar Lucas D. says:

      No comment on the realism of the first three movies, but Sly did his homework in Rambo. He was using a Ma Deuce on those guys, and the .50 BMG round it fires really can do that kind of damage to a human body.

      1. avatar FormerWaterWalker says:

        Don’t bogard that joint-pass it over to me! Silliest movie ever made…

        1. avatar Lucas D. says:

          The .50 BMG is a very big bullet, and from the barrel of an M2 it goes fast enough to create a wound channel bigger than many parts of the human body. A single shot probably won’t cut someone completely in half unless the distance and POI are just right, but stories abound -along with photo and video evidence, if you have the stomach for it- of heads and limbs that were obliterated by the round.

      2. avatar BillC says:

        My favorite .50BMG myth is that it’s sooooo powerful, it doesn’t even need to hit you to do damage or rip limps off or whatever. It only needs to pass by you real close. HAHA. I personally haven’t heard it in a long time, though.

        I will admit, I did help to perpetuate that myth a bit though when I was in the Army. My unit had access too, but rarely used the M107 .50, but people would ask that question about it being able to hurt/kill without actually hitting the target; we would just say it did because it made them happy.

        1. avatar Scoutino says:

          Matt in Demolition Ranch busted that one.

  7. avatar gs650g says:

    Having shot deer numerous times I can tell you it is surprising the damage it takes to bring them down. If a 12ga slug can’t kill a deer instantly a handgun isn’t going to fare any better on a body twice the size

  8. avatar JohnF says:

    Here’s some I got from cowboy movies.

    1. It is actually a tactical option to shoot a gun out of a BG’s hand as he draws it. And three scenes later, he can use that hand again!

    2. Even though a Colt SAA has a big cylinder with flutes on it, it will slide like a hockey puck on wooden bar room floor during a fist fight.

    3. One gunshot will easily open even the heaviest padlock on a strongbox, and it doesn’t seem to actually damage the lock. It causes the shackle to open just like a key would.

    4. A Colt SAA can be fired with great accuracy by holding the trigger and “fanning” the hammer.

    5. It is an acceptable gun handling technique to twirl an SAA back into the holster immediately after finishing firing it. Ignore the facts that 1) You might want to reload it first and 2) It’s at least possible you cocked the hammer after your last shot and twirling it would set it off.

  9. avatar jwm says:

    Guns really don’t go “Pew, Pew, Pew.”? Now I’m disillusioned.

  10. avatar Jim says:

    Not a myth but what I hate is when a striker fired pistol gets cocked just so there can be a noise.

    1. avatar Mark N. says:

      In Criminal Minds, they are always “cocking” their Glocks, to put emphasis on their demands that the BG stop what he is doing and surrender. Even Joe Mantegna (who really does love his 1911s) cocks his 1911; yet no police officer in his right mind would enter a building without his 1911 cocked.

      1. avatar Drew says:

        People that carry hammer down round chambered with 1911s are a special kind of special.

  11. avatar jsallison says:

    Or the pump shotty gets pumped, repeatedly with no shots fired between pumps.

  12. avatar adverse4 says:

    I am by shooting people like I am by sex, haven’t done it much.

    1. avatar jwm says:

      TMI! TMI!

  13. avatar John says:

    My personal favorite is when merely pointing a handgun at someone or something makes a hammer cocking sound. It’s so prevalent in movies/t.v. that I bet the majority of people don’t even notice it.

  14. avatar Mark N. says:

    The theme in TV and movies is always the same: bad guys get shot and die, good guys get wounded (mostly), and those that do die, die slowly.

  15. avatar IYearn4nARnCali says:

    #6 Hollywood Fabricated Gun Myth: The Impossible Shot,
    You can google any number of movies in which the “hero” is able to place not just a well aimed shot on a target, but an impossible shot, often with an impossible gun.

    Take one example, 2015’s No Escape, Pierce Brosnan is running down a flight of stairs having just been engaged by an AK wielding group of bad guys when he is shot in his lower torso and he drops his AK and aims at a target several hundred yards away and scores a headshot; with a Beretta 92FS!

    #7 Every gun sounds like a shotgun, If you listen closely, most movies give you an audio clue that a firearm is on screen shortly by playing the sound of a shotgun cocking just as it is displayed on screen. Not every movie, but most.

    #8 Quiet pew pew, with few exceptions, the majority of gun shots in cinema are very quiet, every one of us who has ever visited a range or shot a firearm understand the explosion sound that occurs when you hit the bang bang switch, yet Hollywood does not play up that aspect of firearms. You got an entire surround sound capability and yet the movie machines can’t figure out how to make firearms sound right. They should think of the audience as an entire ecosystem of precious snowflake Kuntzman’s and use the power of surround sound to play hard loud fun gun sounds, 100+ db for all gun shots, give em the oomph they deserve.

  16. avatar Shootboot says:

    Mel Gibson shooting a perfect smiley face lethal weapon.

    1. avatar peirsonb says:

      I’ve seen it done with a long gun, it can’t be too far out there believe SOMEONE could do it with a pistol.

      1. avatar LarryinTX says:

        He did it in 2 seconds.

  17. avatar CarlosT says:

    Just watched Suicide Squad recently and it featured one of my pet peeves: people firing guns without hearing protection, then having a conversation. As we all know, guns are extremely loud, and unloading hundreds rounds on steel targets without hearing protection over the course of a couple minutes should leave everyone’s ears ringing. But everybody has a normal volume conversation, like nothing happened.

  18. avatar Aaron M. Walker says:

    Hollyweird, I mean Hollywood … Fakes stuff…You mean there’s still no Star Trek Phasers, or Star Wars blasters yet !? Darn ! Now those would be cool !

    1. avatar b72512ga says:

      I remember when Capt Kirk would tell them to set their Phasers to either Kill or Stun. If they ever make the available to the public, imagine going hunting with one. You could set it to Kill, Stun,or Cook.

  19. avatar Acworthless says:

    And let’s not forget how in Hollywood the inertia of a bullet that weighs less than a half ounce can knock a 190 lb. man backwards ten or twenty feet.

    1. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

      ….without knocking the shooter back 10 or 20 feet, the laws of physics be damned.

  20. avatar C.Rogers says:

    My favorite is how after a rifle round to the shoulder girdle, instead of 6 months in a cast with a kickstand and another 6 months of rehab, the hero immediately wins a fistfight then has vigorous sex.

    1. avatar Big Daddy says:

      I need 6 months in a cast and rehab after vigorous sex now so I avoid it.

  21. avatar BDub says:

    The one that drives me nuts in movies/tv is the “click, click, click, shit my gun is empty!” with a semi-auto pistol…also, the slide never seems to lock back.

  22. avatar DisThunder says:

    Watch Mojo’s last couple gun-related videos have been okay, Their first “gun control facts” almost had me on the road to smack some sense into those fuckin’ hipster Canadians.

  23. avatar AR says:

    and gang bangers holding their 9’s horizontal and not missing way left (for righties)

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