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FEATURE: Ten Dos and Don’ts in a Movie Hostage Crisis

May 30th, 2013 by Big Phil Comments

Hostage films are, let’s face it, some of the most thrilling and exciting films ever made. With villains and heros that have uttered simple but witty one-liners, the explosions and the nail-biting climaxes that have audiences literally cheering at the cinema screens.

However, if you find yourself on board a warship, skyscraper or bank, I have below some helpful dos and don’ts:

DON’T Sit beside the “Panicky” Hostage: This is always a sure fire way of drawing attention to your direction. Whilst some may indeed panic and want to run out to the nearest exit, they may indeed find themselves thrown out of the nearest window… and perhaps you with them.

DO Call for help. If the phone is there, or an open window, use it. Shout it from the roof tops if you have to and let someone know what’s going on. Oh, and try and flag down any passing news vans or reporters, especially TV types as this will increase your chances of a multiple appearances on future talk shows and quite possibly a future bestseller if you play your cards right.

DON’T  Pick up hitchhikers/wanderers on streets/ or any other person in a black suit (NEVER trust men that look like the guy below); especially if there have been various news broadcasts that a robbery/escaped criminal/murder has taken place. Instead, if you are in a vehicle, lock the doors and just head for the border!

DO Duck and Cover! If there is a rescue, chances are there will be gunfire, explosions and even perhaps a vehicle ramming a building. Best to hide in a secure part of the room and wait until it’s all gone quiet, oh, and don’t decide to take revenge, you know it will only end badly, for him and/or you!

DON’T be stupid! Now I know this may come as a shock, but too many hostages never make it because they decide to be heroes or signal for help when they basically haven’t a prayer. By all means, Run when you are alone, but not run when the guy with sweaty palms and weapons is smoking a cigarette five feet away from you. Pick your moments; oh, and avoid the hero types such as the overweight security guards, the man in the suit who has watched too many John Wayne movies – those types are news specials just waiting to be aired!

DO Lie! Yep, this is a must. By all means bull-S%&@ your way out of the hostage crisis anyway you can. But be smart, never tell them you are from a rich family, company or government type as that may think you more valuable you really are. Instead, tell them you have a medical condition, preferably one that is quite contagious, that’s bound to get their attention and get you a quick walk to freedom.

DON’T take payment for granted! Sadly, too many negotiations fail because those with the cash simply won’t pay. If you are held and awaiting a ransom, best to think the worst in that it wont be paid. That way you can prepare for the next step.

DO expect a rescue. There is nearly always a rescue. These can be in multiple forms; the Lone Ranger type (trust men that look like the chap at the top of the page and get him to like you), the Ex-Military type with more special than a Gordon Ramsey menu, The Combat Force Type with more firepower and tactics than a series of Call of Duty games, or maybe even the Cop with a a Conscience type. All of these are good signs and will get you that one step closer to freedom.

DON’T Take their transport! If the guy with gun says “Get into the chopper/bus/car/plane/boat,” simply fake a heart attack, pretend to be deaf or blind, basically do anything in your power to avoid going where they tell you. That transport may look like the Freedom Express, but trust me, if that’s the guys with the shotguns’ getaway vehicle, you don’t want to be anywhere near it!

DO be opportunistic: If your captor has gone to the toilet and left you alone, Run!!! Run fast, run far and don’t look back; avoid helping little old ladies/pregnant women and any kids that are with you, they will only slow you down. Just run to the nearest Police Officer, that is, unless he has a foreign accent, in which case, Run in another direction, and avoid him too!

So there you have it my fellow Nerds and Nerdettes, some helpful tips to get you through those long hours waiting to be freed. Of course, there is a simple moral here: NEVER be in the wrong place at the wrong time!

Please note that the above advice is for entertainment purposes only! this article is in association with Vehicle 19 out now


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I arrived on Earth in 1977 and have virtually devoted my entire existence to cult films, television programmes and cartoons. I am a very big fan of Star Wars and Star Trek; I may struggle with foreign languages but I can order live Gagh in Klingon! I’m the Nerd that knows the trivia but I’m hopeless at sport!