"So why do we care so much? It’s no longer a surprise to see pop culture icons shilling for big business; hell, I’m old enough to remember the giant controversy that followed the licensing of a Beatles song for Nike ad. (That uproar seems positively quaint these days, when a commercial deal is a giant coup for musicians of all stripes.) The commotion over Broderick’s Honda ad speaks not to “selling out” in general. It’s about the selling out of this character — and not just because he didn’t condone any “–isms” (including, presumably, capitalism). It’s about our connection with Ferris Bueller, who wasn’t just a protagonist. By taking us into his confidence and guiding us through his world, Bueller made us his co-conspirator."The linked tumblr, Look at the camera is as addictive as they suggest.
But some of the best are when the conspiracy isn't between character and audience, but actor and audience, however subconscious. Here are three more apparently inadvertent examples which I have a sneaky suspicion are entirely meant:
School of Rock
Zack, one of the children in Jack Black's class looks at the camera as he sits down. It's an odd moment because unlike everyone else in the scene he looks exceedingly self-conscious.
The L Word: Losing it
In what is an extraordinary piece of acting Mia Kirshner portrays her character Jenny's drop off the rails. In the middle of all the crying she happens to look into the camera for a few frames, just long enough to make the viewer jump back in surprise. And then, of course ...
Jon Pertwee in Doctor Who: The Five Doctors: Special Edition
Pertwee inadvertantly looks into the lense during one of many particularly long scenes in this special anniversary edition of Doctor Who. I'm not sure if this appeared in the programme when it was originally broadcast, but the look is fairly ghostly, as though he's wondering why the camera hasn't moved away yet.