do an about-face(redirected from doing an about face)
do an about-face
To suddenly and completely turn or change one's direction. This phrase can describe one's physical movement or a change in concept. She did an about-face and walked back up the steps once she saw that the subway wasn't running. Based on the reactions we got from test audiences, we need to do an about-face with the movie's plot.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
do an about-face
Also, do a flip-flop or one-eighty . Reverse one's opinion or course of action. For example, The board did an about-face on acquiring more land, or We expected Dad to do a flip-flop concerning our vacation plans, or They had relied on Jim to vote for Harry, but he did a one-eighty and cast his vote for the incumbent . The first term, alluding to the army command to turn around, dates from the first half of the 1900s, and the variants from the second half of the 1900s (the last refers to a 180-degree change of direction).
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
about face, to do an
To reverse a decision or change one’s opinion. The term comes from the American military command to turn 180 degrees at attention, dating from the mid-nineteenth century, and by 1900 was being used figuratively. A more recent colloquial usage is to do a 180, but it has not yet reached cliché status.
See also: to
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer