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General questions about movies, TV and more

This page is for general movie questions - if you've got a question about a specific film or TV show, please check the title-specific questions page first.Click the edit button below a question to answer it or amend the existing answer, if needed. Got a question about movies/TV shows that the IMDb or Google can't help with? Just click "submit something" in the navigation bar. I'll post it ASAP and hopefully someone will answer soon! Members get e-mailed when any of their questions are answered.

Question: I remember watching a movie on TV in the 50's or 60's, I think it was in black and white. There was a young woman throughout the movie keeps in a sing-song manner mumbling what seems to be gibberish rhyming. But it turns out she is giving clues such as something like 'on door knob is, in drawer key is'. Hopefully someone knows the name of this movie?

Answer: It's from the 1945 b/w film "Murder, He Says," starring Fred MacMurray. The character Elany Fleagle (played by Jean Heather) goes throughout the movie singing what appears to be a non-sense song. The words she sings are: Ohors Flisis Incombeesis - onches nobis inob keesis; a song taugh to her by her Grandma. As it turns out the lyrics to the song are actually clues to where money is hidden. The actual meaning of the words are: On horses there are flies, in combs there are bees, on a chest there is a knob, in the knob there is a key. In the Grandmother's room they find a chest with a honeycomb pattern, and in one of the knobs, there is a key. They find the key and there is a tag with the name of a local bank where the money can be found in a safe deposit box.

Question: I am looking for an American commercial advertisement (I 'think' it was for a car or something in the 1990s perhaps) that features a man standing in front of a chalkboard, his right hand is solving a complex mathematical problem, while his left hand is simultaneously drawing a beautiful work of art. I am haunted and tormented by my failure to find this epic work. I would be most grateful to anyone who can help stop my pain.

Answer: Apple 2gs - 1988? And you're right...it's epic.

Question: A few years ago, I watched a movie on TV about a girl who has been teased in high school, by one popular guy and especially his girlfriend. About 10 years later, the girl has a great job, and the popular guy, who now owns a restaurant, needs her help (promoting it?) only he doesn't recognize her. She decides to make him fall in love with her and then break his heart, like he did with her. Only she herself falls in love with him too. Does anyone knows the title of this movie, or who plays in it?

Answer: The Movie is called "This Time Around" and was a made for TV movie starring Carly Pope and Brian Austin Greene. See IMDb synopsis at http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0363129/.

Question: What is the movie where a cop gets shot in the face and then has to put eye drops in for the remainder of the movie?

Answer: "Kiss of Death" starring Nicolas Cage, Samuel Jackson, and David Caruso.

Question: I am trying to find the name of a TV movie that I saw back in the 80's. It featured Ken Berry and Sean Marshall (who starred in Pete's Dragon). In the film, Ken's character sees Sean fishing on a beach and they strike up a friendship. Sean lives with his brother and divorced mum who works in a bank. Ken eventually becomes close to the family. At the end whilst in the bank, Sean's little brother dares him to step into the open safe and as a joke promptly closes it, locking him in. They are told that the safe is on a timelock and can't be reopened until the next morning. With no other option, Ken Berry attempts to open it with some tools and is successful. I remember that Max Showalter played the bank manager. I have been unable to find anything on IMDB that links all 3 actors but I know that the film exists. Has anyone else seen this film and knows which one I am talking about?

Answer: It's Valentine's Second Chance (1977). It was an ABC Short Story Special. It's based off the O. Henry story "A Retrieved Reformation. See http://www.hollywood.com/tv/Valentines_Second_Chance/5194277.

Question: Can anyone tell me the title of a fantasy/sci fi TV movie that aired on Nickelodeon at least once in the late 1990s with a plot involving a brother and sister in a ravaged ghetto like city full of corruption where they lived with their grandfather. People there are taken for bizarre mind experiments all the time, so the grandfather send them on a journey through a desert to find some utopia like haven. The grandfather can't go because of his failing health. The brother and sister set off, all the while being chased by the evil authorities. Along the way, they pick up a few friends, including a couple younger boys, a teen-aged desert drifter, a big bald guy, and a girl from the city who lost her boyfriend to the evil mind experiments. After escaping capture at least once, they make their way through a maze filled with poison gas and find a beautiful safe haven on a beach to live happily ever after. Last image being a grave stone/monument on the beach engraved with the grandfather's name. Do you know the title? Thank you.

Answer: It is Doom Runners. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0135997/.

Bowling255

Question: Does anyone know if the show "Freakylinks" (with Ethan Embry and Lisa Sheridan) is on DVD, or if it will be? I searched on Amazon.com, but there is just an option to be notified when it becomes available. Thanks.

Answer: YES! "Freakylinks" on DVD can be found at Ioffer.com. Goto: http://www.ioffer.com/search/items/freakylinks/text_pics/ioffer/0/false.

CCARNI

Question: I'm looking for a film I heard about in drama class in high school. It takes place on a steamboat or river paddle boat. The main character is a woman that sings on the boat, but is kicked off for being half black. If this sounds familiar please please please let me know! Thanks.

Answer: This is the musical, "Showboat." It was originally a Broadway musical by Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein, based on Edna Ferber's novel set in the late-19th century American south. The character, Julie, is a mulatto who marries a white man, which was illegal. When it is discovered that she is half-black, the couple is arrested. There have been several movie adaptations of Showboat, the most notable being the 1951 MGM version starring Howard Keel, Kathryn Grayson, and Ava Gardner, among others. The 1936 film starring Paul Robeson is more faithful to the original story, however.

raywest

Question: I just borrowed a movie from my university library, and the cover of the DVD case reminded me of a query I've had for a long time about DVD cover/advertisement design. The movie is called The Island. It stars Ewan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson. And here's the thing: On the front of the DVD case, under the name Ewan McGregor is Scarlett Johansson, and under the name Scarlett Johansson is Ewan McGregor. Is this a mix-up? This has seemed, to me, to be a sign of a shoddily-made, generally crappy movie, but I liked this one. What's the deal? Thank you.

Answer: These are two totally unconnected items that you're discussing. McGregor is the lead and the biggest name in the film, so his name appears first, just as it will in the credits of the film itself. As for the picture, that's purely down to aesthetics, how they felt the cover image looked best. The cover designers aren't going to limit themselves by constraints about having to match the image of the individual to where their name appears, they'll go with what they think is the better image. If the image and name order happen to match up, that's a happy accident, nothing more than that. If they don't, no big deal.

Tailkinker

Question: I'm searching for a movie I saw maybe 20 years ago about a community on Venus. Venus is covered in clouds and there is a legend/story that the clouds will part one day in however long and the sun will come out. A little girl believes in this story but everyone in her class makes fun of her. On the day it's supposed to happen, her classmates lock her in a shed or closet or something but the clouds do part. The kids run out in the sun while all the flowers bloom in the sunlight and the little girl only gets to see a streak of sunlight through a slot in the door. Finally, the clouds close up and the kids remember that they locked her in the closet. So they go and open the closet and give her all the flowers they collected in the time the sun was out.

Answer: The movie is "All Summer In A Day," based on the short story by Ray Bradbury. (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0195517/)

Question: I'm looking for a movie. It's about a house, on a street where some evil people live (I think), and they live at house number 669. Now when the door slams, the 9 turns upside-down to make it 666. That's all I can remember. Can anyone help me on this?

Answer: This is The Blurbs with Tom Hanks, its a generally good 80's movie, with Corey Haim and Corey Feldman to boot.

Question: I wanted to submit this to the general questions page, since it is about more than one Disney movie. Has anyone ever explained why several Disney characters have deceased mothers (Belle, Snow White, etc.)?

Answer: Partially, it may be attributed to feelings of guilt over the death of Walt and Roy Disney's mother of carbon monoxide poisoning in the house they'd just bought her a month previously (For more on that, check http://www.snopes.com/disney/waltdisn/mother.asp), however, it's also a trope of children's literature to have the protagonists be orphaned or without one or the other parent, the better to go off on adventures without anyone worrying about them.

Question: What is probably the best software for creating pictures of mistakes?

Answer: You can do it with just your computer's basic Paint, although the resulting picture may be quite poor. If you want more features, The Gimp (www.gimp.org) is an open source solution.

Sereenie

Question: I saw a trailer for a thriller movie that began with a shot of the first day of the school year at university; a couple of girls were standing on the main building looking down at and discussing the goings on. A new girl arrived and spilled her suitcase, at which point a guy pulled up in a car and offered to take her to the girls' dorm. When they got there the girl saw a memorial (with candles) for some girl that had died the previous school year. Evidently the movie is about some murders, that maybe the girls on top of the building are involved in. Can anyone identify this movie? Thanks.

Answer: Poison Ivy IV.

Question: I am looking for a movie that was a direct to DVD movie. It had 3 or 4 stories in it. I remember the first story had a man fighting toy soldiers in his penthouse apartment. The last story had a couple where their car broke down in a small town. The town was being run by dead celebrities (Elvis was the sheriff) and the celebrities forced the visitors to stay and watch them perform every night. Anybody know the name of this movie?

Answer: These stories were not from a movie, but from an anthology series called "Nightmares and Dreamscapes" that was shown on TNT in 2006. All of the episodes are based on Stephen King short stories. The first one you mentioned is called "Battleground" and the second one is called "You Know They Got a Hell of a Band".

wizard_of_gore

Question: I'm looking for the title of a show that has a scene in a stark white hospital room. The man is completely covered in bandages except for his nose and his eyes. He is in traction. A fly lands on his nose and his eyes go back and forth watching the fly. He is completely immobile except for his eyes. Can someone help?

Answer: Could be the last scene of Daredevil, where the injured Bullseye is seen doing precisely that.

Tailkinker

Question: 1 What is the name of the film inspired by Hansel & Gretel, made in the 1960's or 1970's? This movie was a suspense/thriller type movie, not made for children. From what I remember, the movie began as a group of unfortunate orphans who visited a woman in her large home for a Halloween party. Two children, a brother and a sister stowed away because they were not allowed to attend. When the party was over, these two children got left behind and were imprisoned by the woman of the house. The woman of the house previously had a daughter, who died by falling while sliding down the stair rail, and whose body was kept as a shrine. One night the woman touched her dead daughter's face, and it crumbled in her hands. The sister of the children who were held captive was a splitting image of the woman's dead daughter which is why she kept the children in her home. The film may have been made in the 1960's or 1970's, but I could be wrong about that. I have searched long and hard with zero luck. If anyone could shed some light on what the name of this film is, I would be most grateful. Submitted 7/01/09.

Answer: The movie was "Whoever Slew Auntie Roo? released in 1971. It starred Shelley Winters, Mark Lester and Chloe Franks.

Question: What is the name of the film inspired by Hansel & Gretel, made in the 1960's or 1970's? This movie was a suspense/thriller type movie, not made for children. From what I remember, the movie began as a group of unfortunate orphans who visited a woman in her large home for a Halloween party. Two children, a brother and a sister stowed away because they were not allowed to attend. When the party was over, these two children got left behind and were imprisoned by the woman of the house. The woman of the house previously had a daughter, who died by falling while sliding down the stair rail, and whose body was kept as a shrine. One night the woman touched her dead daughter's face, and it crumbled in her hands. The sister of the children who were held captive was a splitting image of the woman's dead daughter which is why she kept the children in her home. The film may have been made in the 1960's or 1970's, but I could be wrong about that. I have searched long and hard with zero luck. If anyone could shed some light on what the name of this film is, I would be most grateful. Submitted 7/01/09.

Answer: "Whoever Slew Auntie Roo" Starring Shelley Winters and Mark Lester.

Question: Once saw on public tv only part of a movie that was a sprawling epic about Scandanavian or German immigrant steelworkers in the Midwest. A catch phrase, connecting or ending scenes, showed workers shoveling coal into a furnace with the foreman saying, "Let's make steel." Never saw the film pop up again, could never figure out what it was. Film seemed quite old. Anyone know the film?

Answer: Hope I have it for you now. "An American Romance" with Brian Donlevy. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0036596/.

Question: I remember watching this movie about 30 years ago, when I was a kid. I remember a scene where a young girl is trying to show off for her sibling and his/her friends, so she puts her pet bird on the ground and tries to make it fly by throwing small pebbles at the bird. What the young girl actually does is pelt the bird to death. Does anyone know the name of this movie?

Answer: The title of this is A Girl Named Sooner.

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