The Langoliers

Question: Is there a reason why when they're in the past they can't catch up with the present, but when they land a little into the future, the present can catch up with them? Are they not moving along on their own timeline? And if not, why are they not left in that moment and stand there to see the present come and go without taking them?

Chosen answer: Think of time as a gear with only one tooth, and think of them as a gear with only one notch. In the past, the one tooth has forever passed their notch and they'll never be carried along in the flow of time again. In the future, the tooth comes along, snags their notch, and they're back in the flow of time.

Phixius

Question: What happened to the people who disappeared? Did they die?

Answer: No, they didn't die. The premise of the story is that the sleeping plane passengers were in an alternate timeline a few minutes out-of-sync with normal time; so, when they awoke, they were aware of a dead zone in the immediate past. Everyone else in the world is still alive in the present. The "Langoliers" were interdimensional creatures that fed on the past, gobbling it up like a stage-cleaning crew.

Charles Austin Miller

Question: After Brian and the others escape the Bangor airport and are on their way back to LA, before they get to the time rip, Brian says to Nick that he wanted kids and she didn't and he did "something that he never thought he'd do" and that he always wanted to tell her sorry. What was that thing he did that was so bad, there is no mention of what he did unless he is talking about the divorce. Could someone please clarify this?

Chosen answer: In the book he slaps her across the face during a heated argument. I can only assume that is what he is talking about.

Question: At the end when time catches up with the people from the plane they all go up against the wall to avoid being where other people might be. I assume this is because they didn't want to risk being in the same spot as another person when time caught up. My question is what would have happened with the plane on the runway? What would happen if time caught up and someone or something happened to be in that spot?

Chosen answer: It is impossible to say because the story never explains what would happen in this specific situation.

BaconIsMyBFF

Question: This is a very open-ended question which I doubt anyone could provide a definitive answer for, but isn't it extremely convenient for the plot that the author character (played by Dean Stockwell) is able to figure out more or less everything despite the absurdity of the situation?

enter_a_uh

Chosen answer: That's just it....if he had not been on the plane, then the story would not have evolved the way it did, and we would be given a different set of events. He writes mystery novels, and it is fairly realistic that he would have figured out most of the events as they unfolded, as he likely uses similar bizarre situations for his books, and is familiar with the strange and unusual.

Jazetopher

Question: Were the airport scenes shot on location at Bangor and LAX airports? If so, I'm curious as to find out how they achieved the effect of no-one being there. I mean, is it possible to desert a whole airport for filming? I would have thought that to be rather impossible, to close the airport whilst shooting. Any help?

Hamster

Chosen answer: Yes, they were at those locations.Filming with nobody around is possible, either by shooting indoor scenes at night, when the terminals are closed, or outdoor scenes on unused sections of the airport. If maintenance is going to close a runway (or a whole terminal) for a week, a film company can rent the space (at a price of course!) to keep it closed a few extra days for filming.As well, many shots can be established in real locations, but followed by filming on sets built to replicate parts of the real locations.You could film a whole movie's "setting" in an afternoon by taking select shots, then spend a couple of months in a studio on closeup shots which don't require the large, real, backgrounds.

Question: Why is it that the bullet bounced off Albert chest, and didn't pierce into his skin or anything, yet the knife blade was able to enter Dinah? I never understood why the bullet did no damage to him, yet the blade did.

Hamster

Chosen answer: Because as time runs down, food loses its taste, drinks lose their fizz and the gunpowder in the bullet had lost most of its explosive force. It was unable to propel the bullet very hard. The knife still retained its edge as physical objects didn't break down.

Grumpy Scot

Question: Are the creatures we actually witness, eating up the LAX airport, actually Langoliers? I have heard from friends who have read the book that they are not Langoliers. Also Mr. Toomy's description of them (he says they have legs and are hairy) doesn't hold up. Are they Langoliers? If not, what are they? And if not, why do the characters refer to them as Langoliers?

Hamster

Chosen answer: The Langoliers don't exist, they are Toomey's version of the boogeyman. The creatures that "eat" the past are close enough to what Craig believes that he thinks they are the Langoliers. And it's as good as anything else to call them, so all the others adopt the name as well. No one could actually know what they are called as most people move into the future along with the natural flow of time and the few that do travel into the past are eventually killed by them.

Grumpy Scot

Question: Did Dinah ever disappear after they flew through the rip? I am just wondering this because everyone who was awake was supposed to disappear, and Dinah wasn't awake, but she was never sleeping either.

Chosen answer: They don't show this in the film, but in the novella Dinah's body does disappear.

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Quotes

Nick Hopewell: Do you ever watch Mr. Spock on Star Trek?
Craig Toomy: What the hell are you talking about?
Nick Hopewell: Because if you don't shut your cakehole, you bloody idiot, I'll be happy to demonstrate his Vulcan sleeper-hold for you.

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Mistakes

As Brian lands the plane down to Bangor, his headset is on in a frontal shot, but in a reverse shot it isn't.

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Trivia

In the scene near the end of the movie, there is a board meeting on the tarmac. The Chairman of the Board is Stephen King who is the author of The Langoliers.

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