Answered general questions about movies, TV and more

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New this week Question: When sitcom TV shows have restaurant scenes, are these typically filmed in a real restaurant or is a set created?

New this week Answer: Due to the logistics involved in filming, in most cases, a set would be created. In some cases, a real restaurant might be used, but it would involve compensating a business for lost revenue during the filming, obtaining special city permits, hiring police to monitor crowd control, etc. It is simpler and more economic to build a confined set.

raywest

Question: Several times I've only seen the ending of this movie. A man goes to an abandoned construction site at night to rescue a woman and her son who have been abducted. When he gets there, he sees little robotic machines. The kidnapper tells him that the machines won't attack him and he goes to the top of the site. When he gets up there and confronts the kidnapper, he's told that the machines will attack and kill the first person that appears on the ground floor. A fight ensues and the kidnapper gets knocked to ground level and is killed by his own machines.

Answer: Sounds like the ending of "Runaway", 1984 with Tom Selleck and Gene Simmons. Http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0088024/?ref_=nv_sr_3.

David George

Question: Why do cartoon shows often portray characters with three fingers (and a thumb) instead of four? For example, The Simpsons, Family Guy, South Park.

Answer: This is done because according to animators, it's easier to draw hands with three fingers instead of four. This is a practice that dates back to the early days of animation; characters such as Mickey Mouse, Bugs Bunny. And Popeye were usually drawn with three fingers, thus setting the precedent still in use today.

zendaddy621

Answer: The answer is pretty complex and there's YouTube videos delving into the many reasons. It started in the 1920's and the idea behind Mickey Mouse, in 1928, having 4 fingers is the style he was drawn in, with rounded shapes, making 5 fingers too crowded. Walt Disney allegedly said with 5 fingers Mickey's hands would look like a "bunch of bananas." Additionally, there's a theory called the "uncanny valley", which basically states that humanoid objects that look almost, but not exactly, human tend to make people have uncanny feelings of eeriness (think of life-like dolls or why some CGI looks strange to us). For some reason, 4 finger characters make us recognize they're human-like, without that eerie feeling. There are several other theories and ideas behind the 4 fingers (such as many characters being anthropomorphized animals.) Although Japanese anime often have 5-fingered characters for cultural reasons (in fact some 4-fingered characters have been edited with 5 fingers when released in Japan), so it's not always based on saving time or money, but tradition. With the aid of computer generated animation and people breaking from tradition, the future of cartoons may include more and more 5-fingered characters being the norm.

Bishop73

Question: This is a TV movie from the early or mid seventies. A lady is in a sculptor's loft with several disassembled statues. A head of a statue sitting on a table starts speaking, saying to her, "you killed me, Rachel, you killed me!" She screams, picks up the head and smashes it on the floor. Anybody have an idea what the name of this movie was or who was in it?

Scott215

Answer: It's an ABC Movie of the Week horror called Sweet, Sweet Rachel (1971), starring Alex Dreier, Pat Hingle, Louise Latham and Stefanie Powers, Scene head (46:59) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a5dWE5oyJNw.

Arris

Question: Does anyone know what TV show this episode is from? It was a scary anthology/short story type of show. I saw it on TV a couple of years ago, but it was made in the '90s or possibly '80s. A woman visits her pregnant sister. The sister is either trapped or basically stuck in a room. The woman sleeps with the sister's husband/serious boyfriend. It turns out that he is a monster. I think he had insect-like qualities, but I am not certain.

Answer: It sounds like an episode from "Tales From the Crypt" that originally aired on HBO from the late 80's to the early 90s.

raywest

Question: Saw an old black and white war movie. It had a bunch of students who were friends with one of their teachers. Eventually, the students were drafted into a war and when they see their teacher walking into the barracks, they are very happy to see him and even make jokes when he informs them that he's their superior officer. His pleasant demeanor which he showed as a teacher is changed to being tyrannical to the point that the cadets finally tie him up in a huge bag and drop him into a huge mud puddle as for revenge for the harsh treatment he gave them.

Answer: The film you are referencing is the classic WW1 movie "All Quiet on the Western Front" starring Lew Ayers and Louis Wolheim.

Scott215

Question: I'm looking for a cartoon seen in the early 70s (but may be from earlier decade). I was a very young kid at the time so my info may be slightly off. All I remember is someone not too strong was given strength from something in the shape of a missile, and you heard a low voice (or voices) with music in the background saying "Guided Missile, Guided Missile " etc. Does anyone know what this was from?

Answer: I actually found the answer to what I was looking for. It's Harecules Hare (from the Beany and Cecil cartoons of the 60s). It was actually Guided MUSCLE (not missile) that Harecules Hare made out of an invention (a golden fist-looking robot type) that destroyed an eviler character.

Question: What was the movie in which a vampire rematerializes in one of the opening scenes when a wooden stake is removed from a coffin?

Answer: I'm sure this happens in multiple films. One that immediately comes to mind is House of Frankenstein.

Question: This is something I watched as a child so my recollection of it is incredibly vague. I believe it was 80s or early 90s movie. Main character is a girl with thick glasses. I remember a scene where she puts her face into a mask looking thing on the wall and it gave her instant makeup. Then, I think, she ended up going to an underground city or something.

Chosen answer: I believe the movie you're describing is a 1988 science fiction film, called Alien from L.A., that stars Kathy Ireland as a young woman who visits the underground civilization of Atlantis. "Wanda Saknussemm (Ireland) is a nerdy social misfit with large glasses and an intolerable squeaky voice who lives in Los Angeles and works at a diner. After being dumped by her boyfriend, Wanda is informed by a letter that her father, an archaeologist, has died. She flies to North Africa and while going through her father's belongings, she finds his notes about Atlantis, apparently an alien ship that crashed millennia ago and sank into the center of the Earth. Wanda comes across a chamber beneath her father's apartment and accidentally sets off a chain of events that ultimately cause her to fall into a deep hole." http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0092532/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z-SclSgWSa4.

Arris

Question: I am trying to identify a movie that I saw a part of as a child. I only saw the ending, and this was back in the 90's when I saw it. It was at least a late 80's to early 90's film and I saw it on TV at my grandmother's house. But I only remember once part. That there were two cars racing down a street, but towards each other for some reason. And there was some distance between them as there was not direct line of sight, but they went over hills and around corners. All I can remember is one car was like a purple Lamborghini or such. Or it might have been black. It's hard to remember. But as they two cars drew near to each other, it would cut back and forth to the other driver's face, and then his point of view. And for some reason before the cards met, the point of view of the other driver was seeing the Lamborghini as a man and not a car. Just standing perfectly still but moving towards him in the street. But this man, to my memory was in a full classic diver outfit. Like the old time ones from Scooby Do cartoons where it's like a big metal bowl on the divers head with a window on the front. However he was all purple. And the other driver only saw this, but as they hit. It was a head on collision and both cars exploded. This is all I can remember, and it was 20 years ago so my memory of the exact details is probably off.

Quantom X

Chosen answer: The Wraith (1986) starring Charlie Sheen and Nick Cassavetes.

Gavin Jackson

Question: Need help remembering the name of an episode from the TV show CBS Storybreak. The episode is about a kid who has a model of a dinosaur. As soon as he puts the head on, he's immediately transported to another world populated by anthropomorphic dinosaurs. He befriends a dinosaur and has to escape from the clutches of an evil dinosaur who wants to make money off him.

Chosen answer: This sounds like "The Double Disappearance Of Walter Fozbek" (Season 1, Episode 7) https://www.bcdb.com/cartoon-story/129796-Double-Disappearance-Of-Walter-Fozb.

Arris

Question: A comedy movie, although I don't know what year it's from. The only scene I remember is a teenage girl is having dinner with her parents and younger brother. She gets into an argument and then suddenly rips open her shirt exposing her breasts. Her brother then responds that she's the one he saw on the internet.

Chosen answer: That scene is from the movie "Say it Isn't So" from 2001, with Chris Klein, Heather Graham, and Sally Field.

Scott215

Question: There was a movie that had Jerry Lewis and some other guy but I can't remember his name. In the movie, the guy is a famous performer who isn't getting many people to attend his show. Jerry plays a guy who is the man's biggest fan and during one of the guys shows, Jerry appears on stage and starts doing things that make the audience laugh such as wearing girls clothes and giving the man a flower. They prove to be such a hit together that they start performing and become celebrities. The guy falls in love with a woman and eventually gets angry at Jerry causing Jerry to leave. When the guy tries to get a show done, it doesn't go so well but Jerry reappears and helps the guy and the guy makes amends with Jerry.

Chosen answer: That's "The Stooge". Http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0045192.

Answer: Definitely "The Stooge". 1953 b/w with Polly Bergen.

Question: I have a memory of one great movie I really liked when I was a kid (during the 90s). Unfortunately, I have never again bumped into it, so till this day I have now idea what film was it. I don't remember much of it; I would say it was filmed during the 70s or 80s, but don't know for sure. I think it was kind of those rockabilly movies, there were some cars and some dancing involved. The main character is a young man, I even think he is an outsider and gets in conflict with some popular clique. I remember that one girl gets her hair on fire (no idea how). Anyway, what I do remember are bloopers after the end. It was the first time I saw bloopers and I'm guessing that is why I liked the movie so much. The scene I particularly remember from bloopers is when the main character is sitting on the car hood holding pack of cigarettes. He takes one cigarette and throws it in the air, toward his mouth, and is supposed to catch it with his lips. But he fails. And fails again. And again. Finally, he manages to do that, so he takes a lighter from the pockets and tries to light it, but it doesn't work. He smiles and says something like: "It's hard to be cool." So, if anyone has an idea what movie is that, I would really appreciate the information. Thank you! P.S. It is not Footloose, Crybaby, Cannonball Run, Smokey and the Bandit.

Chosen answer: The movie you are describing is a 1994 made-for-TV rockabilly film called "Roadracers" by Robert Rodriguez (it was only his second film, following his 1992 film "El Mariachi"). "Roadracers" originally aired on the Showtime cable network. It was a 1950's retro action/drama full of cliches such as hot-rod racing, rockabilly music, dirty dancing, and trouble with authority figures (very much like the plots of Grease and Crybaby). During a drag race, the lead character ("Dude") flicks a lit cigarette into the hair of his rival's girlfriend, setting her hair aflame.

Charles Austin Miller

Question: There was a movie featuring Vincent D'onofrio. In the movie he is the leader of a gang of criminals who rob a building. One of the criminals forgot to wear his gloves, leaving Vincent deciding whether to kill the guy for his incompetents or let him live. They also unknowingly abducted a young mentally impaired girl who laughs at the whole ordeal.

Chosen answer: It may be 'Spanish Judges', a low-budget movie from 2000, in which Vincent D'Onofrio is a con-man. In it, I believe he plans to steal antique art. It also features a mentally impaired girl who thinks she is from another planet.

Purple_Girl

Question: There is a common trend I have noticed time and time again regarding many of Pixar's film releases. This is that many of Pixar's summer released movies, when they are given a release date for the US, they are given a release date somewhere in the middle of June. However, when they are given a release date for the UK, they are given a release date at some point in July, possibly a month or over a month after release in the US. For example, Toy Story 3 was given a June 18, 2010 release in the US, but took until July 19 to be released in the UK. Cars 2 was given a June 24, 2011 release in the US, but took until July 22 for the UK release. This trend for release dates has been continued with Brave, Monsters University, Inside Out, Finding Dory and Cars 3, but why exactly is this? Why exactly does it take about a month after the US release for Pixar's movies to be released in the UK?

Harris

Chosen answer: This isn't just a thing Pixar does. It's very standard. For example, just looking at 12 US films released in Jan 2016, only 1 had the same release date in the UK. 6 had a UK release date more than a month later, 2 were not released in the UK, and 3 had release dates 2-3 weeks later. Many factors go into the decision when to release in various countries. A lot has to do with marketing. For example, when films are released at different dates, stars of the film can attend premiers in both the US and UK and have more time to promote their films. Additionally, distribution companies and studios want to see how the film will do in the US. Studios also have to consider the UK market and what films they'll be competing against opening week. There are also many factors in deciding to release a film on the same date. Most top grossing films tend to open world wide on the same date where marketing in the US is rolled over to the UK and it helps reduce piracy opportunities. For Pixar, it would seem they found that the delay works best for them.

Question: Searching for the name of a story. It's about two teenage friends. One of them invents a time machine and when the button is pressed, they both end up in Medieval times. Unfortunately, the kid who invented the time machine is turned into a horse while his friend remains human but must take the place of a knight who looks exactly like him.

Chosen answer: It's called 'Max and Me and the Time Machine' (though they acquired the time machine from the estate of a mad scientist).

Brian Katcher

Question: I remember watching a movie in the end where a woman framed a public official who cheated on his wife with several women for murdering a former friend who used to blackmail her, or something like that. There was a guy who knew about it and then asked what she would do for him to keep him quiet. She stabbed him to death and framed him as the murderer while a neighbor looked on through a window. Thanks.

Chosen answer: It's Perfect Strangers with Halle Berry and Bruce Willis.

Question: Movie I'm looking for is a movie about a female cop who gets suspended because a robber's gun was stolen by a guy in the store after she killed him. He then begins killing people and coincidentally runs into her and begins a romance. When she finds out about him committing the murders with the robber's gun, she is unable to prove it and he kills her friend, cop friend, and rapes her.

Chosen answer: Blue Steel (1990).

lionhead

Question: I am looking for the name of a movie...I don't have much to go on but I think it was made in the 1980s or early '90s...it is a movie where people were taken hostage and they shoot a woman in the head and her husband or boyfriend witnesses it...he might be a cop or something.

jajoda1964

Chosen answer: I believe the movie you're describing is Passenger 57. Wesley Snipes plays an Airport Security Expert, whose plane is hijacked by the world's dangerous terrorist. He's haunted by the death of his girlfriend, who was murdered in a convenience store robbery and his guilt over not stopping it in time.

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