General questions about movies, TV and more

This page is for general questions - if you've got a question about a specific title, please check the title-specific questions page first. Click the button below a question to answer it or click "edit" to correct a spelling mistake. Ask your questions here, and hopefully someone will answer soon. Members get e-mailed when any of their questions are answered.

Question: I seem to remember seeing an animated movie when my kids were small, mid 90's, that had a scene with an overweight, lazy dachshund rolling around on a skateboard. If I remember correctly the dog was owned by the "villain" in the movie but I'm not sure. My kids have been laughing at me for years because no one else remembers it and they say I dreamed it. Can anyone help me get the last laugh?

Chosen answer: It was the first Tom and Jerry movie.

Question: I am looking for the title of a film that I remember only the first scene of: it is not a porn film, but rather, if I recall, it is a fairly good, independent, offbeat drama. It starts with a sudden jolt - a couple are passionately having sex, the girl is on top and she is enjoying herself in an intense way. If anyone can tell me the name of this film (probably American, made in the past 10 years) I would really appreciate it. Thank you.

Chosen answer: Sounds like Basic Instinct.

Rlvlk

Question: If an actor does not want to smoke a real cigarette in a film, is there an alternative on offer (a prop cigarette for eg), or would it be more likely that that particular part would just be recast with someone who had no problem smoking?

Chosen answer: There are non-tobacco cigarettes available for this. They contain an herb that has no nicotine or any other chemical/toxin which may affect the lungs or state of mind. They are, however, purported to smell and taste quite terrible. These are what Eva Amurri smoked in the movie "Saved!".

Phixius Premium member

Question: I'm trying to remember the title of a film that came out in the late 80's or early 90's (I think; could have been a little earlier) about a group of young adults who engage in philosophical banter. The dialogue is very rich and several story lines are dealt with simultaneously. It might have "Hampton" in the title or take place in the Hamptons. Thanks.

Chosen answer: This sounds like it might be "Metropolitan" a very "talkie" film directed by Whit Stillman. It's set in Manhattan.

Question: What happens when a film with the same title as (or very similar title to) another film is released? Is there some sort of legal problem? A producer couldn't copyright a word like 'Jaws', for instance, or a person's name, so surely anyone else can use them. What's to stop someone making a film called 'Harry Potter' and coining it in?

Chosen answer: You can trademark a title or word in conjunction with a movie or book title. There's plenty of lawsuits where a title is too close to an existing well-known title, and most often the case is settled on behalf of the original title. Exceptions are when the title was well-known before the book or movie, such as "Titanic."

CocoCami

Question: I remember a trailer for a movie (or possibly tv show preview) in which a woman threatens to stab herself in the aorta, raising a pen to her throat, and a man informs her that the aorta is in the heart. Any idea what this is from?

Chosen answer: You're thinking of Girl Interrupted. In the movie, Lisa (played by Angelina Jolie) threatens to stab herself in the aorta, but Valerie (played by Whoopie Goldberg) informs her that the aorta is in the chest.

Garlonuss Premium member

Question: Hello. I wonder if anyone can help me find the name of a film that was on tv around 25 years ago. It was the same story as Incredible Journey, but involved two little dogs: one looked like a fox and the other was white and hairy (short). Every holiday I have looked for it but, it has as far as I know never been on tv again .

Chosen answer: Homeward bound?

Question: I remember watching a programme on TV about movie mistakes a few months ago on VH1 and saw a clip with a lot of people in a school gymnasium and at the back there was a man standing up "exposing" himself that the editors supposedly missed. Can anyone tell me which film this was?

Chosen answer: It was Teen Wolf. In the scene after the basketball game was over, when everyone storms the court in celebration, there is an extra who clearly was airing out his "dirty laundry". That scene has since been removed.

BGraz

Question: My boyfriend wants to see this movie again, but can't remember the title. A group of people, traveling on a bus, find out they are all dead. Apparently each has a loose end s/he needs to tie up before heading to the hereafter. Thanks.

Chosen answer: That would be "Heart and Souls" starring Charles Grodin, Alfre Woodard, Kyra Sedgwick, Tom Sizemore, and David Paymer as the people "on the bus," and Robert Downey Jr. as their "corporeal being."

Phixius Premium member

Question: I remember seeing this movie in the early-to-mid 90s. I can't remember too much, but I will do my best. I remember a young teenage boy and a blue and white ancient stamp of something nautical - either a boat or a sailor-type boy with a spy glass or something along those lines. The stamp was very important and worth a lot of money, and, I believe, had something to do with this boy's dead grandfather. I also think if there was a boy in the stamp it may have looked like the boy in the movie. Maybe that was what the big adventure (aka the plot) was over? This is where I may just be speculating: The boy also had an older brother and his friends who, I think, got involved with the boy in some search for the stamp. I remember images of the end pretty well - the boy pastes or find the stamp in a "stamp book". Then someone from the beginning of the film steals something or runs off and everyone has to chase him. I just remember the line "He's had a relapse." and someone answers "What's a relapse?" And that's how it ends.This is so far fetched, but it would make my existence if someone knew what in the hell I was talking about. THANKS.

Chosen answer: Tommy Tricker and the Stamp Travellers, with Lucas Evans and Anthony Rogers. There is also a sequel, The Return of Tommy Tricker.

Sereenie

Question: I am looking for the name of a horror movie. I only remember that it looked like it was made in the 70's or 80's and that the first girl who got killed off was stabbed in the heart and fell through a large stained glass window on the ceiling with a cord tied around her neck so it looked like she hung herself. Any ideas?

Chosen answer: The name of this film is 'Suspiria'. It was directed by Dario Argento and it came out in 1977.

wizard_of_gore Premium member

Question: I watched a film on TV when I was a kid and I can't remember the name of it. It was about an adopted boy who discovered that his birth parents had been mermaids, and as he hit puberty he began to turn into a mermaid himself. All I remember is that he started to be thirsty all the time and whenever he went in water he began to grow scales, which was a problem since he was on the school swimming team. I think there was a scene when he dived into the sea to catch up with a ferry which was pulling away, and another when he was about to start a swimming race but realised he still had his trainers on. Anyone know the name of this film? Thanks.

Chosen answer: The Thirteenth Year.

Phixius Premium member

Question: Does anybody know what the first movie to have a product placement was? I am losing sleep over this, please help.

Chosen answer: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Product_placement

CocoCami

Question: When I was a kid, I remember seeing a movie in the early 80's, and all I can remember is at the end, a ghost train comes crashing through the house in the living room. Prior to this, you can see the light approaching, and I think there was a kid that yelled that the train was coming towards the house. Anyone know what film this was? It may have been a made for TV movie, but I think it was a regular film.

Jazetopher

Chosen answer: Could you be thinking of the Spielberg-penned "Ghost Train" episode of "Amazing Stories"?

JC Fernandez

Question: I am trying to find out the name of the movie that had the following scene: a man is flipping a toothpick over and over in his mouth. It gets stuck, holding his mouth open, and he gags/coughs and takes it out. I think he was trying to be cool or intimidating as he flipped it so it was amusing when he got it stuck. I am guessing it was some time in the early 90's.

Twotall

Chosen answer: This is the bowling alley scene from Uncle Buck. He is hitting on John Candy's niece.

Jazetopher

Question: I remember seeing a film as a girl and remember only one scene where a woman is at a party and is hiding or sneaking around, and by accident gets her dress shredded by standing above the shredder. Does anyone know what film I'm talking about?

Twotall

Chosen answer: Jumping Jack Flash.

Grumpy Scot

Question: I am after the title of a narrated animated/live action film about people living underground in the woods(probably in Germany) during World War 2 to hide from the Nazis. There is a little girl in the film whose family gets taken to a concentration camp and she is left all alone.

Twotall

Chosen answer: It might be "Sarah" a.k.a. "Sarah and the Squirrel", 1982 by Yoram Gross.

Question: I remember watching a cartoon quite some time back now. I remember that it was about a dentists, or something similar, and I remember there being a lot of children in it. It stuck in my mind because it reminded me an awful lot of Dr. Katz, although aimed at a younger audience. Does anyone have any idea what this show is? I seem to remember it was quite short lived. The only solid thing I can remember about the show itself was that there was a receptionist who I think was married to the dentist/doctor (and it's not Home Movies).

Gary O'Reilly

Chosen answer: I think you are referring to 'Bob and Margaret' which was an animated British show about a dentist and his chiropodist wife which ran from 1998-2001.

wizard_of_gore Premium member

Question: This is a question regarding all films. I know that in a lot of films the image is reversed for some reason for particular shots and that you can usually tell this because, for example, something on the left side of someone's face will be on their right side, etc. But I don't understand why?

Craig Bryant

Chosen answer: The most likely explanation is because when it comes to editing it may look better when flipped, or because it was not possible to shoot a shot from the opposite angle at the time of filming. Also if shots are edited together from different sequences, the director may need to match the direction of movement, so has to flip one set of shots in order to maintain obvious continuity (at the cost of smaller things).

Scrappy

Question: I want to find out the name of a sci-fi movie I saw when I was kid in 1974. Aliens from a planet soon to be doomed due to an expanding sun appeared on Earth through some transporter-like device and sought our help. The movie sticks in my mind because, in spite of our efforts, we could not help and the planet was destroyed.

Adam Feller

Chosen answer: Sounds like "This Island Earth (1955)".

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