Answered questions about specific movies, TV and more

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Question: Who or what is actually possessing the Overlook Hotel? Also, why do the said possessors want to drive Jack Torrance insane?


Chosen answer: There is never a definitive answer, in either the book or the movie, as to what exactly possesses the Overlook. (There's a passing mention in the movie of the hotel being the site of an old Indian burial ground; Ullman says it as he's leading Jack and Wendy on the tour). The book makes mention of a lot of violent and unpleasant things that have occurred at the Overlook in the past, so the implication is that the hotel contains traces of these things. The answer to that question is left vague in both versions, though. You might get differing answers on the second part of your question, but most people who've read the book will probably tell you that the hotel's "goal" was not to drive Jack insane. Rather, its goal was to capture Danny's shining power. (The shining is a relatively rare power to begin with, and Danny's shine is extremely strong and powerful). The only way, of course, for Danny and his power to remain at the Overlook forever was for Danny to die there. Thus, the Overlook wants Jack to kill Danny, to ensure that Danny can never leave. If Jack's insanity is a side effect of that goal, there's no reason for the Overlook to care much about it.As an interesting side note, Jack believes that it is him that the hotel wants. In his conversations with Derwent and the bartender, he is led to believe that he is "managerial material" that is, that he will rise up the ranks from caretaker to the prestigious job of managing the Overlook. The Overlook does a good job of not revealing its true goal: to get Danny. Even though Jack is very flawed, he loves his son, and he repeatedly tells the manifestations of the Overlook that Jack's position in the hotel has nothing to do with Danny, and that Danny is ultimately none of the Hotel's concern. The Overlook finally begins to convince Jack of the need to "correct" Danny when it appears that Danny and Wendy's behavior might keep Jack from getting the manager job. (These last two paragraphs refer to the book, not the movie, as the movie provides virtually no answers at all to your second question).

Question: Does Danny's ability to "shine" have any connection to Jack's insanity and the events that occur in the hotel?

Chosen answer: Effectively, Danny's shining is what brings the hotel to life. Because he has such an incredibly powerful shine about him, all these weird ghost things in the hotel are able to materialize and reveal themselves. These weird ghost things are always present to some degree, and those people with a small degree of shine get glimpses of them - like Dick Hallorann. (It's not quite made clear in the movie, but Dick saw the woman in room 237 in the book). However, Danny's shine is so great that he gives these forces enough life to appear to those without any shine, people like his father and mother. As it's the hotel that's slowly driving Jack crazy, and the hotel gets its power from Danny's shining, then I'd say there's definitely a connection between Jack's insanity and Danny's abilities. In the movie, it's not as clear as it is in the book, but Jack is effectively possessed by the hotel. He's not a flawed drunk with an anger problem who loses his mind because of isolation. He's a flawed drunk with an anger problem who's doing the best he can, until the forces of the hotel get inside his head and make him lose it.

If Danny's shining is what brings the hotel back to life, does this mean that all the previous "Jacks" had a son or daughter with the shining too?

Answer: The movie is really 2 parallel story-lines with history repeating itself. In 1920s Jack visited the same hotel with his wife and son, they got stuck there due to snow storm along with rest of hotel crew (which leaves early in a hurry in 1980s). The director has carefully changed background score on things which were not present in 1920s when Dick is showing the facilities to Danny and his mother (like food cold storage). In the 80's version, Danny, Jack and Dick are the ones who have the power to shine or see scenes from the past in the same place. But as Dick says, its like reading a book and has no physical presence in current world. Whenever Dick is talking to Danny, it happened exactly the same way in 1920s, except replace the secret of shining with the secret of cannibalism around the hotel. Jack's insanity is just a repeat of his past, in the 20's the job of being the butcher (of human flesh) got to his mind and he started behaving weird. In the hotel lobby, replace the sound of heavy typing on the long table with sharp knife falling on human flesh. Red carpet depicts the blood and body parts all around the floor in 20s.

Question: Does it ever specify whether it is the first day of school for everybody or just for Cady?

Chosen answer: Mr. Duvall comes to ask Ms. Norbury how her summer went which means it is the first day back. Cady is lost simply because she is new to the school in general, while everyone else is already familiar with it.

Question: When Gandalf is hanging on the edge of the bridge in the mines, what does he say just before he drops? At first I thought he said 'run you fools' but it sounds different every time I hear it.

Chosen answer: "Run, you fools" (in the original theatrical release). "Fly, you fools" (in the DVD release).

Question: I still don't understand why Leonard switches clothes with Jimmy and steals his car after he kills him. "I'd rather be mistaken for a dead guy than a killer." That makes absolutely no sense. Driving around in Jimmy's car and wearing his suit would make him the prime suspect in the investigation. He was much safer when he was just an anonymous guy driving around in a pickup truck.

Chosen answer: It is never explicitly given. The most Leonard says on the subject is: "I'd rather be mistaken for a dead guy than a killer." Speculations include (you can make up your own motives as well) : (1) The clothes and car are so much nicer than his. If you are willing to kill someone: stealing is not really a "crime." Why not take the nicer objects? (2) It could be part of his "routine": Kill a man, take his clothes and car. The clothes he had on and the truck may be from the man he killed a year ago. (3) It could be that he wants to make the killer of his wife suffer even more, and takes his clothes as a way of humiliating him. Leonard takes the man's life-his clothes and car, which are wrapped up in his identity-just as the man took his. This idea seems to work with a theme in Memento about "Identity" (especially mistaken identity). Natalie thinks Leonard is Jimmy, then thinks he is Teddy, then learns he is Leonard. Teddy is "mistaken" for the second killer, Jimmy is "mistaken" for the 2nd killer. Sammy's story as a part of Leonard's story, etc. (4) It could "simply" be explained as a "plot device": Leonard has to do it, otherwise he won't find the note in "his pocket" and meet Natalie. (5) Leonard doesn't want to admit he's a murderer. He's lying to himself. If he's the victim, then he cannot be the murderer. (6) Leonard takes Jimmy's clothing as part of his routine of killing J.G.'s he becomes another person, he's the victim not the killer, thus "I'd rather be mistaken for a dead guy than a killer." and that's why he also takes his car, so he has to, once again, find his wife's killer and kill him.

Question: It isn't that important to the plot but what does the back of the bus say? The second word looks like "rules" but I can't distinguish the "M" word.

Chosen answer: The writing on the window of the bus says "Mongrels rule". That is the name of the school mascot statue, a mongrel.

Question: In The Fairy Godmother's song, there is one line about something to do with the moon. What does she say?

Chosen answer: You can spoon on the moon with a prince to this tune.

Question: When Woody and Buzz are at Sid's house, at one point the baby with the spider legs taps something in Morse code to Sid's other toys. Is he really tapping something in Morse code or is it just a random jumble of dots and dashes?

Chosen answer: Baby face taps RR TOYS COME OUT. Telling the other toys to come out from hiding. Pixar stated this in their Toy Story character overview.

Question: How did Superman get his powers back? I don't understand what that green crystal did.

Chosen answer: In the theatrical cut, nobody really knows why the green crystal restored his powers. However if you watch the Richard Donner cut, it is explained that the green crystal is a communication device that helps Superman talks to the residual essence/spirit/ghost of his father Jor-El. Before he died, Jor-El gave the crystal to his son. Jor-El anticipated that Kal-El might give up his powers, and he also anticipated that Zod might eventually escape the Phantom Zone, so Jor-El lets his son absorb the leftover energy of his spirit, thus restoring all his Kryptonian powers.

Matt Van Gogh

Question: Did Mark Wahlberg do all his own singing?


Chosen answer: Wahlberg's songs were sung by Miljenko Matijevic, lead singer of "Steelheart".

Jon Sandys Premium member

The Raiders Minimization - S7-E4

Question: In this episode, Amy deduced that if Indy wasn't in Raiders of the Lost Ark it still would have ended the same way. If I remember correctly, Major Toht was on the plane with him. Doesn't this look like the Nazis didn't know where to find Marion, and were following Indy?

Joseph Gutierrez

Chosen answer: The agent on the plane watching Indy was not Toht, and was played by ILM staffer Dennis Muren, although they look similar. The Nazis were spying on Indy but this doesn't mean they didn't know where the Ravenwoods' bar was.

Sierra1 Premium member

Question: When Dom is contacting everyone about the job in London, what was the purpose of the whole spectacle when Han and Gisele get the call? Who were all those people? And how did Dom get in contact with them first? Is it explained outside of the film (interviews etc)?

Chosen answer: An assumption here, but since they are plain-clothes agents and law enforcement officers (one of them is actually listed in the credits as "Lead Chinese Agent"), it could be that Hobbs pulled some law muscle to track Han and Gisele (who may have gone incommunicado after the Rio heist) so Dom could talk to them on the phone.

Question: Why is the King's face hardly ever shown?

Chosen answer: Deliberate production choice, and to show him from the younger child's point of view - also remember The King, when in his drunken state, is a child abuser, so the younger boy will see him as a large and terrifying presence - that is, so big he won't fit in the frame of the shot.

Neil Jones

Question: I am confused as to why the House Cup winner (Gryffindor) is named at the feast where Hagrid returns. Shortly after, there is a mention of "the rest of the final term" passing quickly. If school is still in session, couldn't the students' actions/behavior still change the total amounts of points?

Chosen answer: No, the points are tallied and the cup is awarded by a specific time, which is the Leaving Feast. There is only a short period of time after the feast before the students go home for the summer. Anything a student might do during that time does not count against their House for that year. Any penalties or rewards given to a House after the feast could be carried over to the following year.

raywest Premium member

Question: In the altered timeline, Flash initially could not travel through time because there was another speedster. How was he able to travel through time in the original timeline, when Zoom was alive there as well?

Chosen answer: Flash couldn't travel through time later in the movie not because Zoom was alive but because Zoom was also tapping into the Speed Force, preventing Flash from gathering enough of the Speed Force to break the Time Barrier. When Flash originally went back in time it's likely because Zoom was in custody, therefore not tapping into the Speed Force at that time.

Answer: Batman kills Zoom so the Flash could use the speed force.

Question: What happened to the guy in the first trap? he killed the other man with the eyes sewed shut to get the key. It looked to me like he got the chain unlocked from his neck but he yelled and blood flowed from his mouth. Was he too late?

The_Iceman Premium member

Chosen answer: He wasn't too late. He was the guy supervising the Hoffman/Matthews trap.

Answer: He was barely in time; he was still unlocking the chain from his neck as it was being pulled into the winch, pulling his hands in with it, which made him scream in pain.

Question: What did Dracula meant when he said he can't kill Jonathan?

Chosen answer: Just what he said: it would set monsters back hundreds of years. Monsters are harmless, sociable creatures in this world yet humanity fears them. To kill a human would justify humanity's fears and set whatever progress monsters may have made toward being accepted in the world back hundreds of years.

Phixius Premium member

Question: What was in the picture that Batman gave to Rachel, and how would it have sped things up?

Chosen answer: Pictures of Judge Faden with a woman who was not his wife, to be used as leverage to force him to hear the case against Falcone. A deleted scene shows Bruce gathering the photos himself but only the top one is shown in the final cut.

Phixius Premium member

Question: What effect did they use to get the actors' eyes to glow, revealing they are replicants?

Quantom X

Chosen answer: A two-way mirror at a 45 degree angle in front of the camera with the camera pointing at the see-through side. A light was shone at the reflective side and reflected into the actor's eyes on the optical axis of the lens.

Sierra1 Premium member

Question: After killing Xenia in the Jungle level, you get to dual wield an RCP 90 and a grenade launcher. Other than when using cheat codes, why is this the only time you can wield 2 different weapons at the same time?

Quantom X

Chosen answer: In normal gameplay, yes, this is the only level where you can dual wield two different weapons.

Sierra1 Premium member

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