28
votes
3answers
7k views

What techniqes are used by directors to make an actor cry?

I have always wondered what techniques directors use to get amateur actors, especially young ones, to cry. How can someone surrounded with so many film crew and cameras can concentrate enough and feel ...
28
votes
7answers
4k views

In Back to the Future Part II, how could old Biff have made it back to 2015?

So in Back to the Future Part II, Doc picks up Marty in 1985 and takes him to 2015. Then old Biff realizes the Delorean is a time machine. Old Biff steals the Delorean and travels from 2015 to 1955 to ...
28
votes
1answer
556 views

Is there any evidence of “Big Twist” movies having poor post-cinema sales?

I have watched many movies such as Sixth Sense, where there is a major twist that if known prior to watching the movie can potentially spoil the enjoyment of viewing. I tend not to watch this type of ...
28
votes
4answers
5k views

What rules govern how TV show opening credits are structured?

I've always been curious what decides if a credit is in the opening or closing credits. It seems loosely that cast (in order of today's "big name" significance), directors and financiers get the ...
27
votes
4answers
6k views

How closely do Sherlock Episodes relate to the original stories?

In the TV Series Sherlock I know there are many references to the original canon (for example the hat). Particularly variations of the episode names. A Study in Pink - A Study in Scarlet A Scandal ...
27
votes
3answers
3k views

Do A-listers audition for roles?

It is normal for new actors who haven't proven themselves to audition for roles in movies. But What about A-listers like Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, etc. Do these guys still attend auditions or are scripts ...
27
votes
4answers
955 views

How can weightlessness be simulated on film?

How can the weightlessness of space be realistically simulated on film? Does it require CG or can a convincing simulation be achieved using wire fu and editing? (I'm happy to hear of good examples of ...
27
votes
3answers
8k views

Can someone explain the sequence of events in 'Primer'?

Primer is one crazy movie, as far as the complicated plot goes. Has anyone figured out the ACTUAL sequence of events?
27
votes
1answer
8k views

What do actors actually inhale when they snort cocaine or smoke crack?

While film scenes where an actor injects something into his/her arm can perhaps be faked with edits and maybe prosthetics, how do actors manage to snort cocaine or smoke crack? Are there approved safe ...
27
votes
4answers
136k views

What really happened in Memento?

So I watched Memento for the second time, and I felt like I understood the story pretty well, however, some things don't make so much sense to me. As far as I know: Leonard, the main character, did ...
27
votes
2answers
4k views

Origin of the Mustache Twirling Villain

Whenever someone thinks about silent cinema the image of the laughing villain, twirling his mustache, and tying the hapless blonde beauty to the railroad, pops up in our collective memory. But in ...
26
votes
2answers
1k views

How do the flying islands in Avatar stay in place?

I've watched movie "Avatar" few times. In my opinion it's one really good movie but every time I watch it I wonder how the hell that pieces of ground or "flying islands" can be in the air? Is there ...
26
votes
3answers
668 views

Why the stoic acting style in 2001 Space Odyssey?

One of the things that I have always found striking about 2001 is the almost mechanical acting of the human characters, especially the radio operator. I'm pretty sure it's a conscious choice on part ...
26
votes
7answers
39k views

What did David say to the engineer in Prometheus?

In Prometheus, when the android David is talking with the Engineer, first he stumbles a bit and stays crouched, then they are all asking him questions and David seems to translate it. Then they all ...
26
votes
2answers
861 views

In Iron Man, why is Tony Stark fooled for so long?

In the first Iron Man film (2008), Tony Stark is betrayed by someone close to him and it takes him (a demonstrable genius) several months to realize it. Why does he not realize as soon as he gets back ...
26
votes
4answers
4k views

How can I find tv shows/films similar to one I like?

As a general case, how can I find movies or TV shows similar to an existing movie or TV show that I like?
26
votes
1answer
3k views

How were R2D2 and C3PO made in the original trilogy?

I know they used a lot of mechanics back then, but were R2D2 and C3PO mechanical, a costume, or something else?
26
votes
1answer
1k views

Language of the Moria password in The Fellowship of the Ring

At the gates of Moria there is a riddle on the door. "Speak Friend and Enter". Frodo then asks Gandalf "What is the elven word for 'Friend'?" who replies and the door opens. Given Moria is a ...
26
votes
2answers
56k views

Why is Gandalf referred to as Mithrandir?

I've read that Mithrandir is one of Gandalf's aliases. Why do certain people call him by this name and not Gandalf? I've noticed in particular that Galadriel uses the name Mithrandir quite often.
26
votes
1answer
11k views

Why did three actors play Darth Vader?

In the original Star Wars movies (IV, V, and VI) three actors ended up playing Darth Vader. David Prowse was the actual physical body for the most part, James Earl Jones was used for the voice, and ...
26
votes
2answers
361 views

Is there a rating of the 3D-ness of a 3D movie?

If things aren't thrown in my face during a 3D movie, I feel somewhat disappointed. I also appreciate the use of 3D to enhance a wide-angle shot, a humorous close-up, give a subtle sense of depth, and ...
25
votes
3answers
54k views

Do the actors really go nude in the shooting of the movies?

I often wonder if actors really go nude for certain scenes in films. I am not talking about those movies where we can see the sexual body-parts or genitals of the actors/actresses, but instead less ...
25
votes
8answers
111k views

Why did Gus kill Victor in Breaking Bad?

In Season 4 episode 1 "Box cutter", Gus kills Victor. Why does he do this? What does he gain from it other than scaring Walt and Jessie? Or is making them fear him his only motive?
25
votes
3answers
5k views

Why was Prowse chosen to play Darth Vader?

Everybody knows that David Prowse played Darth Vader in the old Star Wars episodes. He was a weightlifting champion and a bodybuilder. Does anybody know who and why actually chose him to play this ...
25
votes
1answer
1k views

Eating and toilet taboos are reversed

Can anyone identify a (possibly French) film where the cultural taboos about going to the toilet and eating (not at the same time!) are reversed? I remember seeing a scene with someone knocking on a ...
25
votes
5answers
9k views

What was David's motivation in Prometheus?

For me, perhaps the most interesting person aboard the Prometheus was the android, David. I'm still confused by his seeming fascination with the movie, Lawrence of Arabia. Although I couldn't make ...
25
votes
1answer
3k views

Director's Cut, Editor's Cut, Theatrical Cut. What do these mean?

What do the following terms mean in movie business? Director's Cut Editor's Cut Theatrical Cut What are the differences between them? Are there any other cut s?
25
votes
1answer
304 views

What Muppets were not played by their original puppeteers?

I can see on IMDB that many of the puppeteers who starred in The Muppets (2011) have been working with those characters for decades. Most, if not all, were involved in the original Muppet Show from ...
25
votes
3answers
2k views

Is there an alternative cut of The Truman Show?

When I saw The Truman Show at the cinema, it was edited more heavily to make it look like a documentary about how the show was made, by whom and the actors in it, etc. Some things were mentioned ...
25
votes
1answer
909 views

Which movie did top-to-bottom credits first?

One of the many notable things about modern film-noir Seven was its reverse credits (scrolling top to bottom, the opposite to the expected direction). I recently rewatched the brilliant 1950's ...
24
votes
6answers
9k views

Empire Strikes Back - Scene in Dagobah with Darth Vader

I have never understood why Vader appears in Dagobah in TESB, I understand that the cave Yoda takes Luke to is strong with the dark side of the force but don't understand why the rest of the scene at ...
24
votes
2answers
2k views

Why is the movie titled “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind”?

I watched the movie, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, several times but couldn't understand the relationship between the title and the story. What does the title mean in the context of the ...
24
votes
9answers
24k views

What was the motivation behind the Engineers actions in Prometheus?

After watching Prometheus I don't have a clear idea of why the Engineers created the human beings. Because, if they created humans so that they can test their bio-weapons on us, then it makes sense, ...
24
votes
5answers
5k views

Can someone explain mirror scene with Ariadne in Inception?

The scene where Ariadne closes two mirror planes opposite each other and breaks one. Can someone explain what that meant?
24
votes
3answers
2k views

What happened to the last of the sins in Se7en?

I have watched Se7en and followed Gluttony, Greed, Sloth and Lust. But I couldn't place the events of the other sins: Envy, Wrath and Pride. Please provide some light on these. I am really ...
24
votes
4answers
73k views

What does the missing symbol on Quaid's arm symbolize?

Near the end of Total Recall (2012), does the missing symbol on Quaid's arm symbolize that it is all a dream/fake memory? And, if so, why does he just accept it?
24
votes
4answers
2k views

Why does James Bond use his real name?

In the James Bond universe most characters go by a code name M, Q, the various 00s, In Skyfall Silva is a made up name. Others such as Tanner, Robinson and Moneypenny, Trevelyan we're not so sure but ...
23
votes
5answers
2k views

What was the first crossover movie like The Avengers, using only movie franchises?

The Avengers is taking 4 separate movie franchises (Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, and Captain America) and combining them all into one huge movie with all the main characters from each movie. Doing some ...
23
votes
8answers
16k views

Is Amy right about Indiana Jones being irrelevant to the outcome?

  In the episode The Raiders Minimization of The Big Bang Theory Amy ruins Raiders of the Lost Ark for Sheldon by making the following claim: Indiana Jones plays no role in the outcome of ...
23
votes
6answers
11k views

In Fight Club is Marla Singer a second figment of Jack's imagination?

After reading this article on the existence of Marla Singer, I am fairly convinced she represents his guilt and remorse. It seems entirely plausible Marla Singer materializes to remind Jack he is ...
23
votes
3answers
23k views

Explanation of the ending of A Clockwork Orange

The ending of the film perplexed me a bit. The main hero says, quote, "I was cured alright". While that could be interpreted as honest and truthful, the final scene (the fantasized orgy) makes me ...
23
votes
2answers
805 views

What is rosebud?

In the movie Citizen Kane. What is the significance of rosebud? Or is its insignificance a significance? Or the director has achieved what might sound similar to John Travolta's misdirection in the ...
23
votes
4answers
5k views

Why wasn't the poltergeist Peeves in the Harry Potter movies?

In the Harry Potter book series, Peeves is a poltergeist that roams the hallways causing trouble. He never really adds anything essential to the plot line, but his scenes are amusing. Obviously they ...
23
votes
3answers
3k views

Why did Neo have powers in the real world?

In the Matrix, why did Neo have magic powers in the real world? For example, (1) Those scenes where he blows up those robots purportedly with his mind. (2) That one where he has no eyes but can ...
23
votes
2answers
1k views

To what extent were the actors in Wedding Crashers improvising?

Some comedian/actors are given creative freedom and improvise at times when producing a new film. Is there any evidence that Vince Vaughn or Owen Wilson improvised in any scenes, diverging from the ...
23
votes
3answers
16k views

What does Sherlock say just before opening Irene Adler's safe?

In Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia, the americans force Sherlock to open Irene Adler's safe by threatening Holmes and Adler at gunpoint. The safe turns out to be booby trapped. But just before he ...
23
votes
3answers
2k views

Does the ageing theme in Skyfall contradict the rebooting of the Bond franchise?

At the start of the rebooted series, in Casino Royale, we see Bond gain his 00 status, and through that film and Quantum of Solace Bond goes on his 'first' adventure. Skyfall continues this 'firsts' ...
23
votes
1answer
2k views

Why does J. J. Abrams like to insert the number 47 into his movies?

In another question that used to be on this site, I noticed that J. J. Abrams inserts the number 47 into several of his movies. I'm curious about it... Why is the number 47 significant?
23
votes
1answer
373 views

What Object Is Harry Holding In Prisoner of Azkaban (Film)?

What object is Harry holding in this scene from Prisoner of Azkaban the film? This is the scene where the Fat Lady disappears after Sirius Black tries to break into Gryffindor Tower and gouges her ...
22
votes
8answers
15k views

In Prometheus, is Meredith Vickers a human or android?

While I was watching Prometheus this weekend, I initially thought that Meredith Vickers was an android, like David. They never made it perfectly clear that she was or wasn't human. They did hint at ...

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