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Questions tagged [realism]

The general attempt to depict things accurately in films and tv shows.

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8 votes
2 answers
3k views

In the Unabomber case, was "call Nathan R" really mistakenly written by a New York Times intern?

According to the TV series Manhunt: Unabomber (Manhunt S01), 2017, the "call Nathan R" message was mistakenly written by a New York Times intern. Context (Chicago Tribune, 1995): At one ...
23 votes
8 answers
9k views

What is the significance of the sun shade with “Need help please call police”?

In the 2023 movie The Killer, there is a scene (around 50:39) where The Killer (Michael Fassbender) parks his car in front of a house, and puts up a windshield sun shade that has "Need help ...
8 votes
4 answers
4k views

Were people allowed to smoke on TV back in the 1960s to 1970s?

In this movie, Late Night with the Devil (2023), where the timeline is set in the 1960s or 1970s, one of the guests is smoking a cigar when the program is on the air. Were people allowed to smoke on ...
170 votes
3 answers
77k views

Is the Unix operating system featured in Jurassic Park real?

When the film Jurassic Park came out, and I saw that scene where Ariana Richards is sitting in front of the computer and says; This is a Unix system. I know this. It's the files for the whole ...
45 votes
3 answers
21k views

Was Tim's reaction to the electric fence realistic?

In Jurassic Park when Tim, Dr. Grant and Lex are climbing the fence and Tim gets shocked, he immediately goes flying off the fence. How realistic was this behavior?
15 votes
1 answer
2k views

Would valuables really have been stored in the Nakatomi Plaza vault?

I have always wondered about that vault up on the 30th floor of Nakatomi Plaza (in the first Die Hard movie). Is it realistic that a mid-1980s corporation would store extremely valuable items — from ...
6 votes
1 answer
10k views

Do the symbols used in the TV series Evil, actually exist?

In Robert & Michelle King's latest TV series, Evil, a priest in training, a forensic psychologist/mother of four, and skeptic techie-carpenter/contractor investigate for the Vatican: the potential ...
2 votes
1 answer
609 views

How come the ground shook for days after the bombing raids?

In The Nun father Anthony Burke encounters a damaged castle and asks Frenchie: Father Anthony Burke: A result of the war? Frenchie: Bombing raids, yes. I've heard stories of how the ground ...
2 votes
1 answer
132 views

Is the berating of a witness in "Judgment at Nuremberg" allowed in courts?

In the Judgment at Nuremberg scene, where the German defense lawyer berates Judy Garland's character after she has already answered the question, do judges normally allow this in courts? The outcome ...
6 votes
3 answers
3k views

Was the "Iron Man" video phone technology ever used in real life?

At the very beginning of Iron Man (2008) (and in other parts of the movie), we see Tony Stark, inventor of technology so advanced he can create a suit that builds itself, using a phone with a flip-out ...
10 votes
1 answer
4k views

Is the "quantum world" dialogue between Oppenheimer and Einstein based on a real quote?

Did Einstein ever say, "And here we are, lost in your quantum world of probabilities, but needing certainty," to Oppenheimer and if so, where could such a quote be found?
0 votes
2 answers
239 views

Did Jordan Belfort really own the most expensive real estate in the world?

In The Wolf of Wall Street (2013), Jordan Belfort narrates these lines about the house that he and his wife Naomi bought: Jordan: Seven acres on the Gold Coast of Long Island. The most expensive real ...
-2 votes
1 answer
193 views

In The Bourne Ultimatum, how was Jason able to enter the USA on his Brazilian passport? [closed]

In The Bourne Ultimatum (2007), towards the end of the movie, Jason enters the U.S.A. (from Tangier, Morocco) using his Brazilian passport (Gilberto de Piento). How could he have done this ...
3 votes
0 answers
144 views

Is the electric fence from “The Last of Us” (2023) series realistic?

In episode 3 of The Last of Us TV series, Bill, a lonely survivalist, makes several traps around his place. He has a perimeter electric fence that is apparently powered by a generator or stationary ...
4 votes
1 answer
220 views

Why are the bandsmen wearing black masks in The Last Emperor?

In a scene in the Last Emperor, when Puyi is singing 'Am I blue?', all members of his music band are Europeans but wearing black masks. Why?
4 votes
1 answer
900 views

Were new prisoners in Alcatraz made to walk without clothes as Frank Morris was made to do?

In Escape from Alcatraz, Frank Morris (Clint Eastwood), upon entry into Alcatraz (after being processed), is shown walking down the cell corridor naked (if memory serves me correctly, he is holding ...
4 votes
0 answers
304 views

Why use a slide rule and not an electronic calculator?

In Season 2 Episode 2 of The Wire at around 31:30, we see a guy (forensic medical examiner?) use a slide rule. Why not use a normal electronic calculator? I'm not really familiar with the show - is ...
3 votes
1 answer
2k views

Why take that "glass floor" risk in the museum?

In The Walking Dead's 'A New Beginning' (season 9 episode 1/S09E01), a team led by Rick Grimes enters the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, in order to find useful materials and tools for their ...
2 votes
1 answer
279 views

How realistic is the film “Flash of Genius?”

I recently watched Flash of Genius (2008), and I'm curious how close it stays to the real-life story of Robert Kearns, the man who invented the intermittent windshield wiper in 1969 before having the ...
5 votes
1 answer
1k views

House M.D. - MIDNIT mnemonic

In the second episode of the first season of House, Dr. House during a meeting brings up the mnemonic "MIDNIT": Metabolic Inflammation Degenerative Neoplastic Infection Trauma Is this a ...
3 votes
2 answers
1k views

Does the US really use C64 computers for the launch control of their missiles?

In Season 09 E07 of NCIS: Los Angeles we can see the inside of a launch control center for nuclear missiles. The two terrorists that brought the control center under their control are clearly using a ...
3 votes
2 answers
2k views

What is supposed to be ominous about the 1976 Philadelpha Flyers?

In The Simpsons episode 1F04 "Treehouse of Horror IV", Devil Flanders summons the "Jury of the Damned" to sit in judgment of Homer. The jury consists of "Benedict Arnold, ...
-2 votes
1 answer
165 views

Is it possible to use a diet app to calculate the time of impact of a comet?

Kate, a character, states that a comet will hit Earth in six months, ten days, two hours, 11 minutes and 41 seconds, causing the extinction of all life: Prof Mindy: When did you do those calculations?...
1 vote
0 answers
76 views

Were Al Capone's family calling him Phonse?

In the 2020 film Capone, Al Capone's family always call him Phonse. His real name was Alphonse Capone (I didn't write his middle name). But everyone knew him by the name Al. So were his family really ...
2 votes
2 answers
422 views

After surfacing between 2 allied destroyers, how did U-boat's gun crews stay alive so long, firing their guns?

As soon as the U-boat surfaced, 'Dicky' and 'Greyhound' would have started shooting it. I know that the U-boat slipped under the destroyers' mounted naval guns, but a destroyer crew can still shoot ...
0 votes
1 answer
120 views

In the US, are the assets of a vulnerable elderly person transferred to the custodian?

After I watched I Care a Lot, this question came to mind. In the movie, a woman (Marla), who is a scammer, locates wealthy old people and convinces the court to give her guardianship over them and ...
10 votes
1 answer
3k views

Did Native American fighters really manage to sneak up to European trappers by climbing / jumping trees?

In the movie, The Revenant, Hugh and his group of trappers were ambushed by Native Americans after a fruitful pelt hunt. There was at least one Native American fighter who had climbed onto a tree and ...
3 votes
2 answers
2k views

What's the explosion that we see when Amon Göth shoots from the balcony?

In Schindler's list there's a scene in which Amon Göth, the commandant of the concentration camp, shoots some prisoners from his balcony. His first victim is a woman that stopped to tie her shoes. He ...
42 votes
6 answers
14k views

What could have resulted in such a huge crater in WW I?

In the movie, 1917, there is huge crater filled with muddy water and bodies, what could have caused it? It is a bit too big for an artillery shell.
10 votes
1 answer
5k views

Why is a cash store named as such?

In the movie, Ballad of Buster Scruggs, there is a store in the town called Cash Store. (To the right of the mirror in the screenshot) It is often to see Cash only as a way of accepting payment in ...
-1 votes
2 answers
177 views

Do nightclubs have scoreboard for waitresses?

In Molly's Game (2017), Dean, who is regular to the club, speaks to Molly, a waitress at club: Dean: People seem to take to you. How would you like to get paid to go to grad school and get an MBA in ...
35 votes
1 answer
8k views

Why do some Chinese shows avoid using real toponyms?

While watching the 2023 Chinese tv adaptation of Cixin Liu's The Three-Body Problem with English subtitles, I noticed a peculiarity: Instead of using actual place names, the show appears to use ...
4 votes
1 answer
3k views

Why does Robin Williams have a dark beard in the poster?

In the poster of 1997 movie Good Will Hunting Robin Williams' character Sean Maguire has a dark beard compared with the movie itself: Why is there this difference?
6 votes
2 answers
4k views

How did Seth Powers keep the ball spinning?

In Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide, Seth Powers is always (or almost always, not sure) seen with a basketball spinning on his fingers. Did the actor actually do this, or was it done by means ...
2 votes
2 answers
300 views

How true to knowledge is this representation of fictional (CGI) dinosaur behaviours?

In the Disney film Dinosaur (2000), how true to knowledge is the representation of the dinosaurs' behaviours? Does the film try to be true to knowledge, or is it mostly guesswork or exaggeration?
3 votes
2 answers
3k views

How genuine are the threats in "Alone"?

I've only seen the UK Channel 4 version of Alone, a survivalist game show where contestants must last as long as possible alone in the wilderness. Aside from the threat of hunger and sickness or minor ...
1 vote
1 answer
429 views

Could bulletproof glass stop a sniper?

In the TV show the "The Punisher" (s01e07) there is a scene where Frank Castle attempts to kill a man standing at a window using a sniper rifle: To his ...
-3 votes
2 answers
1k views

How can KGB officers, born and bred in USSR, speak perfect accentless American English?

I know Matthew Rhys's (who portrays Phillip Jennings) first language is Welsh, and speaks English with a Welsh accent, so he's imitating the US accent in The Americans. But US-born actors with ...
4 votes
2 answers
508 views

Do astronauts really have to pay for pillows and blankets as shown in Ad Astra?

Is it really true that astronauts actually have to pay for pillows and blankets during space-flights as shown in Ad Astra? I would rather say it sounds like paying for drinking water or maybe at best ...
1 vote
2 answers
273 views

Would a messmate really be helping the gun crew during a battle?

In the Greyhound movie, we can see a black messmate (or is it "messman"?) Cleveland regularly bringing food to the captain. When the U-boats attack, there is a moment, when we can see ...
-4 votes
1 answer
354 views

Left side steering wheels in "MI: Dead Reckoning"? [closed]

In the new Mission Impossible movie, all the vehicles, even distinctly European ones, have American (left side) steering wheels. Why is that?
5 votes
2 answers
932 views

Are the lifespans of the animals compared to the lions realistic?

In The Lion King, we are shown a family of lion royalty over multiple generations, as well as its subjects and other animals involved with its kingdom, the Pride Lands. Recently, I have noticed how ...
9 votes
1 answer
250 views

How realistic was Robinson Crusoe on Mars when it came out?

Having recently seen Robinson Crusoe on Mars, I of course noticed how unrealistic it is. However given that it was released in 1964, before the first landing of any space probe on Mars, I wonder how ...
4 votes
5 answers
3k views

Is it realistic that Jimmy's friend from the district attorney's office is so poor?

In Better Call Saul S03E03, Jimmy sits next to his old friend Bill Oakley (played by Peter Diseth) who is a Deputy District Attorney. Jimmy pulls out a burger and fries for lunch, while Oakley's lunch ...
1 vote
2 answers
210 views

Accuracy of Hellfighters Trailer Claim of just three

The original trailer of Hellfighters(IMDB) claims that there were "only three people" fighting oil fires this way when it came out in 1968. As far as I realize, John Wayne's character is ...
1 vote
1 answer
6k views

Why was Captain Ranvijay Singh's dead body released in the sea in the movie "The Ghazi Attack"?

In Ghazi (also called The Ghazi Attack), after Captain Ranvijay Singh died, his body was released in the sea. Is it due to religious reasons or is a naval code? This page mentions Cremation is the ...
3 votes
2 answers
237 views

Was this event in S03E05 credible/possible in the UK?

In Happy Valley S03E05, Tommy Lee Royce escapes from the witness stand box by: Two thugs sitting around outside the courtroom beat up some guys, causing a commotion and setting some alarm off Royce (...
-2 votes
1 answer
240 views

Why using planes instead of drones or other unmanned devices?

In Top Gun: Maverick (2022), the plan is to use two fighter jets to breach and destroy a bunker. The US forces know exactly the shape of the canyon that leads to the bunker, yet instead of sending ...
2 votes
3 answers
387 views

How can the canyon at the flight training base exactly match the target one?

In Top Gun: Maverick (2022), the pilots are training to match the terrain they will get at the place where the plant is located. The path they must take closely follows the canyon they need to fly ...
16 votes
4 answers
11k views

Is this laser experiment shown on Big Bang Theory possible?

In Season 3 episode 23 they use a laser to measure the distance between the Moon and the Earth though in the episode Leonard states the conclusion of the experiment as being the only experimental ...

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