Synopses Synapses

I love it when a two-hour movie is summarized in a short paragraph, which, if done right, is supposed to entice you to watch it.  I admit to having decided to watch certain movies based solely on their descriptions.  The following is a list of descriptions (courtesy of Netflix, with a few of my own slight modifications to remove characters’ or actors’ names, etc.) of some familiar movies.  See if you can guess what they are:

[1] When some North Carolina teens flatten a stranger with their car, they leave him for dead and try to get on with their lives. He returns to give ’em, uh, the hook (literally) — the gore is leavened by some much-needed laughs.

[2] A young British expatriate is separated from his parents when the Japanese Army invades Shanghai at the outset of World War II. Eventually interned in a civilian prison camp, he hooks up with several American prisoners and becomes the camp mascot … as war tidings become ominous for the Japanese.

[3] After overhearing a shocking secret, a precocious orphan trades her carefree existence roaming the halls of Jordan College for an otherworldly adventure in the far North, unaware that it’s part of her destiny.

[4] A 10-year-old girl stumbles on a decaying maze guarded by an ancient satyr who claims to know her destiny. With a new home, a new stepfather — a Fascist officer in the pro-Franco army — and a new sibling on the way, nothing is familiar to her.

[5] An insomniac has crossed over into the danger zone. The man hasn’t slept in a year, and his physical and mental health have eroded. His call-girl girlfriend is the only bright spot in his quickly deteriorating world. But when cryptic notes turn up in his apartment and he has visions of a co-worker nobody else can see, is it reality or the next level of his sleeplessness that’s to blame?

[6] Two corporate middle-managers, exiled to a branch office for 6 weeks, come up with a way to kill time: Find an insecure woman, independently romance her and then simultaneously dump her. This powerful, amoral look at office politics and sexual gamesmanship is guaranteed to push buttons with its searing, cruel candor.

[7] This tale of political intrigue centers on a member of the British High Commission based in Africa, and his quest for truth. When his wife is murdered, he begins his own international investigation. Not even the rumors of his wife’s affairs will stop him from uncovering the truth — a conspiracy much larger and more dangerous than he’d imagined.

[8] A horribly burned man recovers from a plane crash at the close of World War II, with a lone nurse tending him. Via flashback, he chronicles his relationship with a married British expatriate in Cairo. Meanwhile, a driven man forges a connection between the tale and the teller.

[9] A social worker looks so much like the United States President that he’s asked to stand in for him after the chief executive suffers an unexpected stroke. Stuck in the White House till the real President’s staff can decide what to do, he gets into the part, passing legislation and even developing a crush on the estranged First Lady.

[10] In the violent 1990s, a cop catches a relentless killer, and both end up in a cryogenic deep freeze. In the peaceful year 2032, the criminal emerges from his long chill and attacks the now crimeless California. Unable to stop the bloodshed, a “Big Brother” boss defrosts the murderer’s past nemesis, who struggles to adapt to the ways of a new world and a restless new partner.

So, how did you fare (without Googling for the answers)?

10 correct answers = Wow, you know your shit!

7 to 9 correct answers = What a respectable showing of cinematic intelligence!

4 to 6 correct answers = Siskel, Ebert, or Roper would still give you mad props!

3 or less corect answers = Here’s $7.00…go watch any movie, pronto!

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15 Responses to “Synopses Synapses”


  1. 1 goodbear August 15, 2008 at 5:48 pm

    oh shoot! delete my entry. so others can take the quiz. i didn’t even think i’d be spoiling it till right after i hit submit!
    sorry!
    delete delete!

  2. 2 jonsquared August 15, 2008 at 5:49 pm

    @ goodbear – What a respectable showing of cinematic intelligence you have!

  3. 3 jonsquared August 15, 2008 at 5:51 pm

    @ goodbear – for some reason I cannot edit posts with this template, but that’s okay. hopefully, the other quiz takers will answer the quiz ‘honestly’ 🙂

  4. 4 goodbear August 15, 2008 at 5:55 pm

    can you go into manage comments and just delete my whole comment?
    i’m a big movie quiz jerk!

  5. 5 jonsquared August 15, 2008 at 6:07 pm

    Done. 🙂 But, I still want people to know that you had 8 answers correct. 🙂

  6. 7 curlywurlygurly August 16, 2008 at 8:19 am

    um…are these real movies? why have i never heard of them? you’d better send me the $7 quick! 🙂 i live in a cave over here.

  7. 8 jonsquared August 16, 2008 at 8:32 am

    check’s in the mail, curly 😉

  8. 9 princess1236 August 16, 2008 at 5:41 pm

    1) I know what you did last summer

    2) I don’t know ($7 would not even get me popcorn; please send $10.50)

    3) The Golden Compass

    4) Pan’s Labyrinth

    5) Another $10.50 please

    6) $10.50

    7) The Constant Gardener

    8) 10.50

    9) 10.50

    10) 10.50

    The way I see it; you owe me $63. I also enjoy a small popcorn with my show; please hold the butter it makes me sick.

  9. 10 jonsquared August 16, 2008 at 9:25 pm

    @ princess – Siskel, Ebert or Robert will still give you mad props, but $10.50 for a movie? Dude, I don’t go any later than 4pm. 😉

  10. 11 princess1236 August 17, 2008 at 8:29 pm

    You sound like an OLD MAN! When are you going to post the answers?

  11. 12 jonsquared August 17, 2008 at 8:53 pm

    Haha! I’m waiting on at least one more fellow blogger who might want to take a stab at the quiz. Patience, little one…

  12. 13 jonsquared August 18, 2008 at 7:21 pm

    Okay, I think we’ve exceeded the statute of limitation on this, so here are the answers:

    [1] I Know What You Did Last Summer
    [2] Empire of the Sun
    [3] The Golden Compass
    [4] Pan’s Labyrinth
    [5] The Machinist
    [6] In The Company of Men
    [7] The Constant Gardener
    [8] The English Patient
    [9] Dave
    [10] Demolition Man

  13. 14 goodbear August 18, 2008 at 7:53 pm

    such a cool post. i should have told others about it. i will next time.
    i just want to let you know that i appreciate how thoughtful your posts are!

  14. 15 jonsquared August 18, 2008 at 8:27 pm

    thanks, goodbear! i’ll try to keep ’em coming. 😉


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