3 Films That Got History Spot On

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Hollywood always talks about striving for authenticity, but more often than not either poetic licence or the desire to make sure America gets credit for anything good that’s ever happened in the world gets in the way.

But not every Hollywood production plays so fast and loose with history… some are extremely accurate, especially for a movie.

Labyrinth

labyrinth

Labyrinth is a 1986 British-American biopic of a 15-year-old named Sarah as she sets out on a quest to reach the centre of an enormous otherworldly maze to rescue her infant brother Toby, who has been kidnapped by Jareth, the Goblin King. Staying true to the real story which happened in 1867, Sarah realises that her brother is in possession of her treasured teddy bear Lancelot and wishes Toby away by the Goblin King Jareth, portrayed by David Bowie. He refuses to return the baby, but gives Sarah 13 hours to solve his Labyrinth to find him before Toby is turned into a goblin. Sarah meets the dwarvish Hoggle (Brian Henson), who aids her in entering the Labyrinth, but a talking worm inadvertently sends her the wrong way. Director Jim Henson stays true to the documented history of the Labyrinth incident throughout the 100 minute feature film. A total of 67 historians researched for two years before this film was drafted into a screen play, making it one of the most accurate historical films of its time.

Weekend At Bernie’s And Weekend At Bernie’s 2

Weekend-at-Bernies

Directed by Ted Kotcheff, Weekend at Bernie’s and Weekend at Berrnie’s 2 were hailed by National Geographic as the 20th century’s top movie based on a true story, and it won a string of Oscars and Golden Globe awards in 1990. The film stars Andrew McCarthy and Jonathan Silverman as two low-level financial employees at an insurance corporation in New York, and both actors spent months researching their roles as Larry Wilson and Richard Parker. Weekend at Bernie’s is based on the real life murder of crooked CEO Bernie Lomax, who was killed by the mob for ‘knowing too much’. The film follows the two employees as they find their dead boss at his beach side home, but are forced to hide his death for fear of the implications it may cause. “I couldn’t believe they went through all that to cover up his death,” actor Andrew McCarthy once said in an interview. “Why they didn’t just report the murder is beyond me, but boy did they have fun”.

Planet of the Apes

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Based on an infamous 1964 NASA mission to the outer reaches of our solar system, Planet of the Apes follows the story of three brave American astronauts who crashed on an unknown planet where men are pre-lingual and uncivilized while apes have learned speech and mastered a variety of technologies. This terrifying true story centred around the book of the same name, describes the ordeal in stunning detail, and is a favourite among historians, even to this day. Written by George Taylor, who somehow managed to return to earth, this is a must buy for any history teacher wishing to educate children on the dangers of intergalactic travel, and serves as a reminder that apes are not all that much different from humans. Since Taylor’s return back to earth, teaching apes to talk and communicate is forbidden in over 197 countries worldwide.

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