Movies With A Twist

Aug 4, 2017
Originally published on March 23, 2018 10:58 am

If the classic Gene Kelly movie about talkies were updated to include ASL, it might be called "SIGNin' in the Rain" instead of "SINGin' in the Rain." We've switched the positions of two letters in a movie's title to create a totally new film.

Heard on Kerry Bishé: Halt And Catch Science

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Want our next special guest to play for you? Follow ASK ME ANOTHER on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Answer a trivia question and you could be our next winner.

Next, we'll play a game where we mix up the letters in movie titles just like a drunk guy changing a theater marquee. Let's meet our next two contestants. First up, Ainsley Anderson on buzzer number one.


EISENBERG: You work in a costume shop. Welcome.


EISENBERG: Hi. Your opponent is Shreyas Vangala on buzzer number two.


EISENBERG: You work for the New York State Power Authority. Welcome.

SHREYAS VANGALA: Thanks for having me.

EISENBERG: Remember, Ainsley and Shreyas, the first of you who wins two of our games will move on to the final round at the end of the show. Let's go to your first game. Ainsley, what are two movies you always confuse?

ANDERSON: "The Prestige" and - is it "The Illusionist"? I don't even remember the other one. They came out, like, the same year. I don't know.

EISENBERG: Yeah. Magic movies.

ANDERSON: Exactly.

EISENBERG: Magic movies. Shreyas, what are two movies you always confused?

VANGALA: As a kid, we had a little box of VHSs. And before I learned to read, "Land Before Time" would always go in the "Jurassic Park" box and vice versa. So, you know.


EISENBERG: Also fair enough. Fair enough.

JONATHAN COULTON: Two very different films.


EISENBERG: So this game is called Movies With A Twist. You're going to take a movie and swap the position of two letters in its title. Puzzle guru Art Chung, can you give an example?

ART CHUNG: If we said, this George Lucas film recounts the battle between Russian monarchs, that'd be "Tsar Wars" - that's swapping the position of the S and the T in "Star Wars."

EISENBERG: OK. So the clue will hint at both the original film and the twisted title, and the letters that get swapped will always be next to each other in the original title. It's going to be great. Here we go. This Disney animated film tells the tale of Simba, who crafted minimalistic garments that only cover reproductive organs.



VANGALA: "The Loin King."



EISENBERG: I'm sure that movie is also out there somewhere.


COULTON: Ansel Elgort stars in this action film where he listens to an iPod while chauffeuring a syndicated advice columnist.


COULTON: Ainsley.

ANDERSON: "Abby Driver."

COULTON: You got it.


EISENBERG: Also known as "Driving Dear Abby." Matt Damon is stranded and presumed dead on Mars. Fortunately, he's there with his companion, the retired Czech tennis player Ms. Navratilova.



VANGALA: "The Martina."

EISENBERG: Yeah, "The Martina."


EISENBERG: "The Martian" becomes "The Martina."

COULTON: Lindsay Lohan plays twins separated at birth who hatch a plan to address the subprime mortgage crisis of 2008 by creating the Troubled Asset Relief Program.


COULTON: Mad-cap fun adventure. Shreyas.

VANGALA: "The Parent TARP."

COULTON: "The Parent TARP." That's right.


EISENBERG: In this classic World War II movie, Steve McQueen plans to break out of a prisoner of war camp where Ms. Van Susteren and Ms. Garbo (ph) are being held captive.



VANGALA: "The Greta Escape."

EISENBERG: Yeah, "The Great Escape" becomes "The Greta Escape."


EISENBERG: All right, this is your last clue. Antonio Banderas and Carla Gugino play secret agent parents to children who must save them from an evil K-pop artist who's trying to make the world go "Gangnam Style."



VANGALA: "Psy Kids."

EISENBERG: That's right.


EISENBERG: Puzzle guru Art Chung, how did our contestants do?

CHUNG: Tough game, but Shreyas, well done. You're one step closer to our final round.


EISENBERG: Can't make it to Brooklyn? No problem. ASK ME ANOTHER is hitting the road. We've got two very special all-celebrity contestant shows at the Ace Hotel Theatre in Los Angeles on August 17 and 18. For information on all of our shows, go to Coming up, Jonathan Coulton leads a music parody about mondegreens. And no, that is not a trendy salad ingredient. I'm Ophira Eisenberg, and this is ASK ME ANOTHER from NPR.

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