Movies provide great escapism from the trauma and boredom of the real world. For this reason, I believe, scriptwriters have one of the toughest jobs. Because to entertain, to please, to surprise and to satisfy the world – is after all not that easy. Thus once-in-a-while when these brilliant people weave together a story, so magical and so dramatic, you can’t help but applaud the workings and imagination of a human mind! But when you find out that these stories are not fictitious but real, you come to realize that not all great stories come from those award-winning guys! Sometimes, true stories are much bigger, stranger and fanciful than fiction.
We take you through five incredible movies that are based on true stories. Stories so strange and unreal that you wouldn’t have otherwise believed if they didn’t happen in real life.
Compliance is a horrifying story that shows how people behave and submit to authority over fear of losing their lives or even a mere $6.35 an hour job. A man posing as a police officer calls and convinces a restaurant manager to help him strip search one of her waitresses who he claims has committed a crime. The 18-year old girl is then detained, stripped and sexually assaulted for 4 hours! What’s more disturbing, apart from this whole ordeal being real is, this wasn’t the only phone call. David R. Steward, the nasty caller, managed to engage 70 fast food outlets in 30 US states in this sick game for 10 years!
Imposter is the story of a 23-year old man living in France who convinces the police that he is Nicholas Barclay from Texas, a boy who had gone missing three years ago at the age of 12. What’s strange is, the family from Texas accepts and identifies him as their missing son even though the boy who came back looks nothing like their son. He’s much older, has the wrong eye color and a distinct French accent! What makes this documentary-styled film interesting is, Frédéric Bourdin, the imposter plays himself in the movie, and so does most of the cast, including Nicholas Barclay’s family.
3 127 HOURS
Between a rock and a man is his arm, and he’s stuck in that position for 127 hours. After trying his best to move the boulder, he ultimately decides to take matters in his own hand. Literally. He releases himself by cutting off his arm, slowly and crudely, by a blunt fruit knife! It is an extreme and difficult situation, but the wonderful memories of his family keep him alive and kicking the entire time. Helmed by the Oscar winning director Danny Boyle, 127 Hours is a true story of Aron Ralston and the incident that took place while he was on a solo-hiking escapade in Utah.
4 THE TERMINAL
No way an airport feels like home. No wonder, when we are there, we get restless to go back to our humble abodes. There was a man who came too, but never left. Mehran Karimi Nasseri, an immigrant from Iran, made an airport terminal his home for 18 years! While on a layover in Paris, his papers get stolen so with no other option, he starts living in the terminal. He even makes a living by charging journalists for interviews, and eventually gets $250,000 for selling movie rights to his story. Few things may have been tweaked – like the romantic angle, but rest remains all true.
5 CATCH ME IF YOU CAN
Frank Abagnale, Jr. might be the most versatile con artist ever to live on earth. He claims to have taken no fewer than eight identities – as a chief resident pediatrician in a Georgia hospital for eleven months, as a professor of sociology at a university for an entire semester and as a pilot for Pan American Airways for two years, among many others. What’s more shocking is after his jail term, Frank was employed by the FBI to help them catch other forgers, and he’s still with them today! Leonardo DiCaprio as the crook and Tom Hanks, the cop, are both wonderful in this cat-and-mouse chase!
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