Sometimes fans come up with wild theories to explain gaping plot holes in movies or just to find deeper meanings and themes. While some theories seem far too improbable to believe, others make perfect sense and can actually make a movie more enjoyable to watch. We’ve shared some outrageous movie theories with you in the past; here are 10 more.
1. THE THEORY: HOGWARTS IS JUST HARRY POTTER'S FANTASY
As the theory goes, Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) became a victim of child abuse and emotional neglect following the death of his parents. His aunt and uncle force him to live in a small cupboard underneath the stairs and act as if he doesn’t exist. Since Harry is unwanted and abused, he copes with his trauma through elaborate fantasies of magic and Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where he has lots of friends and is one of the most important people on campus. If you subscribe to this theory, then it explains all the plot holes and “deus ex machina” moments throughout the series.
2. THE THEORY: FERRIS BUELLER AND CAMERON FRYE ARE THE SAME PERSON
This fan theory suggests that Ferris Bueller (Matthew Broderick) doesn’t exist; he’s just part of Cameron Frye’s (Alan Ruck) psyche. The movie introduces Cameron in bed with multiple and mysterious illnesses. Cameron hates his parents and his father is emotionally abusive, so he copes with his reality by having an imaginary friend named Ferris, who is everything that Cameron is not: confident, cool, and charming.
After he embarks on an adventure of watching a Cubs game, eating fine French cuisine, and going to a world-class art museum, Cameron learns to finally confront his demons when he takes responsibility for trashing his father’s car. The theory further suggests that Cameron is the real protagonist of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, as Ferris is merely Cameron’s “Tyler Durden” from Fight Club.
3. THE THEORY: BACK TO THE FUTURE’S DOC BROWN IS SUICIDAL
In Back to the Future, Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd) and Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) stand right in front of the DeLorean time machine during its first test run. When the speeding car hits 88 miles per hour, it will travel one minute into the future. As the car speeds toward the pair, Marty tries to get out of its way, but Doc pulls him back to watch the DeLorean go into the future. When the car disappears, Doc is surprised that it vanishes.
Throughout the entire Back to the Future trilogy, it’s established that Doc Brown is a failed scientist and the DeLorean time machine is the first thing he’s ever invented that works. There’s a theory that suggests Doc Brown wanted to kill himself after a lifetime of failure and misery. He wanted to commit suicide by way of the invention that consumed his life and drained his family’s fortune. Doc was also on the run after stealing Plutonium from a Libyan terrorist group and he felt that he would be caught soon. Luckily, the time travel experiment worked!
4. THE THEORY: ANDY DUFRESNE IS A MURDEROUS SOCIOPATH
A fan theory suggests that The Shawshank Redemption’s Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins) is really a cold and remorseless murderer and a master manipulator. Here’s why: Andy is convicted of killing his wife and her lover after he finds out that she’s cheating on him. He gets drunk, buys a gun, and loads it with bullets, only to change his mind at the last minute and not commit the murder. Unfortunately, his wife and her lover were murdered by another person on the same night mere hours after he left the scene. Now that’s a pretty big coincidence!
The police investigation found bullets with his fingerprints on them and the gun was unable to be recovered. Once in prison, he convinces everyone that he’s innocent, even though all the evidence points to his guilt. Andy is obsessed with chess, but it never really plays out as a movie theme, unless it turns out that he was playing everyone—including the audience—as pawns. He only befriends Red (Morgan Freeman) when he needs something from him; he gets friendly with the prison guards to get special treatment for his fellow prisoners; and he helps the warden embezzle money so that he can later escape. He even planted a fake story in Tommy’s (Gil Bellows) mind about “the real killer,” so that he could help him get a new trial. Andy has already established that he’s smarter than everyone at the prison and escapes in the dead of night without anyone having a clue.
Andy Dufresne played everyone for fools, even the viewer, because the whole account of The Shawshank Redemption is from Red’s point of view and the only things he knows about Andy came from Andy directly. In that respect, Red is an unreliable narrator. Red even described Andy as having “a quiet way about him, a walk and a talk that just wasn't normal around here. He strolled, like a man in a park without a care or a worry in the world, like he had on an invisible coat that would shield him from this place.” If this theory holds true, that nonchalance is because Andy is a sociopath.
5. THE THEORY: ALADDIN TAKES PLACE IN A POST-APOCALYPTIC FUTURE
The proof that Disney’s Aladdin is set in the future comes from the Genie (Robin Williams). During the film, Genie gives Aladdin a makeover and tells him his look is “much too third century,” which implies that the last time he was out of the lamp was sometime between the years from 201 to 300 A.D. In addition, when Genie does get out of the lamp, he remarks that he’s been inside for 10,000 years. This suggest that Aladdin takes places sometime after the year 10,300.
This would explain the movie’s setting and why there are so many modern pop culture references, such as Genie’s celebrity impressions and the appearance of Disneyland memorabilia.
6. THE THEORY: THE ROCK IS REALLY A JAMES BOND MOVIE
In The Rock, Sean Connery plays John Mason, an ex-British secret service agent who is described as a lethal and highly trained killer. He’s detained in the United States after getting caught spying during the 1960s. If the character from The Rock sounds like another British super spy from the ‘60s that was also played by Sean Connery, it’s because John Mason and James Bond are the same character, according to some fans.
The theory goes on to attribute more 007-like qualities to Connery’s character in The Rock, including his winning charm and his sophisticated style after he’s released from prison. He even wears a snazzy new tailored suit and gets a fresh haircut after spending more than 30 years behind bars.
7. THE THEORY: FROZEN'S ELSA AND ANNA ARE NOT SISTERS
There are a few fan theories that state Frozen and Tangled take place in the same universe. In fact, Rapunzel (Mandy Moore) and Flynn Rider (Zachary Levi) make a brief cameo appearance in Frozen during the royal party. Moreover, it was revealed that King Agnarr and Queen Iduna were making a journey to Rapunzel and Flynn’s wedding at the beginning of Frozen when they were lost at sea. But there’s a fan theory out there that takes this idea even further and suggests that Elsa (Idina Menzel) and Anna (Kristen Bell) aren’t sisters at all. Instead, Elsa’s real sister is Rapunzel.
Here’s the evidence: They’re both from neighboring kingdoms; Rapunzel is from Corona while Elsa is from Arendelle. They are both similar in age because they’re twins. It’s established Rapunzel is 18 years old at her wedding and Elsa’s coronation takes place three years later on her 21st birthday, so at the time of the royal party, Rapunzel and Elsa are both 21 years old. Lastly, they’re the only two princesses from both Tangled and Frozen (or any of the Disney Princesses) who have magical powers; Rapunzel with her hair and Elsa with her snow and ice powers. In addition, they both have the same power to give and heal life
8. THE THEORY: ALIEN AND FIREFLY TAKE PLACE IN THE SAME UNIVERSE
In the opening scene of Firefly’s pilot episode, Captain Malcolm Reynolds (Nathan Fillion) gets behind a large cannon to shoot an Alliance spaceship out of the sky during the Battle of Serenity Valley. When he has the ship in his sights, you can plainly see a Weyland-Yutani Corporation logo in the cannon’s display. It suggests that Firefly takes place 200 years after Alien: Resurrection in the same cinematic universe. It’s probably worth noting that Firefly creator Joss Whedon also penned the script for Alien: Resurrection.
9. THE THEORY: BRICK TAMLAND IS A TIME TRAVELER
Steve Carell’s Brick Tamland from the Anchorman movies is really a time traveler moving back and forth in time and space. The biggest clue to this theory comes from the epic battle scene in Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues. In the middle of the scene, Brick uses a ray gun that he says he got from the future. But before the scene, Brick also subtly references things from the future, such as saying “I ain't afraid of no ghosts” when the movie is set in 1979, which is five years before the release of Ghostbusters in 1984; he can recall his own birth, and plans his own funeral. He knows exactly when he’s going to die in the future because he’s already been there.
It also explains why Brick randomly seems to say nonsensical things, as it’s the only way his brain can deal with his time traveling.
10. THE THEORY: ANT-MAN IS IN EVERY MOVIE IN THE MARVEL CINEMATIC UNIVERSE
A fan theory appeared on Reddit (albeit in the Sh*tty Fan Theories thread) suggesting that Ant-Man has appeared in every Marvel Cinematic Universe movie just before the release of his own movie in July 2015, but that he was stuck in “Ant” mode and the audience just couldn’t see him. Regardless, he was still in every other Marvel movie helping Iron Man, Captain America, and the rest of the Avengers, just shrunken down.
Ant-Man director Peyton Reed even commented on the theory, telling The Huffington Post, “I love that theory. I think it’s a funny theory. I’m not quite sure that the timeline works out, but I like the idea of it.”