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This "blog" is severely out-of-date. Their have been many intersting things discovered about possible solutions, and the one true best solution has been found.

All this material will be added someday.

As time permits I will return and augment the data AND add the SOLUTION.


On the IMDb "I Need To Know" message board appeared this Original Post:


Help with quote: "It doesn't DO anything. That's the beauty of it"

By - ssywak (Thu Apr 10 15:10:14)

I am trying to track down the movie which contains the dialogue:

"What does it do?" "It doesn't DO anything. That's the beauty of it."

I have a number of people wracking their brains for at least a week trying to figure this out.

TIA! --Steve


Here is the address of this thread: http://www.imdb.com/board/bd0000001/nest/1180562

(Thanks to kate_robyn for suggesting I add a set of links, you will find them in the grey box at the left.)

Mayhem ensued.

I have become interested in the thread (hereinafter termed "the thread"), but have difficulty accessing it efficiently due to its length and typically scattershot layout. This chart helps me think about it. Feel free to contact me DIRECTLY (via IMDb PM?) or COMMENT HERE to correct, add to, or critique it. I hope to finish and maintain it. I have no connection to the original poster or thread, or the IMDb boards or the IMDb other than as a registered IMDb user with the user name kcor1953.

First off, anyone who maintains this is an unanswerable question, for whatever reason, is a spoilsport, and has never worked in an office. When there is no answer, rewrite the question.

It has been pointed out that the question has been asked before in other venues and the same venue, to no resolution. Okay. It has been pointed out that it might have never existed in this precise form (the MULTIPLE SOURCES THEORY, first advanced APR 11 2003, and the ALTERNATE WORDING OR EMPHASIS THEORY, first advanced APR 14 2003), probably originated in another medium (the LITERATURE THEORY, first advanced APR 16 2003), and could become the basis of a new religion. The search has exposed the vagarities of human memory, the inefficiency of nonlogical methods, and the strength of good PROCESS.

GENERAL POSITS: The quote, or a near facsimile, can or does exist. A pure, simple question ("What does it do?"); a two-part response with a pure, simple answer ("It doesn't DO anything.") and a poetic qualifier ("That's the beauty of it!"). There is a McGuffin (object/machine OR concept/plan). We prefer, in this order, a match in movies, TV or other lively art, or prose. We want, in this order, an exact match, a close match, a qualified match. We want, ideally, the first instance chronologically; failing that, the earliest instance. In this grey, not-black-and-white world a balance of the above factors is acceptable, and allows multiple answers.  

POSITS PECULIAR TO THIS CHART (ie, ME): Remembering what we've learned about human memory, the "It can't be in X, because I've never seen X" reasoning will not be accepted. NOs based on viewing or having checked scripts are accepted at face value when my subjective judgment is satisfied. They can be overturned by the same process (ie, prove me wrong). I favor a Brit comedic source (maybe Goon-ish, but uncertain origin) resurfacing in US films of the 60s, and homage in TV and films of the last 25-30 years. This might cause me to make mistakes. I favor evidense which, in this order: I can view & corroborate, includes healthy-sized citations (actual dialogue, time into movie, etc.), is lucidly presented. These apply whether it's a YES or a NO or a correction of my data. No Duck Tales.  

THE CHARTS: Each entry has/will have the date of its earliest suggestion. I have retained a record of the identity of the poster, but decided not to display it here. Some have brief notes composed by me, often with the date of a refutation. Some posts had been deleted before I saw or saved the thread, about AUG 09 2004. There are two kinds of Refutations. "Watched" is close to absolute, short of human error. "Checked Script" is less than absolute, due to the AD LIB THEORY, first advanced APR 20 2003.  

SUGGESTIONS are possible sources offered in replies on the thread. They were suggested merely, seem unlikely, or were strongly refuted. Some listed in the thread have been omitted by me. I do not want any new suggestions.

STRONG BUT REFUTED are suggestions which were offered with vigor, from multiple sources, or seemed likely but have been shot down.  

STRONG NOT REFUTED seem quite likely. What is needed now is not testimonials, but testimony (evidense).

THE CHARTS ARE AGAIN COMPLETE, worthwhile posts dated MAY 05 2005 or earlier have now been entered. Comments are welcomed, but will be vetted.

WHAT TO ADD TO CHARTS: Additions should take the form of the newest section CLOSEST EARLIEST, initially comprising one item from STRONG BUT REFUTED. Entries will need identity of movie (or whatever, include date) and full dialogue of the quote, with attribution (actor name or character name or description, explanation of McGuffin, whatever). See current entry for example of format. Addition of the ONE TRUE ANSWER would immediately destroy the purpose of the charts, and so it will destroy them in actuality. This site lives for its own destruction, and hopes for it soon.  

BENCHMARK: Please note that the STRONG BUT REFUTED category contains the current "winner," EARLIEST CLOSEST probably should go to Live a Little, Love a Little. Hudsucker Proxy is not close enough, nor early enough to qualify. Feel free to mine the REFUTED entries, but use the benchmark before you submit your evidense. I think you should stick to the NOT REFUTEDs for now. Use your own judgment about replying to the thread directly. I have no authority over it, and no right to subvert its primacy. All Hail ssywak, the mother of us all.

Below here are the bodies of the Charts--which I wish DIDN'T appear here on the main, Introductory Page. This is evidently due to the limitations of this free website. I suggest you use the TOPIC LINKS in the grey bar to the left and view each Chart in isolation, for clarity in understanding.

Posted by kcor1953beauty at 8:23 AM CDT | Post Comment | View Comments (2) | Permalink
Updated: 08/09/08 1:02 PM CDT

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