Is it OK to ask if something was depicted accurately/realistically in a movie/novel or to illustrate a question by a reference to a movie/novel?

For example the popular movie Gravity suggests multiple questions of this kind. Would such questions be considered useful for this site?

I was not sure if this case is covered in Rules for “Science Fiction” questions so I am asking explicitly.


All the usual criteria applies, such as what's on topic here and rules of asking good questions. But other than that, as long as the questions are specific enough to invite answers that would be presenting the true nature of space exploration and not have to discuss the fictional side too much (preferably not at all), then there ought not be any objections. Please note though that our members are not expected to be familiar with any fictional work you'd be inquiring about, so don't forget to mention all the details that are required for understanding the nature of the question.

For example, when I've been answering a question that might fall into this category you're describing, and since I didn't watch the movie the question was about, it did make me wonder if I was even answering it from the right angle and covered everything OP was inquiring about, because the movie side of the question wasn't presented in enough detail.

I would also advise not to center your question around some particular work of fiction, to avoid it being seen as an endorsement (those are still products that sell, however we look at them). Most of what can be seen in movies and read in science fiction literature can be asked in a general sense just as well. But if you can't word it without asking directly about some work, then please also include some link where potential answerers can appreciate what you're referring to and form their opinion. If possible, without them having to read the whole book chapter or watch half an hour of the movie first. Some pictures or quotes also can't go amiss, as long as they're republishable under our license agreement, you include all the required attribution information, and the texts aren't too long and discourage people to read it.

If these quotes, excerpts, photographs, e.t.c. can't be republished here, then add a link to where they are externally hosted, available to all without registration or purchase and add a description to your link too, so members know what to expect once they click on it or the link can be replaced with a functioning one in case of link rot, which does happen, especially with new contents that might be hosted on paid for advertising space.


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