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The 1989 movie Field of Dreams starring Kevin Costner is billed as a Fantasy/Drama movie on IMDb as well as Wikipedia.

The movie features the following Fantasy elements (to name a few):

  • "Ghosts" of dead baseball players are seen by only certain people.
  • The phenomenon of dead baseball players only occur on the baseball field. the players cannot leave the field for fear of never returning.
  • Certain characters seem to share the exact same "vision" regarding what their purpose is and how it is tied to said baseball field.

Would this movie be deemed on-topic for this site?

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    My apologies in advance to CreationEdge for this post :P – steelersquirrel Jul 10 '16 at 13:35
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    Hey, welcome to SFF meta! :-) – Rand al'Thor Jul 10 '16 at 13:35
  • Huh. Well... it's not really a modern ghost story... but it's not really a modern fantasy either.... I think "open portal to the land of the dead" is close enough to fantasy magic to put it there... but it's definitely an edge example. – Radhil Jul 10 '16 at 13:42
  • Note that IMDB and Wikipedia are both fan-edited. The keywords chosen (Fantasy/Drama) are not necessarily indicative of what the studio intended. – Valorum Jul 10 '16 at 15:26
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    Potential duplicate: meta.scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/337/… ? – AncientSwordRage Jul 10 '16 at 16:18
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    @AncientSwordRage Haven't the guidelines changed a bit since 2011? I don't really know, I just see talk about it all of the time. – steelersquirrel Jul 10 '16 at 16:21
  • @Valorum Oi, watch it, spaceman! – Rand al'Thor Jul 10 '16 at 16:24
  • @steelershark Valorum's answer is mostly based off of that post, right? I don't think it's that heavily changed. – AncientSwordRage Jul 10 '16 at 16:48
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    I've been to the Field of Dreams, and it's really more of a Field of Dullness in the Middle of a Cornfield That Looks Like Every Other Cornfield in Iowa – user31178 Jul 11 '16 at 5:03
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    because its you, ontopic – Himarm Jul 13 '16 at 1:04
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Tentatively yes, but with a proviso (see below)

Main Conceit

The ghost story around which the film is based (farmer hears voices, sees ghosts) is on-topic for the site. Aside from the title character, other people such as his daughter and a local author also see the ghosts as well as elements of his fantastical "field of dreams".

On the strength of that, we're led to believe that the ghosts were real, rather than purely imaginary.

Marketing

The film has been marketed as a "magical experience" and a "glowing tribute to all those who dare to dream" but there's no specific indication that the film was intended to be a straight-up fantasy ghost flick. The ghosts are there to further an allegorical tale about believing in oneself, in the face of opposition.

Proviso

We already have an established system for dealing with films that have SFF content, but aren't in themselves fully on-topic

Are works that aren't SF per se, but have occasional SFnal elements on-topic? (e.g. spy movies)

Because the film is an "edge-case", it's acceptable to ask questions about those elements that are definitely (or at least arguably) on-topic or that relate to on-topic elements


"Why did the ghosts pick Kevin Costner's field?" = Fine
"What kind of corn does Kevin Costner's character grow" = Not fine.

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    If we asked "What kind of potato does Mark Watney grow" that's on-topic, so why not Costner's corn? – user31178 Jul 11 '16 at 5:04
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    @CreationEdge There's nothing wrong with that question. See How should we handle questions that are about non-SF/F elements in a SF/F work? – phantom42 Jul 11 '16 at 10:48
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    @creationedge - I'd hazard that it's because Watney's setting (in the future / on Mars) is sufficiently scifi that pretty much anything you ask will connect in some substantial way to a scifi concept. Whereas Costner's corn only connects tangentially. – Valorum Jul 11 '16 at 10:57
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    That sucks... I was really interested in the corn. – Daft Jul 11 '16 at 16:39
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    I was only joking. I don't really care about corn. – Daft Jul 11 '16 at 17:25
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    @Daft You should. Corn's kind of a big deal. – DCShannon Jul 16 '16 at 3:16
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    @DCShannon - Yes. It's a-maize-ing. – Valorum Jul 16 '16 at 7:42

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