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Barbara L. Baker


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I am a professor of communication at a midwest university, with expertise in film. I can answer most questions on the original "Star Wars" trilogy, and some on the newer trilogy. I also have expertise in general science-fiction film (both history and theory), especially in the United States. For movie titles, I need to have the release date (or a date range, or at least when you saw it). It is better if you note significant, major plot details and characters rather than minor plot events, and it is even better if you can recall an actor or director's name, and if it is a film or TV movie. Plesse do not just provide a set of links to someplace else (e.g. imdb discussion threads). I am less able to answer the following, although I will do my best to track down an answer for you--recent SF films, horror films, or made-for-TV movies. Most SF films from other countries are out of my areas of expertise. In addition, I cannot answer questions about animated SF films, anime/manga, television series or shows, or about film collectables. Nor will I answer obvious homework (although I will point you to resources to help answer the question, if asked). I also can't help you find movie stars, movie memorabilia, or tell you how to break into the business.

Experience in the area

Coursework in science-fiction and fantasy films, plus teaching courses in the subject for several years; I've also conducted research into SF and fantasy films and TV.


Ph.D. in Communication, with emphasis on film and rhetoric.

Awards and Honors

A dissertation award from a national organization and various paper awards.

Past/Present Clients

My students.

What do you like about this subject?

Movies are our fantasies made manifest, and science-fiction/fantasy films push those fantasies to the limit.

What do you still hope to achieve/learn in this field?

To continue to teach courses and do research in this area.

Something controversial or provocative about this subject

Dystopian science fiction often does not have a happy ending; it also deals with controversial issues such as genetic engineering, overpopulation, conformity, etc.

Average Ratings

Recent Reviews from Users

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    K = Knowledgeability    C = Clarity of Response    P = Politeness
Laron10/15/16101010That's the movie I was looking for .....
Patrick01/17/16101010Thanks for your quick and fast answer .....
Gary07/24/15101010Hi Barbara Thanks for your detailed response .....
Peg12/08/141010I appreciate your help when you are .....
Mark05/24/14101010Thanks. You are right. That is it! .....

Recent Answers from Barbara L. Baker

2016-10-15 A movie a saw but can't remember the name:

Laron, the film you are looking mostly likely is a 1989 Australian/US low-budget film that was called "The Blood of Heroes," released in the U.S. in 1990. It also has a longer version released in Australia

2016-05-01 science fiction 50s 60s:

Dear Roger: This plot description best fits the Italian/Mexican horror film "Caltiki, the Immortal Monster," made in 1959 but released in the U.S. in 1960. Often shown on television in the 1960s, the film

2016-01-14 Equivalent of a small thesis on Sci-Fi:

Dear Patrick: By a "small thesis" I am guessing this is a school project of some kind? You don't give the level or further explanations so I cannot be sure. Normally I donít do school work, but in this

2016-01-14 How has sci-fi movies evolved through history:

Dear Mia: You have asked a big, complicated set of questions here, which I cannot answer sufficiently in a short response. Normally I donít do school work, but in this case I will address parts of what

2015-07-24 scifi series:

Gary, this was an interesting assignment, although a bit out of my area of expertise. TV series from the early days of television are not always easy to locate, and this was no exception. I don't have


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