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The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags are used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.
For detailed information about the amounts and types of (a) sex and nudity, (b) violence and gore, (c) profanity, (d) alcohol, drugs, and smoking, and (e) frightening and intense scenes in this movie, consult the IMDb Parents Guide for this movie. The Parents Guide for Splash can be found here.
A mermaid (Daryl Hannah) gets her land legs for six days in order to spend time with produce supplier Allen Bauer (Tom Hanks), whom she met as a boy when she saved him from drowning. Allen doesn't remember her, except as a figment of his imagination, and promptly falls in love with her. However, eccentric scientific researcher Walter Kornbluth (Eugene Levy) suspects that Madison, a name she adopts after seeing a street sign on Madison Avenue, is a mermaid and sets out to throw water on her, believing that her legs will become fins when wet.
Splash is based on a storyline and screenplay by American screenwriters Bruce Jay Friedman, Babaloo Mandel, Lowell Ganz, and Brian Grazer, borrowing from Danish author Hans Christian Anderson's fairytale 'The Little Mermaid', first published in 1837. The movie was subsequently novelized by Ian Marter (under the pen name Ian Don) in 1984 and was followed by a TV movie sequel, Splash, Too, in 1988.
In the fairytale and in a scene deleted from the movie (available on the special edition DVD), Madison gets her legs due to a spell cast by an old sea hag. The stipulation is that she can only wear her legs for one week. If she stays longer than that, she will never be able to return to the sea. In the movie, she considers staying when Allen asks her to marry him, but it becomes necessary for her to escape back into the sea when she's found out by Kornbluth, his superiors, and the authorities.
After Allen, Kornbluth, and Freddie (John Candy) rescue Madison from her tank at the Museum of Natural History, Allen heads toward the docks with the military in hot pursuit. Standing at the end of a pier, Madison and Allen kiss goodbye. Madison says that she will never be able to return, and Allen replies that he wishes he could join her. Madison reminds him that, when she saved him as a child, he was able to breath underwater so long as he was with her but that he'll never be able to come back to land. As the military closes in on them, Allen forces Madison to jump into the water. About a minute later, he jumps in after her. They are pursued by military divers but manage to fight them off until Madison grabs Allen and rapidly swims way with him. In the final scene and as the credits roll, Madison and Allen swim together in semitropical water (filmed in the Bahamas) until they make their way to the undersea kingdom where Madison lives.
...on the musicbox and then by the street musicians? Chopin's Piano Concerto in E Minor, Op. 11, Movement 2 - Romance (Larghetto)...when Madison and Allen are ice skating? Les Patineurs, Op. 183, "The Skater's Waltz"
Yes. Hans Christian Anderson's fairtytale is in the public domain and can be read and/or downloaded from various websites, such as here and here.
Mermaids have long been a part of legend. Thus, there are numerous movies about them, starting with Disney's cartoon, The Little Mermaid (1989), plus various sequels, that tells the story of Hans Christian Anderson's little mermaid. Other movies include Miranda (1948) in which a man takes a mermaid on a tour of London, Mad About Men (1954) in which a mermaid swaps places with a teacher, Ren yu chuan shuo (1994) (Mermaid Got Married), a Chinese movie in which a mermaid pursues love with a teacher, The Thirteenth Year (1999) in which the 13-year-old son of a mermaid begins to transform into one, The Wonderful World of Disney: Sabrina, Down Under (#3.1) (1999) in which Sabrina the teenage witch finds romance with a merman, and Sea People (1999) in which a teenager meets a couple who are mer-people needing her help. More recent movies about mermaids include Mermaid Chronicles Part 1: She Creature (2001) in which two carnies abduct a mermaid, Mermaids (2003) in which three mermaid sisters track down their father's murderer, Aquamarine (2006) in which two teenage girls discover a mermaid in their beach club's swimming pool, and Fishtales (2007) in which a young girl tries to play matchmaker between her father and a mermaid. There are even several TV series featuring mermaids, including Disney's The Little Mermaid (1992-1994) and H2O: Just Add Water (2006-2010) in which three teenagers become mermaids with magical powers.
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