The Polar Express (2004) Poster


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The Polar Express (2004) (Video Game)
The video game is based on the movie.


Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971)
The golden tickets, plus the prominence of serving the hot chocolate
Emperor of the North (1973)
The bum on top of "The Polar Express" directly quotes Lee Marvin's hobo when he stands and proclaims, "I'm King of the North Pole!"
Back to the Future (1985)
The Lone Pine Mall appears in both. In the scene where Smokey and Steamer (the fat man and the red-bearded man) are trying to catch the pin, a flux capacitor can be seen for a brief moment.
Back to the Future Part III (1990)
The slightly elevated close-up shot of the locomotive's cow-catcher coming to a halt just inches from the viewer, the hero quotes Doc Brown about wanting to pull a train whistle, etc.
Forrest Gump (1994)
The "ticket ride" sequence deliberately mimics the feather.
Titanic (1997)
Tom Hanks screams "I'm the king of the North Pole" on top of the train.The same occurs in Titanic when Leonardo DiCaprio screams "I'm the king of the world " at the Titanic's bow.

Referenced in 

2004 World Series (2004) (TV Mini-Series)
Tom Hanks appeared to promote this film.
Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan: Jake and King (2004) (TV Episode)
Chantel mentions that she appeared in The Polar Express.
Dinner for Five: Episode #4.9 (2005) (TV Episode)
Heder mentions the film
Jeopardy!: 2005 College Championship Semifinal Game 3 (2005) (TV Episode)
referenced in clue and correct response in "From Page to Screen" category
Best Ever Christmas Films (2005) (TV Movie)
One of the items on the list
Barry Norman's Christmas Movie Quiz (2007) (Video Game)
Referenced by name
A Hero's Journey: The Making of Beowulf (2008) (Video)
Title mentioned on screen when Tom Hanks appears
Beowulf: Mapping the Journey (2008) (Video)
Mentioned once by Bob Zemeckis
30 Rock: Succession (2008) (TV Episode)
Frank mentioned CGI Tom Hanks in the Polar Express.
Nostalgia Critic: North (2009) (TV Episode)
"It's like Polar Express meets The Flintstones"
A Christmas Carol (2009)
The marionette version of Scrooge in Polar Express is used as the model for the main character in Robert Zemeckis' next Christmas movie, A Christmas Carol.
The Rotten Tomatoes Show: The Men Who Stare at Goats/A Christmas Carol/Precious (2009) (TV Episode)
Ellen says Zemeckis used performance capture to make this movie
Phineas and Ferb: Phineas and Ferb Christmas Vacation (2009) (TV Episode)
The music played when the lights come on sounds similar to "Suite from The Polar Express" by Alan Silvestri.
Avatar: Creating the World of Pandora (2010) (TV Movie)
Mention once
The Cinema Snob: Beaver & Buttface (2010) (TV Episode)
"...which would make Beaver & Buttface the Polar Express of the '90s"
The Hour: Episode #7.46 (2010) (TV Episode)
George Stroumboulopoulos mentions that The Polar Explorer (2011) is not to be mistaken for The Polar Express (2004).
Community: Abed's Uncontrollable Christmas (2010) (TV Episode)
Abed and Pierce travel to the North Pole by train.
Psych: The Polarizing Express (2010) (TV Episode)
Title reference
AniMat's Reviews: Mars Needs Moms (2011) (TV Episode)
Mentioned as one of ImageMovers Digital's films.
Spoof Movie No Jutsu! (2011) (Short)
Naruto says "The Polar Express is trying to kill me!"
AniMat's Reviews: Puss in Boots (2011) (TV Episode)
An animated film that tries to look realistic.
CinemaSins: Everything Wrong with Prometheus in 4 Minutes or Less (2013) (TV Episode)
Mentioned by the narrator
Saturday Night Live: Kristen Wiig/Vampire Weekend (2013) (TV Episode)
Referenced by Seth on Weekend Update
The Simpsons: Dangers on a Train (2013) (TV Episode)
Reverend Lovejoy refers to his wife as "The Bi-polar Express."
Nostalgia Critic: Top 12 Santa Clauses (2013) (TV Episode)
Critic compares Santa in this movie to the open in Santa Claus: The Movie.
Mike & Mike: Episode dated 18 December 2013 (2013) (TV Episode)
Mike Urrunaga's favorite Christmas movie
The Sugarcube Critic: The Ticket Master (2014) (TV Episode)
"Just give it to the boy sitting in the last cable. I mean, Tom Hanks mihgt yell at you but really, it'll be won't any difference when you reach the North Pole."
The Late Late Show with James Corden: Tom Hanks/Mila Kunis (2015) (TV Episode)
Tom Hanks and James Corden re-enact a scene
WatchMojo: Another Top 10 Creepy Kids Movies (2015) (TV Episode)
Mentioned by narrator
The Night Before (2015)
Ethan, Isaac, and Chris aboard a train to get to the party.
Santas in the Barn: Let the Yule Log Burn (2015) (TV Episode)
Mentioned during group challenge
Nostalgia Critic: Cats & Dogs (2016) (TV Episode)
Critic remarks that CG Tom Hanks looks like a pedophile
Superstore: Black Friday (2016) (TV Episode)
mentioned by Garrett
Strictly Come Dancing: Christmas Special 2016 (2016) (TV Episode)
Gethin Jones dances a routine inspired by the film.
Anime Abandon: Metropolis (2017) (TV Episode)
"This would be like if Otumo directed the hot chocolate sequence from"
Mixxxer Show: Renne Dang a Adam Mach (2017) (TV Episode)

Featured in 

HBO First Look: The Polar Express (2004) (TV Episode)
Troldspejlet: Episode #32.13 (2004) (TV Episode)
reviewed + footage used
The 62nd Annual Golden Globe Awards (2005) (TV Special)
The 77th Annual Academy Awards (2005) (TV Special)
Nominated in three categories
Troldspejlet: Episode #34.16 (2005) (TV Episode)
DVD release reviewed + footage used
Best Ever Christmas Films (2005) (TV Movie)
Clips are shown
The Greatest Ever 3D Moments (2009) (TV Movie)
clips shown and discussed
Nostalgia Critic: Return of the Christmas Specials (2009) (TV Episode)
Movie is among the Critic's finalists
Hewy's Animated Movie Reviews: The Polar Express (2010) (TV Episode)
Reviewed, clips shown
Hollywood's Top Ten: Cinema Santas (2010) (TV Episode)
Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #1.25 (2011) (TV Episode)
a clip is shown as Jackson Murphy says the film was spectacular in 3D
A Night at the Movies: Merry Christmas! (2011) (TV Movie)
Clips shown
Nostalgia Critic: The Grinch (2011) (TV Episode)
"We needed a song like we needed one in Polar Express."
Visionado obligado: Especial Navidad (2011) (TV Episode)
clips shown
CineMaverick TV: Episode #1.12 (2012) (TV Episode)
clips shown
Nostalgia Critic: The Cat in the Hat (2013) (TV Episode)
refers to this as a much better book adaptation
Nostalgia Critic: Should We Scare the S#*% Out of Kids? (2013) (TV Episode)
Critic talks about kids' films with some intense moments, like this one
Troldspejlet: Troldspejlet julespecial (2013) (TV Episode)
Jakob Stegelmann looks at some of the must-see Christmas movies + clip
Greatest Ever Christmas Movies (2013) (TV Movie)
Number 28 in the Countdown
Honest Trailers: Forrest Gump (2014) (TV Episode)
Clip is shown
T00nVision: T00nVision on Ice! (2016) (TV Episode)
Features clips in the credits
Nostalgia Critic: The THIRD Animated Titanic Movie (2016) (TV Episode)
Critic compares the rapping sharks to the chefs singing about hot chocolate


Way Out West (1937)
The hobo's speaking of keeping valuables in his shoe that has a big hole in the sole, just as Laurel kept Mary's deed there while travelling to Blackeye Gulch.
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968)
Santa's air-crane with the huge striped ballonets and big fabric propellers looks a lot like Baron Bomburst's airship transport.
Crocodile Dundee (1986)
The hobo's sloshing and wringing out his sock, just as Mick does in the hotel room while taking a bath.
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)
Hero Boy swinging around on the hobo's ski-pole and landing squarely with both feet firmly planted on the top of the train again, just as "Junior" does with the circus-train's cargo-davit when trying to escape his persuers.
The Addams Family (1991)
The fireman's long shiny whole-face-covering hair that is released by the cotter pin, just like Cousin Itt's hair.
Honeymoon in Vegas (1992)
The flying elves/Elvises
Speed (1994)
The hobo gets disinegrated by the tunnel roof, just like Payne gets decapitated by the subway tunnel's warning light.
Inspector Gadget 2 (2003) (Video)
The ticket-punch confetti floating by the boy's face, just as the bubbles float by Brain's face when the glitch-prone Inspector Gadget is trying to access his radar gun but gets the bubble-blower instead; also the hurtling train stopping mere inches from the elk's nose, just as the villains' van stops just a hair's-breadth from G2 when he goops it up with the bubble-gum.
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)
The elderly elf asks the small boy to let him take care of his gift box by saying "Trust me" in a slightly sneaky seductive supplicating tone, and has somewhat crafty-looking facial features, just as Gollum does.

Spoofed in 

VeggieTales: It's a Meaningful Life (2010) (TV Movie)
The train in this episode is a spoof of Chris Van Allsburg's "The Polar Express".
How It Should Have Ended: The Holiday Movie Special (2010) (TV Episode)
Holiday movie parody
The Simpsons: The Fight Before Christmas (2010) (TV Episode)
In the first segment, Bart takes a trip to the North Pole on the Polar Express, which literally flies to its destination because Otto dumps marijuana into the coal engine.
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #20.62 (2011) (TV Episode)
"The Bipolar Express" spoofs the film
Believe (2014) (Short)
Is a parody of the film's bell and catch phrase "Believe"
Robot Chicken: Robot Chicken Christmas Special: X-Mas United (2015) (TV Episode)
The Nerd takes a ride on the Polar Express with a depressed Tom Hanks as the train conductor.

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