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Moving Pictures

"Moving Pictures"
Directors: Mitch Hurwitz & Troy Miller — Writer: Mitch Hurwitz, Dean Lorey, Richard Rosenstock, Jim Vallely & Caroline Williams — Aired: May 4, 2018 — Icon-image      

"Moving Pictures" was the twelfth episode of chronological re-cut of Arrested Development's fourth season. It premiered on Netflix on May 4, 2018.

Desparate for a fresh shart Michael pursues an opportunity with Ron Howard. Oscar gets the lowdown on George's plan. G.O.B. heads for the desert.


Michael is at the airport, trying to get a copy of Altitude magazine which is appearing in. However, he cannot get a copy unless he's on a flight. Michael decides to buy a flight to Phoenix, a place he'd long planned to go to. The hot weather in Phoenix makes him change his mind so he books a flight right back home and returns to Balboa Towers

George Sr. continues with his and Lucille's plan to build a border wall. After bribing politician Herbert Love to support the wall, George Sr. returns to the land they own on the border. However, it turns out that the land they own is in Mexico, not the US, so they cannot sell the land back to the government as they were planning to.

Back home, Michael gets a job driving round a mapping car. Barry calls Michael with news that Ron Howard wants to meet him. Barry doesn't know anymore than that and must hang up as he was on trial for lurking around a school and Bob Loblaw was making his case.

Oscar, pretending to be George Sr., talks to Lucille about the border wall and she suggests that they could give G.O.B. a job building the wall. Lucille rings G.O.B. and he accepts the job, hoping it will help make him Bluth Company president. Meanwhile, Michael goes to Imagine Entertainment to meet Ron Howard but first he meets Kitty, who is a movie executive there. Ron Howard wants to make a film about the Michael, his father-son relationship, and the housing crisis. He wants to cast his daughter Rebel Alley in the role although Michael misunderstands and thinks she is his mistress. To make the film, Michael must collect all his family's signatures although he worries about getting George Michael's after Michael was kicked out of his dorm.

The film has made Michael a film producer and he phones Barry, who is being arrested, to share the news. After the call ends, Michael bumps into Rebel Alley but doesn't recognise her. He tells her that he is a movie producer and she invites him to see her Scottish band at the Ealing Club. Rebel leaves and Michael realises that he didn't get her name.

G.O.B. arrives in the desert, ready to work, and meets George Sr., who has no idea why G.O.B. is there. George Sr. realises that Oscar must be pretending to be him. G.O.B. drove in his limo and when the door is opened, all his sick bees fly out into the colony. Oscar arrives at the desert and George Sr. confronts him because Oscar said that the land was in the USA. Oscar is also upset because George Sr. claimed he bought the land to save the colony.

On the next Arrested Development: Fateful Consequences... G.O.B. enters the sweat lodge which was used in his wedding illusion and finds that a cross locked the part of the trick he needed. G.O.B. mistakes the cross for a T necklace and thinks it must have been Tony Wonder's plan.


Main Cast (in order of appearance)



Recurring themes[]


  • Birth Control - Love mocks people wanting subsidized birth control via health insurance, a political point during the 2012 presidential race.
  • Carrie Fisher - The issue of Variety has a headline "Carrie Fisher Ankles Big, Too." Kitty says "ankles" is a film industry term, implying Carrie Fisher will star in a movie titled Big, Too.
  • Happy Days
    • Max Winkler, Henry Winkler's son who portrays Barry Zuckerkorn in 1982, says "eh!" like Henry Winkler's character Fonzie in Happy Days.
    • When Barry is reaching over the gate at the high school, he calls the doorknob a "chachi". Bob Loblaw, standing nearby, is portrayed by Scott Baio who portrayed Chachi Arcola in Happy Days and the spinoff Joanie Loves Chachi.
  • Imagine Entertainment - Several Imagine films are mentioned including Cocoon, Splash, The DaVinci Code, and Willow.
  • Is Oscar Buster's father? - Oscar's theme music plays when Lucille mentions her son and Oscar assumes Buster.
  • Jerry Bruckheimer - Ron Howard, Brian Grazer, and Imagine Entertainment have a feud with producer Jerry Bruckheimer and Bruckheimer Films.
  • Moon landing conspiracy - Ron Howard says the 1969 moon landing was faked.
  • OutWest Airlines - This is the airline that publishes Altitude, the in-flight magazine. It is a pun on Southwest Airlines.
  • Phoenix
    • Michael has always wanted to visit Phoenix, mentioned in "Pilot" and "The One Where Michael Leaves". He finally makes it there.
    • In Greek mythology, a phoenix is a bird that dies in a burst of fire at old age, and is reborn from the ashes. This is a nod to the 'rebirth' of Arrested Development.
  • Seinfeld - Michael buys a plane ticket and boards a flight he didn't plan on taking, just to get a magazine that mentions him. Similarly, in the Seinfeld episode "The Airport," George buys a plane ticket and boards a flight he didn't plan on taking, right after buying a magazine with a blurb that mentions him.
  • The Andy Griffith Show- Ron Howard starred as Opie in The Andy Griffith Show (which was previously mentioned in "For British Eyes Only" and "Public Relations".) Imagine Entertainment is casting to direct an AGS film but it's "not a done deal yet", mocking how the AD movie is not a done deal either and churned for 7 years.
  • Variety - Issues of Variety appear in multiple episodes including "Development Arrested".
  • Workaholics - The cast of the show Workaholics appear as flight attendants for OutWest

Callbacks/Running Jokes[]

  • "All You Need Is Smiles" - George sings Oscar's song while driving his RV.
  • Banners - Michael knocks down a Herbert Love banner with the Google StreetView car.
  • Bees / Ashamed of their name - Michael's film is called the Untitled Michael B. Project, just as his solo real estate company was called the Michael B. Company and his father wanted to be called "Father B."
  • Bees - G.O.B. is now a honey farmer and brings bees to George's sweat lodge. George asks "beans?", a callback to G.O.B.'s bee business in "Let 'Em Eat Cake".
  • Birds - Michael is run over by an ostrich in Balboa Towers, a vulture haunts Sudden Valley, and Michael attends the University of Phoenix and visits the city of Phoenix.
  • Bob Loblaw law bomb - After the prosecutor says "That's a low blow loblaw" he replies "Bob Loblaw law bomb!" Loblaw lobbed a law bomb at the Bluth family in "S.O.B.s".
  • Flashing - Michael assumes Kitty is going to flash him. She is seen flashing in her ID card photo.
  • FOX 6 - A news clip with the headline "Herbert Love Convention" shows Love supporting the wall project.
  • "Get this - Beverly Hills" - Barry tells Michael that Ron Howard wants to meet with him in "— get this — Beverly Hills."
  • Google StreetView Car - Michael drives the Google StreetView car to Imagine Entertainment.
  • Health insurance - Imagine Entertainment does not offer it's employees health insurance.
  • "Her?" - Michael says "Them?" about his family to Ron Howard.
  • Mexico - Lucille and George's dislike of Mexico is shown again when they discover their owned land is in Mexico.
  • "Mother of God!" - Michael yells this when touching the hot door handle. He yelled the same thing when he touched the hot Cornballer. ("Bringing Up Buster")
  • "No touching!" - The surveyor says "No touching!" to George.
  • Ostrich - The Google employees call StreetView car drivers "ostriches". Also, G.O.B. says his boxes of bees fell over because he had to swerve to avoid an ostrich. We find out in "The Weak Become the Strong" that Marky Bark's ostrich farm is right next to George's camp.
  • Phoenix - Ron has been traveling to Phoenix to see his sick aunt.
  • Photo montage - A photo montage shows Kitty and Ron Howard bonding, mirroring her montage with George in "Visiting Ours".
  • Prayer hands - Ron decided to make a movie about the real estate market crash based on Michael's begging photo in the Altitude magazine.
  • Rhyming legal advice
    • Bob Loblaw says "If he can't reach, this trial's a breach!"
    • A young Barry tells the Bluths "If you don't sign, you'll be fine!"
  • Tracey Bluth - Ron Howard wants to alter the story of Michael's deceased wife to make a better movie and to cast Rebel. Michael mentions Tracey had red hair when he meets Rebel on the street.
  • "X... no Y." "It was Z." - When Michael sees the destroyed Balboa Towers penthouse he thinks it is Buster then G.O.B. The narrator corrects him and says it was Lindsay.

Hidden/Background Jokes[]

  • Bees - George and Oscar call themselves "Father B." at their colony.
  • Birth control - When Love jokes about birth control, he says "your birth control" while talking to George. Later, George becomes a woman due to high estrogen in his system.
  • Bob Hope Airport - As Michael leaves the airport, the Narrator says "Michael had hope." At the same time, a bus passes by outside with the words "Bob Hope Airport" on it. This shows where the scene was actually filmed, and is a reference to Tobias's allusion to John Wayne Airport ("Good Grief"), another L.A.-area airport named after an actor.
  • Father B. - George panics and says "Don't call me that!" when G.O.B. greets him as "Father", despite the fact everyone at the retreat he runs as "Father B." calls him the same thing.
  • Imagine Entertainment Offices - While Michael walks through the Imagine Entertainment building for his first meeting there, Ron Howard and Brian Grazer's offices are seen, Ron's has a wooden carving of a baseball cap above the door (a reference to the fact he often wears the hat) and Brian's has a carving of his own hairstyle.
  • LEM - Ron invited Michael to talk inside the LEM (Lunar Excursion Module). We find out in "What Goes Around" that Rebel's son is named Lem.
  • Mural - In the Phoenix airport, there's a mural depicting scenes from the first three seasons. They include:
    • The model home.
    • Michael and George Michael sitting on the top of the stair car, from "Visiting Ours."
    • The banana stand.
    • The lighthouse from the boardwalk.
    • G.O.B.'s yacht.
    • G.O.B. on a segway.
    • The Mexican church, with a faceless girl (Ann Veal) stranded outside, from "¡Amigos!."
    • The log cabin car from "The Cabin Show."
    • The rickshaw from "Exit Strategy."
    • The streets-changing directions sign and double-decker bus from Wee Britain. Big Ben also appears in the background. However, the building did not appear in Wee Britain.
    • The Queen Mary
    • Michael and George Michael's getaway boat, from "Development Arrested."
    • A seal with a yellow bowtie.
  • Scripts - There are multiple funny movie scripts seen in this episode in the Imagine offices. In the Lunar Lander there are three scripts entitled Three Men and Two Babies, Tell it to the Hand and Backgammon!.

Foreshadowing/Future References[]

  • High-tech sector - Michael gets a job in the high-tech sector after the housing market crashed. George Michael, Maeby, and Mort all get jobs in high-tech during Season Four.

In Comparison to the Original Cut[]

This episode is made up from 6 episodes of the original cut of Season 4. Because the re-cut is chronological and combines the characters' stories into one narrative, new narration was recorded and there is even some additonal dialogue. These changes, as well as which scenes appear in which original episode, are listed below:

  • Michael at the airport, new dialogue in italics (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
    • Narrator: Michael hoped the article would generate interest in his housing business, which had been going through a dry spell. This, combined with some other misfortunes, had led Michael to sacrifice some of his privacy and move into the dormitory of his son…
  • Flashbacks
    • Michael at the dorm (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
    • Narrator: It was the desire to be closer to his son that led Michael to embrace the voting idea as his own.
  • Michael at the airport (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
  • Flashbacks
  • Michael at the airport (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
  • Flashbacks
    • Michael at the dorm (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
    • Narrator: The mistake was not realizing it was actually his son’s idea to get Michael to vote against himself.
    • George Michael's plan (4x13 It Gets Better)
  • Michael at the airport, on the plan, arriving in Phoenix (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
  • Flashbacks
  • George Sr. at the border (4x6 Double Crossers)
    • "No hugging" in the original cut has become "No touching".
  • Michael in Phoenix (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
  • Michael returns to the penthouse (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix, 4x8 Red Hairing)
  • Michael phones Barry (4x4 The B. Team)
    • Car driver: (bleep) you, (bleep)hole!
  • Oscar and Lucille (4x2 Borderline Personalities, 4x6 Double Crossers)
  • G.O.B. in his limo, Lucille calls him (4x7 Colony Collapse)
    • Narrator: In fact, G.O.B. hadn’t been feeling magical at all lately.
    • G.O.B.: (sadly singing) Stay away, Getaway! Get away, Getaway!
    • Narrator: Even since he wasn’t able to open a secret compartment that held handcuff keys at a wedding to a religious girlfriend he was hoping to escape from. And all in front of homosexual rival illusionist Tony Wonder.
    • The magazine cover with Tony Wonder on it is new to this scene.
    • Narrator: With his own career in shambles, G.O.B. was understandably excited to receive a call from his mother.
  • Michael, Kitty, and Ron Howard (4x4 The B. Team)
    • Narrator: Michael was suddenly given the great opportunity to make something of himself.
  • Michael phones Barry again, flashback to young Barry (4x4 The B. Team)
    • Michael: Barry, I hear what you’re saying.
    • Barry: Tell Ron Howard to go shove his (BLEEP) waffle iron-
  • Michael meets Rebel Alley (4x4 The B. Team)
  • Michael leaves & returns, G.O.B. almost hits him (4x4 The B. Team, 4x7 Colony Collapse)
    • G.O.B.: Get away! Sorry!
  • G.O.B. arrives in the desert, releases his bees (4x6 Double Crossers)
  • On the next... G.O.B. finds the cross (4x7 Colony Collapse)


  • Buster Bluth doesn't appear in this episode.
  • The title of this episode is a reference to Michael starting in the movie business.
  • During the Season 4 remix, the narrator often draws parallels between the Bluths' lives being similar despite being separated.
    • Narrator: And for the first time in many years, Michael had hope. George Sr. also had hope…
    • Narrator: As a client, Barry was hoping for a better fate than that of his own client, Lucille Bluth.