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  1. In Topic: I am a genius

    Posted 25 Apr 2017

    I found it interesting that Rogue One was careful to state that it was merely a Star Wars Story and not connected with the rest of the movies, and yet had more connection to the original movie than anything we've seen yet.

    I have defended the scroll up in the original...

    Quote

    This brings up the point of scroll ups in general. The original scroll up had a point; to fill us in on a bit of necessary background. Civil War... rebels... Evil Galactic Empire... plans for the ultimate weapon... a princess in trouble... OK, we've got a few facts, let her rip!



    and blasted the scroll ups in the other films...

    Quote

    But all the scroll ups in all the rest of the movies are a pointless waste of time. Once the decision was made (with the release of Empire Strikes Back) that the films would become "episodic", instead of stand alone stories, then the previous movies themselves should be all the background the viewer requires to understand the current episode.


    Rogue One both stands alone and connects... and has no scroll up.

    Rogue One keeps the force to a mostly mysterious "force" like it seemed to be originally. I mean how can Solo and Motti say they don't believe in the force, it's just tricks used to fool the gullible, when jedis can obviously jump 50 feet vertically, survive falls from rocket cars thousands of feet in the air, shoot lightning from their hands etcetera? The force types in this film (the script is careful not to call them Jedi) are far closer to Obi Wan Kenobi and the subtleties of the original, and leave more room for incredulity and doubt. The Force feels far more like a cultish religion again, and not a shopping list of magic tricks like the force choke, the force push, super speed and all that video game crap.

    Unfortunately Vader does choke someone again in this film, but the fans expect that sore of repetitive dullness from their favorite villain, so I guess we are going to have to put up with that one ad nauseum. And I never thought much of those jedi crystals myself, but the public seem to like them, so I guess we have to put up with them. These are small things however, in a big universe, and the rest of the film kind of kicks ass.

    The Imperials are evil again, not just buffoons masquerading as Nazis, and spaceships rule the sky in that slightly off kilter way which mimics the slightly off kilter movements of the original movie. The rebels actually have a plan when they attack with their X wings, and aren't just flying around shooting randomly and hoping for the best. Even the humor is funny.

    Watch the teaser trailer and if it resonates with you, give it a try!
  2. In Topic: A new new hope?

    Posted 16 Dec 2014

    That lightsaber has been around literally forever...



    Posted Image
  3. In Topic: Star Wars Blu-Ray Edition

    Posted 6 Sep 2011

    I heard that neither Han nor Greedo will shoot in the Blu-ray version.

    Now just as Greedo is about to pull his weapon, a bunch of cute children run into the cantina swarm all over Harrison Ford and shout "Uncle Solo... come back home with us" and all the aliens laugh and then a big Egyptian guy will be waiting outside and say "I thought I would find you there! Better than the United States Marines, eh?"
  4. In Topic: Alien

    Posted 18 Apr 2011

    If you are going to make an Alien sequel you need: an Alien (or Aliens), Sigourney Weaver, and a way to get them together.

    How do you get Ripley back? Space Salvage. The other alternative is have her simply arrive on earth, as per the original plan. The salvage (however mathematically impossible) allows for the reasonably interesting throwaway scene that opens the film. I explain the maths in that she was already inside Mars orbit on her way home, asteroid belt miners, and luck.

    The 57 Years in the future gives you: A freak out factor, a way to explain technological advances, a dead daughter, a way to explain everybody's lack of interest in xenomorphs, and people colonizing the rock. As to why would you colonize the rock? Why would you live in Pittsburgh? Hell, I don't know, because I wouldn't.

    I shall digress here - I prefer the semi lengthened version of Aliens, the one they showed on American TV with the dead daughter, the roving guns, and the other 10 minutes or so (including the Dwayne and Ellen part at the end, which I don't think was in the theatrical version), but not the colonist stuff.

    You need colonists (and a dead daughter, possibly) to get Ripley to the planet. As I said, as as the movie says, Ripley absolutely does not want to go back to that planet. I wonder that she really doesn't want to go into space at all. I shall digress again. I was at the San Diego zoo once in the auditorium when they brought out their "ambassador cheetah" to meet the peasants. The African fellow I was with got up and left the goddam room, and I thought Holy shit, what must that guy have seen to refuse to be in an auditorium with an ostensibly tame cheetah? I mean there's a reality, and there's disneyland, and to imagine you're in one when really you're in the other is a major mistake.

    So we get Ripley's nightmare's (a throwaway scene, but amusing the first time around), Ripley's shit job, shit apartment, and her recent concern for families, and her belief that the marines are going to wipe out all the aliens. So she signs up for the mission. In the words of Martin Sheen, what else was she going to do?

    I do not find Burke to be unbelievale or a waste of time. He is the both the catalyst, and the unforseen factor to the whole plot. Reiser is to me totally believable in his very charming bland lawyer living in disneyland kind of way. Who could have predicted his whole deal? You don't see the aliens screwing each other over for a percentage, as they say.

    The marines are all believable too, except maybe for Spunkmeyer the fuck up. They are competant and lazy, until they are in trouble, and then the survivors begin to inspire some confidence. I'm with Civilian Number 2 on this one. Hope it doesn't piss him off.

    We need Newt because the film is partially about procreation of competing species. It gives Ripley a focal point. Otherwise you just have starship troopers. Which is pretty much what we do have, anyway. I'm almost glad they didn't go all Ender Wiggins on us and have Ripley save the last egg and go all weepy. I prefer the run from the car to the house through the swarms of mosquitos and trying to unlock the door and get in while slapping the little bastards to death and hoping you don't bring even one inside alive with you. You always know it will get you later on...

    So how else are you going to make a sensible film? Get Ripley, get aliens, get them together, and don't do the first film again because if you wanted to see that, you'd just go and watch the first one again. That's the problem with the third one - it's a shit remake of the first one.

    Aliens DOES have tension, right from the opening, through the nightmare, through the search for the colonists, through Burke's traitorous play, through the barricade and the sensors showing the aliens coming closer until they are inside the goddam room - and then your own barricade is a trap, through meeting the Queen, through Ripley pissing her off (I personally belive that the egg opened by itself because it sensed an available host and knew it was time to hatch. The Queen was willing to let the truce be a truce, and Ripley did not. I like to believe that she would have wasted all of them on the way out irregardless of that egg), right through to the site about to go nuclear, and Newt getting lost at an inconvenient moment.
    The more I think about it, the more I am deciding that I like it.

    Right - I am part way into the original presently. It's pretty damn slow, and the characters are not as likeable as the sequel characters, and so far they sound like actors ad libbing in that irritating ad lib way that actors ad lib stupid lines in workshops when rather than shut up they are required to show their ad lib skills.

    But I am going to continue watching now, with hopefully a semi open mind.....
  5. In Topic: Alien

    Posted 17 Apr 2011

    I never thought about many of those points before. I guess that means you made a good post.

    I can't argue with you... but I still prefer Aliens. In fact, until you made your points, I would have said that it was a perfect film. Ripley is found drifiting in that shuttle. Unbelievable, but neccessary for purposes of the plot. She is fired, believed to be insane, unable to find proper work. She runs those loaders. Burke is an excellent character... sleazy and semi charming at the same time. Ripley, however utterly dismisses him . Even though she is at the lowest status level in that society she maintains a believable force of personality. I find her convincing in every way.

    I believe that the company does NOT know about the xenomorphs. It must have been a secret operation that has been somehow forgotten in the last 57 years. Burke, however thinks it is possible, and devises his scheme to get rich with the email to the planet. Doesn't cost him anything, might pay back big bucks. When it goes wrong (or right) he sees his chance. Ripley is the one person who knows something about aliens, bring her along. Like in the sequel to the novel Ringworld, in which the same characters are forced to do the same things in the same place all over again (and remark disparigingly about this fact), the main instigator states "Why would I discard a winning strategy?"

    Of course, Ripley has no wish to go. Her nightmares are neccessary because I can see no way to get her to return to that planet other than the 3 that are used: Get sanity back by facing fears, kill all the aliens, get flight status back.

    The marines are slightly unbelievable. However, I like the point that the heroes are NOT going in at contrived disadvantage. That was one of the main problems with Aliens3. It's true that most of them have to die in order for them to see the seriousness of the situation. There is a contrived disadvantage about the no firing, but they ignore that and fire anyway. But from this point on the movie seems relentlessly logical. Get off the planet fast. Nuke the sight from orbit.

    A good plan, except for the problems which keep turning up.

    I like some of the threads. Ripley has to work the loading docks because of the insanity thing. This gains her points with Apone (and Hicks) on the Sulaco. It explains her kicking ass in the end. I like the dead daughter and the Newt thing. I like Burke's character, as totally believable as basically every person I ever met who studied business is school.

    I like Vasquez. I like Hudson. I like Gorman. I like Hicks. I like the new queen alien. I like the truce that either the queen or Ripley breaks. I like the rising tension of the film. Problems are solved, and then it turns out that they are not solved. The marines don't plan to hang around, but the irritating rescue pilot gets eaten. She's pretty quick with her sidearm, but gets eaten anyway. They plan to get the spare drop ship and barricade themselves in and wait patiently, but Burke screws that up. Everything seems to slowly get worse - but if they stopped the film at any crucial decision point and asked the audience "Anybody got a better idea" you would have to say no, I think you've got it covered.

    I like little things like the elevator button that Hicks has to push twice before the door closes. (I wonder if that was in the script?) I like that the only romance between Hicks and Ripley is that they tell each other their first names. I like when Ripley says to the insanity board "That's because I blew it out of the Goddamn airlock!" It gives me goosebumps. I like the fact that mostly the only characters that are really worth anything are female.

    As for Aliens3, there are parts that I like. The fact that Newt and Hicks are dead in the first 60 seconds is fantastic. I also like the fact that the set up seems to take the first half of the film. I like not knowing what the film is about. Too bad that when I did know, it kinda sucked. Except killing Ripley was a good idea.

    Here are 2 pieces of extranous information... I met Jenette Goldstein and didn't realize she was Vasquez for a long time. I thought she was the Irish immigrant whose big subplot was trimmed to zero in Titanic. Also, you should watch the film Darkstar, which is Dan O'bannon's first attempt at writing the Alien story, only in comedic version, 1974. It's low budget, but semi amusing. You can get it off the torrent.

    The original Alien never did much for me, unfortunately. I'm obviously going to have to watch it again now...

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