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RE: [mythsoc] If you're up to =here= with movie special effects...

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  • David Bratman
    ... Author of the article Stolzi linked to under this topic header. - DB
    Message 1 of 9 , Jun 28, 2004
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      At 12:29 AM 6/29/2004 -0400, Kevin wrote:
      >David, sorry to reveal my ignorance, but who is Easterbrook?

      Author of the article Stolzi linked to under this topic header.

      - DB
    • WendellWag@aol.com
      In a message dated 6/28/2004 11:30:18 PM Eastern Daylight Time, ... In fact, I think one would have to go out of one s way to see just the films Easterbrook
      Message 2 of 9 , Jun 29, 2004
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        In a message dated 6/28/2004 11:30:18 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
        dbratman@... writes:

        > At 08:56 PM 6/28/2004 -0500, Gregg Easterbrook wrote:
        >
        > >Every other movie now has impossible fly-through-the-air kickboxing, faces
        > >morphing from one to another, strange distant cities, energy bolts,
        > >elaborate starcruisers, immense explosions, people falling impossible
        > >distances, and other special-effects staples.
        >
        > I think he's seeing a rather limited selection of movies.
        >

        In fact, I think one would have to go out of one's way to see just the films
        Easterbrook talks about. Here's the most recent films I have seen:

        _Goodbye, Lenin!_
        _Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind_
        _Mean Girls_
        _Saved!_
        _Fahrenheit 9/11_
        _Valentin_

        None of them are special effect films, although the second and fifth are well
        edited. The next two films I'll be seeing are probably going to be _Kill
        Bill, Vol. 2_ and _Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban_. So only two of the
        eight films I've seen or am about to see recently are special-effect-driven.
        Why did Easterbrook waste his time seeing _Van Helsing_ or _The Chronicles of
        Riddick_, since the reviews were pretty negative for both films?

        Yes, a lot of recent action films are junk, but it's generally obvious from
        reviews that they are junk for reasons not entirely connected with over-the-top
        special effects. _I, Robot_ will probably be junk because they threw out the
        book and just made up a plot having nothing to do with Asimov's ideas. The
        fact that the special effects will probably look ridiculous is just icing on
        the cake. A lot of the "five-hanky chick-flicks" (as Easterbrook puts it) are
        also bad because they are badly written. This is why, assuming that you don't
        have an unlimited amount of time, that you have to rely on reviews or friends'
        suggestions or something to winnow down the number of films you see. The
        eight films I've most recently seen or am about to see is probably pretty typical
        of the best I can hope for if I'm careful. None of them blew me away, but
        none was a waste of time. Stupid special effects are more like a consequence of
        stupid writing than the cause of it.

        Wendell Wagner


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      • darancgrissom@sbcglobal.net
        ... [darancgrissom@sbcglobal.net] I am both dreading and looking forward to I, Robot. Yes they threw out the plot to one of the seminal works of science
        Message 3 of 9 , Jun 29, 2004
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          >I, Robot_ will probably be junk because they threw out the
          > book and just made up a plot having nothing to do with Asimov's ideas.


          [darancgrissom@...]
          I am both dreading and looking forward to I, Robot. Yes they threw out
          the plot to one of the seminal works of science fiction in favor of an
          aglomaration of all three of his books in that particular world. With good
          deal of stuff made up to boot. But I like Will Smith action movies. He's a
          good actor, ALi proved that even to people who can't get past an action
          movie plot. I liked Independance Day, I liked Men in Black.

          In any case I have never been able to see a "good" movie in the theatre.
          When I saw Signs in the theatre there were people talking through the whole
          movie. When I saw Troy there was a large group of pre-teen girls sitting up
          front who screamed, loudly, everytime Orlando Bloom was on screen. When I
          saw bwoling for Columbine I went to the theatre at noon on a Tuesday, and
          there was still an old drunk guy yelling at the screen. He and I were the
          only two people in the theatre. I see a movie every Friday, to relax. I
          like explosions, I like unbelievable feats of strength and knowing that the
          hero will win. I saw Chronicles of Riddick, and it wasn't bad. It was
          Connan in space and I knew how it would end five minutes after it started,
          but the sets were interesting and Il like the semi witty dialouge which
          seems to follow Vin around from movie to movie. For good movies with less
          production costs I have patience and Net Flix.

          > " I'm a little dubious about this as a complaint, because cartoons have
          been
          >doing exactly that for decades. Is that OK because nobody expects
          cartoons
          >to be anything other than presentations of the physically impossible? If
          >so, why can't action films develop the same protocols?"


          Asian movies have had those protocols for many years. Korean and Japanese
          action films are generally based on the abillities which defy the laws of
          physics. Chrouching Tigar Hidden Dragon is a good example because most
          Americans know it, but it is indicative of the general class of Asian Actio
          Movies


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        • Stolzi
          Wendell has a point, but some of us are fantasy geeks rather than movie geeks, so our viewing tends to be slanted that way. I don t mind impossible feats in
          Message 4 of 9 , Jun 30, 2004
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            Wendell has a point, but some of us are fantasy geeks rather than movie geeks, so our viewing tends to be slanted that way.

            I don't mind impossible feats in movies like SPIDERMAN, because after all, the source comic books =always= had impossible feats in them. But it IS interesting to think of our heroes' arms being ripped right off as they swing about their world... like that piece somebody wrote on "the physics of STAR TREK."

            What bores me most of all in SFX is ridiculously impractical affairs like those "battle machines" in STAR WARS staggering around on their long legs, and the endless computer-generated "armies" that make me lose all interest in battles - for some reason, even though battles filmed with only a few hundred "meat" extras are just as unreal, I can get more involved.

            Oh, and speaking of stupid writing, I generally loved INDEPENDENCE DAY, and Will Smith not least. But when he gets into a totally alien spaceship and jimmies their totally alien computer???? GMAB!!!! Suspension of disbelief leapt right out the window.

            Diamond Proudbrook



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          • Elizabeth Apgar Triano
            Oh, and speaking of stupid writing, I generally loved INDEPENDENCE DAY, and Will Smith not least. But when he gets into a totally alien spaceship and jimmies
            Message 5 of 9 , Jun 30, 2004
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              Oh, and speaking of stupid writing, I generally loved INDEPENDENCE DAY, and
              Will Smith not least. But when he gets into a totally alien spaceship and
              jimmies their totally alien computer???? GMAB!!!! Suspension of disbelief
              leapt right out the window.>>

              Oh, Diamond, I missed that part. I only saw a chunk out of the middle. I
              liked "Welcome to Earth." POW.

              Lizzie

              Elizabeth Apgar Triano
              lizziewriter@...
              amor vincit omnia
            • darancgrissom@sbcglobal.net
              You know two things about that. First If you watch the extended DVD. there is a thirty second scene in which he explains that he reverse engineered the
              Message 6 of 9 , Jul 2, 2004
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                You know two things about that. First If you watch the extended DVD. there
                is a thirty second scene in which he explains that he reverse engineered the
                aliens program using the ship so the computer wasn't communicting, he was
                using the computer to run the ships systems. I explained it badly but the
                story makes more sense if you watch it. Second, I have a group of about
                nine cllose friends I saw that movie with, almost all of which are PC users.
                We have one person that uses an Apple Computer. We spent the rest of the
                summer joking with him by saying we always suspected the Apple was really
                the Vanguard of ALien invaders, and now we knew
                -----Original Message-----
                From: Elizabeth Apgar Triano [mailto:lizziewriter@...]
                Sent: Wednesday, June 30, 2004 3:27 PM
                To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: Re: [mythsoc] If you're up to =here= with movie special
                effects...


                Oh, and speaking of stupid writing, I generally loved INDEPENDENCE DAY,
                and
                Will Smith not least. But when he gets into a totally alien spaceship and
                jimmies their totally alien computer???? GMAB!!!! Suspension of disbelief
                leapt right out the window.>>

                Oh, Diamond, I missed that part. I only saw a chunk out of the middle. I
                liked "Welcome to Earth." POW.

                Lizzie

                Elizabeth Apgar Triano
                lizziewriter@...
                amor vincit omnia





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