Showing posts with label Movie Review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Movie Review. Show all posts

Thursday, October 08, 2020

The Three Theys of Interstellar

Interstellar movie
I'm not going to explain everything about Interstellar. I'm just going to jump right into the discussion.  Please watch the movie Interstellar, if you haven't.  Or, if you haven't seen the movie in awhile, watch it again.  Here's my "film theory" about Interstellar's supposed Bootstrap Paradox, "The Three Theys of Interstellar".

The third "they"

The movie Interstellar runs deep with current known science and also notions of time (in a manner that is not well-enough understood by science).  In the movie, there are several discussions that refer to "they" as the architects (my word) of the events within the movie.  "They" is used to refer to the creators of the wormhole, the same wormhole that brings humans to a distance galaxy to find habitable worlds.  "They" is also used to describe the creators of the tesseract within Gargantua Black Hole into which Cooper falls.  There's actually a third "they" used by Brand (daughter of Professor Brand) where she unknowingly shakes Cooper's hand while she's in the wormhole and while the tesseract collapses around Cooper.  She mistakenly refers to Cooper as "them".

The second "they"


While in the tesseract, Cooper hypothesizes (or guesses) that "they" are future descents of humans.  When viewing the movie's narrative superficially, "they" are the ones who set everything up to allow colonization of distance worlds, and also to allow Cooper to survive within the Black Hole long enough to send back the necessary data  to solve Professor Brand's equations. The movie does not provide any further explanation, but does hint that Cooper's guess is not 100% accurate.  This hint comes when he becomes third "they" during the aforementioned handshake with Brand.  Also, Tars specifically calls the creators of the tesseract by the moniker "Bulk Beings".  

Cooper's explanation for "they" is flawed.  If "they" are our descents and also the creators of the wormhole, this forms a "Bootstrap Paradox". If the wormhole didn't exist, we'd have no ability to save humanity in order to have our descents create the wormhole.

Getting stuck on this Bootstrap Paradox assumes this movie presents the final and accurate explanation for "they" or the "Bulk Beings'.  However, if the creators of the wormhole are different from the Bulk Beings (creators of the tesseract), the paradox evaporates.

The first "they"

Cooper was right in his guess that we were solving our own problems.  We got our selves to the wormhole.  We investigated several habitable worlds on the other side.  Cooper himself fell into the Black Hole and interacted with Murph.  However, what's the moment that prevents the paradox and allows Bulk Beings to exist?  This moment is when Brand colonizes Edmond's Planet.  Her colony saved the human species, but not humans on Earth.  Her colony's eventual descents (the Bulk Beings) had to finish the job.  They had to enable the survival of humans on Earth.  They did so by creating the tesseract for Cooper inside of Gargantua.

So, who are the creators of the wormhole that kicked off human survival?  Who are the first "they" of Interstellar?  My best guess is that "they" are simply an interested party who provided us with a way to save ourselves, if we are ready to be saved.  The first "they" of Interstellar are different non-human related beings who were possibly even more advanced than the Bulk Beings.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

One Minute to Midnight (2019)


Good short film, for which I am titled "Executive Producer".  Although the title is only earned by my literal contribution to the Kickstarter project, I actually did help out with getting film details on IMDb, so...I guess I did some executive-producery stuff afterall. For the scope of the project and its literal shoestring budget, it turned out to be a surprizingly good short film.  Enjoy!

Thursday, December 27, 2018

I've not seen a response to a movie like Bird Box in a long time

In the past two days I've encountered a several random people talking about Bird Box on such diverse platforms as Instagram, Facebook and even during a match on CS:GO (an online FPS). It seems to be effecting a great many people. If you haven't seen Bird Box, it appears to be something that you need to see. I've seen it. This movie sticks with you. How Netflix captured this dark gem, I don't know.



Wednesday, January 24, 2018

2018 Oscar Nominations for best motion picture aren't the best of the best

2018 Oscar Noms seem to be heavily focused on movies that make obvious political statements rather than actual film greatness.

"Call Me by Your Name”

“Darkest Hour”
“Dunkirk”
“Get Out”
“Lady Bird”
“Phantom Thread”
“The Post”
“The Shape of Water”
“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

Of these, in my opinion based on seeing some of these films and also RT users' ratings, "Get Out", "The Post", "Phantom Thread" and "Darkest Hour" don't belong. Meanwhile, better movies get snubbed, like "Logan", "Blade Runner 2049" or "Baby Driver" (not withstanding Kevin Spacey's fall from grace).

"Get Out" is a good movie, but it's way overrated in the current environment. It's a by-the-numbers horror story that happens to include obvious social commentary. The movie isn't going to age well with time.

The fact that the horror genre is getting a pass this year at Oscars, while comic hero genre again gets a snub is particularly telling. "Logan" is a superior film to "Get Out" in most aspects. "Logan" also addresses racism, but it does so more cleverly (perhaps too subtly) than "Get Out" by a mile. Where "Get Out" is basically about cultural appropriation and first world problems, "Logan" addresses actual issues with the effects of institutionalized racism. "Logan" also has better acting, script, and overall direction. Additionally, "Logan" actually earns its ending, where "Get Out" just kinda ends. Even the alternate-ending for "Get Out" isn't great (but moderately better than the theatrical ending). About the only area where "Get Out" might be a bit better is with scene composition for *some* of the scenes. That's not enough to include it on the final list of ten instead of several other better films.

That said, "Wonder Woman", "ThorRagnarok", "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2" and other comic hero movies in 2017 aren't cinematic greats; not worthy of Oscar Noms for best motion picture. They are enjoyable and entertaining, but don't really stand above anything other than being slightly better than other films within their own theatrical universes.


Now that female characters are getting more attention in comic hero movies, I think some might be surprized to see me say "Wonder Woman" isn't a great overall movie. It's not. As far as comic hero origin movies go, it's average. It's great to see from where Wonder Woman comes, and her character does have a well-developed story arc. However, the villain is very weakly conceived; on par with the underdeveloped Marvel Cinematic Universe villains. Man of Steel and Batman V Superman primary villains are far more developed and central to the plot and story of their respective movies. Man of Steel is a better movie than Woman Women. (Batman V Superman, was also a good but not great movie which really would've been better served if broken up into a trilogy of three separate movies).


Another issue with the movies nominated for best motion picture is that most of them just aren't that popular. "Call Me by Your Name", "Darkest Hour", "Lady Bird", "Phantom Thread", "The Post", "The Shape of Water" and "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" are not going to earn even $50 million at the box office, with several of them unlikely to ever see $25 million. The whole idea of expanding the list of best motion picture nominations to possible ten was to include more popular movies in the most important category in order to help the Oscars attract more interest from potential viewers. It looks like they've given up on that idea in favor of other agendas. Oscars are irrelevant.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Avatar now highest grossing movie ever? No.

I got a chance to meet James Cameron this week. I told him I liked Dark Angel, while I was having my photo taken with him. There, you can see me saying out of the corner of my mouth.

I do love Avatar. I've seen it once in AMC's fake IMAX theater in 3D. I want to see it again soon. This week, it has become the highest grossing film of all time in terms of actual dollars. However, it is not even close to being the highest inflation adjusted grossing film of all time. Right now, Avatar is #21 and Titanic is #6. Adjusted for inflation, the highest grossing film of all time is actually Gone with the Wind currently at over $1.5 billion, followed by Star Wars at $1.3 billion in today's money. These numbers are well over double Avatar's earnings of $603 million.

Though it doesn't benefit me at all, I am rooting for Avatar to approach those numbers. If Cameron can keep the magic of this new franchise alive, the rumors are that this movie is the first of a trilogy. My hope for any sequels is to not allow familiarity with the characters to interfere with making two more great films. Star Wars balanced this fairly well with its first sequel, Empire Strikes Back, but lost much of its magic since. Here's to the hope of continued high quality entertainment from James Cameron!

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Autumn-Gem film

I took Allie to something she's not done before, a screening of an independent film, at SCU. The film is called Autumn Gem and is done in the same style as many Biography or History Channel shows. The topic of the film was a late 19th Century Chinese heroine by the name of Qiu Jin. You can see me and Allie in the upper left corner of the room in the panoramic photo. From the looks of my face, I was apparently in the middle of chewing my gum (which is something I don't really do all that often, so this may actually be the first photo of me doing that).


From the movie's website:

Qiu Jin was a seminal leader in both the revolutionary movement and the struggle
for women’s emancipation.
Allie has never heard of Qiu Jin before that evening, as is the case for most Americans (even Chinese Americans who were born in Asia). For me, the film was an interesting exploration into Qiu Jin's role in the Chinese revolution at the turn of the 20th Century. Here's the promotional image from the previous showing.



The makers and supporters of the film hope to sell it to the History Channel or preferably to PBS. Though the film's scope is admirable, in my opinion it needs a bit more editing, production work and clean up before its ready for those venues. It was interesting to watch, but ran a bit long for the quantity of information presented. Even still, if someone is interested in the topic, or even just interested in supporting independent film makers, please check out the upcoming screening dates. They will be all over the country in a 24 day/16 city tour.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

ATTN: Vulcan has been destroyed!

Hey J.J. Abrams, don't let a significant and vital portion of the Star Trek universe get in the way of telling a good story. Though the Star Trek movie was enjoyable and fun, it cuts so deeply that it will be hard to hold validity to the ideals that are behind Star Trek. The destruction of Enterprise in the Star Trek 3 was for a reason. For one character to return from the dead, another had to die. In your movie, one of the four founding member worlds (and 6 billion people) of the Federation is destroyed with nothing gained in return. Either you'll have to find a way to bring back Vulcan, or your going to have end the "alternate time line" at some time to restore balance to the story. This can be done with Spock's death (again) of course, since your whole story hings on the fact that he didn't kill himself at the start of whole story. Anyway, this reboot is a great movie, but it makes the plausible continuation of the franchise very difficult. I guess it does open the door for a second reboot of the franchise in another 20 years.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Holiday Report

As long as the holiday feels, it never lasts long enough. Allie and I split Turkey Day between my aunt's and her parents'.

Friday, we did a little late morning shopping. Got some great deals. Then we headed up to the auto show in SF. We looked at practically every car being made today. I walked away with a better impression of Saab, and a worse impression of Audi. I'm also left wondering why someone would pay $60K for either a Lexus or a Cadillac, so I understand why someone would spend that much for a Mercedes.

In the evening we saw Australia. It was a throwback to classic romantic movies with an Australian twist. Pretty clear. The story backdrop is the Japanese attack on Darwin, though this is almost minor to the story, as it is really about ugliness of racism.

On Sat, we spend time with my friends Ronie, Fern and Miriam. It was nice being able to get together. It's been too long. Everyone has just been too busy.

Sunday was spent cleaning up a bit around the house.