Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Shatner



"Last year, I had a life-changing experience at 90 years old. I went to space, after decades of playing an iconic science-fiction character who was exploring the universe. I thought I would experience a deep connection with the immensity around us, a deep call for endless exploration.
I was absolutely wrong. The strongest feeling, that dominated everything else by far, was the deepest grief that I had ever experienced.
I understood, in the clearest possible way, that we were living on a tiny oasis of life, surrounded by an immensity of death. I didn't see infinite possibilities of worlds to explore, adventures to have, or living creatures to connect with. I saw the deepest darkness I could have ever imagined, contrasting so starkly with the welcoming warmth of our nurturing home planet.
This was an immensely powerful awakening for me. It filled me with sadness. I realized that we had spent decades, if not centuries, being obsessed with looking away, with looking outside. I did my share in popularizing the idea that space was the final frontier. But I had to get to space to understand that Earth is and will stay our only home. And that we have been ravaging it, relentlessly, making it uninhabitable."
~ William Shatner

Thursday, April 4, 2024

Star Wars - 1950's Super Panavision 70

Star Wars reimagined as a 1950s movie. I think that this is AI generated. We are living in a new age.

https://youtu.be/cUm3oRYV7yM?si=SeR1gKPINBa_DBe7

Hypothetically, if Star Wars had been made in the 1950s, it would have been like Flash Gordon.

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

 


I can see why Batman vs. Superman got mostly negative reviews. The movie is overloaded with action sequences and drags out too long. But the film is underrated. Between all those action sequences are bits of dialog, so brief that you have to pay attention to keep up, that are gold. Jesse Eisenberg steals the show as Lex Luther. He is a welcome surprise, playing a really manic Luther with some cool dialog.

https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/batman_v_superman_dawn_of_justice

Post From 4 Years Ago About Video Resolution

 When 4K TV's first came out, some people pointed out that your eyes can't see in 4K. (I know mine can't.) I bought a 4K TV anyway on a Walmart Black Friday sale at a great price.

The 4K designation is a bit deceptive because the 4K refers to the number of horizontal pixels. In the past, video resolutions were designated by the number of lines vertically. Therefore, just so we are clear, 4K is 2160P, and 1080P is 2K.
Old tube TV's broadcast in 480i, which means the video was only 480 lines, and the TV takes two 1/60th of a second cycles to draw the entire screen.
The most you can get out of broadcast TV right now is 1080i. The old TV shows that dominate broadcast TV were recorded on videotape, which is 480i, so that how they are broadcast today. Blu-ray disks are typically 1080P, and DVD's can be as low as 480p. There is a special Blu-ray format that is 4K, but you need a Blu-ray player that supports it.
When movie theaters started using digital projection, the format they used was 2K, and some later movies were shown in 4K. I am one who sits on the front row of a theater when everybody else sits 2/3 of the way back. (That's kind of nice for me actually.) Even with a giant screen in front of me, I can't notice any lack of resolution with a 2K or 4K projection.
My favorite computer resolution is 1440P, which is technically 2.5K, and this is what I use now. This is an ideal resolution for playing games. The Apple iMac that I own is capable of 5K, which is overkill on Apple's part because it doesn't make sense to have that much detail on a 27-inch monitor.
On my computer, I routinely watch videos that are 720P and I never notice any lack of clarity.
So now the industry is developing 8K TV's, which is insane. Your eyes will not see the difference, and there's not going to be any content available in 8K. The new videogame systems that are coming out this year are also going to support 8K, but likely just for content and not for games which will be in 4K instead. Right now you can buy a 98 inch Samsung 8K TV for $79,000. This is insane.

Star Wars Meme Monday with Thor & Naboo (Episode 107) and Special Treat

Star Wars has the bad habit of bringing back dead characters...

Sunday, March 24, 2024

Dee Bradley Baker doing clone voices for five and a half minutes

I realized that not everyone likes animation, but animated Star Wars has some great characters and stories.  The Batd Batch is exceptional.

Not everyone likes science fiction, but I am impressed at how many voices Dee Bradley Baker does.  He voices most of the show.


I am surprised at how enthusiastic the audience is.

Friday, February 23, 2024

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

 


Time has an interesting way of shocking us with its passage.  When Raiders of the Lost Ark came out on June 12th, 1981, Harrison Ford was 40 years old and his young love interest co-star Karren Allen was 29.  The movie was filmed the year before when the actors were 39 and 28 respectively.  In the latest Indiana Jones film, the Dial of Destiny, Karen Allen briefly reprises her role as Marion, but she is now 72 and Harrison Ford is 83.  The movie was filmed two years ago, but seeing an old-looking Karen Allen is the most shocking scene in the movie.  It reminds us of how old we are.

What can we expect when an 81-year-old actor reprises his role as an action star?  We get a B-grade film that relies on nostalgia to keep us interested.  The movie has everything we could want in an Indiana Jones film, but the execution is not perfect.  The payoff at the end could have been spectacular and should have been spectacular, but it looks computer-generated and cheap.

Reportedly, Steven Spielberg dropped out of the project for a lack of interest.  Had he directed the movie, I think that it would have been better.

The movie doesn't shy away from showing us Harrison Ford's age.  That is the point.  He is a hero who is a bit slow but still capable and brave.  In a way, he is a perfect action hero for an aging boomer generation that grew up and grew old watching action movies.

The best part of the film is the first 21 minutes where they "de-age" Harrison Ford for a World War II Nazi action sequence that is very reminiscent of the first movie.  It looks terrific and is fun to watch.  This sequence by itself is for me worth the price of admission.

The story revolves around a device, The Dial of Destiny, invented by Archimedes that could be used to travel through time.  Although Archimedes was a pretty famous ancient Greek mathematician, this is a pretty hokey story.  However, every Indiana Jones movie has some element that requires suspension of disbelief.  Alfred Hitchcock invented the term, "MacGuffin", to describe some item that drives the story forward, even if that element is not particularly interesting.  Every Indiana Jones movie has a MacGuffin that the bad guys want and that the good guys are trying to keep the bad guys from getting.

Much has been written about the character Helen Shaw played by Phoebe Waller-Bridge.  She plays Indy's goddaughter who accompanies him on his grand adventure.  The Internet took a dislike to her, mostly out of a fear that she was upstaging the Indiana Jones character, which she sometimes does.  However, it is hard to imagine an old man going on a great journey spanning many countries without some sidekick to assist him.  Her role in the film is necessary, although many people complained about her inclusion being due to wokeness.  Some people also worried that her character was there to replace Indiana Jones, say in the next picture, but this really isn't the case.  This is the last Indiana Jones movie, and Harrison Ford has said that his role will not be recast.

Half the movie consists of chase scenes.  We get at least one too many.

Despite all the flaws, I had a good time watching Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny.  The film is so rich in detail, and nostalgia, that it is a pleasure to watch.

Rating:  B+.

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny is available to stream on Disney+.

The Imitation Game

 


I wish that I could say that "The Imitation Game" is objectively a bad movie.  The problem is that it is very entertaining, but it is one of the most historically inaccurate films I have seen in recent memory.  I was already familiar with the history of breaking the Nazi Enigma code, so on my first viewing, I noticed a problem with the scene where the code breakers decide to not stop a German attack for fear of alerting the Nazis that they had broken the code.  In reality, these decisions were made at the highest level of the government of Great Britain.

However, on my second viewing, I noticed how the movie is loaded with melodramatic scenes, and I guessed that every one of these scenes is either a complete fiction or a big distortion of actual events.  It turns out that I was right.  The film also leaves out a great deal of actual history giving the viewer the false impression that Turring was solely responsible for breaking the code.

I have a low tolerance for movies that distort history, and it is a problem we see in many films.  Why should I care so much?  Because it miseducates the public about real events.

https://screenrant.com/imitation-game-true-story-every-change/

Saturday, February 17, 2024

The Remains of the Day


The movie "The Remains of the Day" came out 31 years ago.  I am often surprised by the passage of time.  Anthony Hopkins was 55 years old when it came out, and this was two years after he did "The Silence of the Lambs."
 
The movie was highly praised for its performances and for its message. Anthony Hopkins was nominated for Best Actor.  The main character is effectively in a prison partially of his own making by being stuck in English tradition and roles.

I remember thinking that the movie was a bit of a bore and a waste of Emma Thompson.  It was delightful to see Christopher Reeve in a small role at the end.

Sunday, February 11, 2024

I Always Hated *STAR WARS* But Then I Watched It...

We are starting to get young people who didn't grow up with Star Wars and are now experiencing it for the first time.

Stormtroopers...

Why Movies Are So Expensive (And How To Fix It)

Friday, February 9, 2024

He is the "Eeyore" of the group. :-)


She watched the prequels first, as a child, which is probably the wrong order to watch Star Wars.

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Stargate (1994) Retrospective/Review


Despite the problems with the movie, I enjoyed it.

The TV series was even better.

Monday, January 29, 2024

Should Star Wars fans lower their expectations? Oh, I don't think so...



@john2001plus
2 minutes ago 
My problem is that I found many shows, The Last Jedi, Kenobi, Ahsoka, and even The Book of Boba Fett entertaining even though I know that they are flawed.  I prefer higher-quality entertainment, but I still enjoy these shows for what they are.  I also don't judge TV shows by the same standard I would movies because they are lower-budget productions.  The fact that we get halfway decent Star Wars TV shows is a bit of a miracle.  Back in my day, all we got was the original trilogy, and on TV we had to settle for Star Wars wannabes like Battlestar Galactica and Buck Rogers.

Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Friday, January 5, 2024

What was Disney's original plan for the Skywalker Family?



@john2001plus
0 seconds ago

Very well said. 

I liked the direction The Last Jedi was going in.  Although I would have been just as happy with an entirely different movie centered on the Skywalker Saga, The Last Jedi made me feel that Star Wars was moving in an exciting new direction.  Then J.J. Abrams threw that all away in The Rise of Crapwalker.