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So as to not dredge up a 14 year old thread on the subject I'll just state here:

By far most 'classic' SciFi series were published before my time and I hardly have enough time to read them all. So I took a little time and crawled the Internet to take a gander at a large number of "Best of all-time" lists various entities had published. Culling from those got me a short list of perhaps a hundred books/series.

Starting with the Sword of Truth (Terry Goodkind).... and I must say it was a rough start. How the ####! did this author make so many lists? His evil characters are deeply sadistic with motivations verging on the comically putrid. Even the "good guys" act alarmingly vindictive and seem perversely motivated. That, and every adult ("good guys" and bad), in every instance, come off as creepers when they have conversation with minors. Oh, and the character Samuel - how did he not get sued by the Tolkien estate for that patent ripoff of Gollum? Nope, I'm done with this series before finishing the first book.

On to the Sword of Shannara by Terry Brooks. I've seen the TV series - all two abortive seasons - but I won't hold that against the book until I read it anyway.


A somewhat spoilery clip from the movie, released 10 days ago, strongly supports the now common view among early viewers of the whole movie that Dune part 2 will be better than Dune part 1 and, like Jackson's LotR movies, will set the standard for 'hard' SciFi going forward over the next few decades.


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Less than a month away!

People who've seen it are saying it's great. I can hardly wait.

Edit:
last official trailer


Well..... there's always hope for part 2 coming later this year. Especially if they lean into Jimmy. But it looked really, really nice!

:D


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I tried to like it. I couldn't. It's just sooo poorly written - a real disservice to the actors, the lead especially. If anything they reached for could've been done better, I think leaning more into ASL and letting the uninitiated use subtitles would've been neat.

As usual, the Pitch Meeting rather nails the issues at a gloss. The Drinker, though more surly and less generally well received, gives fair criticism this time as well.


Countdown three days on the other side of the pond!

Countdown ten days for those of us over here.


When Grace Randolph declared Ms Marvel (and her familia) to be the best thing about the movie, I knew it wasn't for me. My cousin and his wife confirmed this decision (because they are the biggest Marvel fans I personally know and they told me to wait for streaming after seeing it in IMAX).

Movies this year have been rather thin gruel for the most part.

Billion $ movies in 2019 = 9 (7 from Disney!)

Billion $ movies in 2023 = 2 (0 from Disney!)

The Spiderverse is plugging along nicely (can hardly wait for the third one) but as a cartoon it's going to have limited appeal.


Best film of the year so far.... maybe.... the genres are so different but Spiderverse, Oppenheimer and Barbie are serious contenders of course.


NobodysHome wrote:

Keeping good records can really teach you something about what's happened in the medical industry in the U.S. in the last 25 years.

I'm doing my annual file cabinet purge and found GothBard's dental records. In 1998 she needed an emergency crown. Our total out-of-pocket cost was $55. Twenty-five years later in 2023 I needed an emergency crown. My total out-of-pocket cost was $2070.

And needless to say, I'm paying hundreds more per year for the dental insurance I have now than the insurance I had in 1998, and it's considered "very good" insurance these days.

Well, you do live in California!


DeathQuaker wrote:
....Should I watch Ahsoka?

If the rest of the show is as good as Ep. 4, then #### yes! you should watch it. But we'll have to wait and see how it goes.

The first three episodes are flaccid and painfully slow for the most part. There's also a small (or large) issue with how lightsabers work.... I know it's fantasy and all but a little internal consistency would go a long way.


This nicely sums up the known-knowns, the known-unknowns, and of course the unknown-unknows re Arcane Season 2.


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Aberzombie wrote:

That might be for the best. Disney films have been a mixed bag lately....

Still, there’s a tiny part of me that is very slightly, cautiously pessimistic.

Most films have been a mixed bag lately, with the mix heavily in favor of an emesis bag. Even films I liked this year I don't plan on ever seeing them again. Lately I've been crawling through various streaming services (mine, my roomies', my cousin's) looking for classic movies that I've never seen. Just watched Once Upon a Time in the West. It fails the Bechdel Test rather handily but just might be the best Western I've ever seen.... though admittedly it doesn't have much competition as of yet.

Back to Tron:Ares
Nothing announced about this film makes me hopeful but it's not obviously off the rails either. Legacy was a spectacular show (sonically, visually, even if the plot was a little thin) and it will be difficult to follow that.

Maybe all the competition from streaming has diluted things but, overall, films hitting the silver screen these last few years grant no obvious warrant to the current Hollywood strike. Even characters that I really like - Kara Zor-El e.g. - markedly lack commendation in the films that feature them. For the remainder of this year I'm only looking forward to Dune pt 2 and Godzilla: Minus One.


How have I never heard of this guy?
:D

Not funny that he died but his shtick is unparalleled methinks.


There are many reasons for them to push it out until next year beyond the fallout from the strike. There may be contractual reasons to release it this year though. The fact that it's still only a rumor makes me think it'll be out in November.


Wasn't there a "Hippies in Space" episode of the original? There was no singing there?

Not really a musical though even if there was some singing. I've seen random episodes of all the shows, though I may have only seen one of Voyager - because I dislike the Nelix character..... so annoying. So annoying I know the character's name still. Maybe it was an unfortunate episode for my initial viewing but it will surely be my last - I'd rather spoon-feed fish eggs to a rabid squirrel.

Back to ST-SNW: I liked very much the animation crossover and musical episodes. I don't really care for the 'character development'*, as the drama seems oddly superfluous for all that it takes up so much of the show. Ships discipline seems more like this show is a stolid sitcom. Captain Pike is more like Coach Pike. M'Benga's PTSD rather highlights a stellar lack of mental health care in the ST universe and interestingly highlights one of my longstanding complaints about TTRPGs complete gloss on just how catastrophically brutal adventuring would really be.

This show is Star Trek's take on The Orville, a show I also like.

* e.g. La'An + Kirk .... Will they? Won't they? Don't Care! Why would I possibly care? There is next to nothing there for me to invest in.


So far this is looking most excellent. I can't wait until November.... but I'm hearing rumor that it might be pushed out until next year because the actors won't be available to promote the show.


Frankly, I take the current ST shows as being written about a parallel universe. Sometimes even from episode to episode in the same show. The names may be the same but the characters are not. They've thrown consistency away and replaced it with "drama". Picard (3rd season being markedly better making it just okay.... I couldn't even tell you what any of the shows in seasons 1 & 2 covered, and I've seen them all) and the other show were generally poorly written and, as indicated, utterly forgettable.

I actually like ST:SNW but it's Star Trek like rugby is football (or pickleball is tennis). Vulcans in particular are whatever the current plot needs them to be. There is huge opportunity to show Vulcan institutions as near-monastic enterprises but instead they are just a bunch of prigs with pointed ears and aping pointless ceremony.


thejeff wrote:

Clarke might have had a ghost writer? You're joking, right?

Of course you started by saying creativity starts waning at 25, is easily measurable by 35 and completely gone by 50. As far as I can tell, all of his works were published after 25. The vast majority after 35.

This isn't uncommon. It's fair to say there's often a drop off later in life, but that can be balanced by experience and growing skill at the craft. It's certainly nothing like "completely gone by 50".

Nor is this needed to explain Rowling. She caught fire with one series that hit the right niche at the right time. That she can't do it again for an entirely different target market doesn't need special explanation.

Do you know he didn't have help? Other famous writers have.

Do you know that Clarke hadn't been mulling and hacking away at the same or similar story for years or decades prior? Other famous writers have.

Are his later books adaptations/expansions of prior short stories (published or not)?

Beethoven seems to have been remarkably creative late in life but perhaps that was driven by his lack of hearing condition.

Rowling rehashed a very well trodden path of coming of age fantasy fiction. She succeeded by crafting a decent yarn lived by compelling characters - both sympathetic and not. The long-con of Snape being a prime example from that series.

At any rate, finding one exemplar from among a thousand writers hardly merits a refutation of the well documented general thesis of creative decline with the onset and progression of adulthood.

Which brings me to a needed a point of correction:

Since quoting me verbatim is too easy on these forums, I can only assume you did it on purpose but....

I said, "completely gone in the vast majority of people by 50".

Counter to that notion is the seeming trend of the vast majority of people thinking the rule doesn't really apply to their case for.... reasons.

Good ones too I'm sure.
;D


Werthead wrote:
Quark Blast wrote:

Good points but these are all writers. Painters sometimes too are known for producing their best works late in life. But for writers one often does not know how long the ideas were bouncing around inside their head before it finally got printed. Tolkien had been writing that story in dribs and drabs since the Great War and was expressly banging away at "the new Hobbit" for 15 years, more or less, prior to it's publishing dates. At any rate, a few exceptions doesn't really break the rule and it's not obvious to me that these writers are exceptions - though I think your strongest case is Cormac McCarthy!

* Shouldn't that be 2001?

JK Rowling is a writer as well, so the comparison seemed reasonable. Although I also noted Ridley Scott, a film director.

2001 is a film novelization that Clarke co-developed with Stanley Kubrick, and some people get antsy over its definition. Rendezvous with Rama doesn't have that categorisation problem, and was his most critically acclaimed novel. Although it is - finally! - getting a movie adaptation courtesey of Denis Villeneuve once he's done with DUNE.

I just meant that with writers one can't be certain how long the work sat before the final push to publish the idea. Clarke's Rama was, as you noted, published at 56 - not so very far from my average upper limit of 50 - and could be an outlier (though I think Cormac McCarthy is a better candidate!), have had a ghost writer, or truly be his magnum opus*.

JK might get lucky again but it's a very long shot and I'm comfortable prognosticating it to be a middling success; mostly on the strength of name recognition from her previous works of approximately two decades past. I'm not so concerned she has "lost her audience" as people are incredibly fickle - fans think they're owed so much and creators owe them nothing. It's a good lesson to learn, as it applies to so much in life.

* In fact, I'll put it on my ever-growing list of books to 'read' someday.... somewhere near the top because I'll want to read it before Ville's movie adaptation.


Werthead wrote:
Quark Blast wrote:
I don't know any relevant facts re all the controversy but I do know that creativity wanes starting at about age 25 years, the decline is easily measurable by age 35, and is completely gone in the vast majority of people by 50. That's why JK is not producing anything new, and won't.

On the other hand, J.R.R. Tolkien published THE LORD OF THE RINGS at the age of 62, George R.R. Martin published A GAME OF THRONES at 47 (and its sequels at 50, 51, 57 and 62) and Arthur C. Clarke published his best-known novel* RENDEZVOUS WITH RAMA at 56. Ridley Scott directed his last great movie, THE MARTIAN, at 77. Cormac McCarthy published THE ROAD at 73.

It's also worth noting that Rowling is continuing her crime fiction series, but given it's somewhat tedious, that may actually prove the inverse.

Good points but these are all writers. Painters sometimes too are known for producing their best works late in life. But for writers one often does not know how long the ideas were bouncing around inside their head before it finally got printed. Tolkien had been writing that story in dribs and drabs since the Great War and was expressly banging away at "the new Hobbit" for 15 years, more or less, prior to it's publishing dates. At any rate, a few exceptions doesn't really break the rule and it's not obvious to me that these writers are exceptions - though I think your strongest case is Cormac McCarthy!

* Shouldn't that be 2001?


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Thor Skywalker, a SW fan of prolific output, pretty much nails the downside of Mando season 3.

Anyway, I'm shipping BoDin for s4.
:D


Or, using music as an example, one can peruse the charts for The Rolling Stones. They've been their own tribute band for over three decades now and haven't been music innovators for over four or five decades - depending on how you measure. Looking at earnings of course and they're still bringing in tens of millions, but that's called 'living off the mojo' in R&R parlance, iirc.


Marc Radle wrote:
Quark Blast wrote:
… but I do know that creativity wanes starting at about age 25 years, the decline is easily measurable by age 35, and is completely gone in the vast majority of people by 50.
Wait … what???

Basic biology. After a certain time we are merely rehashing old ideas. Maybe in ways that are marketable, patent-able, and copyrightable, but virtually never in a way that makes a profound contribution to moving a field of thought forward in a way no one else has foreseen.

For example:

IMU wrote:

The Fields Medal is awarded every four years on the occasion of the International Congress of Mathematicians to recognize outstanding mathematical achievement for existing work and for the promise of future achievement.

The Fields Medal Committee is chosen by the Executive Committee of the International Mathematical Union and is normally chaired by the IMU President. It is asked to choose at least two, with a strong preference for four, Fields Medalists, and to have regard in its choice to representing a diversity of mathematical fields. A candidate's 40th birthday must not occur before January 1st of the year of the Congress at which the Fields Medals are awarded.

The medals and cash prizes are funded by a trust established by J.C.Fields
at the University of Toronto, which has been supplemented periodically, but is still significantly
underfunded. The discrepancy in 2018 was made up by the University of Toronto and
the Fields Institute.

The name of the Chair of the Committee is made public, but the names of other members of the Committee remain anonymous until the award of the prize at the Congress.


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NobodysHome wrote:
....However, getting caught spying on South Korean communications was a big no-no, and puts their government in a bind because now the populace doesn't want to help the U.S....

Does anyone believe that the NSA doesn't still scrape everything pertaining to all citizens and store it, compressed and encrypted, in that monster data center in Utah?

With the rise of AI/deep-learning we are fast approaching a Pre-Crime state of affairs that will be personally predictive and thoroughly pervasive.


I don't know any relevant facts re all the controversy but I do know that creativity wanes starting at about age 25 years, the decline is easily measurable by age 35, and is completely gone in the vast majority of people by 50. That's why JK is not producing anything new, and won't.

The only thing the series could do better than the movies is to rehabilitate Ron. Making him comic relief rather obscured his actual contribution to the Golden Trio.

And while it's true that "bad" hasn't stopped DC/CW (and so many others) in the recent past, the loss of many tens of $Billions these past few years rather dictates that the studios STOP with the hemorrhaging through exceedingly poorly written content. These days it seems even modestly good content doesn't make a reasonable ROI.


I like it, quite a bit, and have happily watched the whole thing. I will definitely watch the next season when it comes out.

However, it is painfully and uselessly slow.... in every episode as best as I can recall. I binged it this last weekend because gamers are flaky by nature and Saturday's usual all-day game was pushed out to next week. For the three of us who showed, we voted to binge on Mando. The only thing I'm personally hung up on is the ####### ####### "this is the way/we never remove our helmets" thing. It reminds me of something "cool" my eight-year-old self would've come up with. <eyeroll>

also...:
They broke the Darksaber! WTF! Jedi and quasi-Jedi things are the best part of SW and they break the not-a-lightsaber. Maybe Bo's side quest next season will be to reforge the Darksaber. Her character deserves more screen time.


pauljathome wrote:

Well, somebody has to be a dissenting voice.

Went to this today and I found some parts of it mildly entertaining but most of it fairly boring.

I was kinda amused by the fact that you have 4 quite high level characters together with Chris Pine who seemed to be maybe a 1st level expert or something :-)

One could assume he lost his major powers when he bailed out of the Harpers.

It's also possible to see his encouragement of various people, both in and out of combat, as just the way Bards do spells in this interpretation of the game.
.

Mark wrote:
It was cute and fun. The only question I had: why didn't they fight as a party? Like, they made plans and did b&e stuff as a unit, but most of the fights were "leave them to me" or "I've got this, go!" type situations. Except for the end, which was pretty cool.

Mostly they were lone experts for each sub-part of (the current iteration of) the plan. That and the Paladin was a DM-PC so really wasn't meant to mesh with the rest of them.


David M Mallon wrote:
Quark Blast wrote:

Did we really find out anything we didn't already know?

If so, what?

I found out that The Mandalorian isn't actually very good. Especially season 3.

Hey! Take it over here.

;)


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NobodysHome wrote:
Quark Blast wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:
I'm reading about the massive U.S. intelligence leak caused by someone trying to win an argument* on Discord....

Okay, I'm game.

Did we really find out anything we didn't already know?

If so, what?

.
* I take it they won the argument?

Well, there's the whole, "Everyone knows that you're doing it, but you're not supposed to admit that you're doing it."

So the whole, "We (the U.S.) can probably manipulate and/or coerce these friendly governments into providing support to Ukraine."

Kind of like your parents and sex. Just because you know it happened doesn't mean you want to admit it.

EDIT: More seriously, the fact that there are NATO forces on the ground in Ukraine is bad, as it gives Putin an excuse to attack any country whose troops are identified in the leak. So I'll admit, I didn't think we were stupid enough to put people in, because for whatever bizarre reason handing a Ukrainian a rocket launcher is OK, but sending Ukraine a guy with a rocket launcher isn't, but we'll see how the whole thing plays out. Somehow I'm not an expert on international politics...

It was pretty clear from the get-go that Ukraine was using US/NATO signals intelligence as well as "plausibly deniable" help on the ground.

Apparently there were some things aired that did not pertain to Ukraine and that was also not so great. But then, I've taken a history class or two and read some on my own. Nothing I saw was a real surprise - like I knew last November that Ukraine was using up bullets, shells and other munitions at a rate exceeding the entire NATO production 7x over. If Mother Russia keeps it up, they'll be down to using cap guns and spit-balls by the end of this summer.


NobodysHome wrote:
I'm reading about the massive U.S. intelligence leak caused by someone trying to win an argument* on Discord....

Okay, I'm game.

Did we really find out anything we didn't already know?

If so, what?

.
* I take it they won the argument?


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I got booted once for "not role-playing enough". Never mind that the GM had one, ONE, voice for one NPC that sounded like an eight year old attempting a Yoda voice. That's it. That was the extent of RP we saw from the GM. Every other NPC (plus a GM-PC) were virtual clones - gender/ancestry differences notwithstanding. And never mind my character was a stranger in a strange land, wasn't yet fluent in the local language, so my voice acting was minimal - as agreed between me and the GM in my session zero.

Some people aren't worth wasting your time with.


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The Drinker has stated that the show subverted his expectations and I've linked to the end of his video there where he concisely states why he liked the film. His summary is, I think, a minimally decent and accurate summary from the POV of a non-TTRPGer.

The showing I went to was nearly full and the families there all clearly enjoyed it - when the lights went up the faces were smiling and/or laughing and talking about it on the way out.

Iceland, sorry, Icewind Dale looked great. All ice and snow and rocky terrain. Not a speck of green in sight, let alone a forest - just as I knew it would be. ;)

And the practical effects were all excellent. People whining about the Druid's Wildshape ability as seen in the movie are to be pitied - the license to make an interesting movie rather necessitates RAW be abandoned for the Rule of Cool.

There weren't so many fan-service moments that it stalled the story or added unresolved complexity. I liked seeing the live action D&D cartoon adventuring group and was disappointed that they didn't have any lines - even a throw away "I'm scared" by Sheela, a "Let me at 'em" from her brother, or a "Scatter!" from Hank in the arena. Frankly I don't understand why, since the characters they did go with have no history with the IP, they didn't attempt to adapt existing characters.* Though I'll admit they gave enough backstory for the Bard and Barbarian, and maybe the Sorcerer as well, to invest in those characters.

I hope it clears $300M worldwide so that they make another.

* This is the problem MC and DC seem to be having lately with their movies - minor (indeed, unknown!) characters being given their own movies. Mind, I don't want to see another origin story for Spidy (e.g.) but it would be nice to continue existing concepts. Maybe see something besides the regurgitated third-act CGI blowout to end a movie with.


I'd be surprised if it ever gets back up. The ratings for it are not good.*

Far too much of this series was simply boring. Same thing happened to the Rings of Power - all the unfounded hate aside - these shows were just mostly boring. YMMV

*And, yes, I know ratings can be corrupted, but trolls and sycophants are typically rather simple in their thinking and all one has to do is eliminate all the "1-star" and '"10-star" ratings to get the same reading that IMDB has. That is, the IMDB rating already accounts for spam reviews, both for and against.


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The early reviews - IMDB and RT (not to mention all the podcasters) are quite encouraging. I'm not surprised, as it was clear from the beginning that the deciders understood the IP they purchased the rights to.

The worst criticisms seem to center on it being a little long and running the funny out of some of the gags.


NobodysHome wrote:
(3) Probability. Because every casino, street hustler, sports betting venue, or what-have-you will take advantage of you if you don't understand probability.

Fun factoid on this topic:

I once worked with a guy who was big into sports betting. Totally dominated his betting league - winning something like 90% of the pot year after year - and so upped his game to a city-wide league and still killed it there. Buoyed by his success he took on the legit professionals and came away with crumbs. Still a winner but he calculated it earned him wages of $0.14/hour.

If things like the promise seen with ChatGPT, or an up-scaled Wolfram Alpha, become commonplace and free, the only math skill you'll really need beyond primary school basics is how to frame your question well.


Dancing Wind wrote:
Quark Blast wrote:
Anyone have a sane grip on this issue? The issue of, oh... half a trillion $ evaporating unexpectedly last week and the reasonable expectation of impact on the broader economy. Anyone?

The Feds have announced that no depositors will lose any money. (also true for another bank they closed today)

It's not going to have any impact on the broader economy. As Vankrye says, Congress will take care of their donors

I heard that 90% of the deposit monies are in accounts in excess of the $250k maximum FDIC insured amount. That is, most of SVB assets will be liquidated at cents on the dollar to pay dividends towards uninsured deposits. And at any rate that would seem to do nothing for the evaporation of east coast bank valuation.

And yeppers, I know the end of the story - the American taxpayers will cover the losses. That doesn't mean it won't hurt or take years for the damage to heal.

Possibly related:
Is this why Mexico is moving towards the BRIC economic union? To get away from the economic chaos and high fossil fuel prices?


So, SVB imploded this last week and the three major east coast banks (BofA, CitiGrp, WF) lost nearly the same amount of value. Economists and "economists" everywhere are saying everything from; "SVB is an isolated incident" to "OMG, this is the beginning of the end".

Anyone have a sane grip on this issue? The issue of, oh... half a trillion $ evaporating unexpectedly last week and the reasonable expectation of impact on the broader economy. Anyone?


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The latest clip from the upcoming D&D movie is pretty good satire and definitive proof the writers understand the IP. Now if there's a scene dealing with Commune and one with a Djinn-noble granting wishes, the trifecta will be complete.


Werthead wrote:
Quote:
Has there been any really good adaptation of anything SciFi/Fantasy between Jackson's LotR trilogy and Dune - part 1?
Sure. The Expanse and Paper Girls were great, The Boys is pretty good and Shadow & Bone is decent (probably better than the source material). Tales from the Loop was good, although it didn't have a huge amount to do with the source material. Game of Thrones started off superbly, but fell off a cliff there towards the end. House of the Dragon and The Last of Us have both started superbly. The Martian, Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, and Station 11 were all excellent. Season 1 of Altered Carbon was very good. Sandman has been excellent so far, but early days.

Umm.... We're in, Community / Forums / Gamer Life / Entertainment / Movies....

But, yes, for TV several of those have been "really good" indeed. I think there is no serious debate around The Expanse, The Boys, HotD 1-6-ish, and TLOU. Although I don't particularly care for a couple of them and quit watching.

Back on topic:
For movies, there has been a dearth of really good book adaptions my whole lifetime it seems. I'll grant The Martian as an exception, along with Jackson's LotR and Villeneuve's Dune - pt 1 (and hopefully part 2 as well). But for these latest entries into LotR movie-making, I'm far less optimistic. The fact that the first one is a cartoon rather confirms my fears.


thejeff wrote:

I think if you're going back to the first age, you've got to do a major arc, not just individual stories. You need the context.

The stories are also dark as hell - especially Turin, but basically everything. Not sure that's what they'll want.

I'm not a copyright lawyer but... afaik no one has any rights to adapt anything Tolkien except the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings (including the appendices).

As for the quality of these hypothetical movies:
Has there been any really good adaptation of anything SciFi/Fantasy between Jackson's LotR trilogy and Dune - part 1?

The latest clip from the upcoming D&D movie is pretty good satire though. Now if there's a scene dealing with Commune and one with a Djinn granting wishes, the trifecta will be complete.


Master Han Del of the Web wrote:
Damn those children, they've had to too easy for too long!

Truth!

Children of the Corn.


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Gently waves left hand in a subtle circular motion
"Joel, this isn't the show you're looking for."


Pan wrote:
Felt like the influenced by Batman movie. Touch of Bladerunner detective noir, dark rainy crime ridden city with emo rock like the crow, cat and mouse like game between the riddler like the Dark Knight... Great influences and I really liked the film, but I dont think it has its own identity, which will keep it from being considered a great movie.

Now that they've green-lit the sequel it might get it's own identity as a package of two or three or four movies. I think Honest Trailers makes a case for this being the most noir of the franchise, and that's a start on it having a unique identity.

Pan wrote:
Cast was excellent, and I liked a more introverted Batman we got from Patterson. Turturro proved, once again, he is a real underrated actor that out did himself in this film (so much presence!). Colin Ferrell's Penguin gave a real comic book almost Dick Tracy feel.

They were well directed and don't feel derivative of anything that's come before. Though I've not seen all of the pre-Nolan films... in fact, maybe only the very first one. It's just too bad that superhero and scifi films don't ever get proper recognition for their actors. Ian McKellen killed it as Gandalf in the first LotR movie but had no real chance of winning Best Supporting Actor.

Pan wrote:

I was disappointed in Kravitz catwoman, not by her acting, but I feel the writing let her down. The character felt like she was there to move the plot around and be a cosplay doll. Jeffrey Wright's Gordon had the same issue. How many times does Gordon repeat, slowly, exactly what the audience just saw, knew, and read before he mutters it out? Also, why does anyone in the police force put up with Gordon? They clearly hate him and his friendship with Batman, but they just allow Gordon a wide berth.

Cosplay doll (aka Selina Kyle) was Catwoman's persona to be able to move in the underworld unnoticed as she planned out her next job. This movie is really the setup for Catwoman as a main player.

I saw Gordon as a guy who has no internal monologue and so mumbles out-loud what he's thinking. I expect he's tolerated on the force for two main reasons. One, he has dirt on most of them. Two, he's an effective, if eccentric, detective.

Overall, a good solid addition to the Bat flicks.

Kudos for the director for making a 3-hour movie that didn't creep along.

.

thejeff wrote:
At least to start with - you can bring in the gadgets to help cope with the more extreme supervillains that come along. Not like a jobs program would really help with the sometimes super-powered monsters that Gotham attracts.

A jobs program isn't really comics accurate either. That would be a whole different movie. Nor, IRL, does something like that actually solve the problem. Helps maybe if instituted among a plethora of other efforts, but even then doesn't "solve it". People are too complex for that kind of fix. Bill Gates rather proved that with the billions of dollars he spent on education. IIRC his schools were audited a decade later and got a "C" grade despite all the money and latest tech being thrown at the kids.


AceofMoxen wrote:
I finally saw this yesterday. It was overall really good, but I was really bothered by how often Batman gets shot and just doesn't care. At least three times, he gets shot and keeps standing there. Batman getting shot should at least get a reaction. Ideally, Batman uses stealth and brains to take out gunmen before they shoot.

He's an angry young man. By the time he's Batffleck he's well past his MMA phase and more into defeating opponents via 4D chess.

:D

Best film of the year so far. Best film noir (albeit in color) in my lifetime.

Won't get at many Oscars as Dune did though.


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Okay, maybe it's tech companies proportion non-COLA raises according to where employees fall out in the company rankings and then cut from the bottom when there's a need to RIF.

As for teachers, I grew up next door to two and another lived across the street and down one house. Nice neighbors and I had friends who were in their class(es) and liked them. They weren't living in the worst neighborhood, far from it, and they always had at least one late model car around. Solidly middle class. I remember my mom talking with the next door teacher one summer and her saying that the toughest part of her job were the parents. Looking back on my middle school experience and you couldn't pay me enough to teach the middle grades.

Between the unions, totally disengaged parents and the helicopter parents, I don't know how the situation gets fixed because that covers a large majority of kids.

Parents of some means often home-school or private school their kids and I can say from my college experience those kids were always among the top students. Still, your kids will have to live and work with the majority.


Tristan d'Ambrosius wrote:
Knowing the actual categories available for nomination is a broadly useful skill. Just sayin. Try it sometime and you might see it works for you. Clearly it can't hurt.

Why? I don't care what they call a given category. They change all the time. As long as I got the bases covered I'm good.


NobodysHome wrote:

While I fervently argue in favor of higher pay and better working conditions for good teachers, articles like this one depress me at the state of education today, and how many teachers really need to be fired.

The TL;DR version: A girl transferred out of a San Francisco public school. In spite of never showing up, she got a report card anyway. The report card included two A's (social studies and P.E.) and at least one "pass".

If a student never once attends class nor turns in a single bit of homework, and you give them an A, you deserve to be fired. Period. (One of the A's has mitigating circumstances, but the other has no explanation beyond incompetence.)

One of my advisers for undergrad Uni never gave a grade lower than "B-" so as to avoid all the whiny parents, and the occasional whiny student.

Public K-12 are already generally understaffed and/or underpaid. Firing incompetent teachers won't change anything until they get directly compensated for their work. Maybe look at student improvement from beginning to end of the school year. The more improvement the more pay they get.

High paying tech companies are known for cutting the bottom n% from their staff each year. But then they typically pay better than public K-12 schools.

Any word on what charter or private K-12 schools pay their teaching staff?


Oh, I thought the complaint was about there being only 17 categories listed. Hence listing a few that were inapplicable to represent all the inapplicable ones.

At any rate I was simply listing the possible ones originally.

You know, "real shot" "must be nominated".

Reading for comprehension is a broadly useful skill. Just say'n. Try it sometime and you might see it works for you. Clearly it can't hurt.


Well yeah, of course!

Like "Best Short", "Best International Feature", "Best Documentary", etc. weren't really in the cards.


I won't argue with Doom Patrol.

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