Alien (1979)

Heresy! Blasphemy! Doesn't everyone like this movie? I didn't. If a film is going to scare me, it has to make me believe what's going on in order to set me up for a good fright. I stopped believing in the plot and characters of Alien very quickly. Some of my issues:

o Nostromo is a deep-space ore ship? Did we use up all the minerals on the moon and in the asteroids?

o What's the safest way for non-explorers to investigate something on an unfamiliar, hostile planet? You all get into the shuttlecraft and crash on the surface, leaving no one back on the ship except the cat. Brilliant.

o Speaking of the cat, could someone tell me how he closed himself in that small locker so that he could jump out and scare the crewman? Do cats evolve thumbs and sense of humor in the future?

o The final scene aboard the escape shuttle is a real puzzler. Apparently a well-designed shuttle contains an assortment of poisonous gases that you can easily release into the passenger compartment...just in case.

I really wanted to like this movie; it remains a visual wonder. But I left the theater that day feeling cheated. I think we're all accustomed to cutting film-makers a bit of slack, but there were just too many times during this movie when I thought, "Oh, come one!" One faux pas was not fatal, but together they ruined the movie for me.

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How did all of us 'smart' wizards give Bush office?

Duh! And I thought it was Muggles!
it does. it is cleverly disguised as a childrens book but there are definately some political themes in there when read as an adult. another reason harry potter is great: accessible to all ages even if it is not enjoyed by all adults.

and i liked al the themes you mentioned. stupid political leaders had a specific purpose in the series.
Don't forget Grindelwald-as-Hitler in the last book...
is it so horrible to imagine that rotting in a torturous prison can make a soft man turn hard? seems strange if it didn't happen to me.

The most awful serial killers in history were severely abused throughout their lives.

That seems beyond explainable to me. I'd say that it wouldn't make sense if he continued to be weak after living through the worst prison on earth.

Actually, that goes to make a political statement about the ineffectiveness of the prison system.

And Crouch's authority was exactly one of a US judge. The counsel called a vote for guilty or not guilty and he carried out sentencing. When it came to government, however, there were clear messages about how easily he could bypass all the systems in place and pass his own agendas with his influence.
The Imperious Curse travelling through the ministry, I think, had a metaphorical connection to the "evil" brainwashing of corrupt media.

Anyway, case and point, things were corrupt for a reason. That was practically the purpose of every book after the 2nd in some variation. After the fifth book, when one powerhungry minister retired after being ashamed of his mistakes, another minister who rode the propoganda and fear into being elected for being a famous (war) hero and being able to combat the forces of darkness with his dark wizard-battling experience, yet his own tunnelvision slapped down, suppressed, and was skeptical of other forces of good rather than supplementing them. Then he died through betrayal and another ultimately corrupt power took HIS place.

Government corruption was a huge theme from power shift to power shift thoughout the series. Calling out stupid things about the govt are the point lol.
is it so horrible to imagine that rotting in a torturous prison can make a soft man turn hard? seems strange if it didn't happen to me.

Harder? I don't think so. Vicious, violent, cruel, sadistic, nihilistic, whatever - that's quite common. But evidence shows it's strong personalities who emerge with extra confidence and assertiveness from this kind of experience.

The most awful serial killers in history were severely abused throughout their lives.

Again that's beside the point. I can't think of any serial killer known to grow up as an insecure teen and who were remarkable for their steadiness or assertiveness as adults - as Crouch Jr was. That is what I find inconsistent. Not the fact that abused people may become psychopaths.
I can see the point of making it for kids. A lot of adults who do read the upper level also seem to like HP.

I don't think I would love it, though. I'm allergic to witchcraft.
Any haters of Harry Potter simply started reading the books when they were too old and already read the upper level books. If you read it at the appropriate reading level, you would have loved it too.

That might very well be true, it might be that I am past that level of engagement, but my first novels we by authors such as Robert Heinlein, Michael Moorcock, Issac Asimov, etc. That was somewhere around grades 5 or 6 when I first read Starship Troopers (horrible film, great book).

I am still not sure I would have found Harry Potter all that engaging, but it would be impossible for me to ever really know. I still find them to be extremely repetitive when it comes to any serious story telling, however I am glad that if anything it got a new generation reading.
I absolutely love the "Harry Potter" books and films, with one notable element: Quiddich.

Since the golden snitch is worth 15x the points of shooting a goal/basket whatever, and catching the snitch automatically ends the game, there's no point to having the rest of the players (and it's the other players/shooting goals aspect of the game which I think is far more exciting).

Best to have gotten rid of the snitch aspect of the game altogether. Or of it must be there, have it worth a lot less points and not be a game-ender.
Oops. A little clumsy with the italics tag today.
Rocky Horror Picture Show was pretty damn overrated to me. Normally I would love a movie chock full of men dancing around in corsets and tights...but honestly I found it kind of boring. I know my "meh" feelings about it are influenced by the fact that everyone else I know thinks this movie, which I find mildly amusing at best, is the most awesome movie ever made.
Rocky Horror is a very silly movie, but I love the soundtrack. Of course, it's supposed to be a silly movie, so they sort of nailed that.
To really understand why Rocky Horror made such an impact, you have to understand the culture and the movies of the 50s and 60s that it came out of. Sexual liberation, cross-dressing, homosexuality and bisexuality are almost banal today, but they were utterly shocking when the film was made--and especially to be portrayed so graphically. It was an act of personal independence and social defiance at the time to go see this movie and act it out. It's a mark of exactly how successful this film was in achieving its goals that it can seem so mildly silly today. Can anyone today believe how totally shocking it was in 1939 for Clark Gable to say, "Frankly, my dear, I don;t give a damn." That film almost didn't get released, while today no one would even think twice if he'd substituted "shit" or "fuck" for "damn."


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