Harvey Weinstein & Hollywood’s Complicity

This is brilliant and must be shared. I’ve been following this topic, and it smells really bad, especially when you read the comments of other people on various places on the web.

Kate Winslet publicly criticized Weinstein and just because of that many criticized her (!) for staying silent for so long, like she is just trying to get away with the fact that all these things were well known. How can one react to this? I don’t know. And Winslet is not the only one who reacted to it in this way and was criticized for. The same happened to Ben Affleck and many others.

There is absolutely zero doubt about Weinstein and how stuff like this must be treated. I, as a man, am happy that people discuss it publicly now.

From the other point of view, there is a lot of hypocrisy in all this topic which I don’t know what to think about. Take Cara Delevingne. She was already successful as a model. She is not an actress, at least, not in first place. She comes from a wealthy family and know lots of influential people. What did she had to lose? I specifically searched if she mentioned about Weinstein before all this stuff started. Zero. Nothing. Why was she silent? Maybe I didn’t search well? Maybe. I am not saying I am 100% right on this, but it smells bad. And now she is posting stuff on Instagram, gaining 200k likes per posts that she is “not afraid”. If Delevingne did speak out before, maybe it would have helped somebody. But she didn’t. It is my assumption, but it’s pretty sure many will try to jump now on this ship of accusations.

It is obvious who is guilty and I am not trying to say something controversial. But there’s more that just one person guilty, and this more is the system. And if – if! – I am right about people like Cara Delevingne – it’s also these people too who contributed to this rotten system. Because Jay got it perfectly right – there are hundreds of Weinsteins out there, and they would have never done what they did without other people’s complicity.

ASSHOLES WATCHING MOVIES

So. This is a difficult subject to broach because of its sheer scope. Unless you’ve been hibernating under the proverbial rock, you know now that Harvey Weinstein has been accused of rape, sexual misconduct, and various kinds of inappropriate behaviour that are mind-boggling in their number. Harvey Weinstein is (was?) a producer and film studio executive who co-founded Miramax, which produced several popular indies, including Pulp Fiction, Clerks, and The Crying Game, and 24th-annual-producers-guild-pga-awards-backstage-roamiwon an Oscar for producing Shakespeare in Love. He was recently ousted from his own company because of these accusations, though it should be said that it was likely a form or self-protection for the company rather than any sense of moral obligation. Indeed, many people at said company will have had knowledge of, and helped cover up, the very reprehensible behaviour that got him ousted in the first place.

We know why women stay silent –…

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scifiinterfaces.com / sci-fi designs

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I’ve been a long-time follower of this amazing blog, “Sci-Fi Interfaces“. Its author, Chris, is a very humble guy…

“Scifiinterfaces analyzes the interfaces seen in movies and television show for fun and erudition. Its main author and curator and all around guy is me, Chris Noessel.”

…but in fact he does a very detailed and lentghy analysis of all type of sci-fi interfaces, from “TRON” and “Oblivion” (about 30 interfaces analyzed) to “Dr. Strange” and “Johny Mnemonic“. Together with Nathan Shedroff, Chris published a 348-page book “Make It So: Interaction Design Lessons from Science Fiction”.

Here is one of my favourite posts by Chris about “Johny Mnemonic” (by the way, Keanu Reeves is doing “Replicas”, his new sci-fi movie): Cyberspace: Bulletin Board.

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So, “Replicas”… Here’s a shot from it with Keanu wearing a helmet that makes me think of the “Johny Mnemonic”:

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I must sadly admit I paused the trailer at the same moment ss it was written “from the producers of ‘Passengers‘ and ‘Transformers‘.” That is a bad sign. Really bad. How someone even dares to use it to attract audience? It’s not 2007 now. I cannot express how much I hated that movie even though it had some moments (actually I hated both, but at least Transformers never tried to pretend something it isn’t). The trailer of “Replicas” doesn’t look really good. For now, it looks exactly like a film influenced by the producers of “Passengers”, ha ha.

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And to end this post on a positive note, two ultracool GIFs from “Johny Mnemonic”, a movie with weird as never Dolph Lundgren and a cyborg dolphin.

 

 

A Trip to Mars (Himmelskibet) / posters

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This is not a Soviet film as you might have thought, but a Soviet poster for “A Trip to Mars” (“Himmelskibet“), a silent 1918 Danish film, one of the earliest productions in space travel sub-genre of science fiction. It’s interesting to note that Denmark didn’t make another science fiction film until the 60-s.

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This original poster was cool, but not as the Soviet one.

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Pay attention to the writings.

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I won’t review it since this oldie is mostly interesting for cultural reasons and cinephiles (I’ve already covered “Aelita“, a silent Soviet movie about, guess what, also a trip to Mars! It seems like people really preferred Mars to the Moon), but moviessilently.com did a terrific film analysis, here are some highlights:

  • “The spaceship is called the Excelsior but it looks more like a fat little airplane.”
  • “It seems that Mars was once warlike but then some guy showed up and said, “Hey, what if we make love and not war!”
  • “The performances are very… European, especially among the human characters. There was a tendency in European silent cinema to treat film acting as a series of poses, which leads to a choppy set of movements as the performers check items off the list. “Let’s see, I need to be excited then determined then indignant…”
  • “The first key problem with the film is that modern science fiction fans have seen this scenario before but always with a twist.”

Version 1.0 (Paranoia 1.0, One Point O)

one-point-0-1417958542Directors: Marteinn Thorsson, Jeff Renfroe. Starring: Jeremy Sisto, Deborah Unger, Udo Kier, Lance Henriksen, Bruce Payne. 2004, Iceland, USA, Romania. Budget: $1.7 mln. Box office: unknown. IMDb: 6.2. My rating: 3.5/4. Surreal cyberpunk.

– I’m full of bugs. I’m full of mistakes.
(one of the movie’s main characters)

– You ever have that feeling where you’re not sure if you’re awake or still dreaming?
– All the time. It’s called mescaline.
(a dialogue from “The Matrix”)

“Is atmospheric but in a way that made me nervous, I wanted to tear the seat and theater apart.”
(p_imdb-238-926380 from Germany)

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Has it ever happened to you to spend days while you are trying to get a certain information or a document? The office rats send you from one office to another (“Sure, ask my colleague from room 867 on the 16th floor“), you spend hours on the phone, then from one building to the opposite side of town (“Yes, we are open on Tuesday from 16.00 till 18.00 and on Thursday from 10.00 till 12.00“), and days pass and you feel being sucked in some insane surreal bureaucratic vortex. I experienced it more than once and – while I hope it didn’t happen do you – I bet you went through this too.

Now imagine of experiencing this kind of feeling in your own apartment, located in a somewhat post-Victorian post-communist gloomy house full of surveillance cameras, weird dark holes and obscure personalities. Every day you receive a nicely packaged box which is perfectly empty. Every day. You spy your neighbours, install the surveillance, but… the packages keep appearing. And THE MILK. You are just obsessed with milk now. “Nature Fresh” brand milk. Continue reading

Black Melt (my short horror film)

Inertia creeps.

Here’s a creepy b&w short film I did just recently. It’s the first time I filmed something, so take you time to praise bash this no-budget production.

Anyone who can guess from which title I borrowed the sounds will receive an honourable mention in the end credits! 😃

Please, watch with headphones as there are some weird sounds and I highly recommend switching to YouTube HD quality.

 

Cinematic archives / Terminator / posters

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My cinematic archive is small, but what can be better than a photo of a Robert Patrick’s metal sculpture.

He won’t be present in the forthcoming “Terminator” sequel, produced by James Cameron and directed by Tim Miller (“Deadpool”), but Arnold and Linda Hamilton will. Details are unknown, but it seems that the new film will be the first in a new trilogy and will continue the events of “T2”.

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I still cannot believe that James Cameron is so busy with all these Avatar sequels, 4 of them are planned currently… couldn’t he do just 1 sequel and 3 films about something else? I was just thinking about how much I loved “Avatar” upon its release, but it rarely comed to my mind now (and I heard similar thoughts from other movie lovers too). I got a bad feeling that if the first sequel won’t be too successful commercially, the other will be simply cancelled. Here is a very good insight into why it didn’t have a long-lasting influence.

Two weird posters to compensate the sadness.

4 October 1957 – the start of the space age

thescienceeek.org is our space science instructor.

“The launch of Sputnik 1 caught many in America by surprise. For this reason, the period of time immediately after the Sputnik launch is often known as the “Sputnik Crisis”.”
“it was a tight squeeze to get Laika into the capsule and for the duration of the spaceflight she was barely able to move. Sadly for Laika, it was a one way ticket. Sputnik 2 could only carry enough food, water and oxygen for Laika to survive for 7 days”
“After the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, however, different accounts of the Sputnik 2 mission emerged and it was suggested that she had died much earlier in the mission from lack of oxygen, or when the cabin had overheated.”

The Science Geek

Exactly sixty years ago today, on 4 October 1957, the Soviet Union launched the first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1, into orbit around the Earth. This is considered to be the beginning of the space age. Before this date there were no man made satellites in space but on every single day since then there have been artificial satellites around the Earth. Today there are over 1000 active satellites in orbit (Union of Concerned Scientists 2017) and many times that number of defunct ones.

Image from NASA

Sputnik 1 is shown above. It consisted of a shiny metal sphere, 58.5 cm in diameter, made out of an aluminium alloy. To the sphere were attached four radio aerials. Unlike later satellites, Sputnik 1 carried no scientific instruments and wasn’t fitted with a TV camera to take pictures. It had no solar cells to generate electricity and was powered by three non-rechargeable batteries. Its…

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Silent Running / posters

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Some of you may rightfully wonder why the name of Mark Kemrode, the film critic, is floating on the poster. The answer is simple – he likes to float, too this is a cover of his book, “Silent Running“. He often said that the film is one of his all-time personal favourites, citing his preference for it over “sterile and emotionless” “2001: A Space Odyssey“.

Now I start to doubt even more in the sanity of top-notch movie critics as calling “Silent Running” the best sci-fi film is just insane – for a serious cinema critic, not fanboy like me. But that does not make the book cover any less beautiful. It was designed by Olly Moss and he did a bunch of awesome movie posters, including very original “Star Wars” posters (and it must be very difficult to make an original SW poster!). Amazing work.

…and just for the record, the other most recent time I ranted about insane movie critics was when ebert.com rated “Alien: Covenant” 4/4.

Here is another poster oldschool poster.

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And a wonderful photo from the shooting.

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I reviewed the film before, so check here my GIFs about the film and the amazing special effects of the flight through the Saturn rings here. That was something incredible.

Plus, here’s some interesting info about “Silent Running” that I didn’t cover in my review. “After the success of Easy Rider (1969), directed by Dennis Hopper, Universal Studios hit upon the idea to let young filmmakers make “semi-independent” films for low budgets in hopes of generating similar profits. The idea was to make five of these movies each for $1 million dollars or less, not interfere in the filmmaking process, and give the directors final cut, a level of control seldom allotted to even the most successful directors. The movies produced were The Hired Hand (1971) directed by Peter Fonda, The Last Movie (1971) by Dennis Hopper, Taking Off (1971) by Milos Forman, American Graffiti (1973) by a young and impressionable George Lucas, and lastly Silent Running. Released in 1972 (5 years prior to the release of the first Star Wars film), Silent Running is an environmentally themed American sci-fi film written, produced, and directed by the legendary filmmaker and visual effects pioneer, Douglas Trumbull.” Thanks to Supercult Show blog that did a very comprehensive write-up about the film.

Now… Suntory time, as Bill-motherfucking-ghostbuster-Murray once said.

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What Philip K. Dick Really Thought of ‘Blade Runner’?

In short… “It will prove invincible”.

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Concept art by Syd Mead. © 1982 The Blade Runner Partnership. All rights reserved.

It’s well known that the author never saw the entire film – Philip K. Dick died too early. But he did visit the production set, and there was a special screening organized just for the writer. “Future Noir: The Making of Blade Runner“, a recent book by Paul M. Sammon says that after watching the footage Dick didn’t say a word and just sat there like a statue for 20 minutes.

Totally silent.

Then he asked to see the footage again. The writer praised what he saw infinitely, saying that the whole spirit of what he imagined when writing the book was totally transformed to the screen.

This is the letter Philip K. Dick wrote to the production company responsible after seeing the footage.

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The old man got it right.

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And for dessert, ladies and gentlemen, we have more concept art by Syd Mead, who also worked on “Aliens“, “TRON” and many other futuristic projects.

 

(All images used in this post belong to 1982 The Blade Runner Partnership. All rights reserved. ©)