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Knowing: Do not watch

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Grames
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Knowing sucks. Christian allegory of the end of the world, nobody sees it coming except the crazy ignored prophet girl, nobody could do anything about it anyway. Nicholas Cage has yet another role where he solves riddles, but here this is merely an excuse to travel to the sites of disasters which he finds he cannot prevent but which are spectacular to witness. Angels are aliens, or maybe vice versa. If you want to reinforce your sense of the futility of life and its struggles, this will do the trick.

Director Alex Proyas had done Dark City, The Crow and I, Robot but this is a turkey.

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Why can't Hollywood make some decent sf every once and awhile?

It can, just not at the movies.

Movies are expensive, SF movies more so. They must be marketed to large audiences, therefore they are watered down.

On TV, however, costs are lower, there's some time to build up an audience, and given the large amount of offerings even a relatively small audience pays off. So the better kind of SF has moved to television. Consider the various Stargate shows, Star Trek TNG and DS9 (even Voyager and Enterprise managed a few good eps), Babylon 5, Sliders (some of the time), even flops like Earth 2 and Time Traxx.

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Star Trek TNG and DS9 (even Voyager and Enterprise managed a few good eps),

What about the original series? I've always thought that was a great allegory for man's drive to understand the universe. Not to mention Spock being the epitome of logic (remember, the seires; not the movie where he suddenly goes nuts just before he "dies").

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Nicholas Cage has yet another role where he solves riddles, but here this is merely an excuse to travel to the sites of disasters which he finds he cannot prevent but which are spectacular to witness.

And all with a horrible haircut.

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I think I can hint at why, but would you tell me what's wrong with "I, Robot"?

If you read the source material you'd see how they transformed an intelligent book into a stupid Will Smith shoot-em-up vehicle.

Edited by Myself
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And why this hate on Dark City? I thought that one was actually pretty good. It's not SCIENCE fiction, being pretty much pure fantasy all the way (and I heard that the book was much better), but I enjoyed the premise and I could really respect the choices of the main character, which is more than I can say for most movies.

Anyway, I detest Nicholas Cage and this movie looked like a cross between Armageddon and The Davinci Code so I've been proactively avoiding it since the first previews came out.

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And why this hate on Dark City? I thought that one was actually pretty good. It's not SCIENCE fiction, being pretty much pure fantasy all the way (and I heard that the book was much better), but I enjoyed the premise and I could really respect the choices of the main character, which is more than I can say for most movies.

Dark City had truly awful acting, a ridiculous plot, and characters that were never adequately explained.

During large portions of the movie I thought I was watching a comedy, only to go online later and find out I was watching a "science fiction drama", that was "visionary." There wasn't one genuine moment I could buy in the whole film. Every note was off, every performance forced and hackneyed, the set design and costuming was a failed attempt at stylization, and the plot never resolved itself in any coherent manner.

The praise Dark City garners is totally inexplicable to me. It played like a bigger budget and better crafted Plan 9 from Outer Space, landing it squarely in B movie territory.

Edited by Myself
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What about the original series? I've always thought that was a great allegory for man's drive to understand the universe. Not to mention Spock being the epitome of logic (remember, the seires; not the movie where he suddenly goes nuts just before he "dies").

The 60s original was good enough. My comments were about mroe recent times. There are more than a few good older SF movies: Logan's Run, Soylent Green, Omega Man (the original).

As for Spock, I've always found him wanting. He was like an Asimov robot: logical but not rational. I suppose that's some of what you mean that he goes nuts in ST II ("The needs of the many..." and all that). But he was always a little bit like that. And anyway the whole lakc of emotion bit always struck me as a cheap gimmick.

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Dark City had truly awful acting, a ridiculous plot, and characters that were never adequately explained.

Was that the one where the guy could "tune", which apparently meant, "alter the reality we've created for you"?

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Edit: WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD

I thought this movie was excellent. Before I even get into anything about the story I have to mention the 'events'. The plane and train scenes were absolutely intense and shocking. It is not often that imagery from a movie is stuck in my head for days afterward, but that was definitely the case with this movie. Whether it was a good or bad thing in this case I'm not sure.

The only fair criticism I've seen of the move so far is the acting. The only reason I think it is fair is because I didn't even notice it. It may just be a personal ability to dismiss acting and become completely envelopped by the story, but I don't think any of the acting was absurd or terrible. I did see a review that said that the children out acted the parents, and that may be true.

Now, for all this talk on religion. This is just how I read into it, but I think this movie was a complete dismissal of religion. It was almost a mockery really, but I think most people did not read it this way. For me, the movie essentially said: here is a bunch of stuff that religion claims (angels, end of the world, garden of eden thing at the end) but it turns out it's all just aliens and science (knowing the sun is going to get us) so HAH! I think the most obvious demonstration of this was at the end when Cage goes to his parents home. His father basically says "you know it's not going to end like this, religion dictates..." and Cage, clearly knowing that it is going to end, just says "I know" in a 'mmhmm doens't really matter now' tone. To me this whole scene shows: I'm a Chrisitan, I know the world won't end *BAM* dead, worthless beliefs.

I don't see how the idea of an amazingly evolved superior alien race is out of line with Objectivism. I think it is an interesting idea to play with, it is my favorite type of science fiction and allows one to ponder all kinds of wonderful questions about determinism if that were the case.

I think the movie was insanely well directed, the scenes were intense and effective. I think there was a lot to it that one might miss on the first time around, like the kid saying "just checking if you were listening" after Cage talks about how many planets there are/possiblity of aliens. But that might just be me reading into things.

All of this being said, I find applying Objectivism to art to be the most difficult part of my studies in Objectivism.

Edited by AlexGrant
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And why this hate on Dark City? I thought that one was actually pretty good. It's not SCIENCE fiction, being pretty much pure fantasy all the way (and I heard that the book was much better), but I enjoyed the premise and I could really respect the choices of the main character, which is more than I can say for most movies.

Yes, I liked Dark City. I haven't seen it in a long time, so I can't be sure if I'd agree with the message now. It was styled in a film noir fashion, I think maybe that's why Myself is referring to. It was actually a lot like the Matrix, before the Matrix (and the crap squeals).

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