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Indiana Jones 4

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The Wrath
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According to Wikipedia's article, they're finally about to get underway with this project. Looks like they'll start filming this summer. It's about time, since they've been talking about it for over a decade. A few things worry me, however.

Firstly, I've read that it will be set in a later decade, to account for Harrison Ford's age. Indiana Jones without Nazis to kill just doesn't seem right. Secondly, movies that happen decades after the original series usually suck (see Star Wars, Aliens, and Planet of the Apes). Thirdly, George Lucas has said "It's going to be fantastic. It's going to be the best one yet." This bothers me because I think George Lucas has totally lost his abilities as a film-maker. The Star Wars prequels were horrible, as were the myriad of completely unnecessary updates that he added to the original trilogy. Thankfully, though, it looks like Spielberg is the director, not Lucas.

I'm looking forward to it but, in a way, I wish they would just leave the series alone. I can't imagine a better ending to the story than the end of Last Crusade, when he, his father, and his 2 best friends ride away victoriously into the sunset. Other than John Wayne, I think that Indiana Jones is the ultimate archetypal American hero, and I really hope they do this one right.

On the religiosity of the movies:

The religious overtones don't bother me, and I don't think they should bother any Objectivist who watches them. The supernatural stuff is an accepted part of the metaphysics of the movie, just like magic is in Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings. But the religiosity has little to do with Jones' character (except, arguably, towards the end of Last Crusade). In fact, I think that all 3 movies display some very Objectivist values.

In the first, for instance, Brody says to Jones, "They want you to go for it and they're prepared to pay handsomely for it." Then when he voices concerns about the mystique of the Ark, Jones says "I'm going after a piece of historical significance and you're talking about the boogey-man." In the second, Jones mentions a number of times that his goal is "fortune and glory," with respect to taking on the new quest. Then, in the third, he's trying to rescue his father and, in the process, discovers how much fun it is to destroy Nazis.

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I am willing to bet that this movie will be so "politically correct" it will make me puke. Some predictions:

Indy will be motivated by altruism (save XXX, help YYY, whatever)

Indy will have a black ally

Indy will have an asian ally

Indy's opponents will not be arabs

Indy's opponents will be businessmen of some sort

Indy's opponents will be "harming the environment" in some way

Indy will not shoot the guy swinging scimitars at him out of hand (hell, they edited Han Solo's bar fight from Star Wars)

If I'm wrong about more than one of those, I'll be extremely surprised.

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I am willing to bet that this movie will be so "politically correct" it will make me puke. Some predictions:

Indy will be motivated by altruism (save XXX, help YYY, whatever)

Indy will have a black ally

Indy will have an asian ally

Indy's opponents will not be arabs

Indy's opponents will be businessmen of some sort

Indy's opponents will be "harming the environment" in some way

Indy will not shoot the guy swinging scimitars at him out of hand (hell, they edited Han Solo's bar fight from Star Wars)

If I'm wrong about more than one of those, I'll be extremely surprised.

Nah, I don't think Indy will be motivated by altruism...at least, not anymore than he was in the third one, when his objective was to save his father. It would be totally breaking with character for him to not want something for himself.

As far as his allies go...that depends on what part of the world he's in. It only makes sense that he have a local helping him out.

Why is it necessary that he fight Arabs? We didn't have any national security concerns in the Middle East at the time.

Businessmen and harming the environment...also totally out of character for Indy.

I think people have learned their lesson about approaching Indiana Jones with only a scimitar in their hand. And yeah, Lucas sucks for editing the original Star Wars trilogy.

God.. You think so? Literal ones? Why? (I hope not!) : /

They'll never have any real power again, but I don't think we'll ever be totally rid of the Nazis.

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Indy will be motivated by altruism (save XXX, help YYY, whatever)

In the Last Crusade, a young Indy risks his life to amke sure an artifact winds up in a museum.

Indy will have a black ally

Indy will have an asian ally

He's had both, in supporting roles, in the first two movies.

Indy's opponents will not be arabs

Probably not. On the other hand, he's faced arabs who helped him, others who were against him, and others who paid him no mind. In other words, the previous Indy movies treated arabs as people (what a radical notion!)

Indy's opponents will be businessmen of some sort

Indy's opponents will be "harming the environment" in some way

Maybe. He might also have to fight a Bush/Cheney/Rove/Rumsfeld clone, or a Bush/Cheney/Rove/Rumsfeld composite.

Indy will not shoot the guy swinging scimitars at him out of hand (hell, they edited Han Solo's bar fight from Star Wars)

I predict we'll see a new prehensile whip capable fo astonishing feats of disarmament. Indy's version of the magical disarming bullet seen in other movies.

Regarding the Solo vs Greedo scene, if being pressured at gunpoint isn't sufficient cause for shooting in self-defense, then what is? Also, Han Solo acted disporportionately. After all, Greedo wouldn't hit the broadside of a barn. I mean, he had his gun pointed squarely at Solo, and he missed! By all movie and liberal logic, Solo ought to have been able to walk out without suffering any harm ;)

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Bah, you 2 are too pessimistic. Indy is no altruist and I don't perceive there being a major change to his character in the 4th movie. My concerns are stylistic ones.

D'Kian's Second Law Of Moviemaking states: Nothing is so simple that Hollywood can't foul it up beyond all recognition (NOTE: for the purpose of the Laws of Moviemaking, the term "Hollywood" is shorthand for "movie makers in general).

So, you already have a well-defined, high quality character, and a well-defined formula for his adventures. It's too simple not to foul it up, yes?

For the record, D'kain's two other Laws Of Moviemaking state:

One: Whatever happens, nothing happens (or why movies can gestate for years)

Three: Any movie without a love triangle cannot get past the Suits.

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D'Kian's Second Law Of Moviemaking states: Nothing is so simple that Hollywood can't foul it up beyond all recognition (NOTE: for the purpose of the Laws of Moviemaking, the term "Hollywood" is shorthand for "movie makers in general).

So, you already have a well-defined, high quality character, and a well-defined formula for his adventures. It's too simple not to foul it up, yes?

For the record, D'kain's two other Laws Of Moviemaking state:

One: Whatever happens, nothing happens (or why movies can gestate for years)

Three: Any movie without a love triangle cannot get past the Suits.

I agree that Hollywood screws up alot, but I trust Spielberg as a director. I can't think of a single of his movies that is not extremely well-made. I just thank God that Lucas isn't the director, and I pray that he has minimal influence over the final product.

I'm honestly not worried at all the they're going to turn Indiana Jones into some politically correct hippie if, for no other reason, it would be historically inaccurate to do so. I'm just worried that it won't live up the original trilogy. And, as I said before, I don't think they can possibly give it a better ending than Last Crusade had.

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I agree that Hollywood screws up alot, but I trust Spielberg as a director. I can't think of a single of his movies that is not extremely well-made. I just thank God that Lucas isn't the director, and I pray that he has minimal influence over the final product.

Lucas is a perfectly good second-rate director. This may or may not disqualify him from directing an action movie. It depends on how much he delegates to the second unit director.

What worries me is he's a very bad writer. He did ok in the first SW movies, but the prequels were such a waste I still daydream of re-writing them (step one: burn the original screenplay). So, as long as Lucas doesn't write it, we still have a chance.

I'm honestly not worried at all the they're going to turn Indiana Jones into some politically correct hippie if, for no other reason, it would be historically inaccurate to do so.

I've never known Hollywood (see D'kian's Second Law) to let such details stop them.

I am worried because the PC crowd bears to strong an influence, and both Lucas and Spielberg are sympathetic, at least, to the liberal point of view (to say the least). And they have to justify the action, the killings and the adventure somehow. PC justifies everything from false accusations (see the Duke Lacrosse Team), to multiple murders (see Andrea Yates).

Finally, Lucas has had a big impact on pop culture, but he's not taken as a serious filmaker. Spielberg has done both. Therefore Lucas, I'm afraid, is trying to turn "serious" (ie to address adult issues). He tackled love, or so he said, in films that should have been political. Now he can tackle politics in a film that should be an adventure story.

Of course, he may tackle middle age angst, too.

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Lucas is a perfectly good second-rate director. This may or may not disqualify him from directing an action movie. It depends on how much he delegates to the second unit director.

Well, it doesn't really matter in this case, because Spielberg is doing it.

What worries me is he's a very bad writer. He did ok in the first SW movies, but the prequels were such a waste I still daydream of re-writing them (step one: burn the original screenplay). So, as long as Lucas doesn't write it, we still have a chance.

I've never known Hollywood (see D'kian's Second Law) to let such details stop them.

I couldn't agree more.

I am worried because the PC crowd bears to strong an influence, and both Lucas and Spielberg are sympathetic, at least, to the liberal point of view (to say the least). And they have to justify the action, the killings and the adventure somehow. PC justifies everything from false accusations (see the Duke Lacrosse Team), to multiple murders (see Andrea Yates).

Yeah, they're both kinda liberal. But I imagine they've always been that way. And you've got to remember that liberals hate all wars except WWII. I've never heard a liberal (not talking about hard-core leftists) complain about our treatment of the Nazis. I've heard conflicting reports about the time period of the new movie...some have said it will be later, to account for Ford's age. Others have said that there will be Nazis involved. So, it's anyone's guess.

Ever since the Duke case was exposed as a fraud, I haven't heard anyone defending the false accusation. As for Yates...yeah, some people have defended her because she's crazy. But even if she winds up in a mental hospital instead of jail, she'll spend the rest of her life there.

Finally, Lucas has had a big impact on pop culture, but he's not taken as a serious filmaker. Spielberg has done both. Therefore Lucas, I'm afraid, is trying to turn "serious" (ie to address adult issues). He tackled love, or so he said, in films that should have been political. Now he can tackle politics in a film that should be an adventure story.

Yeah, Lucas is definitely not a serious filmmaker. I actually think he's downright pitiful at it.

For what its worth, I don't think he did a particularly good job with the original Star Wars, either. They are immensely entertaining and I wouldn't want them to be any different than they are (wel...different than they were before Lucas ruined them), but that's mostly because, as you said, they're so much a part of pop culture. When you watch them and listen to the script, I don't think they can justly be called well-made.

And what films did he do that were supposed to be political?

Here's an interesting take on Lucas' abilities:

Edited by Moose
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Yeah, they're both kinda liberal. But I imagine they've always been that way. And you've got to remember that liberals hate all wars except WWII. I've never heard a liberal (not talking about hard-core leftists) complain about our treatment of the Nazis.

They positively hate the Pacific part of the war. They don't demonize Truman because he was a Democrat. But most of them regard Hiroshima and Nagasaki as both evil and unnecessary. Worse, yet, the left is slowly beginning to inch towards massive revisionism of WWII. One symptom, there were some very positive eulogies of Lenni Riefenstahl a few years back (I never understood why that woman was allowed to keep breathing after 1945)

I've heard conflicting reports about the time period of the new movie...some have said it will be later, to account for Ford's age. Others have said that there will be Nazis involved. So, it's anyone's guess.
I'd set it in the period all the other movies are set in and to hell with Ford's age. The movies are unrealistic to a fault. Not one stunt in three is even remotely plausible. The famous Indy under the truck chase scene is one of the finest action sequences ever filmed, but the likely result in reality would be a mangled Dr. Jones, if he weer very lucky. And at the end something supernatural happens anyway.

So say that drinking from the Holy grail changed him and move on.

For what its worth, I don't think he did a particularly good job with the original Star Wars, either.

The man is good at imagining, and realizing, astonishing visuals. The breakthrough in Star Wars was technical. the same story with early 70s state of the art visual effects would have flopped. But he and his technical wizards re-invented visual effects in a most astonishing manner. Particularly the computer controlled stop-motion techniques that made the space battle possible and exciting. The stories are just interesting enough to get by.

When you watch them and listen to the script, I don't think they can justly be called well-made.
Yeah, the dialogue is pretty bad. Still, there are a few good, witty moments in all 3 films. Aided, I will add, by good deliveries from Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford.

And what films did he do that were supposed to be political?

The SW prequels should have been political. You have a decaying Republic, but you never see exactly how or why it decayed. The sides, if they are the same throughout, aren't even clearly defined. He could have delved into corruption, bloated bureaucracies and such (we got some of it in the first one, but that was it), even corrupt Jedi using their abilities to gain power rather than to protect the Republic (who should have killed off the rest of the Jedi, and should have been killed in turn by Palpatine's elect, like Anakin; but I'm not re-writing the prequels)

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They positively hate the Pacific part of the war. They don't demonize Truman because he was a Democrat. But most of them regard Hiroshima and Nagasaki as both evil and unnecessary. Worse, yet, the left is slowly beginning to inch towards massive revisionism of WWII. One symptom, there were some very positive eulogies of Lenni Riefenstahl a few years back (I never understood why that woman was allowed to keep breathing after 1945)

Well, you're definitely right about the Pacific part of the war, but the other Indy movies haven't even so much as mentioned it.

I'd set it in the period all the other movies are set in and to hell with Ford's age. The movies are unrealistic to a fault. Not one stunt in three is even remotely plausible. The famous Indy under the truck chase scene is one of the finest action sequences ever filmed, but the likely result in reality would be a mangled Dr. Jones, if he weer very lucky. And at the end something supernatural happens anyway.

So say that drinking from the Holy grail changed him and move on.

Well, the problem with that is that Harrison Ford didn't really drink from the Holy Grail. You're right when you say the stunts aren't plausible...but that doesn't change that Harrison Ford probably can't do them anymore. They'd have to use way more stunt doubles than they did for the original trilogy.

The man is good at imagining, and realizing, astonishing visuals. The breakthrough in Star Wars was technical. the same story with early 70s state of the art visual effects would have flopped. But he and his technical wizards re-invented visual effects in a most astonishing manner. Particularly the computer controlled stop-motion techniques that made the space battle possible and exciting. The stories are just interesting enough to get by.

Yeah, the dialogue is pretty bad. Still, there are a few good, witty moments in all 3 films. Aided, I will add, by good deliveries from Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford.

Agreed, although I think that Mark Hamill's acting prowess is questionable, at best. Just watch his reaction to learning that Vader is his father.

The SW prequels should have been political. You have a decaying Republic, but you never see exactly how or why it decayed. The sides, if they are the same throughout, aren't even clearly defined. He could have delved into corruption, bloated bureaucracies and such (we got some of it in the first one, but that was it), even corrupt Jedi using their abilities to gain power rather than to protect the Republic (who should have killed off the rest of the Jedi, and should have been killed in turn by Palpatine's elect, like Anakin; but I'm not re-writing the prequels)

Eh, I don't really agree with that. The original trilogy was not political at all. That's not what an audience wants to see with a movie like Star Wars.

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Well, the problem with that is that Harrison Ford didn't really drink from the Holy Grail. You're right when you say the stunts aren't plausible...but that doesn't change that Harrison Ford probably can't do them anymore. They'd have to use way more stunt doubles than they did for the original trilogy.

Radiation from the Ark, then. It doesn't really matter.

As for stunts, Lucas likes to shoot digital. Let's have a gaggle of virtual stuntmen :ninja:

Agreed, although I think that Mark Hamill's acting prowess is questionable, at best. Just watch his reaction to learning that Vader is his father.
Hamill's best acting is as the Joker in the batman animated series and movies. In SW, his best scene is this:

Solo: What do you think? Do you think a princess and a guy like me-

Luke: No!

He was helped by owning very charismatic boyish looks.

Eh, I don't really agree with that. The original trilogy was not political at all. That's not what an audience wants to see with a movie like Star Wars.

Maybe not. on the other hand, did the fans want to see whatever was shown in the actual prequels? I know I didn't.

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Radiation from the Ark, then. It doesn't really matter.

As for stunts, Lucas likes to shoot digital. Let's have a gaggle of virtual stuntmen :ninja:

Lord, I hope that doesn't happen. It's one thing in Star Wars, where you pretty much have to have special effects, but Indiana Jones is pretty down to earth...literally.

And when I said Ford didn't really drink from the Grail, I meant that, in actual reality, Harrison Ford did not gain immortality by drinking from the Grail, which is why the stunts have to be toned down. For the purposes of the movie, Indy really did drink from it.

Hamill's best acting is as the Joker in the batman animated series and movies. In SW, his best scene is this:

Solo: What do you think? Do you think a princess and a guy like me-

Luke: No!

Haha, so true. I actually laughed out loud when I read that.

Maybe not. on the other hand, did the fans want to see whatever was shown in the actual prequels? I know I didn't.

The third one wasn't too bad. Other than that, I sure as hell didn't want to see it, but I don't think infusing it with lots of political theory would be the answer.

Edited by Moose
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They'll never have any real power again, but I don't think we'll ever be totally rid of the Nazis.
Why not, though? There are many other political ideologies which have risen to prominence in various parts of the globe and then vanished, at least for the most part if not entirely. Why wouldn't that happen to Nazism?
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And when I said Ford didn't really drink from the Grail, I meant that, in actual reality, Harrison Ford did not gain immortality by drinking from the Grail, which is why the stunts have to be toned down. For the purposes of the movie, Indy really did drink from it.

Still the same thing. Tone them down and let the movie play in Indy's usual era.

The third one wasn't too bad. Other than that, I sure as hell didn't want to see it,
Not too bad? Please tell me there are two versions of the third prequel and I watched the wrong one (no, I didn't think so). Anakin Skywalker comes off a a spoiled brat who joins the bad guys simply because his daddy (Kenobi) won't buy him a Jedi Master title. Padme dies of what, exactly? Why does Kenobi not finish off Anakin when he has the chance? Anakin knows he didn't kill Padme, he knows Palpatine has lied to him, why doesn't he know he has at least one child until decades later? he also knows Kenobi is still alive, and Palpatine knows Yoda is alive, why do the two of them allow their most dangerous enemies to live until one comes blundering into the Death Star?

I could go on. The whole movie is a series of plot holes wider than the Pacific Ocean.

but I don't think infusing it with lots of political theory would be the answer.

Not theory, practice. We should have had factions building towards a civil war. Then Palpatine, controlling both sides, can strike, along with his Sith followers (including a disillusioned Anakin who sees how the Jedi are used only to prop up a corrupt, decaying system), and take over.

Of course, all he can do, or even wants to do, is add repression tot he mix. This cements his hold, but also finally wakes up a few beings into realizing what is lacking: liberty.

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To speak to Moose's words on religiosity in the movie, I actually hate (n.b. hate) The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter for their mystical elements--as well as being largely CGI-drive, plotless, empty husks of movies. I can generally overlook a few off-handed remarks about religion, but as soon as it plays a palpable part in the metaphysical assumptions of a movie I begin to grow disintersted. When it dominates the movie, I couldn't care less about the film.

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I can't imagine hating movies like Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter simply because they have magic in them. If you accept them as a part of the metaphysics of the movie you're watching, I think the displays of heroism far outweigh whatever negatives there are from the magic. Look at it this way...in movies such as those, magic is not mystical. It is a force of nature. This is particularly true in Harry Potter. The wizards are not wise old men with white beards who call on powers greater than themselves. The wizards are people who had to go to school and learn the principles of magic use. And, magic, just like any other science, has laws that must be followed. Granted, the laws are basically whatever is most convenient to J.K. Rowling at the time of writing, but it is clear that magic is not a force that can be manipulated or have its rules broken by calling upon a deity.

On Harry Potter's theme: it is very, very capitalist. Just think about it. Kids get excited by going into Diagon Alley so they can try out all the newest magical doo dads. Diagon Alley is commercialism at its best. Two of the minor protagonists become successful businessmen, by doing what they love, and they are not condemned for it. Rather, all of the other protagonists seem very pleased with their success. Compare that to the attitude towards the Ministry of Magic. Typical capitalistic attitude towards bloated government bureaucracy. It gets in the way and prevents the heroes from doing what needs to be done. Then you have Percy Weasley. He turns his back on the other protagonists to become a bureaucrat, writing pointless reports on the consistency of cauldron bottoms. And note how Harry, himself, has a vast amount of wealth, which he does not feel obligated to give to anyone but his own closest friends. And even they only get as much as he thinks they need to cover basic school supplies. Even if you refuse to accept magic as part of the metaphysics of Harry Potter, I think all of these factors far outweigh the mysticism.

And I would be quite interested to hear how Lord of the Rings is plotless? I really don't understand how you can watch those movies or read the books and think that they don't have a plot. And if you think that movie could be made without CGI, I'd love to see it happen. As to the plot of Harry Potter...I have found the movies to be somewhat lacking, but that's mainly because they are not very inclusive. The story is actually somewhat difficult to follow, unless you've read the books.

I have not read Terry Goodkind's series, but I am assuming that it has magic in it. Do you, likewise, hate it?

Edited by Moose
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To speak to Moose's words on religiosity in the movie, I actually hate (n.b. hate) The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter for their mystical elements--as well as being largely CGI-drive, plotless, empty husks of movies.

That makes two of us.

Although my objection has more to do with magic. Invariably the rules are arbitrary and causeless, or unknowable, or illogical, or plain irrational. For example, one person can do something worthwhile with some object, but no one else can. It works a certain way for some people, but not the same way for others. And there's never any explanation but "that's how it is," if that much.

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To speak to Moose's words on religiosity in the movie, I actually hate (n.b. hate) The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter for their mystical elements--as well as being largely CGI-drive, plotless, empty husks of movies. I can generally overlook a few off-handed remarks about religion, but as soon as it plays a palpable part in the metaphysical assumptions of a movie I begin to grow disintersted. When it dominates the movie, I couldn't care less about the film.
Do you feel the same way about the books, or do you think these movies exaggerate the mystical elements in the books?
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Invariably the rules are arbitrary and causeless, or unknowable, or illogical, or plain irrational. For example, one person can do something worthwhile with some object, but no one else can. It works a certain way for some people, but not the same way for others. And there's never any explanation but "that's how it is," if that much.

That is completely false. For instance, in "Harry Potter" being capable of magic is a hereditary genetical trait. It does not go into detail about what magic is, but it always works the same way (children of magic users are magic enabled, cross breads sometimes are). Additionally, magic works the way it works (it has identity!). If you say the wrong words, the spell does not work.

Second example. In the "Eye of the World" series by Robert Jordan (of which the first book is one of the best novels I have read, bar none) magic is analogous to an aditional sense. People who are blind to magic are also immune to a lot of things because they don't have that sense (just as a blind person is not bothered by flashing lights). In that setting magic is also hereditary, controlling magic also involves knowing how to do it.

I could go on.

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I didn't mind the mysticism of Indiana Jones so much (though a bit) because it played such a marginal role in the film. In Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter, magic was pervasive and, if taken away, there is no movie whatsoever. If art is supposed to be a metaphysical recreation of what one finds important in life, this re-writing the metaphysics is at best silly and at worst essentially antithetical to the entire enterprise.

Especially with these, it was only compounded by the fact that magic was largely an excuse to flex CGI muscles while the rest of the story had basically no value on its own.

I never watched either movie, so I cannot say that I know it has no plot. Nor could I say that I know Glitter has no plot. It's what I've gleaned from what everybody says about the films.

I've never read Goodkind's novels. I plan to read one some day, even if I disdain magic in stories, just to see what's going on. Depending on how un-life-like it is, I may hate it.

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