Movies are awesome

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Dominic
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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by Dominic »

In volume perhaps, but not in scope. Nearly every scene between opposing bots is brutally violent and often ends in the death of at least one bot. Not only is it offputting, it also doesn't really make sense if this war's been raging for millennia and there's not billions of bots being built constantly.
The kill count in TF tends to be too low (as a function of dead characters being less marketable). The movies' willingness to have characters engaged in a long-running existential struggle...actually kill each other is one of the things I give Bay credit for. I have always assumed that there are relatively small numbers of existing Cybertronians.


Where do I even begin with this? Well, I'd have to say I enjoyed it more than The Last Jedi, but, as Dom said, that's a low bar to clear.
But, you were commenting on this movie well before you saw it....

Damn, you hunt spoilers more aggressively than I do, which is sort of impressive.

I do like that they finally gave Snoke some backstory, although it also feels like a half-assed explanation.
Spoiler
My guess is that they planned for that origin when Episode 7 was released. But, Abrams et al lacked the discipline to set up for it properly.

I recall something about Johnson deciding to ignore the plan for Episode 8, which might be something of an explanation for why it was not properly set up. And, as we know, blank spots in the movie are opportunities for Disney to sell novels and comics.


...even get the man power to build and operate....
Spoiler
Economics has never been a strong point in SW. Things like fleet sizes and labor force are just...assumed.

But, in this case, I am willing to cut Abrams some slack. The Emperor took control of a thriving republic, and held power for ~2 decades. He was a political and spiritual leader.

It is not hard to believe the Emperor would have a viable population on his hide-away planet. It is hard to reach. But, that does not mean it cannot sustain life. A relatively small seed population only needs to land once. Over the course of 50 years, that population could grow.

.... for reasons the movie also fails to explain ....
There is a throwaway line about this.

Spoiler
3P0 says something to the effect of the "the Senate outlawed translating Sith in....", before his cut off by (I think) Poe.



Spoiler
.. not that it has any weight to it ....


Don't even get me started. I have a background (admittedly dated) in digital forensics. And, that is not how shit works.

Spoiler
I can buy in to the idea that a translator droid might have restrictions. (We have end-user and content-managing rules on current devices that would do much the same thing depending on how a device is set at the factory.

But, if the information exists on a device, it can be aquired. (Think of people hacking game systems. Even if they cannot unlock content, they can see that it exists.)

Even a basic forensic recovery tool (freeware, such as PhotoRec) can copy *everything* from a device. Something like FTK (which starts between cheap and free, and has a really ex$pen$ive but handy option) will not only copy everything, it will actually reconstruct the device's file system. Other stuff (such as various mobile foren$ic$ tools with co$t $omething will effectively create a duplicate of the device itself, right down to file partitions and apps.

I have personally used a combination of FTK and HXD to reconstruct apps across devices. (In fact, it is how I have duplicated Metasploit across several thumb-drives.

At worst, the heroes could have imaged 3P0's brain and then used a (possibly modified) copy of his translation protocol and the image of the dagger to get the needed information. (And, that assumes there were no black-market translator droids to begin with.)

The moral question could have been about violating the privacy of a droid. (SW has never been consistent about exactly what a droid's rights are worth.)


In fact...

Spoiler
....deleting 3P0's memory is the last thing anybody should have been doing.

If 3P0 scanned the Sith text from the dagger, he has that in his memory. Deleting 3P0's memory would delete the image of the dagger. Yes, it is possible to recover a deleted file (including an image). But, there is not reason to delete a file when it only needs to be copied.

And, then finally, after all that, the dramatic impact of the moment is diminished by R2 having a back up.

Up until that moment, I was willing to give them a pass on Chewbacca's death. Fights in SW tend to be too clean, In this case, it made sense for the heroes to be disoriented during a fight. And, Daisy Ridley sold the reaction *really* well. But, having a second fake-out....especially when it rests on such a dumb premise, undermines the movie.




yet another thing the movie does not explain.
I am just going to put most of this down to it being a poorly drafted and edited movie.

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Sparky Prime
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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by Sparky Prime »

Dominic wrote:But, you were commenting on this movie well before you saw it....

Damn, you hunt spoilers more aggressively than I do, which is sort of impressive.
I did say I hadn't seen it yet at the time... I wouldn't say I aggressively hunted down the spoilers, but I didn't exactly avoid them either. After "The Last Jedi", I knew this film was going heavy damage control, so I didn't see much point in waiting to find out what they did with it until I saw it for myself.
Spoiler
My guess is that they planned for that origin when Episode 7 was released. But, Abrams et al lacked the discipline to set up for it properly.
Spoiler
I doubt this origin was planned with episode 7... From the "leaked inside sources" comments I've seen, supposedly, with the death of Snoke in 8, Abrams asked Lucas for some help writing episode 9. They decided the villain was going to be the Son of Mortis (a character from the Clone Wars cartoon series) to be played by Matt Smith. But Disney decided the Son of Mortis would be hard to sell to the general audience, and forced Abrams to change the villain to bring back Palpatine instead. So there was lot that changed from movie to the next, and even during production.

And, as we know, blank spots in the movie are opportunities for Disney to sell novels and comics.
Yeah, and this clearly doesn't work. A film should be able to stand on its own, without supplementary materials being required to explain major characters and plot points. Disney shouldn't expect the general audience to go out to buy novels/comics just to understand who characters are, or what is going on in a film. That's something the film itself needs to cover, like the Prequels and Original Trilogy did.

Speaking of which, I found it odd
Spoiler
according to the supplementary materials, the Battle of Jakku is the final battle in the war between the Rebellion and the Empire (since that's another thing the films don't explain why such an insignificant "no where" planet would have so much debris on it), yet RoS outright says that the Battle of Endor was the final battle of the war... They contradict their own continuity.

Spoiler
Economics has never been a strong point in SW. Things like fleet sizes and labor force are just...assumed.

But, in this case, I am willing to cut Abrams some slack. The Emperor took control of a thriving republic, and held power for ~2 decades. He was a political and spiritual leader.

It is not hard to believe the Emperor would have a viable population on his hide-away planet. It is hard to reach. But, that does not mean it cannot sustain life. A relatively small seed population only needs to land once. Over the course of 50 years, that population could grow.
Spoiler
I'd agree economics has never been a strong point in Star Wars, but I can't cut Abrams any slack here. It would take millions of people, not to mention, massive infrastructure to build all of those Star Destroyers. And then you'd need millions more people just to crew them. That planet, from what we saw of it, was barren and inhospitable on the surface, with lightning everywhere. I'm not seeing how it could sustain a population that size. I'm sorry, but that goes well beyond the realm of believability given the circumstances the film presents to us. At least with the Empire proper, there were thousands of star systems they could draw resources from. The Final Order wouldn't have any of that given the secrecy of the planet's location to begin with.

And then there's the whole "rule of two" thing the Sith have... Between that and all the secrecy we saw from the Sith in the prequels, it seems odd to me there apparently is a massive Sith cult following.

The Resistance has the same problem. At the end of TLJ, the entirety of what's left of the Resistance escapes on just the Millennium Falcon. That's all they've got left. Yet, they've somehow gained a few new people and ships, despite Poe even pointing out that nobody responded to their call. So where'd the starfighters and Tantive IV (or another ship that looks exactly like it) among a few others and new people come from?

Spoiler
I can buy in to the idea that a translator droid might have restrictions. (We have end-user and content-managing rules on current devices that would do much the same thing depending on how a device is set at the factory.

But, if the information exists on a device, it can be aquired. (Think of people hacking game systems. Even if they cannot unlock content, they can see that it exists.)
Spoiler
I recall a line from the little alien guy, while he was poking around in his head, to the effect that he could confirm that C-3PO had something was stored in his forbidden language buffer or somesuch.... Which suggests to me that it wasn't even stored in his regular memory files. Which I mean... Nothing about any of the memory wipe scene made any sense. It seemed like the real motivation to that scene was more about establishing some backstory for Poe, while they handled C-3PO's "sacrifice" in the laziest way possible.

There is a throwaway line about this.

Spoiler
3P0 says something to the effect of the "the Senate outlawed translating Sith in....", before his cut off by (I think) Poe.
Does he? Well if he was interrupted while he saying it, it was obviously easy to miss. For how much time they spent explaining how his programming prevented him from speaking it and explaining the roundabout way to get it out of him, it would have been nice if the reason why he couldn't translate was made more apparent with all of that.
I am just going to put most of this down to it being a poorly drafted and edited movie.
For sure.

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andersonh1
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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by andersonh1 »

The sequel trilogy was a poorly planned tug of war between two different directors, and it shows, in addition to simply having nothing new to offer in terms of story or ideas. This whole trilogy ought to have been planned out from the beginning with a clear goal in mind, and it needed to have a reason to exist other than "Disney just bought Star Wars, so make some new movies".

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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by andersonh1 »

I finally watched "Bumblebee", and I have to say, I think it's an improvement on the last few Bay films. I enjoyed the more G1-inspired designs and voices for some of the characters, and the smaller-scale story worked well. Less violence (apart from humans being turned into goo) and less profanity made it more child-friendly than these movies have been since probably the first one, and all the 80s references were fun. Odd never seeing Megatron in the movie at all. I wouldn't mind seeing a few more Transformers movies more like this one and less like the Bay films. There's some good stuff in most of them, but I think that approach is played out.

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Sparky Prime
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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by Sparky Prime »

So the novelization for the Rise of Skywalker is coming out soon and some details have leaked...

Spoiler
Apparently Palpatine's body in the film is a clone that his consciousness transferred to after his death in Return of the Jedi. And his son that fathered Rey? Apparently that was a failed clone of Palaptine.

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Sparky Prime
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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by Sparky Prime »

JediTricks wrote:
Thu Aug 29, 2019 10:53 am
andersonh1 wrote:
JediTricks wrote:What We Leave Behind - 8/10 - the Deep Space Nine documentary finally streamed for early backers like me. It's 2 hours long, feels like it could have been another hour easily, so much probably got left out. A bit unfocused and unclear of the point (except for focusing on Ira Steven Behr a lot, must be nice to be producer), but the smaller points and the greater whole are well-served. The HD remastering looks fantastic, if CBS doesn't put money into this, they're fools.
Did they talk about why Terry Farrell left the show? I only recently heard anything about it, and it seems like Rick Berman was being insulting to her and not taking her seriously, and she decided to walk rather than put up with any more of that. Apparently Ira Behr didn't know anything about it or he would have intervened.
I haven't watched since the backers' digital stream, though I will again soon since I have the blu-ray here. I remember them touching on Terry Farrell's leaving but not really digging into it, I suspect they didn't want to shit on Rick Berman as he was also one of the interviewees on the film. They did add a little to the story other than Berman's abuse (which I've heard from so many sources that I can't help but believe) by talking about Terry not wanting a full season contract, IIRC.
Finally got around to watching this yesterday. It's currently on Youtube for free, albeit with ads.

I didn't realize how bad things were for Terry Farrell behind the scenes with the producers. I kinda wish they had gone into it a bit more. She said at the end of the 5th season, the contract negotiations began for the 7th season. A few of them were essentially given a take-it-or-leave-it offer, but she wanted to have a conversation with the producers about it, and they were dismissive towards her. Then one of the producers (she didn't say which), told her she was really lucky to be there, and that if she hadn't been working on DS9, that she'd be working at Kmart. That was the final straw for her. She told them she wanted out, and they killed off the character.

I liked that they got some of the writers back together to do a hypothetical season 8 first episode. Not sure how I feel about Bajor becoming so secretive and getting converted Jem'Hadar soldiers to work for them (and I have a hard time believing Kira would go along with any of that)... But still, it was an interesting story pitch they came up with. Honestly, I'd much rather watch that than what the current Star Trek series have been doing.

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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by Sparky Prime »

Mortal Kombat 2021

Kinda reliving a piece of my childhood watching this film. I enjoyed the first 3 games of the series, but I haven't really followed it since then (although I know they did some time travel stuff to reset the timeline and take the story in a new direction in MK 10 and 11). I also saw the two films they'd done in the 90s. Which, I mean, they weren't great. Bad early 90s CGI. Not much of a story (not that MK is exactly known for its story in the first place, but every character has their own story and possible outcomes in every game). So after nearly 20 years, it's interesting to see then revisit the franchise, to hopefully do a better job with it...
Spoiler
The opening takes place sometime in the past. Sub-Zero arrives at Scorpion's home, where he kills his family before fighting and killing Scorpion as well. Scorpion's daughter was hidden away though, and is taken by Raiden. Sub-Zero says killing Scorpion is for the Lin Kuei... but the movie never expands on that.

In the present day, Earthrealm has lost 9 straight Mortal Kombat tournaments, and is on their last chance before Outworld will be allowed to invade Earthrealm. The story now focuses on a washed up MMA fighter named Cole Young. If anyone is a fan of the franchise you'll recognize... there is no character with that name in the franchise. He's an original character they invented for this film, so it's easy to guess he is the descendant of Scorpion's daughter, long before they establish it. Sonya, Jax, Kano, Liu Kang, Kung Lao, and Cole are the chosen fighters that all end up at Raiden's temple to begin training and learn to unlock their arcana. Basically arcana is their special abilities, like Liu Kang's fireballs or Kano shooting a laser from one eye (rather than being a cyborg eye he's got in the games). But some of them don't really make sense. Jax's special ability in this film is essentially just an upgrade to his metal arms (which, apparently Shaolin Monks knew how to make his initial robot arms, which I vaguely recall they hand wave away as having gotten knowledge from other realms) while Cole's manifests from a bracelet that turns into armor and arm blades.

Shang Tsung along with Sub-Zero, Mileena, Reiko, Nitara, Goro, and Kabal attempts to kill them before the tournament. Why is Kabal fighting for Outworld? He's from Earthrealm. Not that you'd know that from this film. Other than they establish he's got some history with Kano... None of these villains really get any development.

The final fight, Scorpion returns from Hell (the movie doesn't explain how) to help Cole fight Sub-Zero and save his family... So with the Outworlder's defeated, Shang Tsung says he will return with an army next time, and the Earthrealm fighters decide they should gather more chosen fighters for Mortal Kombat... Setting things up for a sequel.

As far as Mortal Kombat movies go... I'd say the story is on par with the 90's films. Things tend to happen just because they need it to, and most of the characters I feel only got put in for brand recognition. I expected Cole would become like a new Scorpion, or maybe a reincarnation or the original. But nope. Totally new character that might as well not even be related to Scorpion. Which I feel kinda highlights the problems with this film... If your characters are so interchangeable you can introduce a totally new one like this, what's the point of making a film based off an existing franchise? Heck, technically, the Mortal Kombat tournament doesn't even happen in this film, this is all Outworld cheating by trying to kill off the Earthrealm fighters before the tournament even begins. I do have to say though, the special effects and costumes were pretty good.

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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by andersonh1 »

Finally got around to watching Spider-Man: Far From Home over the weekend. I think they did a good job showing how young and inexperienced Peter Parker really is, and how difficult it would be for a teen to navigate a world of far more experienced and dominant personalities like Nick Fury, Tony Stark and Quentin Beck. Peter is a bit lost without his mentor. Spider Man feels like the most traditional "wants to get the girl, has to protect his secret id" type of superhero movie that Marvel produces, a formula which still works well. I did enjoy the fact that MJ figured out who he was before he told her.

On the other hand, how many of the threats in these movies are all down to Tony Stark? Mysterio and all his support team are disaffected employees of Tony's!! I liked how the guy Stane was griping at in the first Iron Man movie came back, nice continuity there. Beck was well played, and I like that his whole deal is a giant scam based on illusory threats.

And they got J. K. Simmons back as Jonah Jameson! That's great!

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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by Shockwave »

Saw Mortal Kombat this weekend. I actually liked it. I liked it better than the first movie in the 90's which I actually liked then as well. I thought this one had a better story, only because they pretty much kept it to characters from the first game. There were a few from later games, but mostly only because they were tangential to the characters that we were following. Kabal is in it, but he was in the Black Dragon with Kano, so their stories mesh. Jax is in it, but again, his story is tied to Sonya's. The only ones from other games that weren't specifically tied to characters from the first game were mostly on the Outworld side, Mileena, Nitara, and Reiko. I feel like they incorporated everything storywise from the first game well. Visually, I would have preferred Scorpion and Sub-Zero to have their iconic yellow and blue in their costumes. Scorpion didn't really get that until the end and if not for people addressing Sub-Zero by name, I wouldn't have known it was him. In fact, at first I thought it was either Noob Saibot or Smoke. But overall, I liked it, I thought it was an improvement over the first one. It was entertaining and fun.

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Sparky Prime
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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by Sparky Prime »

Shockwave wrote:
Mon Apr 26, 2021 9:08 am
Kabal is in it, but he was in the Black Dragon with Kano, so their stories mesh.
One of the problems I had with this in the movie... They establish
Spoiler
Kano is the reason Kabal has to wear that mask/respirator. So why would Kano trust him at all?
And they never explain why Kabal is working with Outworld in this film. I mean, as a (former) member of the Black Dragon, it makes sense he wouldn't necessarily be fighting with the other Earthrealm fighters, but, In the games, he's usually still fighting for Earthrealm. So how/why did he end up working with Outworld in this film instead?
In fact, at first I thought it was either Noob Saibot or Smoke.
Technically he is Noob Saibot. That's what Bi Han becomes after he's killed in the games.

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