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#836: Anger, Management

August 19, 2013

Notes from the Manager

So… yeah! I’m sure some of you will want to discuss Elysium below, but please keep the comments below spoiler-free for people who haven’t seen it yet. No “spoiler warnings,” just… you know, discuss it without unreasonable spoilers.

My take: it’s pretty dumb. As an action movie, it’s fun, and there are some great effects in it, but the way the premise plays out is like is about as sophisticated as an eight year old wishing for world peace. It just doesn’t explore its ideas with any depth.

I wouldn’t say Elysium is District 9 all over again, personally, but some critics have, so I thought I’d make Jason think that. In any case, District 9 is the smarter movie, the more engaging movie, and the better action movie because of it.

(I think they’re different enough, but I think a lot of people were hoping Elysium would be as different from District 9 as District 9 was from… well, every science fiction movie before it. Except for maybe Alien Nation. What we got was… very much a companion piece. I hope Neill Blomkamp stretches his range a little bit more next time around.)

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Leonard Nimoy (1931–2015)

Sunday, March 1, 2015

I was never a huge Star Trek fan, exactly. I love some of the early episodes, and I think Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan is one of the greatest science fiction movies of all time. I enjoyed Star Trek III and IV, too, for what they were. I read a bunch of the DC Comics Star Trek stuff at that time, because my brother bought them. And I watched a bit of the Next Generation and then fell off the wagon. Kirk and Spock were my Star Trek, and the Star Trek 2–4 “era” was its peak for me, warts and all, because that’s the “era” that really hooked me. And really, for me, it was all about Wrath of Khan.

In addition to playing Mr. Spock, of course, Leonard Nimoy did a lot of other things. He was on Mission: Impossible. He directed a few movies (Three Men and a Baby!). He was a photographer. He was the voice of Civilization IV. But one thing I really loved of his was Standby: Lights, Camera, Action, on Nickelodeon from 1982–1987, which provided a behind the scenes look at movies like Star Trek III, Return of the Jedi, 2010, and more. Nimoy hosted and occasionally interviewed guests like George Lucas. As a budding film nerd in the pre-Internet Dark Ages, behind the scenes specials like Standby: Lights, Camera, Action were hard to come by. I ate that show up.

Anyway, as you’re undoubtedly aware by now, Leonard Nimoy passed away on the 27th. As cartoonists do when they’re sad about these kinds of things, I drew a picture:

Leonard_Nimoy

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