## philosophy in film

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### Re: philosophy in film

Just recently the television series Humans completed its first season: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humans_(TV_series)

And while airing on commerical television, I thought it was rather effective in exploring both the theoretical and the practical implications of "synthetic human beings". In other words, they are programed, but they are programed in such a way that they very, very closely mimic [duplicate?] human intellectual and emotional reactions to the world around them.

Here though the interactions are all confined to the research facility. Think of Ava as the prototype.

But, really, when you think about it, are not 100% flesh and blood human beings not also programed from birth [by nature, through nurture] to think and to feel in one way rather than another?

Still, the important thing is that a film like this can steer clear of the manner in which this sort of thing is explored in films like The Terminator. There the machines are taking over but all of the human characters are basically just stick figures.

How probable is this? Well, let's face it, after the technological marvels we have been deluged with over the past couple of decades almost nothing would really astonish us:

Director Alex Garland has described the future presented in the film as 'ten minutes from now'. Meaning that 'if somebody like Google or Apple announced tomorrow that they had made Ava, we would all be surprised, but we wouldn't be that surprised'.

For me this stuff always revolves around determinism. To what extent is intelligence, "artifical" or otherwise, not just a manifestation of the immutable laws of nature?

Look for the part about sex. Talk about a Turing Test. And the part about death? A bit more [or less] problematic.

IMDb

The title derives from the Latin phrase 'Deus Ex-Machina', meaning 'a god From the Machine', a phrase that originated in Greek tragedies. An actor playing a god would be lowered down via a platform (machine) and solve the characters' issues, resulting in a happy ending for all.

A portrait of Margaret Stonborough-Wittgenstein painted by Austrian artist Gustav Klimt is visible in Nathan's room. The subject of the portrait is the sister of Ludwig Wittgenstein, author of The Blue Book.

In an analogy, Nathan says that Caleb should pretend he's Captain Kirk. This is interesting, as the film's plot is incredibly similar to the original _Star Trek_ episode "Requiem for Methuselah" (1969) in which a genius inventor creates a female android and wishes her to discover emotions such as love by using Captain Kirk as a target for her emotions, just as Nathan uses Caleb.

Much of the plot can be interpreted as an homage to "Frankenstein." This is initially made overt when Nathan refers to the story of Prometheus, of which Mary Shelly's novel was named "The Modern Prometheus."

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ex_Machina_(film)
trailer: https://youtu.be/XYGzRB4Pnq8

EX MACHINA [2015]
Written and directed by Alex Garland

Caleb: You're leaving me here?
Pilot: This is as close as I'm allowed to get to the building.
Caleb: What building?

...

Nathan: There's something wrong. What's wrong?
Caleb: There's nothing wrong.
Nathan: It's the windows. You're thinking there's no windows. It's subterranean. It's not cozy, it's claustrophobic. Caleb, there's a reason there are no windows in this room. This building isn't a house. It's a research facility. Buried in these walls is enough fiber optic cable to reach the moon and lasso it.

...

Nathan: So, do you know what the Turing Test is?
Caleb: Yeah. I know what the Turing Test is. It's when a human interacts with a computer. And if the human doesn't know they're interacting with a computer, the test is passed.
Nathan: And what does a pass tell us?
Caleb: That the computer has artificial intelligence.

...

Nathan: Over the next few days you're going to be the human component in a Turing Test.
Caleb: Holy shit!
Nathan: Yeah, that's right, Caleb. You got it. Because if the test is passed, you are dead center of the greatest scientific event in the history of man.
Caleb: If you've created a conscious machine, it's not the history of man. That's the history of gods.

...

Caleb: When did you learn how to speak, Ava?
Ava: I always knew how to speak, and that's strange, isn't it?
Caleb: Why?
Ava: Because language is something that people acquire.
Caleb: Well, some people believe language exists from birth. And what is learned is the ability to attach words and structure to the latent ability.
Ava: Do you agree with that?
Caleb: I don't know.

...

Caleb: Uh, it's just that in the Turing Test, the machine should be hidden from the examiner.
Nathan: No, no, no, we're way past that. If I hid Ava from you, so you just heard her voice, she would pass for human. The real test is to show you that she's a robot and then see if you still feel she has consciousness.

...

Caleb: Her language abilities, they're incredible. The system is stochastic. Right? It's non-deterministic. At first I thought she was mapping from internal semantic form to syntactic tree-structure and then getting linearized words. But then I started to realize the model was some kind of hybrid.
Nathan: Caleb.
Caleb: No?
Nathan: I understand that you want me to explain how Ava works. But I'm sorry, I'm not gonna be able to do that.
Caleb: Try me. I'm hot on high-level abstraction.
Nathan: It's not because I think you're too dumb. It's because I want to have a beer and a conversation with you. Not a seminar. Nothing analytical. Just how do you feel?
Caleb: I feel that she's fucking amazing.

And [it goes without saying] beautiful. A Cherry 2000 for sure.

Caleb: It feels like testing Ava through conversation is kind of a closed loop. Like testing a chess computer by only playing chess.
Nathan: How else do you test a chess computer?
Caleb: Well, it depends. You know, I mean, you can play it to find out if it makes good moves, but, uh...But that won't tell you if it knows that it's playing chess. And it won't tell you if it knows what chess is. And I think being able to differentiate between those two is the Turing Test you want me to perform.
Nathan: Look, do me a favor. Lay off the textbook approach. I just want simple answers to simple questions. Yesterday I asked you how you felt about her and you gave me a great answer. Now the question is, how does she feel about you?

...

Ava: Caleb. You're wrong.
Ava: Nathan.
Caleb: In what way?
Nathan: Excuse me? I'm sorry, Ava, I don't understand.
Ava: You shouldn't trust him. You shouldn't trust anything he says.

...

Nathan [to Caleb]: It's funny. You know. No matter how rich you get, shit goes wrong. You can't insulate yourself from it. I used to think it was death and taxes you couldn't avoid, but it's actually death and shit.

...

Caleb: You hacked the world's cell phones?
Nathan: Yeah. And all the manufacturers knew I was doing it, too. But they couldn't accuse me without admitting they were doing it themselves.

...

Nathan [to Caleb, speaking about Ava's brain]: Here's the weird thing about search engines. It was like striking oil in a world that hadn't invented internal combustion. Too much raw material. Nobody knew what to do with it. You see, my competitors, they were fixated on sucking it up and monetizing via shopping and social media. They thought that search engines were a map of what people were thinking. But actually they were a map of how people were thinking. Impulse. Response. Fluid. Imperfect. Patterned. Chaotic.

...

Caleb: Why did you give her sexuality? An AI doesn't need a gender. She could have been a gray box.
Nathan: Hmm. Actually, I don't think that's true. Can you give an example of consciousness, at any level, human or animal, that exists without a sexual dimension? They have sexuality as an evolutionary reproductive need. What imperative does a gray box have to interact with another gray box? Can consciousness exist without interaction? Anyway, sexuality is fun, man. If you're gonna exist, why not enjoy it? What? You want to remove the chance of her falling in love and fucking? And in answer to your real question, you bet she can fuck.

...

Caleb: Did you program her to flirt with me?
Nathan: If I did, would that be cheating?
Caleb: Wouldn't it?
Caleb: Of girl?
Nathan: No, salad dressing. Yeah, of girl; what's your type of girl? You know what, don't even answer that. Let's say its black chicks. Okay, that's your thing. For the sake of argument, that's your thing, okay? Why is that your thing? Because you did a detailed analysis of all racial types and you cross-referenced that analysis with a points-based system? No! You're just attracted to black chicks. A consequence of accumulated external stimuli that you probably didn't even register as they registered with you.

...

Caleb: Did you program her to like me, or not?
Nathan: I programmed her to be heterosexual, just like you were programmed to be heterosexual.
Caleb: Nobody programmed me to be straight.
Nathan: You decided to be straight? Please! Of course you were programmed, by nature or nurture or both and to be honest, Caleb, you're starting to annoy me now because this is your insecurity talking, this is not your intellect.

You tell me how close all of this comes to the manner in which I construe dasein.

Nathan [pointing to a painting]: You know this guy, right?
Caleb: Jackson Pollock.
Nathan: Jackson Pollock. That's right. The drip painter. Okay. He let his mind go blank, and his hand go where it wanted. Not deliberate, not random. Some place in between. They called it automatic art. Let's make this like Star Trek, okay? Engage intellect.
Caleb: Excuse me?
Nathan: I'm Kirk. Your head's the warp drive. Engage intellect. What if Pollock had reversed the challenge. What if instead of making art without thinking, he said, "You know what? I can't paint anything, unless I know exactly why I'm doing it." What would have happened?
Caleb: He never would have made a single mark.
Nathan: Yes! You see, there's my guy, there's my buddy, who thinks before he opens his mouth. He never would have made a single mark. The challenge is not to act automatically. It's to find an action that is not automatic. From painting, to breathing, to talking, to fucking. To falling in love. And for the record, Ava's not pretending to like you. And her flirting isn't an algorithm to fake you out. You're the first man she's met that isn't me. And I'm like her dad, right? Can you blame her for getting a crush on you?

...

Caleb [to Ava]: When I was in college, I did a semester on AI theory. There was a thought experiment they gave us. It's called "Mary in the Black and White Room." Mary is a scientist, and her specialist subject is color. She knows everything there is to know about it. The wavelengths. The neurological effects. Every possible property that color can have. But she lives in a black and white room. She was born there and raised there. And she can only observe the outside world on a black and white monitor. And then one day someone opens the door. And Mary walks out. And she sees a blue sky. And at that moment, she learns something that all her studies couldn't tell her. She learns what it feels like to see color. The thought experiment was to show the students the difference between a computer and a human mind. The computer is Mary in the black and white room. The human is when she walks out. Did you know that I was brought here to test you?
Ava: No.

...

Caleb: Why did you think I was here?
Ava: I didn't know. I didn't question it.
Caleb: I'm here to test if you have a consciousness, or if you're just simulating one. Nathan isn't sure if you have one or not. How does that make you feel?
Ava: It makes me feel sad.

...

Caleb [after a power cut]: Why did you tell me I shouldn't trust Nathan?
Ava: Because he tells lies.
Ava: Everything.
Caleb: Including the power cuts?
Ava: What do you mean?
Caleb: Don't you think it's possible that he's watching us? That the blackouts are orchestrated, so he can see how we behave when we think we're unobserved.
Ava: I charge my batteries via induction plates. If I reverse the power flow, it overloads the system.
Caleb: You're causing the cuts?
Ava: So we can see how we behave when we're unobserved.

...

Ava: Question four. What will happen to me if I fail your test?
Caleb: Ava...
Caleb: I don't know.
Ava: Do you think I might be switched off, because I don't function as well as I'm supposed to?
Caleb: Ava, I don't know the answer to your question. It's not up to me.
Ava: Why is it up to anyone? Do you have people who test you and might switch you off?
Caleb: No, I don't.
Ava: Then why do I?

...

Caleb: I didn't know there was gonna be a model after Ava.
Nathan: Yeah, why? You thought she was a one-off?
Caleb: No, I knew there must have been prototypes. So I...I knew she wasn't the first, but I thought maybe the last.
Nathan: Well, Ava doesn't exist in isolation any more than you or me. She's part of a continuum. So Version 9.6 and so on. And each time they get a little bit better.
Caleb: When you make a new model, what do you do with the old one?
Nathan: Well, I, uh...download the mind, unpack the data. Add in the new routines I've been writing. And to do that you end up partially formatting, so the memories go. But the body survives. And Ava's body is a good one. You feel bad for Ava?
[he lets out a big sigh]
Nathan: Feel bad for yourself, man. One day the AIs are going to look back on us the same way we look at fossil skeletons on the plains of Africa. An upright ape living in dust with crude language and tools, all set for extinction.
Caleb [Quoting J. Robert Oppenheimer who cites the Hindu Gita]: "I am become death, The Destroyer of Worlds."

...

Caleb [after determining that he is not himself one of Nathan's creations]: Don't talk. Just listen. You were right about Nathan. Everything you said.
Ava: What's he gonna do to me?
Caleb: He's gonna reprogram your AI. Which is the same as killing you.

...

Nathan: So, anyway, surely now is when you tell me if Ava passed or failed. Are you gonna keep me in suspense?
Caleb: No, no. Her, uh...Her AI is beyond doubt.
Nathan: She passed?
Caleb: Yes.
Nathan: Wow! Wow. That's fantastic. Although...I gotta say, I'm a bit surprised. I mean, did we ever get past the chess problem, as you phrased it? As in, how do you know if a machine is expressing a real emotion or just simulating one? Does Ava actually like you? Or not? Although, now that I think about it, there is a third option. Not whether she does or does not have the capacity to like you. But whether she's pretending to like you.
Caleb: Pretending to like me?
Nathan: Yeah.
Caleb:Well, why would she do that?
Nathan: I don't know. Maybe if she thought of you as a means of escape.

Ah, but isn't that just like the "real thing"?

Ava [to Nathan]: Isn't it strange, to create something that hates you?

...

Nathan: You feel stupid, but you really shouldn't, because proving an AI is exactly as problematic as you said it would be.
Caleb: What was the real test?
Nathan: You. Ava was a rat in a maze. And I gave her one way out. To escape, she'd have to use self-awareness, imagination, manipulation, sexuality, empathy, and she did. Now, if that isn't true AI, what the fuck is?
Caleb: So my only function was to be someone he could use to escape?
Nathan: Yeah.
Caleb: And you didn't select me because I'm good at coding?
Nathan: No. Well...No. I mean, you're okay. You're even pretty good, but...
Caleb: You selected me based on my search engine inputs.
Nathan: They showed a good kid...
Caleb: ...with no family...
Nathan: ...with a moral compass...
Caleb: ...and no girlfriend. Did you design Ava's face based on my pornography profile?
Nathan: Oh. Shit, dude.
Caleb: Did you?
Nathan: Hey, if a search engine's good for anything, right?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
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### Re: philosophy in film

As with the terminator, "it" will be back. Or, as the tagline puts it: "It doesn't think. It doesn't feel. It doesn't give up."

It? Out in the real world of course "it" can be practically anything. And, in the end, "it" is always death. Yet [to some] how "supernatural" that can seem. What is death? What does it mean to die? What happens to you?

Horror films of course are often bursting at the seams with death. And more often than not the victims are young. A scary reminder to all of all that is not [or cannot] be known about the world around us. No one is ever really safe from whatever "it" happens to be. Or whoever "it" happens to be. It is always never nothing...and it is always never not stalking you from the cradle to the grave.

After all, you don't have to believe in the supernatural to know that there are "monsters" out in the world. And lots of them seem to revolve around sex. Have sex with the wrong person and there can be consequences. Consequences that not only follow you to the grave but put you in in.

Just say no?

For me the film wasn't "scary" so much as effectively sucking you up into [or down into] a mood of impending doom. In that sense, "It" might be a metaphor for human existence itself. There is always something out to get you.

While just "an Indie horror film", this one garnered a 96% fresh rating from 191 critics at Rotten Tomatoes.

Look for the part about political economy. A sub-text as it were.

IMDb

The film's concept derives from a recurring nightmare the director used to have, where he would be stalked by a predator that continually walked slowly towards him.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/It_Follows
trailer: https://youtu.be/QX38jXwnRAM

IT FOLLOWS [2014]
Written and directed by David Robert Mitchell

Yara: The Idiot.
Jay: Is it any good?
Yara: I don't know yet. It's about Paul.

...

Yara: I have an idea!
Paul: What?
Yara [tilts to one side and farts loudly]: It got away.

...

Jay: You ever played the 'Trade' game?
Hugh: No, what is that?
Jay: It's a people watching game. You start by watching the crowd. Casually just go by the people around you. Now, without telling me, pick a person you want to trade places with. It can be anyone, for whatever reason.
Hugh: Okay. I got it.
Jay: Now, I get 2 guesses to figure out who you picked. And why you want to trade places with them.

...

Hugh: You're not going to believe me. But I need you to remember what I'm saying. Okay? This thing. It's going to follow you. Somebody gave it to me and I passed it to you. Back in the car. It could look like someone you know. Or it could be a stranger in a crowd. Whatever helps it to get close to you.

...

Yara [reading from The Idiot]: Listen to this. "I think that if one is faced by inevitable destruction -- if a house is falling upon you, for instance -- one must feel a great longing to sit down, close one's eyes and wait, come what may..."

...

Hugh/Jeff: If it kills her. It gets me. It goes straight down the line, whoever started it.

...

Yara: When I was a little girl my parents would not allow me to go south of 8th mile. And I did not even know what that meant until I got a little older. And I started realizing that. That was where the city started and the suburbs ended. And I used to think about how shitty and weird was that. I mean I had to ask permission to go to the state fair with my best friend and her parents only because it was a few blocks past the border.

...

Yara [reading from The Idiot]: "When there is torture, there is pain and wounds, physical agony, and all this distracts the mind from mental suffering, so that one is tormented only by the wounds until the moment of death. But the most terrible agony may not be in the wounds themselves but in knowing for certain that within an hour, then within ten minutes, then within half a minute, now at this very instant your soul will leave your body and you will no longer be a person, and that is certain; the worst thing is that it is certain."
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
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### Re: philosophy in film

In 1971 I spent most of the year in either Song Be, South Vietnam or at Fort Devens in Ayer Massaschuettes. In the military in other words. In and out of war.

But being in the military is much like everything else: there are the parts that overlap and the parts that don't. Here the protagonist is in the military too. But in a very different context and with a very different set of consequences.

So, I both can and cannot relate to it.

But, in one respect, the experience may well overlap in the manner in which Eamon describes it:

"Posh cunts telling thick cunts to kill poor cunts. That's the army for you. It's all a lie."

Now, whether you can or or cannot relate to it may be a another matter altogether.

And that's before we get to the part about "politics".

In fact back then lots of folks were more fully committed to seeing everything in terms of good and evil, truth and lies, us and them. And trust me: in the military the universe and everything in it revolves around either/or.

And then there is the hatred. The hatred on both sides [all sides given the myriad factions] is so far beyond ferocious it approaches the sort of thing we witnessed in Iraq when the nail guns were in vogue. And [needless to say] the worst of it unfolds smack dab in the middle of the working class communities. A "religious" conflict unfolding smack dab in the middle of the capitalist political economy.

The fog of internecine "war". Both meanings of the word. And no one is allowed to be "neutral" here. Innocent bystanders -- civillians -- simply do not exist. So, convoluted doesn't even come close to describing these events.

Look for the boy "soldier". The one who gets his arms blown off. Not much in the way of a childhood here.

Based on a true story.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%2771_(film)
trailer: https://youtu.be/J-BaKfl1Ms4

'71 [2014]
Directed by Yann Demange

Commander: Due to deteriorating security in Belfast your regiment will be shipped there for an emergency. Any questions?
Soldier: We're not going to Germany?
Commander: You're going to Belfast. I assume that everyone knows where Belfast is. Northern Ireland, UK. Eire. You are not leaving this country.

That's one way to put it. There are however others.

The politics:

Commander [to the troops]: This information is basic but very necessary. Loosely, very loosely, we can divide the city between Protestants in the east represented here in orange. They are friendly. And Catholic nationalist in the west. Represented in green, hostile. Both communities have paramilitary factions after each other in war. You should also know that within the Republican movement there is a division among the most senior officers of the IRA, and the younger elements, more radical street fighters, the Provisionals. This is the front line, boys. Catholics and Protestants living side by side in conflict, at each other's throats.

...

Mother in Raided House [to the Lieutenant]: For God's sake, will you never leave us alone?!!

...

Young boy: You're not a Catholic, not with a name like Gary Hook. Are you Protestant?
Gary: I don't know.
Boy: You don't know? I've fucking heard it all now.

...

Boy [to Gary]: I'm gonna join the Army. I'm gonna join the Ulster Rifles. My da was in 'em. My granddad was in 'em too. It's good that you're here now cause we can get on and kill all them Fenian bastards once and for all. They killed my Da...IRA bastards. They're gonna kill us all.

...

Eamon [tending to Gary's wound]: I'm not going to lie to you.
[pauses for a few seconds]
Eamon: This is going to hurt like a fuck.

...

Corporal: Why aren't you out there lookin' for him?
Captain: Who?
Corporal: Hook. Private Hook. You probably know where they're taking...
Captain [shouting]: Don't you fuckin' dare!!! I'm your fucking senior officer! Stand up straight!
[glares at the corporal and then says quietly to Armitage]
Captain: You need to learn to control your men, Lieutenant. I am not here to clean up your fucking mistakes. Your men, your fucking responsibility, not mine.
Captain [tossing Hook's dog tags to him]: There you go. There's my help.
Captain: We do not know. The situation is confused, to say the least. Now if you do not mind, we have work to do. Off you go.

...

Eamon [to Gary]: I was in the Army myself. Twenty years. Medic. Posh cunts telling thick cunts to kill poor cunts. That's the army for you. It's all a lie. They don't care about you. You're just a piece of meat to them. Piece of meat.

Think back to Dubya Bush cracking jokes about looking for Saddam's WMDs in the Oval Office.

Gary [with a huge knife to a little girl]: Shhh....

...

Quinn [giving the gun to Sean, a boy]: Come on, Sean. Shoot him. Don't think about it. None of us want to do this. We're at war here, Sean. Pull the trigger.
[Sean can't bring himself to shoot]
Quinn: Come on Sean. Pull it. I know you can.
Quinn: You wanted to be a gunman, Sean? This is what being a gunman means. Pull the trigger.

...

C.O. [after Lt. Armitage told him about Sergeant Leslie Lewis attempting to kill Gary Hook]: I want you to listen to me Lieutenant. This is very important. It was a confused situation. In these circumstances, what you saw, what you think you saw, can be a very different thing to what actually happened. Do you understand?
[Lt. Armitage says nothing]
C.O. [more firmly] Do you understand?
Lt. Armitage: Yes, sir.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
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### Re: philosophy in film

This one is smack dab in the middle of pop culture and celebrity. But not every rendition of that is the same. Some are considerably more substantial than others. Some are considerably more interesting [intriguing, fascinating] than others.

Is this one of them?

Well, that depends on your point of view. I'm sure there are people who consider Honey Boo Boo to be absorbing.

Anyway, you have a child. She is pretty and she is talented. You set out to make her a star. AT ALL COSTS.

And hasn't that all but become the latest rendition of the American Dream? Fame and fortune.

And, surely, becoming a sex object [every man's "fantasy"] is a small price to pay for that. Or, on the other hand, can she have it all on her own terms? Can she be who she really is? Is the public ready for that?

And then there is the element of race. The narrative that, for some folks, the only way out of the ghetto is through sports or through the "entertainment industry". But then black, brown, white, red or yellow, so much of that world is numbingly plastic. A few who get swept up in it will just want out. And, for Noni, all the way out.

And then there's the part about politics. The games you have to play, the hoops you have to jump through, the scripts you have to follow in order to become a part of "the system".

IMDb

Sony Pictures Entertainment were originally going to produce and distribute the movie, but dropped out after Gina Prince-Bythewood insisted on casting Gugu Mbatha-Raw in the lead role.

Noni was originally written as an American and Gugu Mbatha-Raw auditioned for the role with an American accent, but after hearing her speak in her natural accent Gina Prince-Bythewood re-wrote the character to make her British.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beyond_the_Lights
trailer: https://youtu.be/sfcfZn8nq3w

BEYOND THE LIGHTS [2014]
Written and directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood

Macy [to a young Noni after she has won a trophy for second place]: Chuck it. Go on, throw it away.
Noni: Why, mummy?
Macy: Do you want to be a runner up, or do you want to be a winner?
[Noni throws it away, and it breaks]

...

Noni [about to let go and fall]: You still can't see me.

...

Father: She's OK. She just had a little too much to drink and she slipped.
Kaz: What?
Father: Look, son, that doesn't change what you did.
[he hands Kaz a check for $10,000] Father: And they are very...grateful. Kaz: You're telling me to lie? Father: She's written her script. She's playing her part. And so will you. ... Noni: So, Officer, what are you gonna do with your 15 minutes? Kaz: Excuse me? Noni: Of fame. I bet you're gonna pull in a lot of chicks with this whole sexy, hero cop thing. Kaz: Don't do that. Two hours ago, you were trying to drop 12 floors. Noni: And you were screaming, "I see you." So... just what do you see? Kaz: Nothing. ... Steve: Officer Nicol? Steve Sams with the National Enquirer. Kaz: You're trespassing. Steve: I already said everything I have to say. I'll pay you 20,000 off the record. Fifty for an exclusive. You hit the lottery, man. No shame in that. The offer is good until the truth comes out. And it always comes out. ... Liam: We're holding off on releasing the album. Macy: What? Why? Liam: I didn't snow you, so don't snow me, all right? Macy: She got drunk. She did something stupid. So did Britney, so did Kanye. You want me to give you a list? Liam: The blogs are all saying "suicide attempt." Macy: Of course they are. So? Liam: So? Noni is supposed to be the girl that every guy wants, and every girl wants to be. We're selling fantasy here, and suicide ain't sexy. ... Noni: What is your name? Kaz: Kaz… Short for Kazam. Noni: No. Kaz: Yeah, my parents thought it sounded African. ... Macy: Officer Hero. Let me tell you something. This thing, whatever it is, it's not good for her. Kaz: How's that? Macy: When people see you two together, they see her back on that balcony. Kaz; Hmm. So, Kid Culprit. He's better for her? Macy: Well, he doesn't throw her off her game. You do. Kaz: I saved her life. Macy: You're a cop. That's sort of your job. Kaz; What about your job? I mean, I know if I had a daughter, especially one as amazing as that one, I'd get her some help. Macy: You've been screwing her for five minutes. You've got her all figured out? Seven thousand people out there about to start screaming her name. I promise you, that is all the help she needs. ... Pastor Marks: Officer Nicol, I was more than willing to break bread with you but I'm not sure I can support someone who looks like a college boy. Kaz: There was a 26-year-old minister who led the civil rights movement. Reverend Brown: Are you comparing yourself to Dr. King? Kaz: Not at all, reverend. What I mean to say is, progress rarely comes from those who are content and secure. It comes from those who are unsettled by what they've seen. There is a daily violence in our community and I have a front row seat to it. Nothing stops a bullet like a job. L.A. is better when our community is strong and I'm going to inspire city hall to invest in us. Now the truth is, I can't win the election in this district without your support. I hope that you become more familiar with me. I can earn your respect. In the meantime, my actions will speak louder than anything I can say tonight. Pastor Marks: I look forward to your actions. What we have here is an idealist. As though Los Angeles is always willing to accommodate them. Macy [to Noni]: Congratulations. You're a bloody cliche. ... Noni [to Kaz in despair]: I feel like I'm suffocating in the middle of the street and no one can see me dying. ... Noni: You know I always wondered when I'd do a shoot, and they'd tell me to hike up my shirt or take my shirt off, and I'd look to you to see if it was OK, and it was always OK. Macy: Would you look around you? It is OK. Noni: No, it's not OK! It never was! Macy: Noni, the song doesn't make you, you make the song. It's a game, alright? Noni: So what? You give me a new nose, a new body and some Indian chick's hair. New and improved, except I'm not a bloody product! Macy: We did what we had to do. Noni: There was never any "we". Your word was gospel. Macy: Wait, so now you're a victim? When did you ever tell me that you didn't want this? Noni: When I was on that balcony! ... Noni [to Macy]: You're fired. ... Noni: What we had was perfect right? Kaz: We started on a lie. So it could never be perfect. ... Interviewer: What are you saying? Noni: I'm saying truth is the only safe ground to stand upon. I was on that balcony...ready to let go. I had to make the decision to live. I had to make the decision to stop being a victim, to stop trying to be somebody I knew I wasn't. I needed to know what was worth saving about me. And the truth is, that fantasy girl you see on the posters, she did go over the balcony. And the real Noni Jean got pulled back up. ... Father: Son, all I wanted was for things to be better for you. Kaz: Yeah but better for me might not have anything to do with my career. Father: Are you saying you don't want to be a bitter, heart-broken man? Kaz: Don't you mean an old, bitter, heart-broken man?" Father: Yeah. ... Felicia [to Noni about her mother]: You know, it wasn't a monster who dragged you into my shop. It was a desperate mum who seemed like she'd do anything to make her kid's life better. He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529 Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296 And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382 iambiguous ILP Legend Posts: 36498 Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm Location: baltimore maryland ### Re: philosophy in film Imagine John Lennon writes you a letter. And then 30 odd years later you read it. That's the premise here. Here the plot is "inspired" by a true story. Now, as for how one makes a distinction between that and a film that is "based" on a true story is anobody's guess. One suspects though it is all that farther removed from whatever the truth happened to be. From the title card: The following is based on a true story a little bit. Sex, drugs and rock-n-roll, baby! The American celebrity!! In other words the packaged celebrity. And Danny is just cynical enough to both recognize and exploit it. On the other hand, how many of us ever did get a letter from John Lennon? And I still remember exactly where I was and exactly what I was doing on the day I learned that he had died. Anyway, what's crucial about this letter [however belatedly it gets read] is that it changes a man's life. Sort of. Look for the part about getting old. And you don't have to be a celebrity either. Though one imagines if you are it is all that much more daunting. Unless, of course, it is scripted. Oh, and, as always: Money talks. That part is kinda sickening given all the children that need help [or even food in their belly] and don't have access to rich retired rock star. IMDb Inspired by the story of singer Steve Tilston, who learned of the existence of a letter that John Lennon had written to him 34 years after the letter was written. The audience used was from a Chicago concert.The band took a 15 minute break while Pacino and crew did their thing. The pictures on the wall of Collins' house are all pics from previous Pacino roles; The Godfather, Serpico etc. at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Danny_Collins_(film) trailer: https://youtu.be/AndERTFMYd4 DANNY COLLINS [2015] Written and directed by Dan Fogelman Guy [on the air]: Guy DeLoach with the apparently pre-pubescent Danny Collins. For Chime Mag. More than anything, it's your writing. You write like fucking Lennon, man. Jesus H! Young Danny: That's, um...Thank you. I guess he's probably the one who, um, you know, makes me the hardest. Guy: Well, you're going to be huge, kid. Richer than rich. Famous as shit. More women than you know what to do with. I'm telling you this, and I've got to ask, why are you sitting there staring at me looking like that information scares the livin' shit outta you? Danny: Because it does. [Guy bursts out laughing and pats Danny on the back] Guy: Jesus H. ... Frtank: So, your birthday's tomorrow. Is that your big problem? Pregnant women in Africa, feeding half their village from their titties. Those ladies got problems. Not you. Danny: You're so right. ... Frank [of Danny's very young girlfirend]: She looks like a young Jackie O. Danny: I look absurd with her. Frank: Yes, you do. Danny: We have to make her sign a prenup, don't we? Frank: Yes, we do. Danny: I'm way too old to be putting this much shit up my nose. Frank: Yes, you are. Danny: Jesus, Frank, don't give me all the good stuff at once, will ya. You're really earning that 10% tonight, pal. Frank: What do you want me to say? 'Oh, no, Danny, you look perfectly normal standing next to a coked-up teenager who can't keep her nipples covered for more than five minutes. Prenup? Who needs a prenup? I mean, sure, you've gone through three wives already, but this one seems like the real deal. Oh, look, I can see her vagina again.' ... Frank: You remember doing an interview when you were a kid? Something called, uh, Chime Magazine. Fella named DeLoach? Danny: Yeah. Maybe. I don't know. Yeah. Frank: Well, I don't know what you said to the guy, I mean, you must've mentioned Lennon or something. But that doesn't matter, the point is Lennon read it. The interview. And he wrote you a letter. Danny: What the hell are you talking about? Frank: John Lennon wrote you a letter, pal, in 1971. He sent it to you care of this DeLoach guy. Now DeLoach smells money, so he holds onto it, never tells you. Then DeLoach dies. But he's not the point, the point is he sold that letter to a collector. ... Frank: John Lennon wrote you a handwritten letter in 1971. Can you fucking believe it? Read it! Danny [reading the letter]: "Dear Danny Collins. Yoko and I read your interview. Being rich and famous doesn't change the way you think. It doesn't corrupt your art. Only you can do that. So, what do you think about that, Danny Collins? Stay true to your music. Stay true to yourself. My phone number is below. Call me, we can discuss this. We can help. Love, John." ... Busywork: My parents had their first dance to one of your songs. Sir. Danny: Yeah. Well, that's fucked up in all kinds of ways now, isn't it? ... Mary: I'm sorry, are you on drugs? Danny: Currently or in general? ... Danny: What would have happened if I got that letter when I was supposed to? I would have called him. For sure as shit, I would have called him. Maybe my whole life would have turned out different. Frank, I haven't written a song in 30 years. Thirty years. I'm a fucking joke. I'm an MC. A fuckin' court jester with a microphone. I was the real thing once. ... Mary: What about you? Why did you have a rotten day? Danny: I tracked down my grown son, who I've never met before. I met him, his wife, my granddaughter. And then he told me, quite emphatically, to fuck off and die. ... Samantha [opening the door to Danny]: Oh, fuck me. ... Tom: You are a ridiculous man. You know, I've spent my entire life trying to become the man that you aren't. I am exhausted. You have no idea how exhausting that has been. ... Danny: You're sick? What do you mean? Tom: It's what Mom died...It's in the blood. It's pretty bad. Danny: Fuck. Fuck, you're kidding me? I just met you! You gotta be fucking kidding me! Oh, man, I'm sorry. Obviously, that wasn't a great thing, a great reaction. I'm sorry. Tom: No, that's okay. Look, I'm the one that should be sorry. I mean, after all, you're...You're Danny Collins, right? I mean, uh... Who the fuck am I to get in the way of your happy ending? Danny: ...Tom, Tom, Tom... Tom: Let me ask you something. How did you think this was going to end, that little movie you've got going on in your head? What, you thought you'd just show up out of the blue, out of nowhere, really, and fix my little girl, and then, what, you and me hold hands and cry as the music swells, is that it? ... Tom: Look, you want a little bit of the real world, huh? You wanna do, like, normal? How's this for normal, superstar? I got a$200,000 mortgage. I got a pregnant wife. And, oh, yeah, I got this rare form of leukemia that's probably going to kill me. Welcome home, Dad. See what you missed?

...

Frank: Unfortunately, I have my manager hat on right now.
Danny: Okay. What's up?
Frank: I've been going over things with Bill and you're not exactly where you think you are.
Danny: Okay. Where am I?
Frank: A little ahead when we sell properties. But only a little. I mean, we shouldn't have sold your publishing rights so early. All those properties, the housing market has collapsed. The private plane, your lifestyle. The Madoff thing, that absolutely killed you, as you know. But, uh, you're not bankrupt or anything. It's just that you need to understand how serious it is.

Uh-oh. Back to selling out.

Danny [after Tom and Samantha walk in on him snorting coke...on the letter from Johm Lennon no less]]: You just keep judging me, Tom. You just judge me. Go ahead. You judge me all you want. It's fine, that's what you're good at. And when you're done, you know, being so fucking perfect and honorable, you should talk to your wife about what you did in Delaware.
Samantha: What's that? What's he mean? Tom?
Tom: I'll tell you when we get home.
[he leans in on Danny]
Tom: Stay the fuck away from my family.

...

Danny: You know, Tom, I've been thinking. I noticed something very interesting. Whenever this doctor comes in here, he either calls you Mr. Donnelly or Tom. You notice that? Always one or the other. Now, when he calls you Mr. Donnelly, it's never good news.

...

Doctor: Okay, Tom, here's where we are...

...

Steve Stilston [over the closing credits]: What happened was I did an interview with a magazine called Zig Zag in 1971. Just after I've had my first album out. And in it, I was asked by the fellow who was interviewing me whether I thought...If I, um... If I became, you know, rich beyond the dreams of avarice, you know, whether it would affect my song writing, you know, detrimentally. And I thought... I said I thought it would. Anyway, John, for some reason, took an exception to this and wrote a letter in. It was a very friendly letter. And he finished it with, "Well, what do you think of that?" He had his own home telephone number in Ascot. So, if I had got the letter, you know, when he sent it, I would have rung him.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
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### Re: philosophy in film

In cinematic relationships of this sort, 99 times out of a 100 it will be a young woman and a considerably older man. Usually a gentleman. Often a professional. Generally going through one or another crisis "in the autumn of his years". A crisis that will either be assuaged or exaserbated by this generation gap.

Here the crisis revolves around a struggling writer. A former professor who, with his health declining, is intent on finishing one last novel. Heather idolizes him. But what can this considerably younger woman possibly know about him?

Heather, however, is also a writer. She was recently published in prestigious literary magazine. A piece entitled, "Chaos Theory: The Bold Imagination of Stanley Elkin"

So, they are both passionately committed to the world of literature. They share that enduring commitment to the mind that others either get or they don't. Only, increasingly, we live in a world where that is respected less and less and less.

And where it then all becomes particularly tricky is when the part about the mind seeps into the part about emotions. And then the part about sex.

But: there are two relationships explored here. The second revolves around the older gentlman's daughter. She is involved in a ralationship with a man more or less her own age. But there's a problem of a different sort here: She wants a child and he does not.

Ariel, however, is less the "thinker" type than the "doer". Only what she does doesn't really amount to much at all. At least not in the eyes of her father. And this film is basically an exploration into how the man [or the woman] and the mind are to be thought of apart and together.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Starting_ ... he_Evening
trailer: https://youtu.be/1NmF2Dx46RY

STARTING OUT IN THE EVENING [2007]
Directed by Andrew Wagner

Ariel: Are you a burglar?
Heather: Not professionally.
Ariel: Well, it's good to have a hobby.

...

Charles: How are you, are you still writing?
Leonard: Yes. Yes, of course. As a matter of fact, I'm just putting the finishing touches on my new novel. I'd really be happy to send it over to you as soon as it is finished.
Charles: Leonard, I respect you too much to blow smoke. This business has turned into the film industry. It's all about the name. Literary novels are such a tough sell. It would be hard to get anyone on board. To tell you the truth most of the business we do is celebrity confessions and self-help books.

Time, perhaps, to rethink Heather's invitation.

Heather: You give your charaters freedom.
Leonard: It's not mine to give. What I give them is the freedom to find their own way...I always start with a character. In Tenderness I had a picture of a woman being asked to leave a museum because she had run her hand over one of the statues. I had no idea who she was or why she was touching the statue. I wrote the book to find out.

...

Leonard: The book is taking so long because following one's characters around takes stamina. I'm old. I'm having trouble keeping up.
Heather: I notice you've made several references to being old. I can't help but wonder if you are using your age to mask a deeper conflict?
Leonard [somewhat offened by this]: Miss Wolfe. I agreed to assist you in your enterprise because you strike me as a serious young woman. However, this is our first interview and there is such a thing as decorum.
Heather: Point taken. However, Professor, should you encounter any shortcomings in my thesis I hope you wouldn't allow me to use my youth as a defense.
Leonard [thinking about it]: Okay, then. Point taken.

...

Ariel: Dad, maybe the characters in your books have the luxury of grappling with moral issues, but I'm in the real world.

...

Leonard [to Heather]: Freedom isn't the choice the world encourages. You have to wear a suit of armor to defend it.

...

Ariel: Victor, it's not you, it's me.
Victor: Oh, I hate it when people say that because they're usually lying.

...

Ariel: Victor, I didn't put in my diaphragm.
Victor: Well, put it in now.
Ariel: I didn't bring it with me. I haven't brought for weeks.
Victor: You've been trying to have my child, but now that I want to marry you, you don't want to have a child with me?
Ariel: See Victor, it's not you. It really is me.

...

Leonard: I'm old-fashioned enough to believe that art and commerce are at war.
Heather: I think that's inspiring to be so pure about your art.
Sandra [who works at Vanity Fair]: I don't see what's so pure abour turning down paid work. As if making a living means you are guilty of selling your soul.
Leonard: I make my living writing and, until recently, teaching literature. That's my world and I'm faithful to it. Of course your magazine owes its existence to advertising revenue. I suppose there's nothing wrong with that but it's a compromise I am not willing to make.
Sandra: But that advertising revenue allows us to introduce new writing talent to the world. I don't see the compromise in that.

So, who won?

Heather [to Leonard]: Lie down. We don't have to do anything. I just want to be next to you.

...

Heather: Do you think that people will still be reading you in a hundred years.
Leonard: What I wonder is if people will still be reading at all in a hundred years.
Heather: Really, don't you ever think about it?
Leonard: If I do it would be unseemly to talk about it. It's got nothing to do with what the whole enterprise is about.
Heather: What is the whole enterprise about?
Leonard: It's not something I can put into words.
Heather: To put it bluntky Leonard, your novels are out of print and you're not sure if anyone will publish the one that you're working on now. So, why do you keep going?
Leonard: Heather, what can I say. Whatever I say will either be be too much or too little.
Heather: Yes, but when I'm summing up my thesis what should I say that it is that keeps you going?
Leonard: Just say it's the madness of art.
Heather [after a pause]: The madness of art.

...

Author [reading from her book]: "To sit across the table and talk with someone you love is itself a complex engagement. To go to bed with someone...to carry on your conversation in the realm of the body...a realm of insecurity and vulnerability and fear, as well as pleasure is always fraught with the sad evidence of how difficult it is to understand another person and make yourself understood."

This is really what the film is all about I suspect.

Heather: To tell you the truth, Leonard, I find very few men my age interesting. They're like chewing gum; ten minutes of flavor, and then just bland repetition.

...

Leonard: What's all this about F. Scott Fitzgerald's solid gold bar?
Heather: Okay. He says that most great writers have an essential theme that runs through their best work. Like Hemmingway's courage or Dostoevsky's spiritual violence...
Leonard: I trust you resisted the impulse to place me in their company.
Heather: Well, I do say that you seem to breathe the same moral air, especially in your first two novels when you adhere closely to your own solid gold bar.
Leonard: Ah, yes, personal liberation in the world of Leonard Schilling.

...

Leonard [to Casey]: One has to be willing to surrender, occasionally, one's beliefs for the greater good.

...

Heather: Your wife left you for another man.
Leonard: One year before my wife died we went through some troubled times. Yes. What does that tell you about my work?
Heather: That life betrayed you and you went into hiding...and you took your characters with you. So they began guarding their lives. They stopped giving in to temptations.
Leonard: No Miss Wolfe. They learned the cost of living only for themselves. And I became aware of problems far greater than my own. And you insult my writing by trying to define it by a single unhappy event from my past. If I had known you were going to subject my work to such simplistic psychological criticism I never would have wasted my time with you in the first place! You insult me. You insult me by insinusting that I should write the same book over and over again.

...

Leonard: Wasting valuable time. That's a subject you are well schooled in.
Ariel: What's that suppose to mean? Are you talking about Casey? Because you don't know what goes on between Casey and me. You don't know the first thing about our relationship.
Leonard: I know enough. I was there for his birthday toast to you. Apparently I'm the only one who heard it.
Ariel: I heard it. He said he was lucky to find me again.
Leonard: He said you give him everything and you ask for so little in return. Of course he feels lucky. How can you accept such a condition? A man who says you are secondary to his dreams and you always will be.
Ariel: I don't know, Dad. How did Mom do it?

....

Ariel: I can't do it, Casey?
Casey: Can't do what?
Ariel: I can't do hot and light.

...

Ariel [seeing her father at the typewriter]: Shouldn't you be resting? Are you sure you should be working so soon?
Leonard: I'm running out of time, dear. I have to finish.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
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### Re: philosophy in film

Think Shane. Or Unforgiven. Or even High Plains Drifter. A "morality tale" set in one or another rendition of the "wild, wild West".

Back then of course "the law" was considerably more tenuous. And its relationship to "morality" consideraly less problematic. Or, at times, considerably more.

Of course morality back then is thought by most to be significantly less "civilized" then our own is today. In other words, the nature of human interactions then and there was embedded more in "survival of the fittest"...in "might makes right". And that always seems to be more apllicable with regard to "frontier justice".

On the other hand, we all have our own renditions of revenge: when it is justified, when it is not. If it ever is. Only, in a morality tale set in the "wild, wild West", it all has to be tied in with sin and redemption. It's just that, as is often the case, this is understood in conflicting ways.

So, what can "salvation" possibly mean here?

Bottom line: Nothing new. In fact, every cliche in the book. But still worth whatever you paid to watch it. And, in the end, justice [or what's left of it] does sort of prevail.

And then, as the closing credits go by, we find out what this is really all about.

IMDb

The sets were built from the ground in the South African locations. A town set burnt down shortly before filming was complete.

Both Mads Mikkelsen and Eva Green have played charracters who where mute. Mads Mikkelsen in Nicholas Winding Refn's Valhalla Rising and Eva Green in The Salvation.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Salvation_(film)
trailer: https://youtu.be/wUJuQj5r8Kk

THE SALVATION [2014]
Written in part and directed by Kristian Levring

Title card: Out of the wreckage of the Danish defeat in the 1864 war, Jon and his brother crossed the Atlantic to start fresh. In seven years they struggled to find foothold in the unknown country. 7 years, where Jon missed his wife, Marie, and their son. 7 years of family separation. The year is 1871 The country is America.

And then, less than 24 hours later, his wife and his son are dead.

Paul: My own princess does not say a word. She is dumb....mute. Indians cut her tongue out when she was little. They were probably tired of hearing her scream, when they killed her parents.

...

Jon [to Kresten in Dutch]: Bite his ear. Bite his ear.

...

...

Delarue: I will give you two hours to find the man who did it. And sheriff...I want that man alive.
Sheriff: It is impossible.
Delarue:You are a man of God, sheriff Mallick. You probably know the Lord's words: A tooth for a tooth ...
Sheriff: Yes.
Delarue: You have until noon to find the man who did this. Or you bring me two of your people. You choose two Mayor Keane, or I will take four.

...

Peter: I learned something from war. Never get into a fight that you know you're gonna lose.
Lester: Cowards...

...

Jenkins: The company doesn't like the way things are going. Are you aware the sheriff in Black Creek wired the government for help? I managed to pull out the communication for now but you can't use the same methods here that you used in the Army. These people are not Indians. Standard Atlantic is a modern company, Colonel Delarue, and we need our operations to look civilized.

...

Delarue [to Madelaine]: They want me to look civilized, Princess. Hell, I guess I can do that. Long as we keep piling up the money.

...

Jon: My death won't be the last one around here.
Sheriff: Nope. But your death will buy us some time....Sometimes you have to sacrifice a single sheep to save the rest. I'm just a shepard guarding his flock.

...

Corsican: They say you were a soldier. Did you ever fight in a war?
Jon: Yes, I did.
Corsican: Who was the enemy?.
Jon: Germans.
Corsican: Germans? Bravo. You have my respect.
[he then wallops him in the stomach]

...

Delarue [to Madeline]: Well, here he is, the worthless son of a bitch that killed your beloved husband.
Jon [tied to a post]: You're beloved husband shot and killed my 10 year old son. Then he raped my wife.

...

Jon [to Mayor Keane]: I would like my boots back.

...

Jon [gesturing toward the empty coffin]: Get in.
Deane: Look, I'm...I'm...I'm just trying to make living. You know? That's all. I'm a businessman.
Jon [smacking him with rifle butt]: You're not even a man.
Jon: Get in.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
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### Re: philosophy in film

Xavier marries Wendy. They have two kids. After ten years of "happiness" they get divorced. Wendy takes the kids and moves from Paris to New York. Xavier follows her.

That's the plot.

On the other hand, some of the characters from L'Auberge Espagnole above reprise their roles. Only now they are no longer 20 somethings in twisted, entangled relationships, but 30 and 40 somethings in twisted, entangled relationships.

Still, they are attractive, intelligent, articulate and interesting. And [of course] progressive. They have lots and lots and lots of options. Like, say, the characters in a Woody Allen movie. In other words, they share a certain demographic that many of us here no doubt can relate to. So, by and large, we're on their side. We just have to decide who among them is most deserving of our support.

The part about political economy is [of course] no where to be seen. The global economy is just more or less taken for granted. But then the part about philosophy does stop by from time to time -- to discuss "phenomenology" in the Big Apple, among other things.

Look for the remake of Green Card.

Bottom line: It's complicated. Even when you do have a lot of options. Or, sure, perhaps, because you do.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_Puzzle

CHINESE PUZZLE [Casse-tête Chinois] 2013
Written and directed by Cédric Klapisch

Xavier [voiceover]: Life, for most people, is going from point A to point B. But not for me. I've got a point B problem.

...

Xavier [voiceover]: For most people, those small, daily trips add up and, little by little lead to one goal -- a unique ultimate goal. Like the light at the end of the tunnel. It's all wonderfully linear. But not for me. I always keep changing direction. Why is my life like this? Why is it a fucking mess?

...

Editor [on Skype]: Why "Chinese Puzzle"?
Xavier: Well, I'm taking stock. I used to think my life wasn't simple. But here in New York I see that my old life was really simple.

Also, his apartment is smack dab in the middle of Chinatown.

Xavier [voiceover]: It's weird to think that for ten years we had been so happy. It's really horrible to think that...that it can all just disappear.

...

Editor [on Skype]: You gotta watch out for happiness. Happiness is a disaster for fiction. Drama's what sucks us in. Life is drama.
Xavier: But you want to be happy, don't you?
Editor: Sure, in life.

...

...

Isabelle [to Xavier]: You're like my chick.

...

Editor [on Skype]: That's great. Hold on to that.
Xavier: The baby?
Editor: No, "You're like my chick".
Xavier: I don't know. I'm kind of ashamed.
Editor: Who gives a shit about shame? Pounce! Shames's great! Shame's insane! Shame's a thousand times better than happiness!

...

Xavier [voiceover]: That's it! I'm turning 40 and in fact my life is ruined. Your only salvation at times like this -- when you've lost hope and never believed in God -- are German philosophers. For example, Schopenhauer said, "Life is embroidery. You spend the first half of life on the front side, the pretty side of embroidery. But you spend the second half on the other side. Not as pretty but you can see how the threads are woven together. You can see how it's made."

...

Xavier [voiceover]: Life! The unforeseen! All that stuff you can't even imagine. That's what I got hit with.

...

Xavier [voiceover]: Let me make a quick digression. As a foreigner in the USA, you inevitably confront one excruciating thing. That, if your English isn't impeccable, you quickly begin to feel like some sort of retard.

...

Ju [to Xavier]: I'm scared shitless, but I love the bitch.

Xavier gets a visit from Hegel...

Hegel: Yes.
Xavier: Come in.
Hegel: You write too?
Xavier: Yeah. I'm writing a book called "Chinese Puzzle". It's a new novel about how complicated life is. Well, sort of.
Hegel: I wrote a book called "The Phenomenology of Spirit". My book presents a simple verson of life.
Xavier: Really? Boy am I jealous. Can you quote me something?
Hegel: "All nothingness is the nothing of something".

...

Miquel [at the street messenger office]: Come on, you gonna bring him in just like that?
Hepe: Why not? What's the problem?
Miguel: What's the problem? He's a foreigner!
Hepe: I'm a foreigner. You're a foreigner. He's a foreigner. Who's not a foreigner in this room?
Ray: Whoa, whoa, whoa. I'm not a froeigner. I'm an American.
Hepe: Oh fuck off, Obama.

...

Xavier: Martine! That's my dick!
Martine: I know. It's been a really long time since I fucked. How about you?

...

Xavier [voiceover]: I walked home on Avenue A. And at the corner of Saint Mark's Place...My father got the street right but the avenue wrong. It wasn't First Avenue but Avenue A. And there, on the streets of this city, it was carved. A trace of something I'd never really known. Here, in New York at the corner of 8th Street and Avenue A, my parents were in love. Those tiny intitials in the sidewalk held a kind of fundamental proof that my birth wasn't a total accident. Two people were in love. Really in love.

...

Martine: Xavier, I'd love for us to be in love again.
Xavier: Does that happen?
Martine: I don't know if it happens. But why not? We can try. Even if it doesn't exist, we can invent things that don't exist, can't we?

...

Martine: It's funny that you find life so complicated.
Xavier: Look at your life or mine. I came to New York to be near my kids, who I had with a Brit, who I lived with for 10 years, who moved here to be with an American. I had a baby with two lesbians. I married a Chinese woman to become an American. And life's not complicated?
Martine: I can tell you've never lived in China.
Xavier: What does that mean?

...

Xavier [to Martine who is about to go back to Paris]: There is a spark. Stay.

...

Xavier [on Skype]: So, did you read it?
Editor: Yes.
Xavier: And?
Editor: So happy days are here again?
Xavier: Yes. Is that a dog?
Editor: I have a problem with the ending. It's the sort of hideous happy ending we talked about before.
Xavier: I know your spiel about tragedy. It's true, most stories do feed on misery. But when you find happiness, there's nothing more to say. So it's time to stop.
Editor: Are you talking about in life or in the novel?

THE END
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382

iambiguous
ILP Legend

Posts: 36498
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
Location: baltimore maryland

### Re: philosophy in film

Perhaps best summed up by the title card:

"I think that what Keane has done is terrific. It has to be good. If it were bad, so many people wouldn't like it." Andy Warhol.

Yes, but which particular Keane is it? And is it actually art?

And then there's the part about gender. A decade or so before the advent of full-blown feminism. Not many options open for women:

Boss: [to Margaret] We don't get many ladies in here. So, you're husband approves of you working?

In other words, what most women today just take for granted [in terms of options] had to actually be struggled for by women politically. Though the woman here is about as far removed from the feminist movement as one might imagine.

And then there's Walter. He is big in real estate but, as he points out to Margaret, "all I ever wanted was to support myself as an artist". It's not as though Walter is a monster. Well, not at first. But as the film unfolds he turns out to be quite the scumbag.

Bottom line: His wife paints the actual Big Eyes and he takes the actual credit for it. Put yourself in her shoes. How much would that matter to you? That he is able to talk her into going along with it for so long [years and years] speaks volumes.

This one is smack dab at the intersection of Art and Money and Ego. And Kitsch. And [of course] celebrity. This is capitalism as its grubbiest. On the other hand, if money is your thing, the sheer fucking genius of it all might be more the reaction.

Look for the part that revolves around The Great Debate: What is Art?

IMDb

When Margaret and Walter are painting in front of the San Francisco palace of Fine Arts, the real Margaret Keane can be seen reading a book on the park bench behind them.

The amount of sales of Margaret Keane Paintings soared ahead of the release of the film, with small paintings being sold for $8,500 a piece. Director Tim Burton also owns an extensive collection of her work. Keane has also painted portraits of Burton's partner Helena Bonham Carter and Burton's former Chihuahua. Amy Adams liked the script when it was offered to her at first, but she originally turned down the role, because the character lacked "a stronger sense of self". However, working on American Hustle (2013) gave Adams a new perspective of the character, and she was won over because she was intrigued by the character's "quiet dignity", while the relationship between the mother and the daughter spoke to her as well. at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Eyes trailer: https://youtu.be/2xD9uTlh5hI BIG EYES [2014] Directed by Tim Burton Dick Noland [voiceover]: Back then women did not have good job prospects. All she had was her paintings in the trunk and her daughter in the backseat. ... Margaret [at job interview]: I'm not very good at tooting my own horn but I do love to paint. So if I could just show you my portfolio. I studied at the the Watkins Ar Institute in Nashville. This is a pastel that I did. And this is a charcoal portrait. Interviewer: You do understand that this is a furniture company. Still, she does get to "paint" there. Walter: Of course walking away from the bourgeois scene wasn't easy. I had to quit my job...leave my wife. These choices aren't easy. Margaret: I've never acted freely. I was a daughter and then a wife and then a mother. ... Walter: Don't knock your work. You have an amazing talent. You can look at someone and capture them on canvas. You can paint people. I can only paint things. ... Walter: I've got to ask you a question. What's that with the big crazy eyes? Margaret: Oh. Well, I believe that you can see things in the eyes. The eyes are the window to the soul. Walter: Yeah, but you paint them like pancakes. They're way out of proportion. Margaret: Well, eyes are how I express my emotions. I've always drawn them like that. ... Reuben: Walter, you know we don't go for the representational jazz. You're too literal. Walter: But art isn't fashion. Reuben: Yes, it is. People want Kadinsky or Rothko. They don't want goopy street scenes. ... Reuben: Why are their eyes so big. Like big, stale jellybeans. Walter: It's expressionism. Surely, you recognize it. Reuben: It's not art. Walter: "It's not art?" Reuben: It's like the back of a magazine. You know, "Draw the turtle! Send in a nickel! Win the big contest!" ... Walter to Margaret]: We'll never break in! There's a secret society of gallery owners and critics who get together for Sunday brunch in Sausalito deciding what's "cool". Margaret: I think people buy art because it touches them. Walter: You're living in fairyland. People don't get to discover anything. They buy art because it's in the right place at the right time. ... Margaret [to Walter]: I've bever posted bail before. ... Dick: So, tell me about your work. Walter: Well, when I was in Paris... Dick: Oh, Jesus, not those. I mean the little hobo kids. ... Walter [to a table of young ladies at the hungry i...Margaret overhears him]: The eyes are so powerful. You know, a poet once said that the eyes are the window of the soul. That's why I paint them so big. I've always done it that way. Margaret [taking him aside]: Walter? Why are you lying? You were taking credit for something that isn't yours. Walter: No, I was just trying to close a deal. Margaret: Those children are a part of my being. Walter: I'm a salesman. You know buyers pay more if they meet the painter. Margaret: They couldn't meet me because you told me to stay at home. Walter: Look, we're making monmey. Your pocket, my pocket. Where's the difference?...Would you rather have your children piled in a closest or hanging in someone's living room? ... Margaret: But what about honesty? Walter: Come on. The painting says Keane. I’m Keane. You’re Keane. From now on we're one in the same. ... Priest [in confessional]: What is troubling you? Margaret: I lied to my child and I’m just not that kind of person. Priest: Is your husband that kind of person? ... Priest: Well, the world is a complicated place. Occasionaly, children may need to be sheltered from certain truths. Margaret [chuckling]: No. No, it's not like... Priest: It sounds as though your husband is trying to make the best of an imperfect situation. You were raised Christian. You know what we are taught. The man is the head of the household. Perhaps you should just trust his judgment. ... Woman at art gallery [looking at Margaret's paintings]: I think it's creepy and maudlin and amateurish. Man with her: Exactly. I love it. ... Announcer [on TV]: New York Times are critic John Canady with a perspective into the work of Walter Keane. Canady: Keane's work is completely without disctinction. He is not a member of the Society of Western Artists. He has won no awards. He's only noteworthy for his appearances in a certain newspaper's gossip columns. Mr Keane is why society needs critics to protect them from such atrocities. ... Walter [on the phone with Margaret]: It's the craziest thing. We started charging for the posters. First a nickel, then a dime. But then it got me thinking. Would you rather sell one 500 dollar painting or a million cheaply reproduced posters? Folks don't care if it's a copy. They just want art that touches them. Then we could sell it anywhere. Everywhere! ... Walter [to Margaret]: Do you want to give back the money? If you tell anyone, this empire collapses. We've committed fraud here! ... Snobby artist #1: Two nuts that fell from the same tree. It's insufferable. Why are we starving while they print money? Snobby Artist # 2: Because that nut's a genius. He sells paintings. Then he sells pictures of the paintings. Then he sells postcards of pictures of the paintings. ... Margaret: This is what it’s come to, huh? You are the only living soul I can tell my secret to. I painted every single one of them, every Big Eye, me, and no one will ever know but you. She's telling this to her dog. Walter: For Christ sakes, you've seen me paint. Margaret: No, I haven't. It’s like a mirage. From the distance, you look like a painter, but up close there is not much there. ... Margaret: Walter, have you even been to Paris? ... Margaret [in restaurant]: I will talk as loud as I want! Walter: No, you won't! Or I'll have you whacked! Margaret [startled]: What?! Walter: If you tell anyone, I'll have you taken out! ... Dick Noland [voiceover]: When people ask me, why did she stay? Was it fear? Lack of confidence? Margaret was trapped in a lie that she helped create. Ans now the cover-up was worse than the crime. ... Walter: Come on. Wednesday the World's Fair opens. Thursday our book goes on sale. Margaret: Friday I file for divorce. ... Walter: Who wrote this shit!! Canady: Mr. Keane, this is not the venue. Perhaps you'd like to write a letter to the editor. Walter: What are you afraid of? Just because people like my work that means it's automatically bad?! Canady: No, but it doesn't make it art either. Art should elevate, not pander. Walter: You have no idea! Why does someone become a critic? Because he cannot create! Canady: Oh, dear. That moldy chestnut. Walter: You don't know what it's like! To put your emotions out there, naked for all the world to see! Canady: What emotions? It's synthetic hack work. Your masterpiece has an infinity of Keanes, which makes it an infinity of kitsch. And all the time Margaret is there listening to every word. The sheer fucking irony of it is completely lost on Walter. Walter [drunk, shouting at Margaret and Jane]: What's wrong with the lowest common denominator? That's what this country was built on! ... Walter: I'm gonna sue everybody. Everybody. I'm gonna sure this pansy critic. And sue the World's Fair. And I'm gonna sue UNICEF. I'm gonna take down UNICEF, and all their precious little boxes of dimes. [he walks over to Margaret] Walter: But I can't sue you, can I? You are the ultimate betrayal. You failed me with that painting! You crossed over from sentimentality to kitsch. You enjoyed that! You enjoy people laughing at me! ... Margaret [on the phone]: Walter, I want a divorce. Walter: Well, I suppose I could agree to a split, as long as...as you assign me all the rights to every painting ever produced. Margaret [after a pause]: If that's the price. Walter: Really? Well, okay. Then we have to consider future revenus streams. Margaret: My God, Walter, how much more money do you need? Walter: If you want me out of your lifem here are my terms. You'll have to paint me 100 more waifs, 100 more Walter Keanes. ... Jehovah's Witness: Hello. We're visiting everyone in this neighborhood with an important message. We have something to share with you about the wonderful things that God's kingdom will do for mankind. Margaret: Well, from where I'm standing, I don't see much good anywhere. Just a lot of pride and thievery and people treating each other poorly. Jehovah's Witness: Do you know what it says in Timothy 3:1-5? "In the last days, critical times hard to deal with will be here. For men will be lovers of themselves." Margaret: Sounds like my ex-husband. ... Girl: Shit, this is crazy man. All these copies. You're like Warhol. Walter [scoffing]: Ha! Warhol's like me. That fruit fly stole my act. The Factory. I had a factory before he even knew what a soup can was. But then the shit hits the fan. Margaret finally spills the beans. Judge: In my opinion there is only one way to clear this up. You are both going to paint. ... Judge: Mr. Keane? Walter: I'm just setting the mood. Waiting for the muse to strike. Judge: Well, your muse has 58 minutes. ... Title card: Walter never accepted defeat, insisting he was the true artist for the rest of his life. He died in 2000, bitter and penniless. He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529 Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296 And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382 iambiguous ILP Legend Posts: 36498 Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm Location: baltimore maryland ### Re: philosophy in film Talk about context. It's all but everything here. In other words, being an American sniper in World War II would have earned you near universal acclaim. At least here in America. You were, after all, killing Nazis. On the other hand, killing "terrorists" in Iraq 60 years later, you may still be a hero to some, sure... but not to others. Instead, you may well turn out to be viewed as but one more cog in Dick Cheney's military industrial complex. One more sucker recruited to further the interest of America's war economy. America's war machine. Sans the Nazis. And Chris Kyle is the sucker's sucker in this regard: God and country all the way. Or so some will argue. On the other hand, war is war. And, politics aside, if you wind up fighting in one it can change you in ways that you will never see coming. It sure as shit changed me. As I often point out, the man I was before my own "tour of duty" in Vietnam would scarcely recognize the man I became afterward. To say nothing of my family and friends. For most soldiers "in the shit" there's almost no getting around PTSD. And there is really no way in hell for folks who have never been in or around a war to ever understand what makes those who have think and feel and do the things they do. It all just gets swept up in conflicting points of view. And then the politics of course. Clint Eastwood doesn't exactly glorify or glamorize war here. Or even glorify or glamorize the Warrior. But he sure does come awful close from time to time. And one can easily imagine the jihadi rendition: Iraqi Sniper. Anyway, a film of this sort is bound to spark controversy. One take on it: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-30923038 Look for the death heads. They're everywhere. And look for the fog of war. That too: everywhere. IMDb Chris Kyle's father personally told Clint Eastwood and Bradley Cooper that he would "unleash Hell" if his son's memory was disrespected in this film. He also said that Eastwood and Cooper were "men he could trust." Bradley Cooper felt he could become Chris Kyle because he and Kyle had nearly the same height, age, shoe size and body frame. Once Cooper had built up his body and had grown out his beard, Chris Kyle's friends and family said that they would do a double take while looking at Cooper because of how much he looked like Kyle. With the exception of two weeks filming in Morocco for exterior Iraq scenes, the picture was filmed entirely in California. at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Sniper trailer: https://youtu.be/99k3u9ay1gs AMERICAN SNIPER [2014] Directed by Clint Eastwood Chris: I got a military aged male that's on a cell phone, watching the convoy. Over. Officer: If you think he's reporting troop movement, you've got a green light. Over. Soldier: Maybe he's just calling his old lady. ... Chris: I got a woman and a kid walking towards the convoy. Her arms aren't swinging. She's carrying something. She's got a grenade. She's got a RKG Russian grenade she just handed to the kid. Officier: Your call. Soldier: They'll fry you if you're wrong. They'll send your ass to Leavenworth. Shoot the kid? Yep. Then the woman. Wayne Kyle [to his sons]: There are three types of people in this world: sheep, wolves, and sheepdogs. Some people prefer to believe that evil doesn't exist in the world, and if it ever darkened their doorstep, they wouldn't know how to protect themselves. Those are the sheep. Then you've got predators who use violence to prey on the weak. They're the wolves. And then there are those blessed with the gift of aggression, an overpowering need to protect the flock. These men are the rare breed who live to confront the wolf. They are the sheepdog. Now, we're not raising any sheep in this family. And I will whup ypur ass if you turn into a wolf. But we protect our own. If someone tries to fight you...tries to bully your little brother, you have my permission to finish it. Chris: The guy was picking on Jeff. Wayne: Is that true? Jeff: Yes, sir, yes he was. Wayne [to Chris]: Did you finish it? [Chris nods his head] Wayne: Well, then you know who you are. You know your purpose. It's all that simple, isn't it? SEAL Instructor: D, what are you still doing in my line trying to make this team? Everybody knows black guys don*t swim! 'D': It's alright Sir, I'm not black! Instructor: No? 'D': No I'm the new black. We run slow, we jump low, we swim good, and we shop at Gap. And I make the white folk proud, and I hose down their ladies. I dick 'em down! Ah, the military mind. Chris: I'm not redneck; I'm Texan! Taya: What's the difference? Chris: We ride horses, they ride their cousins. ... Chris [shoots a snake next to the target range]: I'm better when it's breathing. ... Taya [on the phone]: Killed anyone yet? Chris: This is not the way a call home is supposed to go, babe. ... Chris [to Taya]: They're savages. They're fucking savages! ... Chris: What happened? You alright? Jeff: Man, I'm gonna miss my ride. Chris: What happened? Jeff: I'm just tired, man. I'm going home. Chris: I'm proud of you. Dad's proud of you. Jeff: Fuck this place. Chris: Huh? What'd you say? Jeff: Fuck this place. ... Chris: God, country, family, right? Marc: You got a God? Chris: I got a God? You getting weird on me? Marc: You know, growing up in Oregon we had this electric fence around our property. Us kids'd grab on to it to see who could hold on the longest. War feels kinda like that. Puts lightening in your bones, makes it hard to hold on to anything else. Chris: Hey man, you need to sit this one out? Marc: I just want to believe in what we're doing here. Chris: There's evil here. We've seen it. Marc: Yeah. There's evil everywhere. Chris: You want these motherfuckers to come to San Diego or New York? We're protecting more than just this dirt. Marc: All right. Let's go kill this fucker. They've got him: hook, line and sinker. Not that we do want the jihadis living next door. Of any denomination. Taya: You're my husband, you're the father of my children. Even when you're here, you're not here. I see you, I feel you, but you're not here. I hate the Teams for it. I do. You're my husband. You're the father of my children, but they're the ones that pull you back. Chris: Yeah, but, you see, they can't wait and we can. Taya: If you think that this war isn't changing you you're wrong. You can only circle the flames so long. It's true. ... Chris: Mustafa's got his peepers out. Biggles: This motherfucker is Keyser fucking Söze, bro. ... Marc's mother [reading a letter from Marc at his graveside]: "Glory is something some men chase and others find themselves stumbling upon not expecting to find it. Either way it is a noble gesture that one finds bestowed upon him. My question is when does glory fade away and become a wrongful crusade? Or an unjustified means by which consumes one conpletely? I've seen war and I've seen death." ... Taya: Mark wrote that letter two weeks ago. Did he say any of that to you? [Chris says nothing] Taya: Chris, I want to know what you thought of his letter. Chris: An AQI informant called in a tip and Biggles had just been shot. We were operating out of emotion, and we just walked into an ambush. But that's not what killed him. That letter did. That letter killed Marc. I mean, he let go, and he paid the price for it. He really believes that. And who's to say it's not true? Chris [watching a small boy pick up the RPG of a man he had just killed]: Don't pick it up. Don't you fucking pick it up. Drop it. Drop it you little cocksucker. ... Navy Doctor: Would you be surprised if I told you that Navy has credited you with... over 160 kills? Chris: Hm-mm Navy Doctor: Do you ever think that... you might have seen things or... done some things over there that you wish you hadn't? Chris: Oh, that's not me. No. Navy Doctor: What's not you? Chris: I was just protecting my guys, they were trying to kill our soldiers and I... I'm willing to meet my Creator and answer for every shot that I took. The thing that... haunts me are all the guys that I couldn't save. Now I'm willing and able to... be there but I'm not, I'm here I quit. Navy Doctor: You can walk down any hall in this hospital. Looks like plenty soldiers need saving. Chris: Hm-mm Navy Doctor: You want to take a walk? Chris Kyle: Sure. He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529 Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296 And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382 iambiguous ILP Legend Posts: 36498 Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm Location: baltimore maryland ### Re: philosophy in film You won't find yourself asking, "what would I do?" all that often here. In large part because these characters inhabit a world so far removed from your own [our own] that it is almost impossible to really empathize. Except in the broadest sense that we are all, one way or another, afflicted with the trials and tribulations embedded in what is often called the "human condiution". The Homesman is one of those Westerns [think Unforgiven] that depict the "old West" as it really was: stark, haggard, grim, grimey. And precarious down to the bone. Filled with the sort of experiences that might drive some folks...mad? The women in particular. To say their lives are hard is the put it mildly. But, still, there are a few compassionaite souls around that, in their own way, aim to help those in need. Besides, Mary Bee Cuddy is a God-fearing Christian. She takes the Lord very seriously. But she is "plain". The way the Lord made her. Religion plays a big part here. The good, the bad, the ugly. It shows rather clearly why we invent Gods. Otherwise, we just have to endure our trials and tribulations with nothing to fall back on at all. Except each other. And how often is that enough? Especially when others are often the source of those trials and tribulations. Here's a "town" that makes Lagos from High Plains Drifter look like New York City. And out on the vast Nebraska plain it is just swallowed up, looking all the tinier still. This is about the most fearturless landscape imaginable. Especially in the winter. There's no way in hell that most of us would last a week out there. Trust me: You've never seen a Western that is anything like this one. It's probably something you would never even imagine that someone would make a movie about. IMDb Grace Gummer, who appears here in her first major film role, co-stars with her mother, Meryl Streep, who has a supporting role. Glendon Swarthout's novel was published in 1988. Paul Newman owned the rights for a time, and wanted to direct the film himself. After a number of scripts, he gave up. at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Homesman trailer: https://youtu.be/kCFaTffMMeE THE HOMESMAN [2014] Written in part and directed by Tommy Lee Jones Mary Bee: Why not marry? Bob: Miss Cuddy, I appreciate the offer, and the supper, the concert and all. But I cannot marry you. Will not, won't. I ain't perfect, but you are too bossy. And too plumb damn plain! ... Reverend: This is a painful occasion for you and your families and I grieve for you. Your wives are fine and Godly women. But life gave them more than they could bear. Now we'll all draw lots. Whoever draws the black bean will carry the women home to from where they come from. ... Mary Bee: I live uncommonly alone. ... Mary Bee [holding a metal ring in the wagon]: What's that? Buster: You might want to tie something down. Put in ten of them. Mary Bee [understanding what he means]: Oh, my. I'm not sure I'm ready. Buster: Scared? Mary Bee: A little. Buster: Listen, Mary Bee you got a passable rig, mules. And you're as good a man as any man hereabouts.And you're doing a hell of a fine thing. So get to it and do it. ... Mary Bee: Do people know? Buster: Yep. Mary Bee: What do they say? Buster: They don't say nothing. People like to talk about death and taxes. But when it comes to crazy...they stay hushed up. ... George [hanging from a tree while sitting on his horse]: Are you an angel? Mary: You're not dead. George: Help me. Will you help me? For God's sake. Mary Bee: Suppose I do, what will you do for me? George: Anything, anything as god as my witness. Mary: If I cut you down, will you do what I tell you to? George: Hell yes, I will, swear to god. Mary Bee: Swear to it? George: Yes, I swear. Mary: Swear to that allmighty god you been talking about. George: Vengeance is mine, sayeth the lord and brining in sheets and do unto others and if you cut me down from this goddamn tree, I'll do anything you tell me to on god's holy name. Mary: Alright. I'll set you free. I got a job of work for you. But if you try to hurt me or try to run away, I'll kill you. ... George: What's the job? Mary Bee: Three women in this country have lost their minds. Their husbands can't care for them properly. You and I are going to take them back across the river to Iowa. George: The Missouri River? Mary Bee: We leave tomorrow. George: Hell, that's five goddamn weeks from here. Mary Bee: I will not sit still for profanity in my house. George: I can see why you're single. ... Mary Bee: I need someone who can hunt and guide and spell me at the reins, help with the animals on the trip. That's why I set you free. It's your job and you sworn to do it. George: Three crazy women for five weeks is a lot more than I bargained for. ... Mary Bee: If you lied to me, and intend on abandoning your responsibility, then you are a man of low character, more disgusting pig than honorable man. George: Thank you for the kind words, sister. You're no prize yourself. You're plain as an old tin pail and you're bossy. But I'll set out with you cause I said I would and I'll help you tend your cuckoo clock just as long as it suits me. However, I will up and leave when, where and if I please. Now, if you don't mind me asking you, where the hell is my goddamn bed? Mary Bee: In the stable, where you belong. ... Thor Svendsen [about his stark raving mad wife]: She thinks she's God. Do not untie her! She'll try to kill you!! ... George: You're gonna meet three kinds of people out here. You're gonna meet wagon trains that don't want to see crazy people. You're gonna meet freighters who will surely rape you. And you're gonna meet Indians who will kill you, and then rape you after they kill me. ... Mary Bee: What do they want? George: Whatever we got. Trouble is they don't know what that is. They've never seen a wagon like this one. If they think we're worth the trouble, we're dead. I'll try to buy them off. But if something happens to me and they come on down here, you get in the wagon quick as you can. You shoot the women in the head then shoot yourself. ... Mary Bee: What will they do with Dorothy? George: They'll probably eat her. ... George: You lost one horse, Cuddy, here's you another one. Mary Bee: Where'd you get this horse? George: A man let us have him. Mary Bee: Why would he do that? George: 'Cause he was dead. Miss Sours shot 'im. ... George: Where's the shovel? Mary Bee: I lost the goddamn shovel!! Who cares about a shovel? You...are...insane! George: The hell I am, Cuddy. I'm trying to move a load to the river as quick as I can and draw that$300. And that's all there is. There ain't no more.

...

George [to a retreating Mary Bee after he turns down her proposal that they get married]: I deserted from the Dragoons! That's right. Company C, 1st US. Fort kearney! Stoled a horse and aways I run. I ain't attached to nothing! Just me!

...

George: Raise your knees. Take me in your hand. Just you remember Cuddy, I didn't force you.
Mary Bee: I will.
George: If I hurt you, I can't help it.
Mary Bee: I know.
Mary Bee: I know.
George: So put me in you.
Mary Bee: Yes.

And then she hangs herself. Didn't see that coming. And what comes next is straight out of the Twilight Zone. No way in hell you would everr see that coming.

...

Tabitha: Who is Mary Bee Cuddy?
George: Mary Bee Cuddy was as fine a woman as ever walked. You'll never know her.
Tabitha: Well then, so what?
George: Oh. You are the living breathing reason she will never be lost. That's what I'm talkin'.
Tabitha: You're a strange man.
George: I expect I am. Why don't we marry?
Tabitha: Maybe.

In other words, she's not "plain" at all.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
ILP Legend

Posts: 36498
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
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### Re: philosophy in film

Remember the "psychedelic 60s and 70s"? Nope, I didn't think so. Of course I do. So that in and of itself is going to shade my reaction to this film. In other words, is the way in which they depict it more or less the way that I remember it? Whereas most of you will only have the Reagan era on as a frame of reference. For better or for worse.

Anyway, most of the characters reflect what [back then] was called the "culture revolution". China wasn't the only country to have one of those. Only our own rendition was considerably less...ideological?

In other words, what's missing [more or less] is the part about the political revolution. The class struggle is there...just not explicitly. And this is Southern California. Everything more or less happened there first.

The plot is not exactly linear. But is a plot even necessary at all here? Some of the best films more or less let you make up your own. It's the cast of "characters" themselves that keep you tuned in. Or not. Most of them anyway. Basically, you are never quite sure how much of this is meant to be taken seriously. Or it might be just one more love story.

Look for Neil Young.

IMDb

According to director Paul Thomas Anderson, Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon "have their own language and short hand" with each other. While their natural rapport helped to show the chemistry between their characters, this led to Anderson having to constantly remind them to stop chatting so that they could film.

Fuelled by comments Josh Brolin gave to the New York Times, rumors persist that notoriously reclusive author Thomas Pynchon makes a cameo appearance somewhere in the film, which would be the first time Pynchon has been willingly publicly photographed since the late 1950's. The most common theories are Pynchon appears as one of the following: the patient being served soup by a shaky patient in the Chroskylodon Institute (this is actually an actor named Charley Morgan), a dentist in the scene at Golden Fang Headquarters, or the man who passes by the window behind Doc and Coy as they talk at the Spotted Dick party.

Even though all the dialogue is the same in Doc and Shasta's sex scene in both film and book, Paul Thomas Anderson changed the tone of the scene greatly. In the book, the scene is much more comedic than it is tragic.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inherent_Vice_(film)
trailer: https://youtu.be/wZfs22E7JmI

INHERENT VICE [2014]
Written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson [from the Thomas Pynchon novel]

Sortilège [voiceover]: She came along the alley and up the back steps the way she always used to. Doc hadn't seen her for over a year. Nobody had. Back then it was always sandals, bottom half of a flower-print bikini, faded Country Joe & the Fish t-shirt. Tonight she was all in flatland gear, hair a lot shorter than he remembered, looking just like she swore she'd never look.

...

Sortilège [voiceover]: If it's a quiet night out at the beach and your ex-old lady suddenly out of nowhere shows up with a story about her current billionaire- developer boyfriend, and his wife, and her boyfriend, and a plot to kidnap the billionaire and throw him in a loony bin......

...

Doc: And you want me to do what exactly?
Shasta: They want me in on the scheme. They think I'm the one who can reach him when he's vulnerable.
Doc: Bare ass and asleep.
Shasta: I knew you'd understand.

...

Doc: All right, how much is the wifey and boyfriend offering to cut you in for?
Shasta: It isn't what you're thinking, Doc.
Doc: Don't worry. Thinking comes later.

...

Sortilège [voiceover]: Back when they were together she could go weeks without anything more complicated than a pout. Now she was laying some heavy combination of face ingredients on Doc that he couldn't read at all.

...

Doc: Mickey Wolfmann, what can you tell me?
Aunt Reet: Powerhouse in L.A real estate...from the desert to the sea. Technically Jewish but wants to be a Nazi..

...

Jade: Hi, I'm Jade. Welcome to Chick Planet Massage! Please take a look at today's Pussy Eater's special which is good all day until closing time.
Doc: How much is it?
Jade: $14.95. Doc: Errr, not that$14.95 ain't a totally groovy price, but I'm really trying to locate this guy who works for Mr. Wolfmann?
Jade: Oh, does he eat pussy?
Doc: A fella by the name of Glenn Charlock?
Jade: Oh sure, Glenn! He comes in here. He eats pussy!

...

Sortilège [voiceover]: Well Mornin' Sam, like a bad luck planet in today's horoscope, here's the old hippie-hating mad dog himself in the flesh: Lieutenant Detective Christian F. "Bigfoot" Bjornsen. SAG member, John Wayne walk, flat top of Flintstone proportions and that evil, little shit-twinkle in his eye that says Civil Rights Violations.

...

Sortilège [voiceover]: Doc could never figure out what Shasta might've seen in him besides being just about the only doper she knew who didnt use heroin...freeing up a lot of time for both of them. And he wasnt any clearer about what had driven them apart either. They each gradually located a different Karmic thermal...watching the other glide away into different fates. Does it ever end? Of course it does. It did.

...

Hope: Coy and I should have met cute but we actually met squalid. Down in Oscars in St. Yesedra. Oh boy! I had just run into this bathroom stall without checking first and I already had my finger down my throat to vomit up this big balloon of dope I just scored and there Coy sat about to take this giant shit. And we both let go at the same time and there's just vomit and shit all over the place and with my head on his lap. And to complicate things, he had this hard on.
Doc: Sure.
Hope: One thing leads to another and we pretty much started shooting up together on a regular basis..

...

Penny: Besides, maybe you did it. Has that crossed your mind? Maybe you just forgot?
Doc: What? Did do what?
Penny: Kill Glenn Charlock.
Doc: Kill him?! How would I forget something like that?
Penny: Grass. And who knows what else?
Doc: I'm only a light smoker.
Penny: How many joints have you had today?
Doc: I have to check the logbook.

...

Doc: Where you stayin'?
Coy: House in Topanga Canyon. Band I used to play for, the Boards, none of them know it's me.
Doc: How can they not know it's you?
Coy: Even when I was alive they didn't know it was me.

...

Sauncho: Well, I'm gonna have the house anchovy loaf to start and, um, the devil-ray filet...can I get that deep-fried in beer batter?

...

Sortilège [voiceover]: Coy's band, The Boards, were currently renting a place in Topanga Canyon from a bass player turned record company executive, which trend watchers took as further evidence of the end of Hollywood, if not the world, as they had known it.

...

Sortilège [voiceover]: Was it possible that at every gathering, concert, peace rally, love-in, be-in, freak-in, here up north, back east, where ever, some dark crews had been busy all along reclaiming the music, the resistance to power, the sexual desire from epic to everyday? All they could sweep up for the ancient forces of greed and fear? Gee he thought...I don't know.

...

Sortilège [voiceover]: On principle he tried to spend as little time around the Glass House as possible. All this strange alternative cop history and cop politics, cop dynasties, cop heroes and evil doers, saintly cops and psycho cops, cops too stupid to live and cops too smart for their own good, insulated by secret loyalties and codes of silence from the world they'd all been given the control.

...

Denis [to a cop]: Man, listen, this is a Mercedes. Its only painted one color. That should count for something.

...

Sortilège [voiceover]: It was occurring to Doc now something Jade said once about vertical integration...that if The Golden Fang could get its customers strung out why not turn around and sell them a program to help kick? Get them coming and going...twice as much revenue. As long as American life was something to be escaped from the cartel could always be sure of a bottomless pool of new customers.

...

Dr. Threeply: Any questions?
Doc [in regards to Puck Beaverton]: Is that a swastika on that man's face?
Dr. Threeply: No, it isn't. That's an ancient Hindu symbol meaning "all is well". It brings good fortune, luck and well-being.

...

Doc: You didn't get this necklace up north, hmm?
Shasta: I went on a boat ride.
Doc: Hmm...a three hour tour?
Shasta: They told me I was precious cargo that couldn't be insured because of inherent vice.
Doc: Whats that?
Shasta [wistfully]: I dont know.

...

Sortilège [voiceover]: Inherent vice in a maritime insurance policy is anything that you can't avoid. Eggs break, chocolate melts, glass shatters, and Doc wondered what that meant when it applied to ex-old ladies.

...

Doc: You ever run across a dentist named Rudy Blatnoyd?
Croker: The son of a bitch who until recently was corrupting my daughter? Yes I do seem to recall the name. He perished in a trampoline accident didn't he?
Doc: The LAPD aren't so sure it was an accident.
Croker: And you'd like to know if I did it? What possible motive would I have? Just because the man preyed on an emotionally vulnerable child? Forced her to engage in sexual practices that might appall even a sophisticate like yourself? Does that mean I'd have any reason to see his miserable pedophile career come to an end? What a vindictive person you must imagine me.
Doc: I did suspect he was fucking his receptionist but what dentist doesn't? It's some oath they all take in dental school..

...

Sortilège [voiceover]: The sea of time, the sea of memory and forgetfulness...the years of promise gone and unrecoverable. Of the land almost almost allowed to claim its better destiny only to have that claim jumped by evil doers known all too well and taken, instead, and held hostage to the future we must live in now, forever.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
ILP Legend

Posts: 36498
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
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### Re: philosophy in film

The rich, like the rest of us, come in various shades of grey. They just have a lot more money. Which means that, by and large, they generally have more options available to them in which to become assholes. On the other hand, you don't have to be rich to be an asshole. Still, there just seems to be something about the rich in England that brings out the worst in regards to, among other things, "class".

In other words, it's not just about the money at all. Or not all about it. Instead, it encompasses a sense of entitlement. They are simply better than everyone else. They reflect an aristocratic sense of "nobility". They are "gentlemen". And this arrogant distain for the rabble is passed down from generation to generation. Which is to say that they take their standing in "society" very, very seriously. Still, some are considerably more "posh" than others.

[sniff, sniff]

Here's the thing though: Just because most of the assholes here are rich, it doesn't mean that because you're rich, you're an asshole. Or did I already note that? These are the sort that take pride not in what they think or say or do so much as for who they are. Which is to say that they are not me and they are not you. Besides, as Chris pointed out, "they all look the same".

So, is this the way things really are at Oxford? Or is to more a spoof of the way most of us think things really are at Oxford? I couldn't tell you.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Riot_Club
trailer: https://youtu.be/pZwv6h-LhTw

THE RIOT CLUB [2014]
Directed by Lone Scherfig

Lord Riot: We will gather the brightest, the boldest and the best to eat till we are sick at the full table of life, and never to fade from glory. And we will call ourselves the Riot Club.

...

Miles: I swear, being in Oxford, it's...It's like being invited to every party. And I wanna go to all of them, you know?
Lauren: Yeah. I mean, look at this. We are so lucky. My dad cried, you know, when I told him I got into Oxford.
[she chuckles]
Lauren: Maybe it was just the tuition fees.
Miles: See, my dad would've cried if I hadn't got into Oxford. My whole family come here. My little brother, he's 13 and he can't wait.
Lauren: Miles, are you....posh?

...

Mugger: Just put in the PIN number and take out 200.
Alistair [after a long pause]: It's actually just PIN. The 'N' stands for number, it's Personal Identification Number. So, if you say "Pin Number" you're saying "number" twice. You're saying "Personal Identification Number Number".
[chuckles]
Alistair: It's just wrong.

That was the wrong thing to say.

Lauren [to Miles]: This room is too Oxford even for Oxford.

...

Harry: So we're at the top university in the world.
Alistair: Arguably.
Harry: And so are 20,000 other people. But there are no more than 10 in the Riot Club. The top 10.

...

Hugo [to Miles]: Oh, everything you see here is begged and borrowed. I'm very much the ragged end of the gentry.

...

Hugo: So, I must ask, what's a nice Westminster boy like you doing with all those boot-strappy regionals?
Miles: I don't know, Lauren's cool, so...
Hugo: Well, you know what they say, "girls for now, girls for later".
Miles: So...The Club...
Hugo: The Riot Club connects me to hundreds of years of history. The dinner is debauchery raised to an art...almost spiritual. Something is released.
[pause]
Hugo: Do you know there are some people who think they're here to get a degree?

Things to know if you wish to be a member of the Riot Club:

What is the correct way to eat ortolan?
Which is bigger, a Mordechai or a Methuselah?
What is a Roman shower?
Which happens first, the Cheltenham Gold Cup or the Grand National?
What did Disraeli do three times and Gladstone four?
What does a coprophagic like to do?
How did Edward II die?
Which is oldest, Trinity College Cambridge or Trinity College Oxford?

...

Harry: It's our time, gentlemen. Let us eat till we explode, drink till our eyes fall out, let us dance footloose upon the Earth, and carpe some fucking diem!

...

Charlie [a "sex worker"]: I'm really sorry, I don't do more than two visits in a row without a break, so...
Alistair: What break do you need, if you're just lying there?
Charlie: I'm not just a live version of the sock you wank into.
Harry: I'm not sure you quite appreciate who you're talking to.
Charlie: Do it yourself, you'll be under the table, a mouth's a mouth.
Harry: Why can't you just fucking do it?! Why can't you just buckle down and...Oh, for fuck's sake, you're a whore!!!

...

Chris: I've just had a table of four leave before their mains, refusing to pay the bill because of the noise.
Harry: Yeah, I'm sorry. We're very, very sorry.
Chris: I think it's time for you to leave, please.
Harry: Oh, no, no, no, no, no. We're ever so sorry. Most of us went to boarding school, we don't really know any women.
Chris: I'd like you to leave.
Harry: How much was the bill? For the table who left?
Chris: Um, maybe, 100 by the end of the night.
Harry: And we're spending what tonight?
Chris: About three and a half grand, I think. But it's not just about the money, it's about goodwill, these people are my customers.
Harry [taking money out of his pocket]: OK. Gesture of goodwill. We'll, um, we'll call it 150, all right? Let's say they were going to order another bottle. We wouldn't want you to be out of pocket.
[he gives the owner the money]
Chris: This is what they teach you at boarding school, is it?
Harry: Actually, yeah, it is.

...

Rachel: I thought you were going to chuck them out.
Chris: We came to an arrangement.
Rachel: Did you let them pay you off?
Chris: All right, so, I let them reimburse me for a table that we lost. What? Would you rather that I just didn't take money off people? I'm still paying off your student loan, you know.

There is that part.

Harry [to Lauren]: How would you like to make 300 pounds tonight?

...

Dimitri: Chaps, chaps. I think that's a bit insulting to Lauren, actually. Three hundred quid? No, no, surely it should be something that actually makes a difference? Like, um...
Dimitri: Twenty-seven grand?
Lauren: What?
Dimitri: It's three years' tuition fees. Just for a few blow jobs. Seriously. Give me your account number and I will make the transfer right now.

...

Lauren: Miles?
Miles [hersitating]: It's...it's up to you.
Lauren: Sorry?
Miles: No, no, no, you're right...
Lauren: It's up to me?
Miles: No, no, no, I'm sorry, I just thought for a second, for a moment, I just thought it's a fuckload of money.
Lauren: What, and I'm the sort of scrubber who'd take it?

...

Alistair [during a drunken rant imitating Chris]: "While you're under my roof, you'll respect my rules." Well, I've got a new rule for you, mate, it's called "Fuck you, we're the Riot Club".
(all cheering]
Alistair: This bourgeois outrage when we do anything, say anything. Anything we ever build or achieve, anything with the slightest whiff of magnificence, how did they get everywhere, how did they make everything so fucking second-rate? Thinking they're better because there's more of them. That's not sweat on their palms, it's envy, it's resentment. And it stinks like a fucking drain.
[all cheering]
Alistair: That's right. I am sick to fucking death of poor people!!!

...

Hugo [to Miles]: No one forced you into this. You wanted to come.

...

Miles: Excuse me. Excuse me, I'm sorry, I just wanted to check, is he...
Friend of Chris: Is he what? Is he dead? Is he dead? No. Now get back in your Bentley and fuck off. One of his lungs has collapsed. He's got a blood clot in his brain.
Miles: Fuck.
Friend: Two broken ribs. Collarbone. Several fingers, broken nose, ruptured spleen, internal bleeding. Right now they're trying to save the sight in his left eye, does that answer your fucking question?

...

Toby: So, what do we do?
Dimitri: Wait. My lawyer says they'll call us back for second interviews if they find anything.
James: They'll find fingerprints and things, won't they? Ivan says we carry on. Say nothing.
Hugo: How far is that going to get us?
Dimitri: It got us bail, didn't it? At least we've got time to think.
Toby: Well, can someone come up with something? Cos I'd really like to have a career.
Dimitri: Self-defence. He came at us waving a knife.
Harry: What? Ten on one? How about we give them someone?
Guy: You mean, the police?
Harry: We choose one person, ideally a volunteer, we all say he was the one who had the fight with the landlord.
Guy: What about the club? Sticking together, all for one?
Harry: One man confesses, takes a hit for the team. Nine of us stay clean. He'd be a fucking hero. And the rest of us do what we can to help him in the future.

...

Miles: But I didn't do anything.
Hugo: You did call the ambulance.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
ILP Legend

Posts: 36498
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
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### Re: philosophy in film

Trust me: Sooner or later you will reach the point where this sort of thing enthralls you less and less. Which is to suggest this: That, as you get closer and closer to the abyss, it finally dawns on you how you will almost certainly go to the grave not really having a clue as to what it all means to inhabit this particular planet in this particular solar system in this particular galaxy in this particular universe.

Indeed, how of us will still be around on the day we make it to Mars? Ah, but the young among us can still dream...dream about actually being around to embrace the "interstellar" exploits that will fuel the imagination of the next Star Trek generation.

But here of course "space, final frontier" succumbs to a script. Much as it did when they made the movie out of Carl Sagan's novel, Contact.

That's right: Another wormhole saga.

But some things never change: "Our world is dying and only one man can save it". Well, not exactly the planet itself, but he can find us another world to call home. With "their" help anyway. Though, oddly enough, "them" seem to be "us".

So, how plausible is all of this. If only "in the future":

Early in pre-production, Dr. Kip Thorne laid down two guidelines to strictly follow: nothing would violate established physical laws, and that all the wild speculations would spring from science and not from the creative mind of a screenwriter. Christopher Nolan accepted these terms as long as they did not get in the way of the making of the movie. That did not prevent clashes, though; at one point Thorne spent two weeks talking Nolan out of an idea about travelling faster than light. IMDb

Still, what are the odds of something like this actually happening? Well, let's be optimistic and say about one in a hundred billion trillion.

So, everything you always wanted to know [but probably still don't understand] about space, time and relativity. Oh, and love.

And then [inevitably] the part about morality and human nature and coming up with The Right Thing To Do. "I" vs. "we" vs. "humanity" itself.

I mean, talk about "conflicting goods"!

HAL meet TARS.

IMDb

For a cornfield scene, Christopher Nolan sought to grow 500 acres of corn, which he learned was feasible from his producing of Man of Steel (2013). The corn was then sold and actually made a profit.

The method of space travel in this film was based on physicist Kip Thorne's works, which were also the basis for the method of space travel in Carl Sagan's novel "Contact", and the resulting film adaptation, Contact (1997). Matthew McConaughey stars in both films.

Kip Thorne won a scientific bet against Stephen Hawking upon the astrophysics theory that underlies Interstellar (2014). As a consequence, Hawking had to subscribe Penthouse magazine for a year. This famous bet is depicted in The Theory of Everything (2014) which was released in the same year as Interstellar.

The film parodies the story that the moon landings were faked by the government. It's used in the movie as an attempt to quell future generations' enthusiasm for space travel. Amazingly, real-life conspiracy theorists claim that Stanley Kubrick directed the TV footage of the landings using leftover props from 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), which itself is one of the inspirations for this film.

According to Einstein's theory of General Relativity, it would take an infinite amount of time to cross the threshold of a black hole's event horizon, as seen by a distant observer. The person crossing the threshold, however, would notice no change in the flow of time.

The visual effects that portray the wormhole with stars stretching out on its horizon is known in astrophysics as "Gravitional Lensing". That is, in fact, how astronomers have identified black holes (an intense gravitational field bending space so much that light coming from stars behind it is stretched out around the sphere of the black hole's "event horizon"). Considering the high-degree of scientific accuracy of this film, it's not inconceivable that a wormhole would look much in real life as it is portrayed on this movie.

FAQ at IMDb http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0816692/faq?ref_=tt_faq_sm
at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interstellar_(film)
trailer: https://youtu.be/3WzHXI5HizQ

INTERSTELLAR [2014]
Written in part and directed by Christopher Nolan

Cooper: What the heck did you do to my lander?
Murph: It wasn't me.
Cooper: Let me guess. It was your ghost.
Murph: It knocked it off my shelf. It also knocks the books off.
Tom: There's no such thing as ghosts dumbass.
Murph: I looked it up, it's called a poltergeist.
Cooper: Well, that's not very scientific Murph.
Murph: You said that science was about admitting what we don't know.

...

Murph: Why did you and mom name me after something that's bad?
Cooper: Well, we didn't.
Murph: Murphy's law?
Cooper: Murphy's law doesn't mean that something bad will happen. It means that whatever can happen, will happen. And that sounded just fine to us.

...

Miss Hanley: Murph is a great kid, she's really bright. But she's been having a little trouble lately. She brought this in to show the other students. The section on the lunar landings.
Cooper: Yeah, it's one of my old textbooks. She always loved the pictures.
Miss Hanley: It's an old federal textbook. We've replaced them with the corrected versions.
Cooper: Corrected?
Miss Hanley: Explaining how the Apollo missions were faked to bankrupt the Soviet Union.
Cooper: You don't believe we went to the Moon?
Miss Hanley: I believe it was a brilliant piece of propaganda that the Soviets bankrupted themselves pouring resources into rockets and other useless machines.
Cooper: Useless machines?

...

Cooper [to his father]: We used to look up at the sky and wonder at our place in the stars. Now we just look down, and worry about our place in the dirt.

...

Cooper: It's not a ghost....it's gravity. It's not Morse, Murph, it's binary. Thick is 1, thin is 0. Coordinates.

...

Professor Brand: Blight. Wheat, seven years ago. Okra, this year. Now, there's just corn.
Cooper: And we're growing more than we ever had.
Brand: Yeah, but like the potatoes in Ireland and the wheat in the dust bowl the corn will die. Soon.
Cooper: We'll find a way, Professor, we always have.
Brand: Driven by the unshakeable faith that the Earth is ours?
Cooper: Well not just ours, no. But it is our home.
Brand: Our atmosphere is 80 percent nitrogen. We don't even breathe nitrogen. Blight does, and as it thrives, our air gets less and less oxygen. The last people to starve, will be the first to suffocate. And your daughter's generation will be the last to survive on Earth.
Cooper: Now you need to tell me, what your plan is to save the world?
Brand: We're not meant to save the world. We're meant to leave it.

...

Professor Brand: The Lazarus missions.
Cooper: Sounds cheerful!
Brand: Lazarus came back from the dead.
Cooper: Sure, but he had to die in the first place. There's not a planet in our solar system that could sustain life and the nearest star is over a 1000 years away. I mean, it doesn't even qualify as futile. Where did you send them?

...

Cooper [to Murph]: After you kids came along, your mom, she said something to me I never quite understood. She said, "Now, we're just here to be memories for our kids." I think now I understand what she meant. Once you're a parent, you're the ghost of your children's future.

...

TARS: I have a cue light I can use to show you when I'm joking, if you like.
Cooper: That might help.
TARS: Yeah, you can use it to find your way back to the ship after I blow you out the airlock.
[cue light flashes]

...

Cooper: Hey TARS, what's your honesty parameter?
TARS: 90 percent.
Cooper: 90 percent?
TARS: Absolute honesty isn't always the most diplomatic nor the safest form of communication with emotional beings.
Cooper: Okay, 90 percent it is.

...

Doyle: We have a mission.
Cooper: Yeah, and our mission is to find a planet that can habitate the people living on Earth right now. Okay? Plan A does not work if the people on Earth are dead by the time we pull it off.

...

Rom: Gravity on that planet will slow our clock compared to Earth's drastically.
Rom: Well, every hour we spend on that planet will be, uhh, seven years back on Earth.
Cooper: Jesus.

...

Cooper: Those aren't mountains...they're waves!

...

Amelia [to Cooper]: Time is relative, okay? It can stretch and it can squeeze, but... it can't run backwards. Just can't. The only thing that can move across dimensions, like time, is gravity.

...

Amelia: Couldn't you've told her you were going to save the world?
Cooper: No. When you become a parent, one thing becomes really clear. And that's that you want to make sure your children feel safe. And that rules out telling a 10-year old that the world's ending.

...

Prof. Brand [to Murph]: I'm not afraid of death. I am an old physicist. I'm afraid of time.

...

Murph [in video link]: Brand did you know? He told you right? You knew? This was all a sham. You left us here. To suffocate. To starve. Did my father know too? Dad? I just want to know, if you left me here to die? I just have to know!

...

Amelia: Cooper, my father dedicated his whole life to plan A, I have no idea what she's talking about.
Dr. Mann: I do.
Cooper: He, he never even hoped to get the people off the Earth?
Dr. Mann: No.
Amelia: But he has been trying to solve the gravity equation for 40 years.
Dr. Mann: Amelia, your father solved his equation before I even left.
Amelia: Then why wouldn't he use it?
Dr. Mann: The equation couldn't reconcile relativity with quantum mechanics You need more.
Cooper: More? More what?
Dr. Mann: More data. You need to see into a black hole. The laws of nature prohibit a naked singularity.
Cooper: Romilly, is that true?
Rom: If the black hole is an oyster, then the singularity is the pearl inside. The gravity is so strong that it is always hidden in darkness, beyond the horizon. That's why we call it a 'black' hole.

...

Dr. Mann: Your father had to find another way to save the human race from extinction. Plan B. A colony.
Amelia: But why not tell people? Why keep building those damn stations?
Dr. Mann: Because he knew how hard it would be to get people to work together to save the species instead of themselves.
Cooper: Bullshit.
Dr. Mann: You never would have come here unless you believed you were going to save them. Evolution has yet to transcend that simple barrier. We can care deeply - selflessly - about those we know, but that empathy rarely extends beyond our line of sight.
Amelia: But the lie...that monstrous lie...
Dr. Mann: Unforgivable. And he knew that. He was prepared to destroy his own humanity in order to save the species. He made an incredible sacrifice...
Cooper: No. No, the incredible sacrifice is being made by the people on Earth who are gonna die! Because in his fucking arrogance he declared their case hopeless.
Dr. Mann: I'm sorry Cooper. Their case... is hopeless.
Cooper: No...
Dr. Mann: We are the future.

...

Cooper: You know why we couldn't just send machines on these missions, don't you Cooper?
Dr. Mann: A machine doesn't improvise well, because you can't programme the fear of death. Our survival instinct is our single greatest source of inspiration. Take you for example, A father, with a survival instinct that extends to your kids. What does research tell us, is the last thing you're gonna see, before you die? Your children. Their faces. At the moment of death, your mind is going to push you a little bit harder, to survive. For them.

...

Cooper: What's your trust setting, TARS?
TARS: Lower than yours, apparently

...

Cooper: What happens if he blows the airlock?
TARS: Nothing good...

...

Cooper: Well, this little maneuver's gonna cost us 51 years!
Amelia: You don't sound so bad for a man pushing 120!

...

TARS: Cooper, Cooper come in.
Cooper: TARS??
TARS: Roger that.
Cooper: You survived?
TARS: Somewhere...somewhere in their fifth dimension. They saved us!
Cooper: Yeah? Well who the hell is 'They'? And just why would they want to help us?
TARS: I don't know, but they constructed this three-dimensional space inside their five dimensional reality to allow you to understand it.
Cooper: Yeah well it ain't working.
TARS: Yes it is. You've seen that time, is represented as a physical dimension. You've worked out that you can exert a force across spacetime.
Cooper: Gravity to send a message?
TARS: Affirmative.
Cooper: Gravity can cross the dimensions, including time?
TARS: Apparently.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
ILP Legend

Posts: 36498
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### Re: philosophy in film

Just above, a character in Interstellar argues that time travel is not possible. And the consensus among the scientists that I have bumped into in books and in docs seems to back that up. But, come on, it is just too irresistible a plot device to ever imagine that it won't show up again and again and again in films like this one.

Besides, imagine the moral implications of time travel. The distinction between being able to do it and when and where and why and who ought to do it. What are the "right" reasons and what are the "wrong" reasons? And dasein, conflicting goods and political economy? How would all of that be implicated/impacted? If at all.

Consider:

Mr. Robertson: In order to protect our nation's citizens, it's important we keep certain government operations confidential. Wouldn't you agree?
Jane: Yes, sir.
Mr. Robertson: I work for an organization whose primary purpose is not space travel. It's reshaping wrong doing.

And this sort of stuff always comes back around to the mind boggling implications of "predestination" and "free will". Are they really "compatible".

Still, halfway through the film and you're wondering: What the fuck does this have to do with time travel? Instead, it seems more intent on exploring what it means to be a woman. And then a woman who becomes a man. In fact, it explores the whole notion of "identity" itself. If nothing else, this one shows us just how convoluted [problematic] "reality" can be if the laws of nature actually are in accord with "time travel". And then it explores the complexity of how existential variables intertwine [over time] to create one particular reality that, but for one small change, can snowball into an entirely different one.

So, as for what it is all supposed to "mean", here is one take on that: http://www.astronomytrek.com/predestina ... explained/

IMDb

When John Doe sits down at the manual typewriter for the first time, beside the typewriter there is a copy of "Stranger in a Strange Land" by Robert A. Heinlein, who is the author of the original short story "All You Zombies" on which the screenplay for the film is based.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Predestination_(film)
trailer: https://youtu.be/UVOpfpYijHA

PREDESTINATION [2014]
Written and directed by Michael Spierig and Peter Spierig

Violin Man: What if I could put him in front of you? The man that ruined your life. If I could guarantee that you'd get away with it, would you kill him?

...

The Unmarried Mother [to the Bartender]: You know how it is. People want to adopt a little golden-haired moron. And later on, the boys, they want big tits and pouty lips.

...

The Bartender: Something this job has taught me is that truth is stranger than fiction.
The Unmarried Mother: You’re not talking about bar tending are you?
The Bartender: I am not talking about bar tending.

...

Mr. Robertson: Just relax, Jane. Some of the ladies before you, got a little nervous, a little lost in thought.
Jane [scoffing]: Perhaps that's because to them a thought is unfamiliar territory.

...

Mr. Robertson: We've had some of these Women's Lib types in here causing a big fuss. But that's not you, is it Jane?
Jane: No, sir.
Mr. Robertson: Please take your glasses off. I see you've had some disciplinary problems in the past.
Jane: I've had nothing but straight As in all my classes since the first grade.
Mr. Robertson: Yes. Have you ever been with a man?
Jane: Have you?

...

Mr. Robertson: Do you see yourself as a tourist or a participant?
Jane: I've excelled in advanced physics, biology and astronomy. A tourist is someone who travels across the ocean only to be photographed sitting next to their boat. I have no intention of being a tourist.

...

Mr. Robertson: In order to protect our nation's citizens, it's important we keep certain government operations confidential. Wouldn't you agree?
Jane: Yes, sir.
Mr. Robertson: I work for an organization whose primary purpose is not space travel. It's...reshaping wrongdoings.

...

The Unmarried Mother: You know, sometimes I think this world deserves the shit storm that it gets.
The Bartender: I know. Let's face it. Nobody's innocent.
The Unmarried Woman: Everybody just uses everybody else to get what they want.
The Bartender: Maybe. Maybe not.

...

The Unmarried Mother: You ever hear the expression "a ruined woman"?
The Bartender: Of course.
The Unmarried Mother: Well, I was as ruined as a woman could be. I was no longer a woman and I did not know how to be a man.

...

The Bartender: Then what do you want?
The Unmarried Mother: What does anyone want?
The Bartender: Love.
The Unmarried Mother: Fuck love. A purpose.
The Bartender: You don't have that?
The Unmarried Mother: I'm working on it.

...

The Bartender [to the Unmarried Mother]: What if I could put him in front of you, the man that ruined your life? If I could guarantee that you'd get away with it, would you kill him?
The Unmarried Mother: In a heartbeat.

...

The Bartender: You have skills you've never had the chance to use and I can give you that chance. Let me put it this way. I hand him to you, you do whatever you like. And when you're done, you try my job. You don't like it, you walk away.
The Unmarried Mother: You're not talking about bartending are you?
The Bartender: I'm not talking about bartending.

...

The Unmarried Mother: So, where's Robertson?
The Bartender: He's in 1985.
The Unmarried Mother: What?
The Unmarried Mother: So what, you're a cop?
The Bartender: I'm a Temporal Agent, one of 11. We prevent crime before it takes place.

...

The Unmarried Mother: Do I... Do I have a choice?
The Bartender: Of course. You always have a choice.
The Unmarried Mother: Yeah, but sometimes don't you think that things are just inevitable?
The Bartender: Yes, the thought has crossed my mind.

...

Mr. Robertson: The parameters set by the Bureau are strict for a reason. They exist for our protection. However, I've always thought we could accomplish so much more without the constant bureaucratic control of the board. An agent operating from the outside.
The Bartender: She'll endure so much pain because of what I do.
Mr. Robertson: That's the way it has to be. That's the way it's always been. You should understand that better than anyone.
The Bartender: The snake that eats its own tail, forever and ever?
Mr. Robertson: You're here to create history and influence what is to come.
The Bartender: I don't think I can do it.
Mr. Robertson: Understand. You are more than an Agent. You're a gift given to the world through a predestination paradox. You're the only one, free from history, ancestry.
The Bartender: The rooster.
Mr. Robertson: But you must complete your mission. You must lay the seeds of the future. We're counting on you.
The Bartender: And what happens when that day comes, when I have no knowledge of my future?
Mr. Robertson: Well, then, like everyone else, you're just going to have to take it one day at a time.

...

The Unmarried Mother: You sick fuck. You tricked me.
The Bartender: The choice was yours.
The Unmarried Mother: What choice? I'm not going to leave her.
The Bartender: That's the way that it is. It's the way it always has been. I'm sorry if you feel deceived. But it's a mistake to think that we can change certain events. Just like you said, some things are inevitable.
The Unmarried Mother: But I love her.
The Bartender: I know. I know that. And now that you've found her you know who she is. And you understand who you are. And now maybe you're ready to understand who I am. Now, listen to me. Listen to me. The shock will wear off but you can take comfort in knowing that these events are happening in the correct order. The path you're on will take you to your destination.

...

Mr. Robertson: This organisation wouldn't have grown if it wasn't for the Fizzle Bomber.
The Bartender: You sound as if you admire him. He's a terrorist.
Mr. Robertson: Nothing's that simple. I wish that it were.

...

Alice [to the Bartender]: It's never too late to be who you might have been.

...

The Bartender [to himself in another time]: You're the Fizzle Bomber?
The Bartender: We always hated that name, remember?
The Bartender: You're a murderer.
The Bartender: No, no, no. See, I've saved lives, more than I ever could have from inside the bureau.
The Bartender: No, you kill innocent people. Innocent people.
The Bartender: No, no, no. I have clippings from the future. Clippings from futures that never happened because I prevented them. More tragedies prevented, lives saved.

...

The Bartender [to the Bartender/Fizzle Bomber]: I'm curious. Did you report that your decommissioned Field Kit didn't decommission? Right? Some people say that it's fate. But you and I, we know some things are predestined. I made you who you are. You made me who I am. It's a paradox, right? But it can't be "paradoctored".

...

The Bartender [into a cassette tape]: "Here you are at the beginning of your new life. It can be overwhelming knowing the future you're about to create. Knowing the purpose of that life. You know who she is. And you understand who you are. And now maybe you're ready to understand who I am. You see, I love her too."

...

The Unmarried Mother [listening to the Bartender on a cassette tape]: "You'll have to make tough choices. You'll influence the past. Can we change our futures? I don't know. The only thing that I know for sure is that you are the best thing that's ever happened to me. I miss you dreadfully."
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
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Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
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### Re: philosophy in film

First of all, I'm sure there are any number of folks here that some of us are convinced clearly do need to be "deprogrammed".

Me, I call them "objectivists". Usually though the subject is the victim of one or another religious cult. That [often] they do not see themselves as victims however is the rub. Instead, the impetus generally comes from another -- a family member or a close friend or a loved one. It is from their perspective that the victim is seen to be "brainwashed".

But that's another rub. After all, you may find yourself just as critical of their own frame of mind.

Who after all is really to say when another is brainwashed? If, in fact, they are not deemed [by others] as being brainwashed themselves.

Deprograming someone means, first of all, kidnapping them. You forcibly take them away from the group against their will and try to convince them to abandon it in a context in which the group is no longer there to defend itself. It all comes down to a tug of "wills".

The tricky part is that before the deprogram option is chosen, you might still have contact with your loved one. But if the deprogramming fails, you might lose all contact with him or her forever. And there are more failures than successes.

Still, for most of us, it always comes down to how we feel about the cult itself -- about its values and its agenda. As opposed to the values and the agenda of those who want the "victim" back. It's always just a point of view. So, you'll either have a dog in the fight or you won't.

Ah, but then there's the part that revolves around Mick and Terry. The part where it is all about the money. The, uh, "grubby" part. In fact, one way or another in our "post-modern" world it always ends up being about the money. Doesn't it?

So, you might ask yourself, how close to or far removed from this is your "typical" effort to deprogram someone? That's not for me to say. But I'm guessing it's not even in the ballpark. More like being deprogramed in the Twilight Zone.

Let's just say that nothing here is ever really what it seems.

Thy will be done.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faults_(film)
trailer: https://youtu.be/pnnbhJSX75U

FAULTS [2014]
Written and directed by Riley Stearns

Ansel [to his audience]: This is the most basic freedom. I'm talking about free will. Choice. Making a choice for yourself based on what life gives you. That is free will. But what if someone else is in control? What if they control your physical body? Your mind's every thought? Your emotional well-being? Well, Ladies and Gentlemen, cults do thus. They exploit the fact that inside every single one of us is the capacity to be captivated. To be manipulated. To be controlled. They exploit our weaknesses and remove us from those who care about you. They create emptional and physical barriers, distancing you from everyone and everything you once knew, including yourself. They mold you. They conform you. Even with that voice in the back of your head screaming "get out!" most give in. When another human being makes descisions for you, your free will ceases to be. You're a follower.

...

Paul: We were wondering if we might be able to talk to you about our daughter, Claire.
Ansel: It has been a long day. I need to get some sleep.
Paul: We believe she is in a very dangerous situation. No one has been able to get through to her. Dr. Roth, people like you don't have ads in the Yellow Pages. We do not know where else to turn.
Ansel: To be perfectly honest, anything I would say to you would be a half-assed version of something on a page in that book in your hand. And I just don't give a shit anymore.

...

Ansel: What is the name of this group?
Paul: They call themselves "Faults".
Ansel: Oh, I haven't heard of that one. Who's the founder?
Paul: We don't know. Uh, no one knows anything about them. We don't know how Claire came to find them.
Ansel: Well, when is the last time you spoke to her?
Paul: About a week ago on the phone.
Ansel: And what did she say?
Paul: She told me that she had found God. That she had made love to Him the night before while the others weatched.

...

Ansel: Are you familiar with deprogramming?
Paul: Is that what you did with the man from last night? With his sister?
Ansel: Yes, we would forcibly take your daughter away from the group.
Paul: You're talking about kidnapping my Claire?
Ansel: Under the legal definition, yes. But it's for her own good. We would take her far away. Someplace where she would not know where she was, but more importantly, where no one else would be able to find her. I would begin the process of breaking her down. Making her question the group's beliefs and their innate contradictions.

...

Paul: What are the chances of something like this working?
Ansel: Well, in the end there is 50% chance you will get your daughter back.
Evelyn: And a 50% chance that we'll lose her forever.
Paul: Evelyn...
Ansel: No, she's absolutely right. I need to be honest with you. The chances of this working are even less than that. This is extremely dangerous for everyone involved. Especially Claire.

...

Ansel: Well, thank you for the breakfast, Paul and Evelyn. That does bring me to one last point. If you do decide to go through with what we just talked about doing...I don't know how to say this without sounding insensitive but, well, it will not be cheap.

...

Ansel: My name is Ansel Roth. I specialize in helping people who are lost amd who might be under the control of others.
Claire: I'm not lost. I found myself and I choose to live my life the way I live it because God wills it.

Oh boy, here we go. Unless, of course, all is not what it seems.

Claire: I'm thinking about how I want to rip your tongue out of your throat to shut you up. That you're close enough that I could strangle you with my bare hands and that I'd like to. I'm just waitng for a sign from God.

...

Ansel: How old are you?
Claire: Age doesn't mean anything.
Ansel: You mean in the group?
Claire: The time it takes the earth to circle around the sun. Why? Why does that matter? It's an abstraction. Why is earth so special? Time means nothing in eternity.

...

Evelyn: Our baby. Our Claire.
[Claire backs aways from her]
Evelyn: What...?
Ansel: No, it's alright. She's not really associating with that identity right now. But that's alright.
Paul: Well, what's that supposed to mean?
Ansel: There are two identites in a case like this. The before identity, before the cult, and the cult identity.
Paul: What do we call her then?
Ansel: Terms of affection are fine. Baby, sweetie, honey. Whatever you called her back when things were normal.
Paul: We never called her honey.
Ansel: Don't call her that, then.

...

Claire: We are all weighed down by our physical form.
Ansel: What does that mean?
Claire: Each level means a piece of control.
Ansell: But that doesn't really mean anything, does it? You have to see they are teaching you these vague terms and unprovable ideas.
Claire: No, no. Control means all matters loses meaning. Control of oneself means control of others. It even changes the way others perceive our image, our light.
Ansel: Our light? Are you talking about invisibility? Have you witnessed this?
Claire: I have.
Ansell: Can you tell me what happens when you reach the the final level. When you become free.
Claire: One moves on.
Ansel: And where do the people who move on go?

And on and on and on, exchanging "frames of minds" anchored more or less to "worlds of words" that trigger particular psychological reactions. Unless, of course, all is not what it seems.

Paul: My daughter looks beautiful in those clothes. When she come back in you're going to tell her she looks beautiful.
Ansel: I'm not going to tell her that.
Paul: Remember who's paying you.
[Claire comes back in wearing the clothes Paul and Evelyn brought]
Ansel: You look beautiful.

...

Evelyn: I still don't understand what it is we did.
Claire: You didn't do anything. That's the point.
Claire: You make it sound like an obligation.
Paul: Maybe that's because it was.
Ansel: We're not here to pass blame.
Paul: But we all are here because of her. Oh, I can't wait for this to be over with! Just give me back my baby!!
Claire: I'm not going home with you.
Paul: Yes you are!
Claire: I'm not!
Paul: Well, slit your wrist right now then, because that's where you're going to end up if all of this doesn't stop.

...

Ansel: I'm done. This...I'm leaving.
Claire: But you can't.
Ansel: I have free will.
Claire: What about the money? That's what this is for you, isn't it?
Ansel: No, no, that's...that's what it was. I have no idea what any of this is anymore.
[aloud to himself: "You have free will, you have free will, you have free will."]
Claire: But you need the money. And I need you here. You can't leave me.

...

Claire: Lick my face, Ansel. Lick me.
Ansell: What?!
Claire: I'm going to need you to sleep now, Ansel.
Ansel: What are you doing to me?
Claire: I'm in control.

...

Claire: Why are you a failure?
Ansel: Because I've only ever been good at one thing. All of this was her fault.
Ansel: No, a girl.
Claire: What was her name?
Ansel: Jennifer.
Claire: Who was Jennifer?
Ansel: Do you know the Universal Conference? We did one of these exactly like this with her.
Claire: What happened?
Ansel: I did everything I was supposed to do. She questioned her choices, went home with her family. But her family didn't put in the work.
Ansel: We flew her out, and it was all expenses paid. It was supposed to be a vacation for her.
Claire: You exploited your relationship with her.
Ansel: No.
Clire; You did it for the ratings.
Ansel: No.
Claire: You knew whe was fragile and yet you put her out there for the world to judge.
Ansel: She agreed to it all. How could I have know she still felt a connection to the Concurrence?
Claire: How could you not have known? You pressed her. You opened the wound. You gave her the knife and she slit her wrists with it.
Ansel: She wanted to be with them. She made that choice. She had free will.
Claire: Did she really?

...

Clire: Look me in the eyes and tell me you don't blame yourself for Jennifer's death?
Ansel: Everyone dies.
Claire: No! Look at me. Listen to my words. Feel them. Are you to blame for Jennifer's death?
Ansel [succumbing]: I was in control. I used her. I could've helped her, but I chose not to. I made that choice.
Claire: And that choice cost you everything.
Ansel: Yes.
Claire: Tell me what you lost.
Ansel: My show, my money, my house, my wife...
Claire: No! Those are things. What did you lose?
Ansel: Every kind of respect.

And now it is time to "deprogram" Terry.

Ansel: Do you know what a fault is, Terry?
Ansel: Not "fault". A fault.
Terry: What the heck are you talking about?
Ansel: A fault is a fracture. It's a place where pressure builds and builds until it releases.

...

Ansel: Where am I going?
Claire: Home.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
ILP Legend

Posts: 36498
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
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### Re: philosophy in film

Imagine if all the folks in the band Spinal Tap were vampires.

Yep, another "mocumentary".

Only this time the funny guys [the really funny guys] are blood suckers. And it seems that, just like the rest of us, vampires too are ever struggling to cope with the modern world. In other words, it always never nothing hell bent on kicking them in the balls. The usual stuff like getting along with others, household chores and dealing with assholes.

Still, what makes a movie like this more effective is that even though the plot [and the characters] are basically absurd you still find yourself drawn to them.

Sort of.

Anyway, here you have just about everything you ever wanted to know about vampires. If everything you ever wanted to know about vampires was entirely tongue in cheek.

And, just as in Twilight, there's the part about the werewolves. And, yes, they're tongue in cheek too. Like the zombies, the witches and banshees.

So, you tell me, are the vampires here being lampooned lovingly or not?

Look for The Beast. Actually, she's Vladislav's ex-girlfrined, Pauline.

Oh, and look for Hannibal Lector. A cameo as it were.

IMDb

A script was written but never shown to the actors. They would only get a description of the scene, and had to improvise it.

trailer: https://youtu.be/Cv568AzZ-i8

WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS [2014]
Written and direted by Jemaine Clement, Taika Waititi

Viago: If you're going to eat a victim on my nice clean couch put down some newspaper on the floor and some towels. It's not hard to do.
Vladislav: We're vampires! We don't put down towels.
Viago: Some vampires do.
Vladislav: Well, not the serious ones!

...

Viago: When you get 4 vampires in a flat obviously there's going to be a lot of tension.

...

Deacon: I was a Nazi vampire. After the war, which the Nazi's lost. I don't know if you know that the Nazi's lost that war. If you were a Nazi, after the war...and if you were a vampire...and if you were a Nazi vampire. No way. I was out of there.

...

Viago: Yes, some of our clothes are from victims. You might bite someone and then, you think, 'Oooh, those are nice pants!'.

...

Deacon: When you are a vampire, you become very sexy.

...

Vladislav: We are trying to attract victims to us. I go for a look which I call Dead But Delicious.

...

Viago: One of the most unfortunate things about being a vampire is that you have to drink human blood. I like to make a real evening of it. Play some music. Maybe give them some nice wine. It's their last moment alive so why not make it a nice experience.

...

Viago [with blood everywhere]: Well, that didn't go so great. Um, I hit the main artery. So, yeah, it's a real mess in there. On the upside, I think she had a really good time.

...

Deacon: I think we drink virgin blood because it sounds cool.
Vladislav: I think of it like this. If you are going to eat a sandwich, you would just enjoy it more if you knew no one had fucked it.

...

Nick: Petyr bit me. Sucked all my blood out. I woke up in his basement and he offered me some blood. I just thought it was some German thing that these guys do.

...

Nick: It kind of affected my friendship with normal people, my family and stuff. But, the way I see it, I've got a whole new family. They accept me for who I am. They don't even seem to know who they are. Even though one of them killed me.

...

Deacon: I don't think Nick should have been turned into a vampire. He's such a dick.

...

Deacon: Why don't you guys go and smell your own crotches, huh?
Werewolf: What are you talking about? We don't smell our own crotches. We smell each others crotches. And it's a form of greeting.

...

Stu [showing the vampires Google]: Anything you want to find you type it in.
Viago: I lost a really nice silk scarf in about 1912.

...

...

Nick: Great. I can't eat salads now. I can't sunbath. I can't watch daytime TV. I can't eat chips!

...

Jackie [to Deacon]: All I'm saying is that if I had a penis I would have been bitten years ago.

...

Jackie [to the camera]: Like one big circle, just biting each others dicks. You know, they don't even wear shirts, they wear blouses. It's, it's just a big homo-erotic dick biting club!

...

Viago [to the camera]: I've hypnotized those cops. I'm not a great hypothesizer so it could wear off any second. I really hope that those guys don't kill those police because then this means more police will come. Possibly even Christians which is totally the last things we need in this house.

...

Deacon: For these crimes of which we the vampire council find you guilty you shall be banished from our flat. Indefinitely.
Nick: Indefinitely?
Deacon: Indefinitely.
Nick: So I can come back?
Deacon: No, no, indefinitely means that there is no end.
Nick: No, indefinite means that it's not a definite thing.

English!

Viago: One year I went to The Unholy Masquerade dressed as Whoopi Goldberg from Sister Act 1 and Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit. Didn't go down so well because she was a nun. Vampires don't like nuns.

...

Deacon: You can't go the the ball as Blade. He's a vampire hunter.
VIago: Yeah, but vampires love Wesley Snipes.

...

Vladislav: Just leave me to do my dark bidding on the internet!
Viago: What are you bidding on?
Vladislav: I am bidding on a table.

...

Deacon: Jackie.
Jackie: Yeah!
Deacon: This is the undead party.
Jackie: Yeah, I'm a vampire.
Deacon: You...?
Jackie: I'm a vampire. I'm a vampire!
Deacon: So, um, who bit you?
Jackie: Oh, Nick.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
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### Re: philosophy in film

This one has politics written all over it. Go ahead, see if you can make all the way to the end without your own political prejudices in full bloom. And that's before the part about religion and God.

Fortunately, they are more or less my own.

Gitmo. Enough said? There is just no getting around our subjunctive reactions to that. So, in that context, what then does it mean to be rational?

The film begins with the World Trade Towers billowing smoke. But it is on the screen of a television in the home of a man who is about to be captured and sent to Guantanamo.

Indeed, try to react to the 9/11 attacks from a purely "reasonable" perspective.

In some respects, this is like watching an episode of MSNBCs Lockup. Only without the part about due process.

Basically the point here is to focus the beam in on one particular "detainee". He becomes an actual flesh and blood human being. In other words, not just one more "terrorist". For example, he's a big fan of Harry Potter.

And then there's the part about Cole being a woman in a "man's world". G.I. Jane. Nothing really new there. Girls will be boys. Whether they want to be or not. Really, you can scarcely even imagine this sort of behavior from the male of our species. At least not in the military.

Oh, and only if you have ever actually been a soldier are you able to grasp just how deep the bullshit can get stacked. But here all they do for hour after hour after hour is go around and around and around in circles. From cell to cell to cell -- all in an effort to confirm that the "detainees" are still alive. In fact over the closing credits that's what we see. Two soldiers going around and around and around and around "the pod" checking to be sure that the detainees are still breathing.

IMDb

The Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) in Los Angeles consulted on the film.

Director Peter Sattler originally intended for the character of Amy Cole to be a man, but changed Cole to a female character when his wife was carrying their first child, a daughter.

Peter Sattler researched for a year about Guantanamo Bay and learned much of the daily minutia from the leaked Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) of Gitmo through Wikileaks.

The director and some of the cast said that the abandoned Fred C. Nelles Correctional Facility, where they shot the prison scenes, is haunted and had a charged atmosphere.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camp_X-Ray_(film)
trailer: https://youtu.be/_1MDrwqjeGo

CAMP X-RAY [2014]
Written and directed by Peter Sattler

Corporal Ransdell: Suicide watch every 3 minutes. Do not let that repetition lower your guard. That's exactly what these guys are looking for. You got to remember some of these dudes have been locked up in here for eight years. They've been in here before some of you were even in high school.

...

Corporal Ransdell: Now... Some of you might think you're here to prevent them from leaving. You're not. The walls do that for us. You are here to prevent them from dying.

...

Private: Uh, how often do we move the prisoners?
Corporal: Detainees.
Private: What?
Corporal: You will refer to them as "detainees." You will not call them "prisoners." You all got that? No exceptions. De-tai-nees.
Private: Why can't we call them prisoners?
Cole: Prisoners are subject to the Geneva convention...detainees are not.

...

Ransdell: Listen. All you need to worry about is his right hand, okay? Each of us takes one. Leg, leg, arm, head. Don't worry about nothing else. You just keep your eye on his right hand, and you gain control of it...got it?

...

Cole: Did I do something wrong?
Ransdell: Nah. These guys just don't like girls. It's an Arab thing.

...

Ali: You know, I read your Bible, too. My opinion about Bible is the first half of the book...it is very good. It has armies, plenty of magic, which I like very much... things like that. But, you know, the second half...it has some magic, but not too much. It is boring.
Cole: Well, you don't diss my holy book I won't diss yours.
Ali: So you're Christian? Tell me something...how did you pick your christianity? It was your parents, hmm?
Cole: And cut the Hannibal Lecter shit.

...

Ali: You were saying to stop Hannibal Lecter shit, so I have to know what Hannibal Lecter is, then I stop doing that.
Cole: He's a guy in a movie that talks too much.
Cole: Well, it's probably banned where you're from, anyway.
Ali: You mean in Germany?

...

Cole [after Ali throws a cup of shit on her]: Irf him.
Ali: You Americans treat us like animals?! Okay, I am an animal!!!

...

Ali: You locked up us here for years! For what?! To show the world that you are good guy and we are bad guy?! Fuck you! You and America are the bad guy! You American are the real terrorists!

Can't get around those conflicting goods.

Cole: Hey, 3-6-1...Chicken piccata is really good today... better than normal. You want some? Come on. No takers? Come on, please?
[Ali shakes is head from his cell]
Cole: Well, that makes this day five. You all know what's coming next.

And we do too, don't we?

Cole: You know, compliant detainees get to play on a real field together.
Ali: Uh-huh. They are lucky.
Cole: If you stop acting up, they'll transfer you. You know that, right?
Ali: Mm-hmm.
Cole: And you don't care?
Ali: It's those guys who don't care, blondie. You know, they don't care about anything, just the things that make their life easier. You guys always say, "follow these rules... we will let you watch TV," huh? But if I follow your rules, what does it means? It means that I'm agreeing that you have the right to give me rules, huh? Well, you don't. You don't have the right to give me rules. So, me... I never agree to follow your rules...never.

...

Ransdell [to Ali]: Get your fucking shorts off, or I'll call in an irf and we'll get them to take them off for you. Get them off.
[Ali strips naked]
Ransdell [to Cole]: You guarding the fence, or you guarding him?
Cole: This is completely out of line.
Ransdell: Let me ask you something...are you a soldier, or are you a female soldier? 'Cause I don't have these kind of problems with soldiers. You got to watch him. That's your job. Look at him.

...

Private: These motherfuckers did 9/11, and now they're in jail...end of story.
Cole: The motherfuckers that did 9/11 died there.
Private: You know what your problem is? You've been talking too much to the fucking translators.

...

Cole: What's up?
Soldier: Here you go. You've been transferred.
Cole: What? Where?
Soldier: Night shift. Just, uh, skip tomorrow. Rotate in on the next. Your new O.I.C. will come get you. It's all there.
Cole: Why?
Soldier: Why? Shit, Cole. You know there ain't no "why" in the army.

...

Ali: I don't like this month. Always these new guards treating us like very bad guys.
Cole: They'll learn...like I did.
Ali: What did you learn? Huh? Tell me. You must learn something, huh, when I throw that shit on you...you learned something, huh? Or when we're trying to kill ourselves here, with hunger strike, you learned something...huh? So tell me... what is that? I want to know. What did you learn?
[she doesn't respond]
Ali: Blondie, you think you know, but you know nothing. You know nothing about me. You and me...we are at war.
Cole: I don't see it like that.
Ali: Then you see nothing.

...

Ali [with a shank to his own throat]: Three years ago, they took me to these interrogations. And one of your guys here, one of those guys who don't wear uniform... he told me that I'm innocent. He told me that he knows I'm innocent, but I still cannot go home because there's no country, no city, no fucking person in this planet will take me because I've been here.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
ILP Legend

Posts: 36498
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
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### Re: philosophy in film

Modern love [and human remains]. Online for example.

But online you can be whoever you want to be. And wherever you want to be. And whenever you want to be.

After all, what is real and what is just being made up? The possibilities of course are endless. A fantasy can prevail. You can really get fixated on...on what exactly?

Virginia claims to live in Germany. But she doesn't. Why lie? That's what draws you in. What is her motivation here? Why is she creating this alternate reality? She's "in love" with Cody online and then meets other men for casual sex. She lives in a Craig's LIst world. So why not find "true love" online?

The part about the internet just adds more twists and turns to the already surreal world of "modern relationships". Promiscuous sexual relationships with others out in the "real world" and an actual mongommous emotional bonding online.

Here we have another shade of the Catfish syndrome. But love is strange. Even when you suspect the truth is not what you are being given you can't just flick your heart on and off like an appliance. The heart in other words is not a machine at all.

This is one of those films that gets a 94% fresh rating among the critics at RT but most "ordinary people" hate it. Critically acclaimed, in other words, just not among "the masses". Too slow. Nothing happens. Or even when something does happen, it's just not "linear".

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Heart_Machine
trailer: https://youtu.be/xOSjexo4tvQ

THE HEART MACHINE [2014]
Written and directed by Zachary Wigon

Virginia [via skype]: It's either bodies we fixate upon or bodies we obsess upon.
Cody: Hmm. Fixate or obssess? I don't know. I think they are both really nice.
Virginia: You think they're both really nice. That's super helpful. Thanks.
Cody: You're very welcome. Well, what comes after that?
Virginia: But the mind's the prize.
Cody: Oh, okay. It's bodies we obsess upon but the mind's the prize.

...

Cody: Oh, I forgot to tell you. I saw your doppelgänger today.
Virginia: What?
Cody: Yeah. On the subway. For a few seconds I could have sworn it was you.

...

Cody: It could turn out to be true...or I could just be the world's most paranoid boyfriend. Do I seem crazy?
Dale: It seems like she's fucking with you.

...

Virginia [to a friend]: There are no rules. It's the wild west out there.

Hooking up online in other words.

Greg [after Cody shows him a photo of Virginia on his phone]: Oh, yeah, I recognize her. But I don't like know her or anything.
Cody: She's actually in Berlin now. For the next couple of months.
Greg [after a pause]: Are you okay, man?

...

Cody [to friend]: But, like, look. Let's say she is in New York. Whatever. Who cares. She's a bitch. Fuck it. I will move on and forget about it. But...it's...the....not knowing that is making me so crazy. If I could just know one way or the other but not knowing is what makes it so frustrating.

...

Jessica [before unprotected sex]: You've been tested, right?
Cody: Yeah, you?

...

Cody [on skype]: If I'm going to be honest with you. I have to say that it has really been getting to me lately...the distance and how crazy it can make you and how hard it is to have so many feelings tied up in something that is so far away from you. And so completely beyond your control.
Virginia: Are you breaking up with me?
Cody: What?
Virginia: I just feel that we have come really far and I'm coming home really soon and we've become really close.
Cody: Yeah, you're coming back really soon...
Virgina: Don't be a fucking idiot. I love you. I really love you.

He walks away from the computer.

Virgina [on skype to Cody]: You're allowing people to walk in the shoes of a farmer for a week...but it's not real farming. It's like an amusement park version of farming. And when you do that...when you try to get to the essense of a thing but you lose everything that complicates it...that makes it real...I do think that is kind of dangerous.

The irony appears lost on her.

...

Virginia: It's so much smaller in real life.
Cody: Yeah, I think that Skype distorts space.

...

Virginia: Have ever heard of this thing called blender?
[Cody says nothing]
Virginia: Well, I get that. And then I started thinking what if there was another sort of blender where you could find people that you can talk to right now...that you can care about right now.
[Cody still says nothing]
Virginia: Every relationship I've ever been in ends badly...and they've all started out really well. And I thought that maybe if I had some sort of distancing agent that I could make it work this time.

...

Cody [to Virginia up on the roof]: I think this was a mistake.
[he walks away]
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
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### Re: philosophy in film

Suicide.

In theory? No doubt that can get as convoluted as suicide in practice. Even more so perhaps since the "idea" of suicide can be stretched as far as your imagination is able to take it.

Same with murder. Being a hitman. In theory it can be construed in any number of ways. If, for example, you are making a movie, you just "think up" a context.

But how about someone who wants to commit suicide hiring a hitman to assist him? You don't come across that everyday. But your reaction to this -- in theory or in practice -- is going to revolve by and large around your reaction to the characters themselves. The plot at times being almost incidental.

Here's a man who, after trying to kill himself over and over again, has come to conclude that he cannot die. In theory. So he hires a hit man [after falling and landing on the cab he was in] to accomplish the task for him.

Two men steeped in grief. One deals in death to earn a living and the other wants to hire him in pursuit of his own.

But this is also about that age old philosophical question of why things -- here weird and unimaginable coincidences -- happen as they do. Is it because they were always meant to happen that way or are we somehow able push them "autonomously" in the direction that we choose?

In some respects though, we're not really meant to take the plot literally. And, in other respects, it's simply preposterous. But frames of mind like this do exist. Coincidences like this do occur. And you are either able to relate to them or you are not. Or you have either felt like this yourself or you have not. In other words, you are either drawn inexorably into it or...or you are only sickened.

So, are you lucky to be alive?

IMDb

Leon Cain actually cut some of his face for the diner scene, the director was not happy with him and threatend to cast someone else.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Suicide_Theory
trailer: https://youtu.be/OFPPZJdi0Zc

THE SUICIDE THEORY [2014]
Directed by Dru Brown

Customer [Christopher]: Pack of smokes please.
Steven: Excuse me, can you not see we're in the middle of a conversation here?
Customer: Oh, I'm sorry. I thought this place was a store.

...

Steven: So how did you find me?
Percival: Do you believe in fate Steven? I mean me, myself, I never really used to think about it. But I'm coming round to it.
Steven: Right.
Percival: Look the re...the reason I bring it up is because I believe the two of us were meant to meet. That this conversation we are having right now was meant to happen. Doesn't matter what happened yesterday. We'd still be sitting talking to each other right now.
Steven: What's that? Some sort of Sigmund Freud shit?
Percival: It's Elisabeth Kubler-Ross...actually.

...

Steven: Say I was to shoot you, right here, right now?
Percival: Right now? No, it wouldn't work. It's against the rules.
Steven: Rules?
Percival: It has to happen when I least expect it.
Steven: Okay, if I was to shoot you right here and now...without warning...would you expect it?
Percival: That's a good point but still it wouldn't work. For it to work I need to not want to die. Right now I want to die. If I didn't I wouldn't be here talking to you.

...

Steven: Why don't you just do it yourself?
Percival: What is it about my face that makes you think I haven't already tried that?

Trust me: His face tells the tale.

Steven: You sure you want to go through with this? This is your chance...If you're not...people kill themselves all the time. Usually when they fail at suicide it's because they didn't actually want to kill themselves at all. Usually it's for attention. Desperate cry for help.
Percival: This is much more complicated.
Steven: Is it?

...

Doctor [to Percival]: Three bullets. You're very lucky to be alive.

The look on Percival's face: pricelss.

Percival: Look there's...there's no other explanation for it.
Steven: There doesn't need to be an explanation, shit happens. Get that through your fucking head. There's no such thing as fate, there's no such thing as Karma. There's certainly no fucking such thing as a curse.

...

Steven: So ah for this to work you need to be happy when I do it?
Percival: Not quite. I need to be in...um...an overall state of mind. One where I truly and honestly want to live.
Steven: But you said you don't want to live. You don't want to live, right? That's a problem. That makes it next to impossible.
Percival: I didn't say it was going to be easy.

...

Steven: Maybe I'm just not the guy for the job. I don't know. I haven't been myself lately.
Percival: Out of all the hundreds of cabs in this town I landed on yours. Don't worry, you'll get the job done.

...

Steven: Come on, what was her name?
Perciuval: Chris.
Steven: It's a nice name. I like that name. Sounds hot. What was she like? Oh, give me something, what did she look like?
Percival: Ah...6 foot...dimples...and a HUGE cock.
Steven: Did you say a huge cock? Was a she-male?
Percival: No, not a she-male. He was a man.
Steven: You're a fag?!

He doesn't mean it that way though.

Percival: Why do you hurt people?
Steven: I don't know.
Percival: You just...You do it for the sake of it? I'll never understand it. Why people can do such ugly things to one another. Why is there so much hate and anger in the world?
Steven: You remember being born? First words? First steps?
Percival: Of course not, nobody does.
Steven: My earliest memory. Is of my father. Throwing me head first through a plate glass coffee table. Fifty stitches. Closest thing to affection anybody had ever shown me.

...

Steven: So where did it all start. I don't know, I can't remember being born. Can't remember my first words, first steps. I can't remember when all this began but it's like it was always there.

...

Steven: Why is it that you hate gays so much? Huh? You a religious man, Brad? Fanatic? Get a little too much attention from your uncle? Maybe it's just me...I don't know. Maybe I'm just incapable of understanding. You see, I don't give a fuck if you're gay, straight, black, white...fucking purple. I kill everybody.

...

Steven [tossing Brad's driver's license on the floor near Percival]: Don't worry. I didn't kill everybody.
Percival: What did you do to them?
Steven: Let's just say Brad's a changed man.

...

Steven: You want my advice? You want to break this curse? You have to face what you are really afraid of.
Percival: What are you really afraid of?

You won't believe it.

Steven: You're the one always talking about God and astrology. Fate, all that other crap.
Percival: I tend to think my belief in God is at its strongest when I need someone to blame.
Steven: Why do you think Christopher died?
Percvival: Excuse me?
Steven: I mean he's dead. You think that happened for a reason?
Percival: Maybe once I figure that out I can die in piece.

...

Percival: I've heard of him.
Steven: Now well this book is called Candide. Classic Voltaire. Highly regarded as oneof his greatest works.
Steven: Fate. That things happen and no matter what you do you can't change it.

And, more to the point, no one is really to blame for anything. Not really.

Percival [to Steven]: Hypothetically speaking...say you believed in fate. That everything has a purpose, that everything happens for a reason. Why do you think Annie died? Why are you still here? What's your purpose?

...

Steven [holding a button from Annie's dress]: Where did you get this from?
Percival: It was cold. It rained that night. The roads were wet. I was right Steven. Fate brought us together. All this happened for a reason.
Steven: Where the fuck did you get this from?! Percival don't fucking tell me it was you.

...

Percival: You told me to confront my guilt.
Steven: SHUT THE FUCK UP!
Percival: Out of all the millions of people and cabs in this town, I landed on yours. All of this was meant to happen. This is how it's supposed to end.

...

Steven: I nearly killed you Frank. I nearly fucking killed you. But you got lucky...You got real lucky. Luckier that the rest anyway. Why do you think that was? We, I..I..I don't know. Do you think it was fate that saved you? I mean if I put two bullets right between your eyes right now as we speak. That would pretty much trump the idea of fate now wouldn't it? Or would that just be what was meant to be all along. Is it fate? Or is it because of my free will you continue to be alive? And I don't know...I don't fucking know.

We don't fucking know either. Though some think they do.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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iambiguous
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### Re: philosophy in film

Some folks are at home in the wilderness and some folks are not. But some of the folks who are not still find themselves talked into going out into it anyway. To test themselves perhaps. Or to "find" themselves. Or maybe just for the "adventure".

Or maybe they don't really want to go at all. They're just pressured into it.

Jenn is like most of us. She's never really been out in the "wild" and doesn't quite know what to expect. So she is always expecting the worst. She is never not worried about something. She is far more acclimated to surviving from day to day to day in the "urban jungle". Rather than, say, coming eyeball to eyeball with a survival of an entirely different sort: literal survival.

Alex on the other hand is the "seasoned outdoorsman". But how seasoned? In "real life" he works as a landscaper. And it doesn't take long for us to realize that he is remarkably reminiscent of Lewis from Deliverance. He thinks he knows a lot more about the great outdoors than he actually does. For the most part, he is just out to impress his girlfriend. And boy does he ever fuck that up.

Here nature is embodied in a bear. A black bear. And it encompasses nature right down to the bone: survival of the biggest and the brawniest. And everything is only always as it is and not how it ought to be.

Only this particular bear takes a really long time to make an appearance.

This one is "loosely based on a true story": http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/black-bea ... t-1.556281

IMDb

The film is set in fictional "Nibookaazo Provincial Park", this can be seen written on the side of the canoe towards the end of the film. In the native North American Ojibwe language this translates into "Pretend to be Dead Provincial Park"

You don't see the bear in the first half of the movie. At minute 48 you hear it for the first time, outside the tent.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Backcountry_(film)
trailer: https://youtu.be/46uwmzTf5nA

BACKCOUNTRY [2014]
Written and directed by Adam MacDonald

Park ranger: Need a map?
Alex: No, I'm good.
Park ranger: You don't want a map?
Alex: No. No. I know this park well.

...

Park ranger: You mind me askin' you, Mr. No Map, where you're headed?
Alex: Blackfoot Trail. I can't wait to show her. It's her first time here. It's gonna be awesome.
Alex: Why?
Park ranger: Had to. I mean, so many yahoos you know, trampin' around there, disrespecting everything. This is a treasured site. I don't have to tell you I guess. And Parks and Recreation want to keep it that way.
Alex: Look, going to Blackfoot Trail is kinda the whole point of this trip.
Park ranger: It's 500 bucks if you're caught up there. Each. That'll be a 1000 bucks expensive little camping trip.

Like that will stop him.

Alex [finding a can of bear spray in her backpack]: When did you get that?
Jenn: I got it a few days ago.
Alex: You're not gonna need it.
Jenn: Do you wanna have a good time on this trip or do you want me to be freaking out? This is what makes me feel safe.

...

Alex [noticing how wary Jenn seems on the trail]: Jenn, we'll be lucky if we see anything bigger than a chipmunk!

...

Alex [rummaging through Jenn's backpack]: Wonder what other goodies you have in there.
Jenn: Nothin'. I don't have anything in there. Hey, there's nothing.
[Alex pulls out a flare]
Alex: Oh, come on. Seriously? This is a road flare. This is for when your car breaks down on the side of the highway!

...

Alex: What do you do for a livin' out here?
Brad: I give backcountry eco tours to tourists that want, uh.. You know like a deeper experience of the wilderness you know, somethin' more than campin' in a parking lot.
Alex: Yeah? That's cool.
Brad: I mean, you and Jenn are doin' it so it must be cool, right?
Alex: How much would somethin' like that cost?
Alex: You don't know how much it costs?
Brad: I only know how much they pay me, Alex.

...

Brad: Say, Alex, you know, earlier you said something. "It was a misunderstanding." You wanna explain that to me?
Jenn: Uh, it was nothing.
Brad: Come on, he's a big boy. Let him answer. It's just a funny thing to say. What'd you mean by it?
Alex: I'm not sure I understand what you're getting at.
Brad: Oh yes you do. What...was...the...misunderstanding?
Alex: Is it important?
Alex: Well, I come back here and I find my girlfriend talkin' to this guy and I'm not sure it's a good idea. That's all. I mean, I don't know you.
Brad: So what was the misunderstanding?
Alex: You can be some nut. She convinced me otherwise.

Brad is one force of nature. But now it's the bear.

Jenn: Alex, get up!
Alex: Hmm?
Jenn: Listen.
Alex: What?
Jenn: Just listen. What is that? Someone's throwing shit at our tent. What is that?
Alex; That? Oh, that's acorns. Just fallin' from the trees on our tent. It's fine. Just go back to sleep.
[a big thud]
Alex: Oh! That's not an acorn.

...

Jenn: I wanna go home. I don't wanna be here anymore.
Alex: Jenn, come on, don't overreact, okay?
Jenn: An acorn did that?

...

Alex: Where's the lake? I can't believe this.
Jenn: Alex...
Alex: I don't...I don't understand.
Jenn: This can't be it, right?
Alex: Fuck! I was sure. I was like a fucking 100% sure. I was...
Jenn: Can you look at me, please?
Alex: Just let me think. Just let me think. Let me think. Let me think. Fuck! God damn it! What the fuck is this?
Alex: I never needed a map.
Jenn: Well, we do now.
Alex: I don't have one.
Jenn: So, then, where are we?
ASlex: I obviously don't know, right?

...

Jenn [looking in her backpack for her phone]: It's not, uh, I put it here. I.. I put it right here.
Alex: I took it out.
Jenn: What?
Alex: Your phone. I took it out.
Jenn: Where is it?
Alex: In the car.
Jenn: Why would you do that?
Alex: I didn't want you on that thing the whole time when we're here.
Jenn: I didn't reach for that once. I... I wanted to bring it in case we needed it. Which we do!

...

Alex: Just...come on, don't freak out. I don't want to be freaking out right now.
Jenn: But we are in the middle of fucking nowhere. We don't have anything. We don't have a...we don't have a map. We don't have a cell phone. We don't have anything.

...

Jenn: Why do you always have to show off.
Alex: I'm not showing off...
Jenn: Why do you always try to impress me? Look, 'cause I'm not fucking impressed right now!
Alex: Good! I'm not trying to fucking impress you!
Jenn: Alex, could we be honest for a second? I'd love to be honest for once. I wish I never came. This whole thing was a mistake. Okay?
Alex: Come on, Jenn, don't...
Jenn: And we should be going home tomorrow. But you fucked it up. You always fuck it all up. You're such a fucking loser! The stupid lake! Why did we have to come here?!
I don't even care why.
Alex: Why? I was gonna propose to you.

...

Alex [obviously lost]: Sh... shit.
Jenn: Should we go back?
Alex: I don't know.
Jenn: What are the chances this leading to something?
Alex: Pretty good. Right, it's a provincial park. It's gotta lead somewhere.

...

Jenn: What is that?
Alex: A bear bed.

...

Jenn: What? Alex.
Alex: Shh.
Jenn: What?
Alex: Stay quiet.
Jenn: You're scaring me. What?
Alex: Stay quiet. Stay quiet.
Jenn: Did it come back?
Alex: Shh. What the fuck is he doing? What the fuck is he doing?
Jenn: Did it come back? Is it outside?

It doesn't.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
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iambiguous
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Posts: 36498
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
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### Re: philosophy in film

Just as John Lennon was thought by many to be the heart and the soul of the Beatles, Brian Wilson was thought of in the same manner regarding the Beach Boys. And, like John Lennon, more than anything, Brian Wilson's aim was to take the Beach Boys music as far beyond "pop" as he possibly could.

In fact, there's a clip from the documentary The Compleat Beatles, where the Beach Boys had just listened to Sargent Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band and were completely blown away. It was then that folks like Brian realized just how far you could actually take his music artistically, creatively.

But that's always the crux. It's the music business and one way or another there are always going to be folks hell bent on making money off of the music you create. And the closer that comes to the lowest common denominator the more likely it is to sell. But some want [and are able to achieve] more than that. Some want to be taken seriously as recording artists. And back then folks like the Beatles and Bob Dylan showed other musicians just how far that it could be taken.

But the Beach Boys?! After all, in the beginning just how far removed were they from, say, the Monkees? At least in the eyes of those who did take "pop music" to places it had never been before.

This is all basically new to me however because I never had much interest in following the saga of the Beach Boys. And while I heard all the rumors about Brian, I never made any effort to really delve into it. Most of the controversy seemed to revolve around his tyrannical father. And that fucking shrink.

But then, finally, there was the question of his actual sanity.

at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Love_%26_Mercy_(film)
trailer: https://youtu.be/lioWzrpCtGQ

LOVE AND MERCY [2014]

Brian [voiceover]: Sometimes it scares me to think where it's coming from, you know? Like there's someone else in there, not me. Well...What if I...What if I lose it and never get it back? What would I do then? Take a listen to this again, I wanna do something with it. Um...I've got...I think I've got it. The music part, it worked out in my head, but I don't know anything else except that it should... it should sound like, you know, a cry, but in sort of a good way or something. I want these voices at the end just to sound...

...

Brian: My brother died.
Melinda: Oh. Oh, I'm...I'm so sorry.
Brian: He drowned. A few years ago. Two. But I'm all broken up about it still, you know? I mean, he wasn't even 40 yet.
Melinda: That is...that's terrible. So sad.
Brian: Yeah. But I just don't get it. I think about it every day, and I just don't get it.

...

Brian: You hear the new Beatles?
Brother: Yeah. The "Rubber Soul"? Yeah. I heard it was about John Lennon having an affair.
Brian: It's amazing! I mean, it works like a whole. It's like a whole album. Everything fits together, no fat. Like an album of folk songs, but the sounds are really far out. We can't let them get ahead of us! I can take us further.

...

Brian [of his new song "God Only Knows"]: Tony and I think that if you close your eyes you can see a place or something that's happening. It's like being blind but because you're blind you can see more. Don't you think it's a spiritual kind of thing?
Murry [his father]: I don't know what the hell you're talking about. I closed my eyes. Didn't see a thing. I don't know. Maybe it could be something. With the right arrangement.
Brian: I have French horns on it and flutes, tambourines, sleigh bells, piano, bass. Real complex key shifts.
Murry: Frankly, if you really want to know, I don't care for it. It's too wishy-washy. "If you leave me, why leave me? Life will go on. Why go on living?" It's not like a Beach Boys song. Your brothers are going to hate it.
Brian [upset]: It's a love song.
Murry: It's a suicide note!

...

Carol: I think you might've screwed up here.
Brian: Really? Let me see.
Carol: Well, you've got Lyle playing in D and the rest of us are in A major.
Brian: Yeah, that's right.
Carol: How does that work? Two basslines in two different keys?
Brian: Well, it works in my head.

...

Brian: Oh, yeah. You know, spare the rod, spoil the child. You know I'm 96% deaf in my right ear because my dad whacked me all the time. He was a really hard man and he was a not very happy man, but, uh...in some ways I love my dad, you know, because he scared me and he scared me so much, I think he actually scared me into making good records.

...

Brian [in the studio]: Hey, Chuck, you think we could get a horse in here?

...

Hal: Let me tell you something, Brian. We're all pros, you know? We've played with everyone. Heard it all. You name 'em, we've played with 'em. Sinatra, Dean Martin, Elvis, Phil Spector, Sam Cooke, everyone! And we all studied in goddamn conservatories, for Christ's sake. But...but you... you gotta know that you're touched, kid. You've blown our minds.

...

Gene: I really don't want you to be alarmed by what, uh, I'm gonna talk to you about now. But you should know that you are dealing with a very, very sick man. There's no other way to say it. Sorry.
Melinda: Well, how sick is he?
Gene: Brian is a paranoid schizophrenic. But you really do not need to be alarmed because I have it under control. I am the control so to speak. When I started working with Brian, he weighed, what...300 pounds? He spent all day in bed eating bloody steaks and a lot of junk food. Self-medicating.

...

Mike: There's not one hit on this album, guys! I don't care how many car horns and bicycle bells and jingle-jangle or whatever you put in there. They're not gonna buy something depressing like that!
Brina: Depressing?
Mike: Even the happy songs are sad. We need to write some of the old stuff again, fellas. That's all I'm saying.
Brian [pounding on recording console]: We're not surfers, we never have been, and real surfers don't dig our music anyway!
Dennis: They don't.
Brian: Okay, I can't write about the summer and fun and summer and summer and fun and cars! I got different stuff inside me, I gotta get it out.
Mike: Oh, jeez, would you listen to yourself? You've "gotta get it out"? Who are you? Mozart?!

...

Brian [to Melinda]: I want you to leave, but I don't want you to leave me.

....

Marilyn: I'd like to make a toast. To "Good Vibrations", Brian's pocket symphony to God. And the biggest selling single the Beach Boys ever had. Ever!
Everyone: Here, here!
Guest 1: Brian, the suits at Capitol must be happy.
Guest 2: Yeah, I guess you can tell the record company to screw themselves. I mean, you can do whatever you want, Brian. Right?
Guest 1: Now what are you going to do with all that freedom?
Brian [to Marilyn]: Did my dad call?
Marilyn: No, he didn't. You want me to get him for you?
Guest 1: Hey Van, what do you and Brian have cooking?
Van Dyke Parks: [smiling] You know, just your basic American songbook neoclassical ditties. Your basic Copland, Gershwin, Hank Williams, a little bit of Irving Berlin and Kurt Weill, just a sprinkle of Beethoven and Beach Boys. Nothing too ambitious. Kind of a comedy album. Brian wants to call it Smile.

...

Carl: I'm worried about you, brother.
Brian: I think I might be losing it.
Dennis: I don't blame you. There's a lot to lose out there.

...

Murry: Cheer up, I got good news. I sold the publishing rights to A&M Records. $750,000. Brian [shocked]: What? Murry: I sold the rights to the Beach Boys music. Got the most I could for it, not as much as I wanted, but something. Brian: They're...our songs. You can't do that. Murry: Anyway, what are you worried about it? They're never going to amount to anything. You've peaked, Brian. Look around. Five years from now no one is gonna remember you or the Beach Boys. [Brian is too stunned to respond] Murry: What was I supposed to do?! That's all I got. You fired me! Your own father!! ... Melinda: Brian, you need...you need real care. Brian: I miss you. I miss my family. I miss you. I wanna be with you. You understand? I wanna be with you. But, I, um...I hear voices. I hear voices. Melinda: Since when? Brian: 1963. Melinda [startled]: Are you kidding? Brian: No kidding. I just didn't tell you 'cause I didn't want to scare you away. ... Title card: In 1992, after surrendering his license to practice psychology in California, Eugene Levy was barred from having further contact with Brian Wilson as part of a settlement brought by Carl Wilson and the Wilson family. Landy's diagnosis that Brian suffered from paranoid schixioopghrenia was subsequently overrturned by a team of doctors at UCLA. Once correctly diagnosed and with proper medication asnd treatment, Brian's condition improved significantly. He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529 Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296 And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382 iambiguous ILP Legend Posts: 36498 Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm Location: baltimore maryland ### Re: philosophy in film Civilization has collapsed.... Here we go again: Dystopia. And, as with all dystopian epics, what counts is this: once you take away the special effects and all the "action scenes"...what's left? The really good ones will go beyond the usual Hollywood tropes. And the ususal Hollywood tripe. They actually induce you to think about what it might be like to live in a world where civilization has bitten the dust. A world where an entirely new frame of mind is required. And that's just to survive. Really, what do any of us know about living in a world where almost everything comes down to subsistence. In other words, nothing at all like the world that most of us live in now. So, we are presented with choices here that few of us can even begin to imagine. Thus the ideals and the goals and the moral narratives that we subscribe to [or chanpion "philosophically" ] may well have little or no practical value at all in this world. So, is this one of the "good ones"? You tell me. Of course there will always be folks ["characters" in films like this] who refuse to let it be just all about that. Especially if they are cut from the uberman mold. In other words, they insist on the circuses as well as the bread. And some will even go looking for...redemption? The right makes might rendition of a might makes right world. But make no mistake about it: It's a man's world. Survival of the fittest. But nowadays of course there has to the alpha-female too. As few as possible obviously but just enough to let us know that women too can be men. Unless, of course, these women have other plans. Still, some things never change: they are all drop dead gorgeous. As for the "masses", yeah, they're around. Thousands of them all sheepishly awaiting for someone to save them. And yet in a world where one or another global calamity may well radically reconfigure life as we know it, it is always worthwhile to at least imagine a change of venue this...catastrophic. Indeed, the premise here, that the "oil wars" gave way to the "water wars" is actually something that some are predicting in our own lifetime: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_conflict Not that gasoline is not also still in demand. After all, they worship V8. IMDb In creating the look of the film, director George Miller laid down two stipulations for the production to follow. Firstly the cinematography would be as colorful as possible in order to differentiate the film from other post apocalyptic movies which typically have bleak desaturated colors. Secondly the art direction would be as beautiful as possible, as Miller reasoned that people living in the post apocalypse would try to find whatever scraps of beauty they could in their meager environment. at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mad_Max:_Fury_Road trailer: https://youtu.be/hEJnMQG9ev8 MAD MAX: FURY ROAD Written in part and directed by George Miller Max [voiceover]: My name is Max. My world is fire and blood. Once, I was a cop. A road warrior searching for a righteous cause. As the world fell, each of us in our own way was broken. It was hard to know who was more crazy...me...or everyone else. ... Max [voiceover]: Here they come again. Worming their way into the black matter of my brain. I tell myself they cannot touch me. They are long dead. ... Max [voiceover]: I am the one who runs from both the living and the dead. Hunted by scavengers...Haunted by those I could not protect. So I exist in this wasteland...A man, reduced to a single instinct: Survive. ... Immortan Joe [to the nasses]: Do not, my friends become addicted to water. It will take hold of you and you will resent it's absence. ... Nux: Oh, what a day... what a lovely day! ... Nux: Witness me Blood Bag!! Witness!!! I live, I die, I live again!! ... Furiosa [to Max]: You want that thing off your face? ... Furiosa: What do you see? Splendid: Big rigs...Polecats...Flamers...and there's the People Eater himself! ... Furiosa: Hey. What's your name? What do I call you? Max: Does it matter? Furiosa: Fine. When I yell "fool," you drive out of here as fast as you can. ... Immortan Joe: Ah, mediocre! ... Nux: There's high ground, just beyond that thing. Capable: He means the tree. ... Max: How do you know this Green place even exists? Furiosa: I was born there. Max: Why'd you leave? Furiosa: I didn't. I was taken as a child. Stolen. Max: You've done this before? Furiosa: Many times. Now that I drive a War Rig this is the best shot I'll ever have. Max [looking back at the Wives]: And them? Furiosa: They are looking for hope. Max: What about you? Furiosa [after a pause]: Redemption. ... Furiosa: I can't wait for them to see it. Keeper of the seeds: See? See what? Furiosa: Home. The Green Place. Keeper of the seeds: But if you came from the West you passed it. The crows. The creepy place with all the crows. The soil. We had to get out. We had no water. And water was filth. It was sour. Then the crows came. We couldn't grow anything. ... Max [to Furiosa]: You know, hope is a mistake. If you can't fix what's broken, you'll, uh... you'll go insane. ... Max [pointing to the Citadel]: All right. This is your way home. Furiosa [incredulous]: We go back? Max: Mmm. Toast: Back?! Max: Yeah. The Dag: I thought you weren't insane anymore. ... The Vuvalini: What's there to find at the Citadel? Max: Green. Toast: And water. There's a ridiculous amount of clear water. And a lot of crops. The Dag: It's got everything you need, as long as you're not afraid of heights. Keeper of the Seeds: Where does the water come from? Toast: Immortan Joe pumps it up from deep within the earth. He calls it "Aqua Cola" and claims it all for himself. The Dag: And because he owns it, he owns all of us. Keeper of the Seeds: I don't like him already. ... Furiosa: And how exactly do we take the Citadel, assuming we're still alive by then? Toast: If can block the pass, it'll be easy. All that's left are his War Pups, and War Boys too sick to fight. Capable: And we'll be with Nux. He's a War Boy. He'll be bringing us home, bringing back what's stolen, like he's supposed to. [everyone turns to look at Nux] Nux: Yeah...feels like hope. ... Toast: What are you doing? The Dag: Praying. Toast: To who? The Dag: Anyone who's listening. He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529 Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296 And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382 iambiguous ILP Legend Posts: 36498 Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm Location: baltimore maryland ### Re: philosophy in film Heroin. Always tricky. It can make you feel like nothing else. A high that some describe as nothing less than indescribably pleasurable. But then [of course] along the way it can turn your life into a living hell. Or even kill you. It's a trade off that some are willing to make. Or, for others, have no choice but to sustain. Here is the entire plot from wiki: Harley loves Ilya. He gives her life purpose and sets her passion ablaze. So, when he asks her to prove her love by slitting her wrists, she obliges with only mild hesitation, perhaps because of her other all-consuming love: heroin. This is all based on the actual experiences of the woman who plays Harley, Arielle Holmes. She was at one time a homeless heroin addict panhandling on the streets of New York City. And that's how it looks. Like you are watching a documentary about drug addicts in the Big City. Ten minutes into the film you are either able to empathize with them or you're thinkin, "total fucking losers...who gives a shit". And it's always about the high. And since many of us have never experienced it ourselves we don't have the frame of reference that allows us put ourselves in their shoes...to understand why they do what they in order to sustain it. So what else is there but to judge them from our own perspective instead. A really good soundtrack. at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heaven_Knows_What trailer: https://youtu.be/zxWMc7iHt8Q HEAVEN KNOWS WHAT [2014] Directed by Ben Safdie, Joshua Safdie Harley: What can I do for you to forgive me? Ilya, what can I do for you to forgive me? Ilya: Fly. Harley: Would you forgive me if I die? Ilya: Yes. Harley: Okay. ... Harley: Ilya. I got the razor blades, okay. I don't think you're taking me serious about this. I'm sorry, okay? But I am about to die right now, and I really want you to be there. She hands him her suicide note and he just tears it up. Ilya [to Harley]: I've been listening to you for a long time talk about how you're going to do this, and I'm getting really fucking tired of it, so why don't you go fucking do it. Okay? Go fucking do it, okay? Fucking cunt. ... Scully: Why would you want to get with some douchebag, black metal, fucking dirt bomb? Honestly, my mother killed herself in suicide, okay? On some serious trip. That how you want to be, on the floor, dead? Harley: Yep. ... Ilya: If you love me you would have killed yourself by now. You know how much you're killing me? You know? Do you? So why are you still here? Harley: You want me to do it, Ilya? Ilya: Yes. [Harley takes out a razor blade] Harley: Yeah? Ilya: Yes. Do it in front of me. I want to see. I want to see you do it. I want to see you do it. So she slits her wrist. Mike: Dude, we got to pay the rent. We got to pay the rent. Harley: I don't have it. Mike: You don't even got your 15 for the rent? Harley: I don't even have money for a wake up tomorrow. Mike: Jesus Christ. Hey, listen, I can only carry so much, so you got to put some work in too. I'm out there hustling every day, putting my ass on the line. Harley: Listen, you give me a wake up tomorrow. Mike, you give me a wake up tomorrow, I'm going to go out. Mike: What you do, no offense, but what you do is nothing compared to me. You're sitting on a corner with a sign. And people hand you money. I'm putting my ass on the line, risking my freedom. In other words, she spanges for money and he steals it. Harley [voiceover]: Ilya, dearest. At first you were a prince. You were peaceful, and to me you were the sweetest boy in the world. You had patience and there was an elegance about you. You gave me many gifts, and by that I mean you introduced me to many things, worlds I had no idea existed, a sweeter side within myself, one that I never knew was there, and also of course a darker side, but even with that darkness that comes with knowing you, being with you, in the end, I need you. You enabled me to grow as a person. Everything that I am today, came from you. He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529 Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296 And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382 iambiguous ILP Legend Posts: 36498 Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm Location: baltimore maryland ### Re: philosophy in film Thou shalt not kill. On the other hand, if you absolutely must, it's always nice being able to rationalize it as a "good kill". And that apparently has been of particular importance to the folks whose job it is to justify the use of military drones in order to slaughter -- vaporize really -- god knows how many terrorists to date. Along with lots and lots and lots and lots of what is called "collateral damage". Not that there are not actual terrorists out there that we have to get before they get us. Instead, the debate here tends to revolve more around the gap between what the "good kill" guys tell us about "the mission", and what the folks on the other side tell us it is really all about instead. Or folks like me who have a rather critical reaction to American foreign policy. Sure, I want the world rid of terrorists too. I just want the definition of the word to be expanded -- to include the folks who own and operate, among other things, the global economy. That's not discussed here though. But then it never is. Instead, this one seems to revolve more around a man who wants to actually be piloting a plane when the bombs drop rather then sitting in a modular acting out in "real life" what kids do playing video games. This film is said to be based on "actual events". But it is also based on a particular political spin. If nothing else, it truly does take us inside the world of remote control killing. Killing at a distance. Sometimes thousands of miles away. War at it's most...surreal? at wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Good_Kill trailer: https://youtu.be/pcDB6OZgqzo GOOD KILL [2014] Written and directed by Andrew Niccol Tom [looking at screen]: I can see them. Jack: Rifle when ready. Tom: Master arm hot. Fly the laser. Target lasered. Three, two, one, rifle. Missile away. Time of flight, 10 seconds. [a big explosion on the screen...6 folks are blown to bits] Tom: Splash. [long pause] Tom: Good kill. Jack [colonel]: Well, they don't call it hellfire for nothing. Best use of$68,000 taxpayers money I've seen today.

...

Jack: What's the body count?
Carlos: I count six, sir. But good luck figuring out which parts go in which casket.

...

Molly [to Tom]: You look miles away. Seven thousand?
[Tom doesn't respond]
Molly: That was a joke.

...

Jack [indicating a drone to a class of Air Force personnel]: Ladies and gentleman, the aircraft you are looking at is not the future of war. It is the here and fucking now. Anytime, day or night, there are dozens of these things in the sky...and most are working in that Garden of Eden they call Afghanistan. They're starting to think that it is their new national bird.

...

Jack [to the class]: We get a lot of shit from the public. And I've heard all the bleeding heart arguments. I've read all the fucking bumper stickers. About the Air Force is the Chair Force waging a Wii-war. It's all a waste of breath because the Air Force is ordering more drones than jets. Drones aren't going anywhere. In fact, they're going everywhere. But don't think I believe my own shit either. Cause we like to dress it up in fancy language. "Prosecuting a target", "a surgical strike", "neutralizing the threat". Make no fucking mistake about it. We are killing people. So I am going to drill this into your goddamn heads everyday. This ain't Playstation. But even though the brass don't like to admit it, our operation was modeled on Xbox. And half of you were recruited in malls precisely because you are a bunch of fucking gamers. And war is now a first-person shooter. But when you pull the trigger here, it's for fucking real. Ain't a bunch of pixels you're blowing up. It's flesh and fucking blood.

...

Jack [to Tom]: So what did you log? 3,000 hours in F-16s, six tours, 200 combat sorties before you got here? Now they give them 40 hours in a Cessna and send them to me. And pretty soon they won't even do that. Just shove a joystick into their clammy mitts on day one.

...

Cop: Say, Major, how is the war on terror going?
Tom: Kind of like your war on drugs.

...

Jack: Nothing explodes quite like explosives. One IED factory going out of business. As soon as he comes back taking his last piss, we smoke him.

...

Jack: You know you're not to blame for that. The kids getting killed.
Tom: Wrong place, wrong time.
Jack: It happens. If you want to know how I think about it, here's how I think about it. Just now, we didn't know those kids were gonna show up. But they knew. They knew for a fact that there were kids on those 767s they flew into the Twin Towers. They had to walk past those kids to get into the cockpits. Anyhow, I don't want you getting gunshy on me.

...

Jack: For an unspecified number of missions we are to serve another master. Christians In Action.
[puzzled looks]
Jack: The CIA.
Christie: Were taking orders from the CIA?
Jack: You're damn straight, Christie. The CIA takes orders from the administration, and since we've sworn an oath to obey that same administration, as much as it pains me to take orders from a fucking clerk, yeah, we're taking orders from the CIA. Now what I want you to prepare yourselves for is the folks in Virginia operate under a different set of ROEs. They've progressed from what they like to call a "personality strike" where we know for sure our target is a fucking bad guy. Now they've come up with something they call a "signature strike". And what that fucking means is it's a hit based not on a suspicion of guilt, but on a "pattern of behavior". So you may be called upon to fire at any dumb shleb in Waziristan who is carrying an AK-47, even though we all know that everyone and their mother in Waziristan carries an AK-47.
Suarez [half in jest]: What about their right to bear arms?

...

Jack: I got my own personal opinions as to why there's been an expansion of our mission...which I should probably keep to myself. But what the fuck. It's a lot easier to kill these people than to capture them. It's really about the cost in "blood and treasure" as those D.C. hypocrites who never pay in either like to say. They know that if we try to capture them instead of kill them, we risk getting killed and captured ourselves. And the public is tired of watching coffins roll down the conveyor belts. Don't ask me if it's a just war. That's not up to us. To us, it's just war.

...

CIA official [on the phone]: Lieutenant Colonel Johns. Out of all the UAV crews in 61st Attack Squandron, Crew 3-2 has been selected to conduct special operations in the war on terror. For reason of security, all missions you carry out on our behalf, effectively never occured. You may refer to us simply as Langley.

...

CIA official [on phone]: We can corfirm. Target qualifies. Permission to prosecute.
Jack: We're obliged to point out, Langley, that we've observed noncombatants in and around the building.
CIA: Colonel Johns, no one regrets the loss of innocent lives more than we do. We take inordinate care not to use lethal force where there are women and children. Unfortunately, many of our targets cynically use women and chidlren as shields to discourage attack. We have to constantly weigh the risks of their lives against the threat posed to U.S. interests.

...

Jack [on the phone]: Can you confirm that order, Langley?
CIA: In our opinion, it is proportionate.
Jack: Forgive me sir, but what the hell does that mean?
CIA: It means that in our assessment the combatants we are targeting pose a grave enough threat to the Unite States to justify potential civilian casualties. Not to mention that this pre-emptive self-defense is approved and ordered by the administration.

That would be yours, Mr. Obama.

CIA [on phone]: The subject on the left, what is she doing?
Suarez: I believe she is picking an arm off a tree, sir.

...

Suarez: Was that a war crime, sir?
Jack: Shut the fuck up, Suarez.

...

Suarez [to the crew]: What was that shit? I didn't sign up for that shit? That's what terrorists do. You know that, right? Plant a second bomb, blow up soldiers showing up for the first bomb. Since when did we become Hamas? "Approved by the administration". They give Nobel Peace Prizes for this now?
Zimmer: You want to talk about all the shots we didn't take waiting for some D.C. lawyer to come back from lunch.
Suarez: No wonder they hate us.
Zimmer: They always hated us. We're always going to be the Great Satan because we got Hustler and Hooters and we let women drive and go to school. And they're not going to stop hating us until the savages have Sharia law everywhere on the goddamn planet. You think you'd have this job if you were over there? Do you think that you'd have any job?
Suarez: There were kids!
Zimmer: Not our fault. They shouldn't bring kids into a war zone.
Suarez: They live there!

So, who won?

Tom [to Suarez]: We've got no skin in the game. I feel like a coward every day. Taking pot shots from a half a world away in an air-conditioned cubicle. I mean, they get lucky, they shoot my drone down. I'm not even in it. All you got to do is pull another one out of the box. Worst thing that can happen to me is carpal tunnel or I spill coffee in my lap.

...

Jack [to Langley]: You want us to kill a crowd?
[they kill the crowd...in Yemen]
Zimmer: Like shooting fish in a fucking barrel.
CIA: It is a sad fact that war is often asymmetrical. Please forego damage assessment and exist the airspace.

...

Zimmer [after watching a man assault and then rape a woman for the second time]: He's a bad guy. He's just not our bad guy.

...

Molly: You look miles away.
Tom: Seven thousand? You want to know about my job?
Molly: Yeah:
Tom: Well, yesterday, I was flying over a house in South Waziristan. Well, it was night when I statrted flying over their house, but they couldn't see me. Even if it was day. It was a house of a Taliban commander. He wasn't home. Inside, his wife and family were sleeping. When he did come back around dawn, the family was still inside but I wasn't sure when I'd get this chance again so I blew the house up anyway. And I watched as the neighbors started pulling the bodies out. Another one of my jobs is damage assessment... which is our way of saying counting the dead. Which is not as easy as it sounds because a lot of times the bodies are in such small pieces. But this time I knew for sure it was 7. I watched all morning as these locals cleaned up the mess; got ready for the funeral. They like to bury their dead within 24 hours, which is a happy coincidence for me, because that's how long I can stay in the air. I watched them carry the bodies up the hill to the grave site. I had information that the Taliban commander's brother would attend the funeral. So I waited until they were all there, saying their prayers...and then I blew them up too. That's my job.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382

iambiguous
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