Monday, April 23, 2007


Oh man, that's a good pun right there.

Time to quickly run down some sci-fi films I saw recently, my sci-fi phase arriving slightly before Film4's, which was a bit annoying (although both were prompted by the first film on the list).

: This is a great film. Yes, the ending is a bit rubbish and abrupt, but up until that it's amazing visuals and brilliant music all the way. Considering it's such a ridiculous concept, all of the action is entirely convincing, and it delivers completely for any nerds wanting glory shots of the sun and spaceships and the sun in front of spaceships. It just gives a view of space that is both pleasing and intriguing, combining 2001 intrigue with Alien convictions.

Solaris: The Steven Soderbergh one. This one really surprised me, mostly because all of the marketing was pictures of a spaceship or George Clooney in a really awesome spacesuit - in fact, this is pretty much just a love story in space. I still really liked it, however, because the atmosphere was both sinister and tranquil - quite a unique film. Right after watching this, I read the book, which is pretty amazing.

Alien: The Director's Cut: The production design, the realism, the pant-messing...yes, we all love Alien. But you know what I loved most about it this time? Ian Holm. That dude can act. But with Harry Dean Stanton and John Hurt along too, the cast couldn't really fail. A simple idea, portraying space as just as rubbish as Earth.

Cypher: This was a pretty enjoyable mystery-sci-fi, that set up an interesting concept, got a bit confused halfway through and then made a complete balls-up of the ending. For the most part, it was stylish and fast-paced enough to maintain interest, but it all got a bit silly.

The Thing: Okay, more of a horror than a sci-fi, and a very effective horror at that. The special effects still hold up today purely becuase of the gag reflex, and it never tries to be something it's not. A brilliant sci-fi creature feature, again not afraid of giving us a grim atmosphere and just killing everybody in nasty ways.

So there it is. It got me thinking - just how do you define sci-fi? If the science is what's important, can The Day After Tomorrow be considered more sci-fi than Star Wars? Isn't the nature of science to contrast with fiction directly? Is science just an excuse that writers use to make the impossible happen, therefore going straight against science?
Anyhow, I like space. I think there should be more than a few elite films that are 'good' space films. As much as real-life space travel both excites and guilt-trips me out, it's nice to see it on screen where we really can fly into the Sun.


Anonymous said...

Did you hear they discovered a planet in another galaxy as far away from the Sun as we are? The gravity is four times stronger though, so everyone there would be short and flat-headed... They think it may be inhabited with lots of flat beetles. IT SEEMS TO ME that in the future they could build a dome thing for us to live in like in that awful Schwarzenegger film where his head explodes. Or nearly explodes. I don't remember...

sam said...

you're right about sunshine.
the only bad thing about it is that scarlett johannson wasn't in it.

in other news, this:


tom said...

space is awesome. i wish space could be my ring tone!