Replicants and RUSes and flying elephants

As a part of their Cult Classics movie series, Dendy is screening two very different ’80s classic movies.

9 May will be the day for “The Princess Bride” and rodents of unusual size and on 15 May “Blade Runner” will be screening.

While on the other side of town, Limelight is screening classic Disney animated fantasy movies starting with “Dumbo”.

Back to the Future Arrival

Today’s date, 21 October 2015, is the future date the characters travelled to in ‘Back to the Future 2’.

Did they get anything right about the future? Is there anything you wanted that they predicted?

I’m glad we don’t have flying cars … all those rooftop accidents.

The BBC website has a detailed article analysing the future shown in the movie, and which predictions came close to our real 21 October 2015.
http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-34569759

Doctor Who 50th Anniversary to be the world’s largest drama simulcast

If you’ve missed the news that’s flooding the SF parts of the internet … the 50th anniversary special of Doctor Who is called The Day of the Doctor as the BBC will be “conquering the Earth” on november 23 (UK time).

75 countries across six continents will simulcast the tv show with the BBC. So, as UK audiences are watching it on the evening of Saturday 23 November, fans in Australia can watch ABC1’s broadcast early morning on Sunday 24 November (the same time as the UK).

‘The Day of the Doctor’ will also be screened in 3D in cinemas across the world. In Canberra, the following cinemas are already selling tickets very quickly for the 3D screenings on Sunday 24 November:
Dendy, Civic
Greater Union, Manuka
Hoyts, Belconnen

The BBC has an interactive map which shows all the 3D cinemas across the world that will be screening “The Day of the Doctor”.

Hugo Awards Winners Announced

The 2013 Hugo (World Science Fiction) Awards and the John Campbell Award have been announced.

The awards were announced and presented at Lonestar 3, the World SF Convention, in Texas and broadcast online. A full list of the winners can be found on Lonestar’s website.

Some of the winners are:

Best Novel – Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas by John Scalzi (Tor)

Best Novella – “The Emperor’s Soul” by Brandon Sanderson (Tachyon Publications)

Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form) – The Avengers,
Screenplay & Directed by Joss Whedon (Marvel Studios, Disney, Paramount)

Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form) – Game of Thrones episode “Blackwater”.
Written by George R.R. Martin, Directed by Neil Marshall. Created by David Benioff and D.B. Weiss (HBO)

Movie Review – Elysium

Elysium is an action science fiction movie set in the mid-twenty second century, written and directed by Neill Blomkamp who also gave us the movie District 9.

Earth has become a polluted, over-populated mess. Rather than attempting to fix the problem, the Earth’s wealthiest people instead moved to a space station called Elysium. Elysium is the ultimate ‘gated community’ where the rich live in opulence with near-miraculous medical care, a clean environment and pristine homes and gardens.

Elysium is so huge that it’s visible in the daytime sky. And reaching the space station is the daydream of most of Earth’s inhabitants.

The story follows Max, played by Matt Damon, who dreams of getting to the space station someday, until fate changes his priorities from dreams to action.

Elysium is a well-written science fiction movie with a believable plot, plenty of internal consistency and an array of characters from different cultures and background. A few science nitpicks could be made about some things but frankly they’re minor compared with the overall success of the story as a science fiction tale.

The acting is excellent with Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, Alice Braga, Wagner Moura and Sharlto Copley all being extremely believable in the main roles. I barely recognised Sharlto Copley who plays a hard-bitten military character, Kruger, so different from the submissive public servant Wilkus he played in District 9.

Very highly recommended, especially for fans of action SF with a message.

Reviewed by Katrina

Man of Steel movie review

Superman returns to the cinema in yet another reboot in the movie Man of Steel.

This movie tells a visually stunning account of the last days of Krypton, a detailed story of young Clark Kent’s childhood, and the dramatic battles both physical and mental when Clark’s past catches up with him. Unfortunately, somewhere along the way all humour disappeared from Krypton and Earth leaving us with a rather dry story.

Man of Steel is visually clever and is much better acted and scripted than the last couple of Superman movies before it. But I found it unengaging and some of the characters, in particular Lois Lane, less interesting than I’d hoped. Apparently everyone in Metropolis is always deadly serious about everything.

Recommended for Superman fans and anyone who enjoys clever visual effects.

Reviewed by Katrina

Pacific Rim movie review

When aliens invade it’s not from space but from a trans-dimensional rift in the Pacific Ocean. Creatures the size of Godzilla appear out of the rift and attack cities. In an effort to stop the creatures the Jaeger war machine program (giant robots) is created.

This is the opening premise of Pacific Rim, an action movie directed by Guillermo del Toro.

Pacific Rim is an amusing romp with a story very strongly inspired by Japanese anime (animated tv shows) especially Neon Evangelion, Robotech, and Full Metal Panic. The story follows the fortunes and battles of the Jaeger war machines and one pilot in particular.

Pacific Rim is not deep and meaningful drama. But if you enjoy anime, Transformers, slightly camp science fiction action, or del Toro’s movie Hellboy then this is a Saturday matinee movie for you.

For Australian fans, there are even a couple of ocker Jaeger pilots who would be at home in the rougher parts of the crowd at a V8 Supercars race or Summernats; I was disappointed that they didn’t have fluffy dice and Holden or Ford stickers in their giant robot.

Recommended for anyone who enjoys giant robots fighting or wants to watch some slightly silly SF action.

Reviewed by Katrina