There are many benefits to writing short stories. Writers do it to practice and develop their style of storytelling, and it also allows them to explore singular ideas, concepts and themes. The narratives are easy to control, the outcomes have less room for error, and you can get your story out quickly.Continue reading “The Conglomeroid Cocktail Party”
The Omega Legend
Of all the tropes, the ‘Last of a Kind’ concept is one of that rare theme, plot and character devices that has evolved into mythical existence with one perfect master stroke. Richard Matheson’s classic vampire novel towers over them all. ‘I Am Legend (1954)’ is an ingenious hybrid of two previous classics, such as Mary Shelley’s ‘The Last Man (1826)’ and Bram Stoker’s ‘Dracula (1897)’. Vampirism and plague, a combination that captures the definitive pretext for a last man alive narrative, grounding the myth of the supernatural with the reality of pathogens.
Matheson also deploys another trope in the finale of the story, one that is more devastating in its social commentary. The vampires, the pandemic, and the last man on Earth are just the setup for the novella’s central message, and it’s the one element shunned by all the film adaptations to date.Continue reading “The Omega Legend”
Gods of Wokeness
The golden age is over.
Works of art are no longer produced to quench a bored populace, who thirst for the type of content that frees them from their mundane lives, enhancing their outlook on life with fascinating stories, old and new, inspiring them to understand their lives and the world they live in.
Post-2016, works of art have degenerated into force-fed garbage that nobody wants, needs or trusts anymore. Deranged by political agenda or succumbing to incompetence, producers still want your money but aren’t willing or capable of delivering what the consumer wants.Continue reading “Gods of Wokeness”
All artists are influenced by the previous generation of artists. Westerns were part of John Carpenter’s cinematic diet growing up. John Ford, and Howard Hawks, these filmmakers were shaping cinema at the time, stamping out a movie language that would become the standard for anyone wishing the tell a story using cinema.
A fan of horror and science fiction movies such as The Thing from Another World and Forbidden Planet, John Carpenter defined another set of standards for a new generation of filmmakers. The modern horror genre is partly his offspring. Like his predecessors, Carpenter mastered the long game, building the tension until the big payoff.
Nowadays, it’s clear that motion pictures have devolved somewhat. Big-budget Hollywood blockbusters lack most of the qualities that gave movies from the past the greatness they deservedly earned. Nowadays, even B-grade movies are more pathetic than ever. Low-budget productions are missing the mark completely.
It’s as if the current batch of filmmakers has stopped learning from the best.Continue reading “The Carpenter”
Star Wars: A Lost Hope
Now that this sad shit-show of a saga is over, the only thing we have left, is the thought, ‘what if they did a decent sequel trilogy with a coherent story without the political rape that Disney inflicted upon this series?’. How hard was it to produce something that remotely resembles a Star Wars story?
Apart from the visuals, there are three fundamental flaws with Episodes 7, 8 and 9. The visual effects and art design are the trilogy’s best asset, but sometimes they do act against the films. The entire narrative seems to be built around these great visuals. And then, to make things unbearable, the cluttering of the SFX is overdone, almost to the point of ridiculousness.Continue reading “Star Wars: A Lost Hope”
If there’s one thing John Brunner is known for, it would be the culture shock he gives readers via his books. “Stand on Zanzibar” is one of those, with a staccato style of writing, Brunner throws everything at you; multiple points of view, news bulletins, media blitzes and a cacophony of characters, locations, immersing you in an anarchic, overcrowded corporate megalopolis.Continue reading “Brunner 2010”
Rise of the Dark Empire: A Star Wars Tragedy
Life imitates art.
It inevitably has to, because art starts off by imitating reality in an attempt to explain it in ways we humans can understand. We tell each other stories, to teach ourselves how to coexist in this strange existence, this universe. We learn from these tales all about what it means to be
Halloween: The Two Evils
The Halloween remake, or second remake, is, by all means, a very good return to the franchise. It does its job of capturing the feel, atmosphere and style of John Carpenter’s original. It doesn’t miss a beat, the dread and the scares are genuine, and the Shape is as menacing as ever. One decision the producers went for in this reboot, however, is the elimination of the events of Halloween 2, and pretty much everything that came later.
Michael Myers ceased being this paranormal, un-killable ‘Shape’.
A fascinating aspect of horror, in particular the slasher genre that the Halloween series ventured into, is which of the following possess the most frightening kind of horror; psychological evil or supernatural evil?Continue reading “Halloween: The Two Evils”
I once bought a novel, Robopocalypse (2011) by Daniel H. Wilson, at an airport bookstore for a fast, time-killing read and while I wasn’t totally disappointed with it, it left me once again tackling the question about this robocalypse that everyone is fearful about.
As for the book itself…Continue reading “The Robocaust”
Flash Gordon Saves the Universe
When Flash Gordon was ‘again’ resurrected back (thanks, Princess Aura for the first time) into pop culture by Seth MacFarlane in his film, Ted (2013), I was filled with bemusement and joy. Ever since that day, walking home from school and coming across the giant movie billboard, Mike Hodges’s Flash Gordon has remained doggedly on my top ten list of favourite movies.
For three decades I felt alone being a fan of this movie. Mention it at film school and people would look at me as if something was fundamentally wrong with my brain. I remember critics panning it at the time, much to my dismay. They were worried about cardboard characters and cardboard sets. Again, to my utter dismay.Continue reading “Flash Gordon Saves the Universe”
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