sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (Default)
There’s this glurgy poem about the Earth being a few feet in diameter. It’s an incredibly cheesy poem (and will you check out the cheesy website I found when I went searching for it to write this post), but I’m kind of partial to it for what it reveals about human psychology. It ends as follows:

“People would love it, and defend it with their lives because they would somehow know that their lives could be nothing without it.

If the Earth were only a few feet in diameter.”

This gap, between real things and representations of things, is at the heart of something I’ve been struggling to get my head around in recent months. The passion I see for stories, be they movies, games, or—gasp—sometimes novels, is something that I share, and yet it boggles me that as much as they affect culture in a broad sense, they seem to often have little impact on the individuals most devoted to them.
long and with pictures )
sabotabby: (jetpack)
It seems vaguely horrific to be writing about anything other than politics right now, but someone requested awhile back that I do a master list of all of the movies and TV that I watched so that you don't have to. And to be fair, we all need distraction now and then—perhaps now more than ever.

(All links go to LJ; sorry DW people, but there are a lot of reviews and I don't have time to do this twice.)

Current (good) TV reviews: I review The Magicians, Preacher, and Luke Cage for terror_scifi. My reviews are all tagged with my name there, but if you're looking for specific shows:

The Magicians (currently posting!)
Preacher
Luke Cage

Bad Movie Reviews: They are all tagged (along with the odd bad book and other things) under Cheatsheet of Freedom. If you're looking for specific things:

This Revolution (the one that started it all; a movie about anarchists that sounded really good and even starred Rosario Dawson, but spoiler, it is not very good)

Left Behind (Jesus takes all of the good Christians to Heaven, leaving Kirk Cameron to fight the Antichrist)

Atlas Shrugged Pt. 1
(John Galt takes all the good capitalists to Heaven, I mean capitalist paradise, leaving some actors you've never heard of to fight the socialists)
Atlas Shrugged Pt. 2 (second verse, same as the first)
Atlas Shrugged Pt. 3 (yes I watched the whole fucking thing, why do you ask?)

American Sniper
(smug jingoism with a fake plastic baby. I was super drunk the whole time.)

50 Shades of Grey
(bad softcore porn, but don't worry, I fixed it.)

The Fountainhead
(a rapey Ayn Rand movie about architecture)

Red Dawn
(communists invade middle America and are repelled by the high school football team. Note that I have somewhat revised my opinion of the film since I wrote this review, and now view it as a clever satire.)

Rambo III (the one where he joins the Taliban, who are the good guys.)

Battle In Seattle (it is about the Battle of Seattle and is exactly as good as you would expect a movie about the Battle of Seattle to be.)

X-Files Season 10 (okay, not a movie, and not a proper screenshot review, but it was really bad)


Good Movie and TV Reviews: I also sometimes review things I like that are kind of obscure, in the hopes that someone else will watch them and squee with me.

Enthiran (this is my favourite movie of all time and objectively the best movie ever made. It's a 3-hour-long Tamil musical about a killer robot and you should watch it at least 70 bazillion times)

Seventeen Moments of Spring (a Soviet-era miniseries about a Russian spy undercover in Germany during WWII)

Cambridge Spies (a BBC miniseries about the Cambridge Five, a bunch of upper class British kids who spied for the USSR for decades without getting caught)

Babylon 5 (some people found out that I had never seen the show and made me watch the whole thing, so I did. Spoiler: Vir is my favourite and Susan Ivanova is my other favourite)

So yeah enjoy.

sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (Default)
So the_axel and I are watching Sherlock. I don't think it's all that good, but it's visually cool and not very frequent, so I tend to watch it and then have Opinions that I want to share with the internet, particularly on the treatment of female characters.

spoilers for Sherlock S4 and also Black Sails and Hell on Wheels )
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (humping bunny)
So I accidentally-except-not-really made [livejournal.com profile] fengi aware of demisexuals on Tumblr and discussion ensued. [livejournal.com profile] literarity made an interesting comment:

May be wishful thinking and hyperbole on my part but how dope would it be if a lot of this kind of argument was "merely" a backlash against an oversexed media by teenagers who have been exposed much earlier than we were to the vocabulary of sex & gender politics?


Which made me happy for a few minutes but then I was on my way to work and another thought occurred to me. It's this: Demisexual describes the sexual orientation of nearly every female character in popular culture that I can think of. I am actually wracking my brain for an example of a female character in media for a younger audience who is shown:

a) Having sex outside of the context of a long-term, monogamous, romantic relationship, and
b) Not being punished by the narrative for it.

I mean, granted I don't watch all that much telly (well, I do, but it's usually HBO stuff and the standards are different), or read much kid lit, and maybe it's just a genre thing, but if I think about the characters that the teenage girls I know could conceivably think of as role models—the Bella Swans and the Katniss Everdeens and the Alison Argents—they are all, as far as I can tell from an audience perspective, only attracted to men they want to be in a long-term, monogamous, romantic relationship with. And when I think of the counter-examples—Faith Lehane, Inara, that one time Buffy had a one-night stand—they're all punished for their transgressions in ways ranging from heartbreak to season-long comas.

So, can you argue that demisexual is a marginalized sexual identity when it's so reinforced in popular culture? Or am I wrong about just how hypersexualized kid media is or is not?

I should add that I'm in no way interested in policing anyone else's sexuality, and everyone ought to be free to identify however they like, obviously. But in response to Tumblr discussions wherein demisexuality is referred to as a site of oppression, I am wondering whether a sexual identity/orientation can be both celebrated by the dominant culture and marginalized.
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (fuck patriarchy)
Via [livejournal.com profile] fengi: New Tomb Raider prequel gives us Lara Croft's backstory, and surprise! It's rape!

Because there was clearly a shortage of Strong Female CharactersTM whose backstory involves rape.

I've never played Tomb Raider, but I do appreciate the character a bit. Yes, she's fanservice, but she's also fun. She gets to run around and do stuff, and, sad to say, there are still very few female characters in mass culture who get to run around and do stuff in a traditionally male dominated field simply because it's fun. I don't even see why she needs a backstory, any more than the backstory we get for Indiana Jones (difficult relationship with father, snake trauma, moving on to the adventures now). Lara Croft is basically Indiana Jones with boobs, and that's just fine, really.

But enough with that. On to the justifications!

Rosenberg brings up Die Hard, another movie where we begin a relationship with a human, vulnerable character and through an intense experience he emerges as a hero. It was important to show her as an innocent, vulnerable character at the beginning of the game. “People really identify with that,” Rosenberg said.


Right. I forgot the bit where John McClane gets raped, despite having seen Die Hard more times than I can count. Maybe because John McClane doesn't need a rapey backstory to be seen as a hero or for the audience to identify with him.

“I would say that the outcome is closer to something like Batman Begins or Casino Royale, where the character at the end is certainly Batman or James Bond, but not necessarily the one from before,” he said.


You know what else I missed? The part where Bruce Wayne gets raped. James Bond got some electrodes to the balls if I remember correctly, but I don't think he got raped either. And somehow they both managed to become kickass without a rapey backstory. In fact, I can't think of a single male pop culture character whose backstory involves rape. But pick a Strong Female CharacterTM, any Strong Female CharacterTM, and someone's gotten rapey with her somewhere. Because obviously no woman can be Strong without trauma in her background, and there is no trauma but rape.

I didn't read the comments but I bet they're full of neckbeards defending this, er, creative decision. Am I right?

ETA: A couple of you raised a good point, which is that most women experience some form of sexual violence in their lifetimes, and why should SFC be exceptions? My objection to this line of reasoning:

1) My problem is not with saying that rape happens (otherwise I wouldn't be hugely obsessed with Game of Thrones right now), it's with rape as a motivating factor. I spent a miserably large percentage of my early adolescence being groped by horny boys on the playground. This did not make me into a superhero. It made me self-conscious about my developing body.

2) As a motivation, rape is incredibly cliché. Want to create a heroine? Can't she be motivated by, I don't know, concern for poor people being forced out of their homes because of gentrification? Or maybe she's a fangirl who wants desperately to be a superhero, so she deliberately alters her body until she has incredible abilities (okay, this idea was already used in The Authority, but I still think it's fantastic). Or, like, anything other than rape. Male heroes have all kinds of motivations, from the death of their parents by violent crime, to getting bitten by a radioactive spider, to girlfriends getting fridged, to loyalty to queen and country, to coming from a family in the hero business, to rationally thinking about it and deciding that it would be a good idea. Why can female heroes be only motivated by one thing?

3) If we're going for realism, why is it always violent stranger-rape? Most rape victims know their attacker. It's usually a family member, friend, or lover. If you want a rape story because it's realistic, maybe make the rape a bit more like what most women experience.

4) But I don't want realism because this is a videogame. Videogames are for escapism and wish fulfillment. Just like I don't want to see a movie where John McClane gets shot in the face by Hans Gruber in the first 10 minutes because that's what would happen in real life, I don't want to see the character I'm pretending to be get raped.

5) So if videogames are about wish fulfillment, then why include rape? I can only conclude that those playing aren't identifying with Lara Croft; they're identifying with her attackers and getting off on it. And that's frightening and disgusting.
sabotabby: (books!)
I had to get some new shows because Doctor Who is over for awhile, I think I will cry my eyes out if I watch Sarah Jane Adventures. My other shows right now are Treme, Mad Men, Leverage, Borgias, and Game of Thrones—you may notice a theme here, and it is that the new seasons have not started. (I'm terrible at keeping track of when seasons start.) Community is still good but it's only half an hour a week. I'm still watching Fringe (still great) and Castle (still sometimes good—I liked the superhero one), but that's still two hours a week and a girl sometimes needs more brain-dead time than that.

Accordingly, my new shows are Lost Girl and—finally—Breaking Bad.

I resisted watching Breaking Bad because it is seriously everything I hate to watch on TV: drug dealers, drug addicts, fuck-ups, cops, and cancer. You could not come up with a more concise list of Things I Don't Need To See. So while various friends whose opinions I trust tried to get me to watch the show, and I politely watched a few episodes, I didn't get into it.

Okay. You win. I'm into it.

Reasons I'm into it: With all of the strikes against it, it has something that is firmly in the camp of Things I Always Want To See, which is Crossing the Line Twice. The show is so over the top it's not even funny. Well, it is funny, because really early on there's a sequence involving the disposal of an inconveniently dead body that goes on for far too long, portrayed in far too much disgustingly graphic detail, and that's honestly what got me hooked. I also really like the idea of having a show where none of the characters are sympathetic. Mad Men had that at the beginning, but the characters slowly became more human. On Breaking Bad, everyone just gets more awful and I love it.

Also, the cinematography is something brilliant. I watch shows for cinematography now. I mean, it's technically magnificent, with shots of beautiful landscapes and ugly buildings and people.

I'm partway through the second season now. I'm told it gets worse but in a good way.

I resisted watching Lost Girl because it looks stupid and it totally is. But I needed something to watch that wouldn't depress me, and it's pretty good for that. It's less well-known than Breaking Bad (well, and deservedly), but the concept is that all mythology is true, and attributable to the Fae, who come in a variety of interesting species and are divided into Light and Dark. The main character is a succubus with a track record of killing anyone she kisses. When she becomes aware of the supernatural origin of her powers and how to control them, she decides against choosing a side and becomes a private detective helping the hopeless or some such. In short, it is exactly the sort of thing I used to write when I was, like, 11, which was fortunately before the internet happened.

Reasons I'm into it: Okay, first of all, a relatively high-budget production of the shit one wrote when one was 11 is awesome and much like eating a gigantic vat of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream. Second of all, it's unabashedly filmed in Toronto, with no attempt to disguise Toronto landmarks. Towards the end of the first season, they at least admit to being in a Canadian city. At least one scene in every episode is filmed in an alley that my old office overlooked.

On a less superficial level, it is Bechdel win according to both the letter and spirit of the law. Half of the main cast is female, and of those, only one is the stereotypical genre hot chick kicking ass. The main character has both male and female love interests, but the most important relationship on the show is between her and her platonic best friend, an adorable gothy thief with a staggering collection of wigs. In between bouts of supernatural menace and romantic angst, there's a good deal of screen time devoted to discussions of feminism and standing up for the oppressed.

So, not great art, but really fun.

Book-wise, having finished Volume 1 of Das Kapital, (go me!) I am now relaxing with Michael Chabon's The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay. I don't remember the last time I related to characters as much as I relate to these ones. Seriously, Chabon writes smart books that hit every single one of my narrative kinks to the point where I can barely appreciate them on an intellectual level.
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (iCom by starrypop)
Nope, I disagree. Amanda's analysis nails why. I had a similar experience (I think we're around the same age) of being into decidedly non-mainstream music and only being exposed to it through painstaking amounts of zine-based research. It's much better now when, with two clicks or so, I can find the name of every band that everyone I like in any band has been in, and also what their favourite bands are.

For one thing, I doubt musical taste was ever quite as homogenous as this guy is suggesting. Otherwise, there wouldn't have been a disco to hate. As much as you can go on about Kids These Days and Their Terrible Taste In Music, it is entirely false that mainstream music was somehow better or more meaningful when I was growing up. I remember just as many manufactured boy bands that I couldn't stand. Even within the limited scope he's talking about (white and black people living in North America and the UK), there wasn't consensus that certain songs were classic until much later. Most music of any era is crap, and we only conceive of Musical Moments in hindsight.

He's also wrong that it doesn't happen now. You might be sick of K'Naan's "Wavin' Flag" but you probably all have it stuck in your head now that I've mentioned it. As does my mom if she's reading, and my kids if I mention it in class tomorrow.

Nor am I convinced that there's anything wrong with a diversity of musical tastes and genres and subgenres. My musical taste didn't freeze at 19 like some people's seem to. I think that there is a higher volume of interesting music coming out now than there was when I was a kid and we only knew about what MuchMusic (or MTV, if you were American) played. The lower barriers to production and distribution might mean that no one makes incredibly huge amounts of money making music, but it also means that there are more people making more music, and different kinds, and while 99% of everything is crap, that 1% that isn't gets drawn from a bigger pool. It's not a perfect model, but it's a more democratic model than that of the music studio, and I think it's resulting in better music.

When I was growing up, there were the goths and the hip hop kids and the rockers and the folkie throwback types, and the kids who listened to music based on how hot or popular the artists seemed to be. You could, if you were a goth, confess a shameful love for one or two country songs, but if half of your CD collection was rap, your cred would certainly be called into question.* I am continually blown away at the tastes of my kids who are into music. Certainly, they mostly listen to music that I think is awful, but they will be interested in very different sorts of awful music and will not, for example, avoid listening to dubstep because that's music for stoners. Or classical, because that music is for old people. I know black kids with baggy pants who are bigger fans of classic rock than my Nice White Lady self. Yes, there are a million subgenres now, but people who are into music don't define their tastes based on them.

I fail to see how this development is a bad thing, or how one could be nostalgic for watching the same video on MTV every hour.

Besides, NyanCat is totally our Musical Moment and you all know it. You also all now have it in your head.

* This, despite the famous Sisters of Mercy/Public Enemy concert at Canada's Wonderland. Yes, really.
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (the beatings will continue...)
Treme: I finished watching the second season of Treme so, for the three of you who also watch the show, you may now analyze it to bits in the comments without fear of spoiling me.

If you're not already watching, read this interview with David Simon. He highlights what I like most about the show:
But it's not that it lacks plot. What it lacks is the life and death stakes of the television trope. If you tell me that somebody is going to lose the love of her life, which is a restaurant, and it's going to happen in real time, and we're going to see them make a choice to abandon their city - that's an awful lot that's happened to a character. On the other hand, are you measuring it by asking, "Did I see a gun put to this person's head? Did I see them raped? Did I see them wreck their car drunkenly and end up in the hospital? Were they put on trial for their life? Were they sent into an ER and the doctors hovered over them making life and death decisions? Were they hurtled into the West Wing where they had to consult on a decision that would mean the lives and deaths of thousands?" Those are the standard tropes of a standard television drama. I'm uninterested in telling a story that is a lie, and those are not the stakes of post-Katrina New Orleans, and I'm interested in post-Katrina New Orleans.


There are more dramatic stories in Season 2 than in Season 1, with more of an emphasis on crime (the cop story was, to me, the least interesting), but the best stories were the subtle ones. An accomplished musician attempts songwriting for the first time. A previously irresponsible man helps to teach a high school band class where most of the kids do not have instruments. A man tries to reconcile with his father and his city through music. These are not the kinds of stories that I am used to seeing on TV—perhaps one might see them in a very literary sort of novel—but in many ways, they're quite well-suited to serial, visual storytelling. I found myself incredibly invested in these stories (at some points talking to my TV—yeah, I know).

cut for spoilers )

Next season, please oh please do a story focusing on the schools. They teased me with the bit where Desiree talks to her co-worker about the attacks on the public education system. Now there are three characters (Desiree, Antoine, and Sofia) in high schools, and a plot about the destruction of all public schooling in New Orleans would be amazing.

Torchwood: Miracle Day: It seems like as the plot of this gets better, the characterization falls by the wayside.

spoilers for that as well )

Not telly related but while I'm going on about pop culture, check out [livejournal.com profile] eumelia's post about X-Men: First Class, because it's really damned good.
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (sad panda by a softer world)
[livejournal.com profile] sabotabby: I showed the manpain video to the pie people.
[livejournal.com profile] zingerella: Sparkletears?
[livejournal.com profile] human_loser: Hanging out with you guys is like watching Twin Peaks. You miss two episodes and nothing makes sense.
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (raspberry reich)
Photobucket

[livejournal.com profile] zingerella and I have determined by skientifical research (a.k.a. polling a bunch of our friends at Stitch n' Bitch) that two iconic movies of the 80s and 90s, Terminator 2 and Aliens, have helped a lot of lesbians figure out their sexuality and have nudged otherwise straight women just a little farther along the Kinsey Scale. All of the women involved in this conversation of a certain generation who had seen said movies agreed.

Photobucket
Oh, admit it.

But what we also realized was that we have no idea whether the equivalent sorts of movies exist for men because, well, male sexuality is very confusing. We sort of figure that there are certain Kinsey-shifting actors and movies out there, but we're not entirely sure what they are.

Photobucket
We think that this guy would probably do it, though.

So we require your input, O Livejournal friends and acquaintances. Which movies and actors made you gay(er)?
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (Default)
Photobucket

[livejournal.com profile] zingerella and I have determined by skientifical research (a.k.a. polling a bunch of our friends at Stitch n' Bitch) that two iconic movies of the 80s and 90s, Terminator 2 and Aliens, have helped a lot of lesbians figure out their sexuality and have nudged otherwise straight women just a little farther along the Kinsey Scale. All of the women involved in this conversation of a certain generation who had seen said movies agreed.

Photobucket
Oh, admit it.

But what we also realized was that we have no idea whether the equivalent sorts of movies exist for men because, well, male sexuality is very confusing. We sort of figure that there are certain Kinsey-shifting actors and movies out there, but we're not entirely sure what they are.

Photobucket
We think that this guy would probably do it, though.

So we require your input, O Livejournal friends and acquaintances. Which movies and actors made you gay(er)?
sabotabby: (jetpack)
I saw the X-Files movie with utterly no expectations. I don't know if a lot of you know this, but I was—surprise!—completely obsessed with the X-Files when it was on the air, right up until it really went downhill and my eyes were starting to hurt from rolling so often.

cut for spoilers and people who rightly don't care )
sabotabby: (jetpack)
I saw the X-Files movie with utterly no expectations. I don't know if a lot of you know this, but I was—surprise!—completely obsessed with the X-Files when it was on the air, right up until it really went downhill and my eyes were starting to hurt from rolling so often.

cut for spoilers and people who rightly don't care )
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (creepy hell-cat thing)
Since I know that there are fellow Spiegelman fans about:

He's brilliant, really, and very funny. The event itself was sponsored by Hillel, which gave me pause (and was interesting, since their politics are substantially to the right of Spiegelman's) but my love for Maus and underground comics in general outweighs my being very, very uncomfortable in that audience. Also, there were a fair number of comic book geeks in attendance, which balanced things out a bit.

The subject of the talk was "Forbidden Images." So he began his talk with this slide:



...and went on to relate it to the caricatures of Mohammad, and Iran's anti-Semitic cartoon contest, and horror comics from the 1940s, and the New Yorker, and Mad Magazine. (And his own work, of course.) He talked a bit about semiotics and the relationship between words and images: how images become shorthand for concepts, except of course that's problematic because of how shorthand transmits cultural norms and stereotypes.

Probably the most interesting bit was about how Mad Magazine changed the cultural landscape. He talked about his own discovery of horror comics that had since been banned (comics were sanitized in the 1950s, but his father was cheap, so he bought Wee Art old comics with damaged covers that happened to be about playing baseball with human heads), so when Mad came out with its blatant agenda to shock, it gave an entire generation counter-cultural ideas. It introduced irony and anti-authoritarianism to the visual landscape.

And so, he said, it was read by people who later created underground comics. But it was also read by Karl Rove and people who would eventually become advertising execs. Irony becomes co-opted, and now we're in a post-ironic era.

He also pissed off a few in the audience, I think, by bringing up Palestine by Joe Sacco as an example of the brilliance of the new breed of comics. (Persepolis as well, of course, which was very much influenced by Maus.) You could hear the gasps; it was very funny.

Anyway, I wish he'd put the slides online because it's really much easier to analyze controversial images when they're actually in front of you. I've been on a comic-reading binge lately (The Watchmen, DMZ, and Transmetropolitan, all of which do very interesting things with the genre) so I'm all about babbling on the subject.

When you look at a work of art and don't understand it, you think you're stupid. When you look at a comic and don't understand it, you think the cartoonist is stupid.
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (Default)
Since I know that there are fellow Spiegelman fans about:

He's brilliant, really, and very funny. The event itself was sponsored by Hillel, which gave me pause (and was interesting, since their politics are substantially to the right of Spiegelman's) but my love for Maus and underground comics in general outweighs my being very, very uncomfortable in that audience. Also, there were a fair number of comic book geeks in attendance, which balanced things out a bit.

The subject of the talk was "Forbidden Images." So he began his talk with this slide:



...and went on to relate it to the caricatures of Mohammad, and Iran's anti-Semitic cartoon contest, and horror comics from the 1940s, and the New Yorker, and Mad Magazine. (And his own work, of course.) He talked a bit about semiotics and the relationship between words and images: how images become shorthand for concepts, except of course that's problematic because of how shorthand transmits cultural norms and stereotypes.

Probably the most interesting bit was about how Mad Magazine changed the cultural landscape. He talked about his own discovery of horror comics that had since been banned (comics were sanitized in the 1950s, but his father was cheap, so he bought Wee Art old comics with damaged covers that happened to be about playing baseball with human heads), so when Mad came out with its blatant agenda to shock, it gave an entire generation counter-cultural ideas. It introduced irony and anti-authoritarianism to the visual landscape.

And so, he said, it was read by people who later created underground comics. But it was also read by Karl Rove and people who would eventually become advertising execs. Irony becomes co-opted, and now we're in a post-ironic era.

He also pissed off a few in the audience, I think, by bringing up Palestine by Joe Sacco as an example of the brilliance of the new breed of comics. (Persepolis as well, of course, which was very much influenced by Maus.) You could hear the gasps; it was very funny.

Anyway, I wish he'd put the slides online because it's really much easier to analyze controversial images when they're actually in front of you. I've been on a comic-reading binge lately (The Watchmen, DMZ, and Transmetropolitan, all of which do very interesting things with the genre) so I'm all about babbling on the subject.

When you look at a work of art and don't understand it, you think you're stupid. When you look at a comic and don't understand it, you think the cartoonist is stupid.
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (hellraiser kitty)
So you’ve written a screenplay or a pilot for a television series or a book. It has a great plot and character development and superb dialogue…but it still sucks. This is probably because it doesn’t have anything in it that makes it worth watching or reading, like a stampede of flaming Rottweilers. You need to put something in it that is actually good. Fortunately, I have been compiling a list of really good things to put in books, movies, and TV shows, and I am sharing my secrets with the world because honestly, I want to see more of this stuff. I’m also using primarily cinematic examples because this whole entry was inspired by a discussion I had with [livejournal.com profile] rohmie about Hellboy. If you can figure out how many of these things showed up in that movie, you win the internet for the day.

Although I think my favourite genre of all might be titled Post-Apocalyptic Social Commentary With Zombies, these suggestions work for all sorts of stories. For instance, Libertarias has anarchists, Fascist and Nazi villains, occult moments, Gay! text, stuffy academics, different languages, and killer robots...and it's not even a sci-fi movie.

Actually, just kidding. It doesn't have killer robots. But it's still a great flick and you should watch it if you haven't seen it already.

Disclaimer the first: Just because you randomly stick something on this list in your work doesn’t guarantee that it’ll actually be good. Writing does count for something, and some of these things I’ve added just because they are so rarely done. (Example: “Islam as a theological or moral base” worked great in Pitch Black but not in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves because the latter movie pretty much sucked in every other way.)

Disclaimer the second: I liked From Dusk Till Dawn. All of them.



and away we go, matey! )

Did I miss anything?
sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (Default)
So you’ve written a screenplay or a pilot for a television series or a book. It has a great plot and character development and superb dialogue…but it still sucks. This is probably because it doesn’t have anything in it that makes it worth watching or reading, like a stampede of flaming Rottweilers. You need to put something in it that is actually good. Fortunately, I have been compiling a list of really good things to put in books, movies, and TV shows, and I am sharing my secrets with the world because honestly, I want to see more of this stuff. I’m also using primarily cinematic examples because this whole entry was inspired by a discussion I had with [livejournal.com profile] rohmie about Hellboy. If you can figure out how many of these things showed up in that movie, you win the internet for the day.

Although I think my favourite genre of all might be titled Post-Apocalyptic Social Commentary With Zombies, these suggestions work for all sorts of stories. For instance, Libertarias has anarchists, Fascist and Nazi villains, occult moments, Gay! text, stuffy academics, different languages, and killer robots...and it's not even a sci-fi movie.

Actually, just kidding. It doesn't have killer robots. But it's still a great flick and you should watch it if you haven't seen it already.

Disclaimer the first: Just because you randomly stick something on this list in your work doesn’t guarantee that it’ll actually be good. Writing does count for something, and some of these things I’ve added just because they are so rarely done. (Example: “Islam as a theological or moral base” worked great in Pitch Black but not in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves because the latter movie pretty much sucked in every other way.)

Disclaimer the second: I liked From Dusk Till Dawn. All of them.



and away we go, matey! )

Did I miss anything?

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sabotabby: raccoon anarchy symbol (Default)
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