Movie Review – Explorers

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Explorers (1985)
Written by Eric Luke
Directed by Joe Dante

explorers

Ben is an average kid having extraordinary dreams. In these dreams he is flying in the clouds, looking down on a complex outline of circuitry. These could just be inspired by his late night viewing of classic science fiction films, but he still shares them with his nerdy friend Wolfgang. They discover this information allows them to manifest an anti-gravity field that they can manipulate the size and speed of. With help from their other friend Darren, they use an old Tilt-a-Whirl car to create a ship they can fly across the city with. A variety of complications arise putting the boys’ plans of space exploration and alien contact in jeopardy.

This is not going to be the review you are expecting.

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Movie Review – Ex Machina

I hope you are enjoying the content I publish on my blog. If you feel compelled and are financially able to, I would greatly appreciate anything you could contribute to my Patreon. I will take it as your way of saying thanks and put that money towards growing the site in a slight manner.

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Ex Machina (2015)
Written & Directed by Alex Garland

ex machina

Caleb Smith is a computer programmer for the search engine Blue Book whose life is changed when he is announced the winner of a week-long retreat with the company’s founder Nathan Bateman. The journey takes Caleb to a remote estate on a vast swath of property. Here Nathan introduces the programmer to Ava, an artificial being he has created. Nathan wants Caleb to run the Turing Test, a thought experiment where you seek to determine if an artificial consciousness is indistinguishable from an organic one. Strange power outages allow Caleb and Ava to communicate briefly without Nathan’s watchful eye. What Ava tells Caleb causes him to question the true nature of why he was brought here and his reality.

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Movie Review – Back to the Future

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Back to the Future (1985)
Written by Bob Gale & Robert Zemeckis
Directed by Robert Zemeckis

back to the future

Marty McFly is your average high school student. He lives in Hill Valley, California. He has a girlfriend. He has lame parents. He’s friends with an elderly disgraced nuclear physicist. You know as regular teenagers do. Things get heavy when Marty meets Doc Brown in a mall parking lot in the middle of the night. Doc shows off his modified Delorean, transformed into a mobile time machine. The experiment is cut short when the Libyan terrorists Doc stole plutonium from show up and kill the elderly scientist. Marty escapes in the Delorean and is tossed back to 1955 without the needed fuel to get time machine running again. To make matters worse, he interrupts his parents’ first meeting so that his future mother is now in love with him! The clock is ticking before Marty destroys his timeline and he needs the Doc Brown of 1955’s help to undo the damage.

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TV Review – Utopia Series 2, Episode 6

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Utopia Series 2, Episode 6 (2014)
Written by Dennis Kelly
Directed by Sam Donovan

utopia s2e6

The ending is finally here. The story, at least in the U.K. version, doesn’t continue from this point, so we have to examine what we are left with. In many ways, this episode is less the ending of the story than the aftermath of episode five. The core story of Carvel, his children, and Milner is over now and as this last chapter opens they are in a state of shock, the clock still counting down for the release of the Russian flu. In many ways this finale is focused around the idea of what happens with an extreme ideology is carried out to its inevitable ends.

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TV Review – Utopia Series 2, Episode 5

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Utopia Series 2, Episode 5 (2014)
Written by Dennis Kelly
Directed by Sam Donovan

Utopia

We cannot experience the trauma of others, and in turn, they cannot suffer our trauma. Words are never sufficient enough to convey the profound psychological and emotional wounds an especially traumatizing experience can cause. This, in turn, leads to a breakdown in communication, which can begin as minor and eventually escalate into violent conflict. While Utopia is about a vast global conspiracy on its surface, the series is actually exploring ideas associated with multi-generational trauma. In the first episode of this season, Milner makes mention that she has witnessed genocide firsthand. Eventually, we learn Philip Carvel is a survivor of the Nazi Holocaust. The horrific things seen and experienced by these people is what led to the founding of the Network and the development of the Janus virus. But there’s is not the only trauma present in Utopia, and their ignoring of other generation’s traumas has led to the dramatic conflict of the series.

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TV Review – Utopia Series 2, Episode 4

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Utopia Series 2, Episode 4 (2014)
Written by Dennis Kelly & John Donnelly
Directed by Sam Donovan

UTOPIA II

Maybe it has always been there, and it’s merely me become awakened to its presence, but I have noticed a growing digging in of heels in political ideologies. Religious ideologues have always seemed to be a constant nuisance, and history has its fair share of political zealots who are willing to compromise moral integrity for “the cause.” These days I often see YouTube videos displaying members of the traditional Left/Right spectrum being downright criminal in their behavior and exhibiting a sense of glee in their transgressions against their fellow man. As a child, I felt a distance from the fundamentalist Christian upbringing I had, I never really bought the pitch that was being sold to me, so I’ve always felt a sense of disconnect from anyone who is radically attached to an idea. Utopia is a show about following that path of radical ideology and how detrimental it can be no matter “rational” or “reasonable” you believe your set of values are.

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TV Review – Utopia Series 2, Episode 3

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Utopia Series 2, Episode 3 (2014)
Written by Dennis Kelly
Directed by Marc Munden

UTOPIA II

There is a universal human tendency to value the lives of your loved ones over the lives of others, particularly strangers. You’ll commonly hear new parents express that they have a sudden sense that they would die for their newborn children. People will make drastic moves to protect their loved ones even in the face of death. But we don’t see often is what a person will do when it comes to harming another in the name of saving their loved one. Would you be willing to kill to protect the people you love? Not kill someone who intends harm, but someone whose continued life might put your family in jeopardy. This is an innocent, for all intents and purposes, who isn’t an immediate threat, but could become one. Would you kill them?

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