Monday, September 28, 2009
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Jonathan Mostow: It's not so much that it revolutionizes their lives. It's just kind of like it's the extrapolation of where we're going, which is more and more we seem to be able to do stuff through our computer and online. Like right now, you can stay in touch with all of your friends via email or Facebook or Twitter; you can get all of the information in the world from AP.com or NewYorkTimes.com, whatever. So the only thing you need to leave the house for is to go to your job, and if you really wanted to socialize in person with somebody. What if there was a machine to enable that to happen as well? Where we're going with robotics and this whole new developing field of brain stuff, it feels like it doesn't take a lot of speculative science-fiction to imagine we could sort of get there. This movie isn't really asking the question, gee, if in the future this technology existed, what would actually happen?
Surrogates is really a metaphor for asking the question, today, right now, we live in a time where we are swamped with all of this technology; we love it and we're addicted to it, but we also can't let go of it. What's that doing to us as human beings? That's really kind of to me what this movie is fundamentally about, so the appeal to people of having a surrogate is extrapolating out where we're already at. We're all constantly seeking convenience and a better existence, so if you can live with a surrogate, you have no personal jeopardy, moral boundaries are conveniently erased, and you also just feel better. It's why video phones never took off; there have been several iterations of video phone technology, and they never took off because ultimately people didn't want to be shown to the person they're talking to. The internet gives you that anonymity – you could be anybody on the internet. So it's the same thing with surrogacy; it affords you that cloak of hiding your personal identity, and that's the other necessary requirement of any of these technologies succeeding."
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Thursday, September 17, 2009
---Richard Dorment of Esquire tries his best to follow the advice of Gwyneth Paltrow's GOOP website. Should he buy that $1850 watch for his wife for Christmas?
Extras are a significant part of the production budget, especially in Britain. Which is why a lot of filming is going to Eastern Europe, where extras charge only $20 a day. The cost of extras is one of the reasons why epics such as Ben Hur are largely a thing of the past. Gandhi was the last – the funeral sequence alone required 300,000 extras.But nowadays, where possible, crowds are digitised in. In Gladiator, they used 2,000 live actors to create a digital crowd of about 35,000 people. But for some of the crowd scenes, in addition to the real-life extras and the digital ones, they also used cut-outs made of cardboard.In Hollywood, there are at least two companies that can supply inflatable extras. Digital extras can look fake, and cardboard extras can look, well, cardboard, particularly if the camera moves. But inflatable extras are more rounded. They can be deflated, stored – a crowd of 10,000 can fit into one 50ft truck – and reused."
---Another reason to dislike Facebook: nostalgic retrosexuals.
---In Twitter news, it can be fun to have a million Twitter followers, even though most users hardly tweet at all, and some say Twitter only succeeds because it is stupider than TV. When not detecting Twitter imposters, you can always read The Twitter Times when you aren't flipping through Google Fast Flip.
---The growing success of the professional blogger.
---Russian trailers also give too much away.
---The 10 most iconic opening scenes in film history (Children of Men!)
---Some imagine that Jennifer's Body will bring on a Diablo Cody critical backlash. I wonder how much critical reception of the film will depend on each reviewer's receptivity to the film's feminist agenda. Then again, Sarah Ball begs to differ.
---Lastly, the torments of easy listening jazz.