Friday, June 10, 2005

Thrill is gone

This was a kinda of a shock for me! just look at this piece of kitsch:



Do you know who designed it? Click on the Gartenzwerge to find out.

Tschüß
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4 Comments:

Anonymous Hooper said...

Napoléon and Attila!!!!!? and I thought the figures were bad taste!

Mate, I'm happy to see you are using your time in important matters.

On a lighter... matter (I'm not trying to trivialize the gnomes of course)

I don´t know if you already watched Star Wars III, since you are such a fan of the franchise.

But if you did, you may be as surprised as I was, of the lack of comentaries about how the bad emperor is a copy of George W Bush, complete with unfortunate comentaries raided from Hitler's speeches (!).

One would've expect some reaction from the white house, or the american media, but nix.

I was about to believe I was the only one who noticed someting but then I came across this wise girls.

What do you think about it?

5:05 AM  
Blogger Fernando Vallejo said...

Welcome back!

Well, I'm very disappointed at Hollywood lately. In out times SciFi was...well, SciFi. It was an opportunity to explore a new order of things. Just think how societies in the future were organized by Aldous Huxley, escape on 23rd century, Star Trek, Asimov, and even Superman. None of them use the concepts of "democracy" or "republic", etc.

They took the opportunity to set politics and society in different ways. Call them utopic, futuristic, advanced... but they have no refernce to our own times.

But now, futuristic societies on movies are just a carbon copy of our own decadent system. Movies are now cheap propaganda of the "american" values of democracy, freedom and all that nonsense.

Here just finished the tv remake of Galactica. I followed all episodes (mostly because we were always recognising the location sets from Vancouver) Anyway, I remember that the old series used a different meassure system. Nobody knew what or how much was a "sentonio", now they used hours and minutes. The president takes office while flying on a plane, they have a daily press conference on a podium that looks just like the white house, they talk about having democratic elections every 4 years, etc, etc, etc... That my friend is just propaganda on how "the amercian values" should be established not just globally but universally.

It is a matter of semantics. I sometimes explain this to my students: Signs and symbols are communication means. They carry encoded meanings. In order to have good communication the emitter and the receivier need to use the same code (language). There are several languages and slangs in design, but let's stay on the movies subject.

Unfortunately, many of the receivers nowadays have a limited understanding. Think about all the homer simpsons on this planet... if you make the politic and society statments that Asimov or Huxley did, those Homers wouldn'd understand a single word.

So, unfortunatelly we sunk to the level of our lowest common denominator in many philosophical levels, including mass media communication. Take a look at Noam Chomsky's ideas on mass media.

What I am saying is that Hollywood SciFi movies are now just a snapshot of our own times. They use terms like "republic" when they don't really refer to the principle of what is a republic or a federation or a democracy for that matter. They just use those words because the common Homers hear them on the news when they see something about their government. If you start using a political system to which the Homers are unfamiliar, they simply wouldn't understand the code.

I don't believe that the future would be a future with all planets in this universe adopting the US constitution as role model. I want to believe that we humans are more clever than that. I definetively wouldn't like the idea of living on a futuristic society with clones, robots, hubber cars, etc, but being ruled by a president like Bush or Pejelagarto. It just doesn't make sense.


Of course humans will always be humans, that's something we learned from Shakespeare. It doesn't matter the time or the place, humans will always conspire, love, hate, kill, etc... I just don't buy the idea that the society of the future is like that.

ciao

11:44 AM  
Anonymous Hooper said...

Wow... did I touch a nerve or what?

You know mate, thou are absolutely right... save for one thing... you talk of Sci-fi... but you are watching Pop-Media!

I'm the first to denounce the gringo invasion via pop-media; Movies, TV, Music, Internet, whatever... I mean, we ARE writing this in english (spanglish) after all.

And the stoopid Bush mantra "you are with us, or against us" can be re-paraphrased as "it's the american way... or there's no way"

But... it is unfair to blame the mass media for rooting on the Homers of the world, after all they've never did otherwise.

No real Sci-fi movie has ever been a blockbuster (or REAL sci-fi novel a bestseller) they become Cult stuff and sell well through the years.

Even Asimov began to loose his Sci-fi touch when he became famous, his later novel are but a shadow of the formers.

About the new Galactica series... I love her, I mean I love the little asiatic chick that plays the Cylon twins, but I can't watch the show because the over-use of the "documentary" camera shake, it makes me want to sing oaxaca!!!!

Therefore, instead of ranting about how Hollowood butchered many of the best stories of one of my favorite Scy-fi writers, Piliph K. Dick... I simply read the books, and don't go to watch the movies!

Piliph K. Dick / Ridley Scott's Blade Rrunner is a good example on how a good Sci-fi film can be a flop in the box office and still become the seed of a future revolution.

As of today it is considered the second best movie of all time, only after Citizen Kane (Ok, they are both american movies, choosen by an american institute, but both the directors are British... if that helps at all).

Star Wars has never -ever- been a Sci-fi movie, if anything a Space Opera, The original Startrek series on the other hand were Sci-fi.

They turn onto fantasy when the series became popular (!) and if you remember the "pime law" in the 60's Startrek TV series, it was more or less To boldly bring democracy and american way of life where nobody has ever gone before

So what's to be surprised now?

That's wht you shoul keep reading real books and watch TV scarcelly... and that too, explains why I prefer to read Manga and watch Anime instead of plain american TV.

...Matta ne!

5:40 AM  
Blogger Fernando Vallejo said...

OH boy!

What kind of blogs do you read? I knew you liked manga... but Goth girls? That is new to me. As for the japanese girl... I believe she was part of the Mickey Mouse Club together with Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears... not really my type (or age).

Anyway, I saw yesterday a very nice series with "commander Adama" (E. J. Olmos) called "american family". It's about a mexican family living in East L.A. vey nice photography, rythm, script, etc... It is nice to see that mexican directors can do a better job than sit-coms or soap operas that are just following a mechanical scheme. It also made me proud to be a mexican, and that is not common on many chicano productions which lack a cutural identity.

If you thought the swiss army lightsaber was wierd, check this out.


さようなら

12:28 PM  

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