There is a new(ish) podcast called Unspooled, hosted by Paul Scheer and Amy Nicholson, that has caught my attention. The concept of the podcast is that Scheer and Nicholson are watching the AFI’s top 100 movies of all time (specifically the 2007 update), a list of the 100 best American movies, as determined by the American Film Institute from a poll of more than 1,500 artists and leaders in the film industry who chose from a list of 400 nominated movies.

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Oh Boy, the things I do to myself in the name of sci-fi. For reasons I talked about in this earlier post, I have decided that I am going to get into the new Nightflyers series coming soon. In preparation I have read the Nightflyers novella, which was… not good, and now I have watched the eighties movie. Like I said, I put myself through a lot in service of science fiction.

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Star Wars Borders

While watching Solo: A Star Wars Story, I was struck by a few things, some of which were glaringly obvious and which I have already written about, such as the extremely disappointing sexual politics, but some that were more subtle. One of the more subtle things I saw was the difference in border controls in Solo: A Star Wars Story, compared to the original Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope.

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I have just seen Solo: A Star Wars Story, and there was a story choice made in that movie that really left a bad taste in my mouth. There is no avoiding spoilers, so here goes: The character that is at the center of this plot point is, Val, played by Thandie Newton. As The Mary Sue puts it: There was one element of the movie that nearly ruined all that fluffy fun, and it was the treatment of the character Val.

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I am so angry at The Cloverfield Paradox because it had all the elements necessary to make something great, but spoiled it by forcing these elements into the service of possibly the worst screenplay ever written. Seriously, you could get a better piece of writing by scattering corn on the keyboard of a laptop and letting a hungry chicken peck at it. Make no mistake, this is a terrible and stupid movie, but there is a lot of good stuff here.

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Dirty Computer

I was getting my morning fix of news today, form a variety of outlets, when I saw on Vox that Janelle Monae’s movie, Dirty Computer, has finally been released. For her first couple of albums, she was inspired by Fritz Lang’s 1927 sci-fi film Metropolis to adopt an alternate “archandroid” persona named Cindi Mayweather. Now comes Dirty Computer and, as Vox says: Dirty Computer tells the story of Jane 57821, a defiant free spirit who lives in a near-future dystopia and takes joy in celebrating herself, her love for fellow rebel Zen (Tessa Thompson), and the queer black community that accepts them both.

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As usual when talking about a movie I really enjoyed, this review has ended up getting a little spoilery. I don’t think I’ve given much more away than can be guessed from the trailer, but if you don’t want to be spoiled at all and only want to know if this movie is worth watching, rest assured that it is and you should be hitting play or going to the screening right now.

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Brett Fitzpatrick

I am an author writing sci-fi novels, blog posts, and a bunch of other stuff.

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