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[personal profile] airiefairie

Suppose you live in the world of Game of Thrones, and you had to incorporate a technology from the modern world.

Which one would it be, and why? =)

(By the way, here is an attempt to analyse why Westeros still hasn't had an Industrial Revolution).
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[personal profile] abomvubuso
Those who are hyped up about tonight's Game of Thrones Season VII debut would know what the above reference is about. It's from a story that Tyrion the imp told his brother while being in a cell, about a dim-witted cousin whose only occupation was to crush little beetles with a stone just because he could: "Khu! Khu! Khuuu!" the stone went down, and the poor little beetles would die by the scores.

There was no reason to it, no intention behind it, no purpose. Just like in real life, the strong would crush the weak just because he could.

Read more... )
[identity profile]
Which GoT house/family/dynasty would you compare to the following countries?

1. USA
2. Russia
3. Japan
4. France
5. Your own (other than the US)
6. Some obscure country of your choosing


My take... )
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Hey guys, can you recommend a nice sci-fi TV series that would involve all the usual stuff like interplanetary travel, spacecraft, space battles, possibly aliens... but also with mystery elements like time travel, parallel universes, etc? Series that I've watched of this genre are Fringe, Continuum, 12 Monkeys, The Expanse, Dark Matter, and of course classics like Battlestar Galactica and the StarGate franchise. I'm curious about other similar suggestions. Would be very grateful if you have some ideas. Thanks!
[identity profile]
‘Black Mirror’ Creator Predicts Trump Will Be President: ‘I Find It F*cking Terrifying’

Charlie Brooker, the showrunner of the acclaimed dystopian sci-fi series, is convinced that Donald Trump will win the presidential election. God help us all.

...And he was right. Even if he didn't take his own prediction seriously at the time. I watched that Black Mirror episode the other day, The Waldo Moment. The similarities are eery. And that one did not end so well.

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[identity profile]
After Alt-Right Pileup, Disney Chief Declares “There Are No Political Statements” in Star Wars Spinoff Rogue One

No? What about these:

There's a general rule in art. If you don't want a political fallout in art, well... don't cause it. Same applies to culture wars.

The hysteria about Trump's election has sneaked into the art of cinema as well now (not that this is a precedent for that genre, but now it's become rather blatant). Seen purely for its cinematic value, Rogue One is so-so. An obvious attempt to make some extra cash by exploiting an old theme (Star Wars; who doesn't love Star Wars!) Essentially, it's junk-food type of cinema: the one that you consummate on the spot, feel good about it while it lasts, then you forget it completely once you're outside the movie theater. But that was its purpose after all, so no biggie there.

The biggie is elsewhere )
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A review of the new movie Arrival (warning: contains spoilers).

The RottenTomatoes consensus reads: Arrival delivers a must-see experience for fans of thinking person's sci-fi that anchors its heady themes with genuinely affecting emotion and a terrific performance from Amy Adams.

Indeed I have to admit, I was impressed.

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[identity profile]
WARNING! Game of Thrones spoilers ahead! Those who haven't watched S06E05 yet may prefer to skip the following!

This post is sad and full of spoilers )
[identity profile]
The second one has arrived. And all Game of Thrones fans are counting the days until the moment when they will realise Jon Snow is... alive... dead... or something in between. We don't know. And that is so exciting! For the first time, no one knows what is going to happen. The feeling is both frightening and mesmerising.

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Game of Thrones season VI begins April 24.
[identity profile]
Interesting suggestion, this one. Why Ted Cruz Should Drop Everything And Watch ‘Zootopia’ Immediately -- The #1 movie in the country could teach him a lot about the problem with racial profiling.

First of all, I did love the movie, for the record. A very smart one, it was. It is one of the few truly fantastic films I have watched lately. Full of appealing characters, as well as a delicate nuance skillfully conveying a complex issue. Or it could just be, as others have said, a film that is too simplistic and inconsistent to serve as propaganda for any one viewpoint - which is exactly where its charm is. But never mind. It did stir quite a few discussions with my kids afterwards, some of them unexpectedly complex. So I suppose it has served its purpose after all.

That said, the parallels between that cartoon and this year's US election (with Trump, Cruz and all the rest) are uncanny - and hardly incidental. We have all heard of Trump's "shocking rhetoric" (as Hillary Clinton called it) about racial and ethnic profiling, his comments on Mexicans, and his promise to ban Muslims from entering the country. We are also aware of Cruz' stance on immigration, what with his plans to deport millions of immigrants, and his remarks that there is "nothing compassionate" about illegal immigration. While Trump is playing by the lowest denominator and capitalising on people's fears and insecurities (his Islamophobic rhetoric being the starkest example), Cruz is being more subtle, but no less dangerous in his intentions.

My question is this. Why are these sentiments holding sway now? Why exactly now? Would our American friends who are better versed in the dynamics of American politics and the peculiarities of the US society, venture with an explanation? Why are guys like Trump and Cruz having so much success right now? Is it the terrorism threat? Is it the recent economic crisis now taking its toll on people's psychology? It is known that such sentiments tend to resurface at times of economic hardships - but oddly, the US economy has bounced back in recent years, and yet, people are still discontent to a point that they are letting their base instincts and worst forms of bigotry come to the surface. Why could that be? What explains the timing? Is it a perfect storm of discontent with the dysfunctional institutions at Capitol Hill mixing up with the above factors - or something else?
[identity profile]
Robert De Niro, Tribeca Film Fest Pull Anti-Vaxxer Documentary

Poor Robert! He was just trying to "stir up a debate", that guy. And give platform to all the good men* who've been keeping up the good fight, flipping the bird to Big Pharma! But they were so violently suppressed, their mouths shut. Such a bad day for freedom!

I know, I know. It's that "teach the controversy" thing again. Freedom of speech, you know. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Any opinion. Even if it doesn't rest upon any fact. Even if it doesn't make any sense. And even if they presume to present it as "scientific", whereas the "science" behind it has been overwhelmingly debunked, discredited, and duly rejected by anyone with a brain (a working brain, I mean).

I`m such a corporate shill, ain`t I? )
[identity profile]
I'm sure the Game of Thrones fans have already watched the latest episode of the hit show on HBO. The show has gone into quite some controversy lately, what with all the gore displayed on screen, and the violence against women, and a number of other controversial issues. But last weekend's installment of the epic story provided yet another piece of food for thought, many believing both author George RR Martin and the show creators DB Weiss and David Benioff have gone too far this time (for the umpteenth time, by the way).

The reason for this contention? An innocent girl, a young princess who has done nobody any harm, being sacrificed by her ruthless (but evidently conflicted) king father as a means in his desperate plight to gain the throne that's "rightfully his by law", and to fulfill his destiny of becoming king no matter the cost. A fanatical move by a fanatically self-obsessed, yet unbelievably complex character whose inner conflict between love for his family and his belief that he has no say in the direction that his destiny is leading him.

But that is not what this post is about. The problem here is about empathy. )
[identity profile]

1. All phone numbers in the US start with 555.
2. No matter how damaged the spaceship, its internal navigation system always remains intact.
3. Everyone speaks English, no matter where they're from. Even E.T.s.
4. Even after we've switched all lights off at home, everything remains well visible in the bedroom, bathing in nice blueish tones.
5. All CDs are compatible with every computer, regardless of its operation system.
Read more... )
[identity profile]
Hi, ma'fellow credulous biz-fanfolk critically-thinking peeps! So, Jordan Belfort, the real Wolf of Wall Street, made a visit to my country the other day, and delivered some lectures in front of packed halls. I'd say those who paid 800 bucks to listen to his insights into the art of conning must've been huge movie fans indeed, because they gave away a whole monthly salary in the hope of being taught how to sell pencils. Of course, the organizers of the event, being as well-versed in PR as they are, did their best to convince the public that the meetings with businesspeople of that calibre are worth much more than they actually are, but not because they believed it for real, but because they, too, are very good salespeople.

Every ticket to the event is supposed to pump up the confidence of small-calibre wannabe-wolflings - that's what all this is about. Everything beyond that is blablah, as Belfort himself has preached. After all, he admits it outright that the trick of good trading is to convince someone that they badly need something they actually don't need. Which he did pretty well by selling these lectures. He's definitely got the knack of it, whatever his detractors (myself included) would say. Or, as our local proverb goes, "He's trying to sell cucumbers to a cucumber trader".

You do not reveal all your tricks to the world just like that. )
[identity profile]
All Men Must Laugh.
...So here are a few things only us Game of Thrones fans will find funny. =)

[!Spoilers for those who haven't watched season IV yet]

This frustrating truth...
[identity profile]
Feast your eyes on the four variant covers for ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY's forthcoming double issue devoted to GAME OF THRONES. Be sure to collect them all. I know I will...

Some gorgeous stuff here. )
[identity profile]
...Or is someone definitely not wanting to have nice things?

While we're still about crazy-ass dictator states, here's the deal.

So basically, a private US cinema studio decides to troll North Korea a little bit, you know, just because they can. North Korea does in response what North Korea usually does in response: it throws a tantrum, talks some smack, etc.

Now, from a US perspective, it's all fair game, since it's just a private cinema studio doing their private cinema stuff - ya know, freedom of speech and all that jazz. A number of people rally behind the movie, even if it's a crappy one (or not - I don't know, I haven't watched it yet), and watch it just because they can, and because, ya know, freedom of speech and all that jazz that we "stand for". So far, so good.

But then the shit *really* hits the fan )
[identity profile]

Ciarán Hinds as Julius Caesar (L) with Kevin McKidd as Lucius Vorenus (R)

Maybe it was all the recent "Obama is an emperor" talk, but I recently started re-watching the HBO/BBC co-production of Rome. It's a pretty gritty view of Rome, starting with the period immediately before Julius Caesar became dictator in Rome through the capture and death of Marc Antony & Cleopatra. Along with the inter family-politics, grudges, and jealousies of leading Roman families, it's largely historically accurate, although it does play with some facts (but no spoilers from me), and I was cool with that. Two fictional characters Lucius Vorenus (played by Kevin McKidd), and Titus Pullo (played by Ray Stevenson), and their relationships are counter-played against the drama of the more recognizable names. The leading families, who enjoy great wealth, are played against most of the lower classes to great effect (as you will see in the clip below)

When Rome first aired, I wasn't impressed with the less-than-grand representation of Rome. I fully admit it, I'm a fan of those widescreen, and at the time "newfangled stereo" 1950s/1960s versions of Roman / Biblical epics, even if I know they weren't especially accurate. But with Rome, but I was fascinated by the humanity (and the inhumanity) of all the characters, and particularly with Lucius Vorenus and Titus Pullo. The acting is superb (e.g. Simon Woods cast as Octavian, Ciarán Hinds as Julius Caesar, David Bamber as Cicero, Kerry Condon as Octavia) The producers were meticulous in their accuracy in many ways: e.g. hiring extras who worked in the fields they represented on screen (a butcher in the series was a butcher in modern Rome), and working with historians and experts in respective fields to visually capture the look of the period. The recreation of a Roman calendar wall and the humorous "newsreader" (wonderfully played by Ian McNeice) were interesting compared to their rather static modern versions. The series is highly watchable (and its great for binge viewing during a snow or rain storm), but despite its popularity, Rome was cancelled by HBO due to high production costs, even though the series was originally going to be a five season production, and that would have included Palestine during the period of Jesus of Nazareth.

Here is a clip that takes place in the aftermath of Caesar's death, and the reading of his will, naming of Octavian as his heir; and a violent foreshadowing of the bigger struggles that lay ahead for Marc Anthony and Octavian. Strong language warning.

Charlton Heston as Marc Antony in Shakespeare's Julius Caesar (1953).

Elizabeth Taylor as Cleopatra with Rex Harrison as Julius Caesar, visiting the tomb of Alexander the Great in Cleopatra (1963).
[identity profile]
Warning: SPOILER ALERT! This infographic contains details about the new space film "Interstellar."

Some cool infographics inside! )

Credits & Style Info

Talk Politics.
A place to discuss politics without egomaniacal mods


Divisive Rhetoric


"Favoring multiculturalism is something Westerners give a lot of lovely lip service to until they have to actually do it."

September 2017

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