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Elysium
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Aug 10, 2013, 03:51 PM
 
I looked, didn't see an existing thread.

I just... ****... I don't even know how to describe my thoughts on this film. It pains me.

The entire experience is ruined by beating me over the head with a ham-fisted, shit-filled script. Pacific Rim and Prometheus are two other examples of this phenomenon. (don't mention avatar because **** that "film"). Awesome CGI and set design. Like a-maze-balls great. Seriously, the dynamic range and illumination rendering crap have come so far that it's almost believable. The casts (while debatable) are seemingly solid. What cocks it up? Shitty non-sensicle writing. Seriously, when the science behind your robot army and artificial gravity make more god damn sense than every ****ing aspect of the "story" I want to twist baskets of kittens. EVERY TIME.

It could have been great. ****, they could have given it to any decent South Korean director and this shit would have been double-d level of awesome. Instead I got to watch Jenny McCarthy's commentary on immigration and wealth disparity come to life. And please, don't assume that my "biases" are tainting my perception of this film. I love anything that makes me think, introspective or ask questions. This experience just made me feel sorry for being alive.

The world, societal construct, logistics of the facility and it's command hierarchy could only have been conceived by a collective of 11 year old kids in a remedial social sciences class after watching an ABC special on immigration and healthcare reform.

All that said, I'm angry because it COULD have been fantastic. But nnnoooooooooooooo.

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Aug 10, 2013, 04:34 PM
 
Damn dude. And I was all excited to go see that.

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Aug 10, 2013, 04:44 PM
 
God, I seriously don't want to ruin the experience for anyone, but I can only imagine that this is the result of studio interference, shitty test-marketing and dim-witted producer interference. Some people apparently love it. I just don't get it.

I watch and enjoy a wide variety of really, really stupid shit. This experience was painful for me. Maybe my hopes were set a little too high. Just... god damn. Maybe with decreased SFX costs the French can save the genre one day soon.

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Aug 10, 2013, 06:52 PM
 
Yup. Another half-baked commentary on social inequality and class division... by folks who embody inequality and class division (cashing in on it to make more money). The hypocrisy of it all makes me cringe.
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Aug 10, 2013, 08:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
Yup. Another half-baked commentary on social inequality and class division... by folks who embody inequality and class division (cashing in on it to make more money). The hypocrisy of it all makes me cringe.
I haven't seen the movie and I don't intend to, but this argument bothers me. It's the same argument that people made against Michael Moore and Al Gore. Why do people have to cut themselves off from a system entirely in order to comment on it or criticize it? For one, sometimes using the system is a way to connect with others a part of it, and a message can travel further distances than being from the outside looking in. Other times living on the outside just requires a lot of effort (e.g. an environmentalist cutting themselves off of all carbon emitting pollutants)...

This whole "we must put you under the microscope and only then if you pass all litmus tests will your message be deemed worthy of 5 minutes of contemplation" is old and tired. I've been told that I shouldn't comment on US affairs because I'm not an American citizen, and according to this line of thinking one can only comment on US affairs if they are US citizens living in the US in a way which passes these tests.

I would get the hypocrisy argument if this director was living in complete and blatant excessive extremes like owning eight homes and a private jet or some crap, but otherwise what seems to happen whenever somebody wants to provide some sort of social commentary is that arguments like this crop up, those that would naturally be inclined to blow off this commentary have rationalization to ignore it, and consequently this individual is sort of in the public discourse for a few minutes and then disappears.

This has to stop. If you can string together a good argument (and I'm not saying that this director did this), people should examine it on its merits, unless the hypocrisy meter is just 99 out of 100 on the hypocrisy scale, in which case I'd still encourage people to consider the points a little bit (which your average person probably doesn't do enough of) before blowing it off.
     
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Aug 10, 2013, 08:12 PM
 
The other annoying thing about these tired arguments is that if you are on the outside looking in to a system, you can also be deemed disconnected from mainstream society. So, in order to have valid commentary you need to be disconnected and connected to mainstream culture at the same time!
     
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Aug 10, 2013, 11:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I haven't seen the movie and I don't intend to, but this argument bothers me. It's the same argument that people made against Michael Moore and Al Gore.
and rightly so. Gore burns up 50x more fossil fuels than the average person; private jet hauling his fat ass around (ever heard of video conferencing, Al?), huge 10k sq/ft homes (for 4 people). If he wanted to have a positive impact on climate change, he'd shoot himself. That would stop part of the problem, right there. As for Moore, he and O'Reilly could start their own bizarro realities, based on the multitude of distorted, half-baked, half truths they spout whenever they open their mouths.

Selling and shoveling social inequality and dystopian nightmares is good business. To hell with the repercussions, as long as they get their pockets lined for more projects. "But they're doing a good thing, it's a public service in awareness!" Horsesh*t. A good thing is going out and busting your ass helping your neighbors with housing, food, and the means to afford a proper education, so they can get out of the low income rut and make something better for themselves than what they were born with. Screaming and bitching about what other people have doesn't help the working class, all it does is shift the sheep from one side of the pen to the other, keeping them distracted while they get fleeced again.
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Aug 10, 2013, 11:23 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
and rightly so. Gore burns up 50x more fossil fuels than the average person; private jet hauling his fat ass around (ever heard of video conferencing, Al?), huge 10k sq/ft homes (for 4 people). If he wanted to have a positive impact on climate change, he'd shoot himself. That would stop part of the problem, right there. As for Moore, he and O'Reilly could start their own bizarro realities, based on the multitude of distorted, half-baked, half truths they spout whenever they open their mouths.

Selling and shoveling social inequality and dystopian nightmares is good business. To hell with the repercussions, as long as they get their pockets lined for more projects. "But they're doing a good thing, it's a public service in awareness!" Horsesh*t. A good thing is going out and busting your ass helping your neighbors with housing, food, and the means to afford a proper education, so they can get out of the low income rut and make something better for themselves than what they were born with. Screaming and bitching about what other people have doesn't help the working class, all it does is shift the sheep from one side of the pen to the other, keeping them distracted while they get fleeced again.

Based on how strong and visceral your reaction is here, I don't suppose anything I'm going to say will make a difference, but why not just address the message rather than the messenger?
     
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Aug 10, 2013, 11:25 PM
 
Shaddim: who could make a movie or sort of piece about the environment, social inequality, or whatever else and both catch your interest and awareness and pass your microscope tests?
     
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Aug 10, 2013, 11:41 PM
 
I don't want to interrupt the circlejerk or fast-tracking of this thread into the pol lounge, but y'all's tangent is not really relevant in my opinion. I mean, I guess you could say they do, but I personally don't give a crap about none of that. It's poorly done. The message COULD have been conveyed in a non-dumb-as-shit way. This is an R-rated flick. The spoon-feeding and cliches were absurd. The content of said spoon is irrelevant to me due to how poorly is was presented. That's really what I'm disappointed in. The story is DUM. The writing is extremely lazy. Michael Moore's films are like Godard compared to this.

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Aug 11, 2013, 12:10 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Shaddim: who could make a movie or sort of piece about the environment, social inequality, or whatever else and both catch your interest and awareness and pass your microscope tests?
No one, because it's a fruitless endeavor. The average person doesn't understand such things, all they focus on is "I want what they have", full stop. They're a bunch of impulses running around trying to satisfy themselves in the quickest way possible. You clang a bell and get them to move wherever you want, based on their base desires. Education and a fundamental understanding of their own nature has to come first, that's what transforms a mob into a community. You don't become better until you're on the ground trying to assist others in doing the same, and yelling about inequality to people who don't understand wealth (or even how to balance their own checkbooks) makes it harder for those of us who are fighting to actually make a difference.
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Aug 11, 2013, 12:12 AM
 
Originally Posted by pooka View Post
I don't want to interrupt the circlejerk or fast-tracking of this thread into the pol lounge, but y'all's tangent is not really relevant in my opinion. I mean, I guess you could say they do, but I personally don't give a crap about none of that. It's poorly done. The message COULD have been conveyed in a non-dumb-as-shit way. This is an R-rated flick. The spoon-feeding and cliches were absurd. The content of said spoon is irrelevant to me due to how poorly is was presented. That's really what I'm disappointed in. The story is DUM. The writing is extremely lazy. Michael Moore's films are like Godard compared to this.
Sorry, I misunderstood. I thought your were talking about the stupid message, not the half-assed delivery. I'll stop.
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Aug 16, 2013, 09:23 AM
 
Saw it last night. Completely meh. The two things that bothered me the most were that apparently when you don an exoskeleton your bones and internal organs suddenly become much stronger, allowing you to get punched by a guy with 2-3x normal human strength and not have your ****ing face shattered; and two, apparently the people on Elysium had medical transports sitting around doing nothing because, why use them? I guess.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 10:11 AM
 
From the trailers, it looked really pretty. But the entire premise reeks of class warfare, and i'm personally sick of that leftist line of social commentary; which is why i'll have to give this one a miss, which is a shame cause i really liked District9.

pooka, were you expecting good writing from Pacific Rim? .... i found it corny, and i kinda think that's what they were going for.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 10:46 AM
 
I had no intentions of seeing Elysium only because it appears to be a CGI orgy with some words thrown on top. Yeah, that's pre-judging right there - but I'm tired of seeing shitty movies with crappy writing.

I'll catch this thing on Netflix or cable. Glad I saved the money. Thanks guys!
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Aug 16, 2013, 01:06 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hawkeye_a View Post
pooka, were you expecting good writing from Pacific Rim? .... i found it corny, and i kinda think that's what they were going for.
I'm sorry, if you went in to Pacific RIM for a logically coherent and sophisticated story, you simply went to see the wrong movie. Sort of like going to see Tomb Raider and expecting Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain instead of Indiana Jones with breasts. Even stereotypical plot devices such as »It's analog!« worked, because I felt the movie did not take itself too seriously. But the imagery in Pacific RIM was epic, from the umbrella scene which introduced Mori in the beginning to the fights. And in parts, the movie was light hearted enough so as to not take itself too seriously.
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Aug 16, 2013, 01:18 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hawkeye_a View Post
From the trailers, it looked really pretty. But the entire premise reeks of class warfare, and i'm personally sick of that leftist line of social commentary; which is why i'll have to give this one a miss, which is a shame cause i really liked District9.

pooka, were you expecting good writing from Pacific Rim? .... i found it corny, and i kinda think that's what they were going for.
Which movie has social commentary more to your taste, and why does it need to be put in a box like this?
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 01:23 PM
 
I really didn't feel Elysium had much in the way of social commentary. Oh, the foundation was laid to give it, but aside from the beginning there wasn't much dialogue about it (How society was structured). Just that he's ****ed and he was gonna get better by any means. No commentary.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 01:45 PM
 
I still haven't seen the movie, but the class warfare premise in sci-fi thing is not new, nor the property of the left wing. Is Hunger Games left wing?

What makes the commentary in this movie different?
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 01:48 PM
 
I have no idea. Like I said, I think it's devoid of commentary outside the actual premise.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 01:55 PM
 
I wonder if this is like vmarks (I think) saying that he wasn't going to take his kids to see Wall-E because of his politics?

Pretty silly if you ask me. Entertainment and story telling is entertainment and story telling, politics is politics. Sometimes there is a bit of an overlap, but big deal? At the end of the day it will either be a good story or not.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 02:12 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I wonder if this is like vmarks (I think) saying that he wasn't going to take his kids to see Wall-E because of his politics?
I don't know if its the same, but it certainly was my first thought when I read the thread. Man, someone should dig up that gem.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 02:29 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
I don't know if its the same, but it certainly was my first thought when I read the thread. Man, someone should dig up that gem.
Slight difference..... i'm not preventing anyone else from watching the movie, i'm just choosing not to for myself.

@besson, I don't have anything against the class warfare angle. It's just that in contemporary times, it has been overplayed in politics, media and culture. Never mind that i do not agree with it, it's just boring now. (kinda like the 10th reality TV series or boy band).

What movies with social commentary do i like? I don't know...off the top of my head, i've never gotten tired of Forrest Gump, Schindler's List, Magnolia to state a few. As a counter example to the whole class warfare angle.... i'd prefer Pursuit of Happiness.

PS>>Sorry for derailing this thread.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 02:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hawkeye_a View Post
Slight difference..... i'm not preventing anyone else from watching the movie, i'm just choosing not to for myself.
Huh? We weren't talking about you
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 03:08 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
I don't know if its the same, but it certainly was my first thought when I read the thread. Man, someone should dig up that gem.
I kind of feel like a dick bringing him up like that since he normally didn't say outlandish things like this, but man... That was definitely a MacNN classic in my mind.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 03:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hawkeye_a View Post
@besson, I don't have anything against the class warfare angle. It's just that in contemporary times, it has been overplayed in politics, media and culture. Never mind that i do not agree with it, it's just boring now. (kinda like the 10th reality TV series or boy band).

What is to disagree with though? I think you disagree with your perception of the rhetoric that it is impossible to succeed and that the rich have everybody over a barrel to the point that our society has become an aristocracy, but that the rich receive unfair treatment and have unfair privileges is a concept probably as old as man - I mean, unless you're able to receive an interest free bailout from the government for your bankruptcies?

Sorry, I don't intend to make this thread political at all, I'm just saying that as a storytelling device, I agree that this has been done to death, but I don't see how anybody could find the premise disagreeable. It's just the extent to which this is so where opinions would diverge. In a completely fictitious world (i.e. a movie) where these extents would also be fictitious, I honestly for the life of me cannot fathom how this would bother anybody with a sound mind, regardless of their politics.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 04:27 PM
 
I have to wonder if people that look for or see these parallels from fictional worlds to real worlds, and are bothered by this notion of the author having some sort of political agenda they want to impose upon others, are letting their emotions influence them too much.

Sometimes the author may intend to manipulate emotions, sometimes not, sometimes when consumers are influenced that way it is a surprise to the author, but either way, we all have the ability to control our emotions. Unless it is a documentary such as something Michael Moore has done, I feel bad for people that can't enjoy a fictional story without their emotions influenced by things in their real worlds influencing them to this extent.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 05:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
What is to disagree with though? I think you disagree with your perception of the rhetoric that it is impossible to succeed and that the rich have everybody over a barrel to the point that our society has become an aristocracy, but that the rich receive unfair treatment and have unfair privileges is a concept probably as old as man - I mean, unless you're able to receive an interest free bailout from the government for your bankruptcies?

Sorry, I don't intend to make this thread political at all, I'm just saying that as a storytelling device, I agree that this has been done to death, but I don't see how anybody could find the premise disagreeable. It's just the extent to which this is so where opinions would diverge. In a completely fictitious world (i.e. a movie) where these extents would also be fictitious, I honestly for the life of me cannot fathom how this would bother anybody with a sound mind, regardless of their politics.
You are entitled to your opinion on the matter. But in short, I do not believe in class warfare. I do not believe it exists, nor do i believe it should exists. If you want to continue this discussion, I suggest a thread in the PL.

Cheers
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 05:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
I really didn't feel Elysium had much in the way of social commentary. Oh, the foundation was laid to give it, but aside from the beginning there wasn't much dialogue about it (How society was structured). Just that he's ****ed and he was gonna get better by any means. No commentary.
I agree

**
Maybe SPOILERS

 


The continuity problems kept me from really delving into any thought during the picture. Visually it was stunning throughout the entire flick, but when it's all said and done it's just another forgettable, predictable action flick set in a world that defies logic.

I'd go see it just for the visuals alone or if you enjoy the "superhuman tragic hero" type of action flick. I agree with OP, it could have been so much better if they had better writers.
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 05:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hawkeye_a View Post
You are entitled to your opinion on the matter. But in short, I do not believe in class warfare. I do not believe it exists, nor do i believe it should exists. If you want to continue this discussion, I suggest a thread in the PL.

Cheers

Maybe I will, this makes absolutely no logical sense to me. Of course it exists, it always has, and it always will. There will always be haves and have nots, the haves will always have greater influence on the powers of society whether it is their ability to bribe or influence politics with their money. Is this the part you disagree with?
( Last edited by besson3c; Aug 16, 2013 at 05:45 PM. )
     
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Aug 16, 2013, 11:53 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Maybe I will, this makes absolutely no logical sense to me. Of course it exists, it always has, and it always will. There will always be haves and have nots, the haves will always have greater influence on the powers of society whether it is their ability to bribe or influence politics with their money. Is this the part you disagree with?
I don't see how you can critique a critque of the movie when you haven't seen it yourself.

Keep your political diatribes in the PL where there's no expectation of honest debate, please.
     
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Aug 17, 2013, 12:03 AM
 
Originally Posted by Snow-i View Post
I don't see how you can critique a critque of the movie when you haven't seen it yourself.

Keep your political diatribes in the PL where there's no expectation of honest debate, please.

I'm not critiquing his critique of the movie. He wrote:

But in short, I do not believe in class warfare. I do not believe it exists, nor do i believe it should exists.
This is a general statement. If he was referring to a specific sort of class warfare as depicted in this movie, I'm sure he would have been more specific.

Also, again, like I said, I'm not trying to make this thread political, there have been no diatribes. My comments have been on point, I think, in examining the intersections between real world politics and fictional stories in a general manner.

So, I don't think we need a thread cop on this particular subject - not until this devolves into specific real world political issues and moves away from general concepts.
     
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Aug 17, 2013, 12:10 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I'm not critiquing his critique of the movie. He wrote:



This is a general statement. If he was referring to a specific sort of class warfare as depicted in this movie, I'm sure he would have been more specific.

Also, again, like I said, I'm not trying to make this thread political, there have been no diatribes. My comments have been on point, I think, in examining the intersections between real world politics and fictional stories in a general manner.

So, I don't think we need a thread cop on this particular subject - not until this devolves into specific real world political issues and moves away from general concepts.
Regardless, the context of the discussion is the movie. I'm not trying to call you out, but what he said was in line with his critique of the movie. I'm just saying, you're making an argument without the context of that argument or how it relates to the topic of discussion. :shrug:

Just trying to keep this from getting out of hand because I'm actually interested in what people have to say about this movie and it's obvious undertones (whether the movie fully explored them or not).
     
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Aug 17, 2013, 12:27 AM
 
Originally Posted by Snow-i View Post
Regardless, the context of the discussion is the movie. I'm not trying to call you out, but what he said was in line with his critique of the movie. I'm just saying, you're making an argument without the context of that argument or how it relates to the topic of discussion. :shrug:
He also said that the class warfare premise is the same old boilerplate sort of storytelling device, or at least that's how I interpreted it, so if it's not terribly unusual seeing the movie is not required, is it?

If pooka doesn't want this particular discussion in his thread he's perfectly capable of speaking for himself.
     
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Aug 17, 2013, 12:13 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
I'm sorry, if you went in to Pacific RIM for a logically coherent and sophisticated story, you simply went to see the wrong movie.
Man, that's some bullshit. I've watched Bunraku like 4 times and thoroughly enjoy the hell out of it (flaws and all). The execution and attention to detail (stylistically) are fun and quirky. It's universally panned, but I appreciate it for what it is. Similar to how I feel about Scott Pilgrim I guess.

Pacific Rim just felt weak. Actors, execution, line-delivery... weak or off mark. I didn't connect with it. Visually, it blew my mind. I just can't stand it when someone uses the "that's what they were going for" argument. I mean if they were going for the 2nd rate, episodic anime vibe I guess they succeeded. I'm not alone. Pretty much all of Japan dislikes Rinko Kikuchi as well.

As for Elysium, I'm not getting into the message or politics or whatever. I don't feel the poor story and writing deserve digging that deep or thinking too hard. I'm merely moaning about what could have been. I'll just go watch Robocop again.

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Aug 17, 2013, 12:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
If pooka doesn't want this particular discussion in his thread he's perfectly capable of speaking for himself.
You guys are free to go off on whatever tangents you like. My intent was not to attack the message or ideology in any way, shape or form. If I walk away from a conversation, book, movie, play, episode of Venture Bros, etc that makes me reflect on my own worldview, flippin' awesome. My personal opinion is that the story/script sucked and ruined what could have been a great film.

The world that the writers created was non-sensical and too jarring to accept. Like in a really, really lame way.

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Aug 18, 2013, 03:20 AM
 
Originally Posted by pooka View Post
Man, that's some bullshit. [...]

Pacific Rim just felt weak. Actors, execution, line-delivery... weak or off mark. I didn't connect with it. Visually, it blew my mind. I just can't stand it when someone uses the "that's what they were going for" argument. I mean if they were going for the 2nd rate, episodic anime vibe I guess they succeeded. I'm not alone. Pretty much all of Japan dislikes Rinko Kikuchi as well.
I didn't say anything about weak acting (I thought the acting was good in an Indiana Jones-type of way). I was more thinking of comments along the line of »Oh, why should you build a giant wall, and wouldn't you want to build the wall closer to the hole?«

Regarding Kikuchi, in parts her behavior was a bit of a caricature of what Americans think Japanese are with some Western bits to make the character feel more at home in the movie. I can see why Japanese are irked by her portrayal of Mako. But I don't think most people can really appreciate these nuances anyway. (I just enjoyed that I did not need subtitles for the Japanese bits … )

But I get if you say »you did not connect to the movie«, I did in a surprising way. It could have been another transformers to me (which I found meh), but it wasn't. There are a bunch of movies I do not connect to (e. g. Pulp Fiction or the Lord of the Rings) even though I know that »in theory« these are great movies.
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Aug 18, 2013, 10:31 AM
 
I saw Elysium yesterday and enjoyed it on the IMAX screen. There wasn't some burdensome message of one percenters versus 99 percent or immigration. There were certainly scenes with that, but by and large that was an undertone to most of the scenes revolving around one man not wanting to die, willing to sell out earth's inhabitants to survive, then changing course because of his love for a woman and what he needed to do to save and protect her.
     
   
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