Periodic Movie Review

Talk about anything under the sun or stars - but keep it civil. This is where we really get to know each other. Everyone is welcome, and invited!
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Postby Syphon the Sun » Tue Jul 27, 2010 5:01 pm

I got the cutoff for my school. I could have decided to be in a grade younger. But I was mature and smart enough! :D
Oooh, you could break the graham crackers on the line?! :P
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Postby Young Val » Sun Aug 01, 2010 3:20 pm

Saw Inception; loved it.
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
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Postby starlooker » Sun Aug 01, 2010 3:24 pm

I got the cutoff for my school. I could have decided to be in a grade younger. But I was mature and smart enough! :D
Oooh, you could break the graham crackers on the line?! :P
:lol:

This literally made me laugh out loud.
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Postby Graff^ » Sun Aug 01, 2010 3:47 pm

Me too. Sadly I still can't do that. Nor am I any good with Scissors.
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Postby ValentineNicole » Sun Aug 01, 2010 3:53 pm

I got the cutoff for my school. I could have decided to be in a grade younger. But I was mature and smart enough! :D
Oooh, you could break the graham crackers on the line?! :P
Hey now, they made me take actual tests to skip into first grade early! LOL, like identifying what the legos looked like, and knowing how to hold scissors. :wink:

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Postby megxers » Sun Aug 01, 2010 3:54 pm

I get into fights about the cut off ALL the time. My brother (a January birth day) refuses to believe he was one of the older people in his grade (his friends group was skewed to early birth dates though), because the cutoff for our district was December. He and I get into fights about everything, the more banal the better; today we were yelling at each other about his picky eating/my food intolerances.

I have somehow seen a movie nearly every weekend in July. Inception, Salt, Predators. My brother's friends have seen Scott Pilgrim but they aren't true fans; they haven't even started the novels.

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Postby Graff^ » Sun Aug 01, 2010 3:57 pm

I get into fights about the cut off ALL the time. My brother (a January birth day) refuses to believe he was one of the older people in his grade (his friends group was skewed to early birth dates though), because the cutoff for our district was December. He and I get into fights about everything, the more banal the better; today we were yelling at each other about his picky eating/my food intolerances.

I have somehow seen a movie nearly every weekend in July. Inception, Salt, Predators. My brother's friends have seen Scott Pilgrim but they aren't true fans; they haven't even started the novels.
how was Salt and Inception? I've been thinking about then for after I see Despiciable me.
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Postby Janus%TheDoorman » Mon Aug 02, 2010 12:06 am

Saw Salt... I'd give it a B-. No real plot spoilers here, but I'll still invisitype the general plot structure, the basic premise of the movie is the ambiguity in Salt's motives, you're basically presented with the options that she's an American agent falsely implicated in some larger Soviet plot, or she's a Russian plant, and the movie is cut up into acts where her actions are deliberately set up to make you think she's one or the other and then the very next thing implies the opposite. It's a bit hamfisted in its delivery of this plot, which lessens the impact when the whole ball of wax comes undone in the end.

If you're a fan of the spy-fiction genre, there's not much here for you, if I'm honest, the espionage backdrop is really just a way of handwaving all the skills Salt puts on display throughout the movie, a premise which is in itself hamfistedly delivered.

It's as if the movie came packaged with the annoying guy who's constantly whispering explanations for the onscreen intrigues as they're happening. Kinda cheapens the whole thing.

And in the end there's a niggling little plot hole which ruins the sequel hook, but whatever.

The movie is essentially one long chase scene, and well enough done at that, so if that floats your boat, go check it out.
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Postby locke » Mon Aug 02, 2010 12:36 am

Saw Get Low, Robert Duvall and Sissy Spacek and Bill Murray are all awesome, terrific script, lovely story, lovely setting. Really excellent movie.

Saw Knight and Day (we got to the theatre too late for The Kids are Alright), it actually is a really fucking terrific movie. Cruise and Diaz have great chemistry, the action is really awesome, the romance is extremely well done and the movie is very very funny. The only comparable movies I can think of is Mr. and Mrs Smith and maybe Get Smart and this movie is up to that level of fun of Mr. and Mrs. Smith and better than Get Smart. It definitely did not deserve the chilled reception it got because the movie is a great action film and its a great romantic comedy--in other words its wonderfully entertaining for everyone.
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Postby BonitoDeMadrid » Mon Aug 02, 2010 12:57 am

Saw Grown Ups yesterday. I couldn't believe it, but the movie actually made me laugh- quite a lot, even - for its first half; afterwards, the jokes got kinda repetitive, or depended too much on slapstick (not that there wasn't slapstick in the first half, it was just toned down a bit).

But what really bugged me in the film - other than what I already wrote - is that there's NO CONFLICT in the film! Seriously, watching the movie felt like reading the main character's diary.
The film centers on the starting 5 of a kiddie basketball team, who are reunited at their old coach's funeral (30 years later) and head, after the funeral, to an old lake house, for... what, exactly? I'm still not sure.
Anyway, they travel there with their families - the family members, of course, being one-dimensional characters who'll make the necessary and unrealistic character development by the end of the film - and decide to spend the 4th of July weekend there. And the movie describes how they spend that 4th of July weekend there. That's it. No plot development (other than very minor and unimportant details), no meaning (I still can't say what the movie was trying to convey; that growing up is a part of life? That today's kids are not so different from yesterday's? That magical lake houses solve any family problems there may be? I'm lost here) and like I said, funny only through its first half.
Don't get me wrong; the movie wasn't terrible, not at all, but it just wasn't that good. The best advice I can give is, go watch it if you like Adam Sandler comedies. This one is like the other Happy Madison films.
Who controls the British crown? Who keeps the metric system down?
We do! We do!
Who leaves Atlantis off the maps? Who keeps the Martians under wraps?
We do! We do!
Who holds back the electric car? Who makes Steve Gutenberg a star?
We do! We do!
Who robs cavefish of their sight? Who rigs every Oscar night?
We do, we do!

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Postby zeroguy » Sat Aug 07, 2010 11:43 pm

World's Greatest Dad. A dark comedy starring Robin Williams.

Succeeded in being both dark (mayhap even thought-provoking) and actually funny. A lot of it was the "awkward funny" type of humor, though, which some people can't take too much of. And it features auto-erotic asphyxiation as an important plot point!
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Tue Aug 17, 2010 8:34 pm

I saw The Sorcerer's Apprentice last night. It was, sadly, not everything I hoped. I was basically hoping for a B-movie where I could watch Nicolas Cage chewing up the scenery, and maybe there'd be a plot with a wee bit of intelligence in it. I got the first two things, but as for the third, it seemed like they were trying to shoehorn a bit too much intelligence into it.

You don't need to explain magic, people. It's just there. Explaining it makes it not-magic. Trying to babble on about Tesla coils and "10% of your brain" just makes it sound stupid and jerks your audience out of the story. I want my science and magic in totally separate boxes, pleaseandthankyou.

So what would have been a B+ (B-movie I enjoyed with just the right amount of stupid) became a B- (trying just a little too hard).
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Postby megxers » Tue Aug 17, 2010 10:25 pm

My friend declared Scott Pilgrim one of his absolute favorite movies ever, because it felt like a movie written specifically to appeal to him/his crowd.

I'm still skeptical. I mean, I liked it a lot, but that is a pretty weighty assessment.
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Postby fawkes » Tue Aug 17, 2010 10:38 pm

Scott Pilgrim was pretty epic. I really liked all of the video game throwbacks, like the coins and extra life heads. We laughed through most of the movie, but some of it was kinda out there, like when the first evil ex started singing and throwing fireballs...

Still highly recommended.
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Postby starlooker » Wed Aug 18, 2010 6:34 am

I saw The Sorcerer's Apprentice last night.

Trying to babble on about... "10% of your brain" just makes it sound stupid and jerks your audience out of the story.
I should actually quote this under "irrational irritations" and "things I hate."

GRRR.

I will never, ever watch that movie now.
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Postby Phenious » Thu Aug 19, 2010 7:08 pm

I saw The Sorcerer's Apprentice last night.

Trying to babble on about... "10% of your brain" just makes it sound stupid and jerks your audience out of the story.
I should actually quote this under "irrational irritations" and "things I hate."

GRRR.

I will never, ever watch that movie now.
I thought that very clever to explain magic in real life terms. It made there be a reason they are special not just some mystical reason you have to take for face value. Makes magic that much more real when its based in real science.
Scott Pilgrim was pretty epic. I really liked all of the video game throwbacks, like the coins and extra life heads. We laughed through most of the movie, but some of it was kinda out there, like when the first evil ex started singing and throwing fireballs...

Still highly recommended.
Epic, completely EPIC. I loved every moment of it. All the 8-bit goodness, the cliché gamer references, everything! Love how the first evil ex starts getting his butt kicked right out of the gate. Guess that's why he's first, he's the weakest. Got to start some where.

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Postby Graff^ » Thu Aug 19, 2010 7:09 pm

Expendiables tomorrow. Opinions?
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Postby ValentineNicole » Thu Aug 19, 2010 8:18 pm

Scott Pilgrim was pretty epic. I really liked all of the video game throwbacks, like the coins and extra life heads. We laughed through most of the movie, but some of it was kinda out there, like when the first evil ex started singing and throwing fireballs...

Still highly recommended.
I agree. An epic of epic epicness. I LOVED it.
Expendiables tomorrow. Opinions?
Expendables was...a lot of action. Totally a "dude's" movie. It was good fun, but it was a testosterone fest to say the least.

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Postby fawkes » Thu Aug 19, 2010 9:31 pm

Expendiables tomorrow. Opinions?
I still have no idea what it's about.
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Thu Aug 19, 2010 10:56 pm

I saw The Sorcerer's Apprentice last night.

Trying to babble on about... "10% of your brain" just makes it sound stupid and jerks your audience out of the story.
I should actually quote this under "irrational irritations" and "things I hate."

GRRR.

I will never, ever watch that movie now.
I thought that very clever to explain magic in real life terms. It made there be a reason they are special not just some mystical reason you have to take for face value. Makes magic that much more real when its based in real science.
But then why bother calling it magic? Magic is, by definition, not science.
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Postby Janus%TheDoorman » Fri Aug 20, 2010 2:24 am

Scott Pilgrim was pretty epic. I really liked all of the video game throwbacks, like the coins and extra life heads.
They never quite explain it in the comics, so I doubt they did in the movie, but Scott Pilgrim's essentially set in the River City Ransom universe. Those aren't just shoutouts, they're actually how the universe works.

But then why bother calling it magic? Magic is, by definition, not science.
Exactly. Sufficiently advance science and technology is indistinguishable from magic, and so sufficiently understood magic is indistinguishable from science. Assuming magic follows any set of rules at all, which it would have to for it to be at all reliable enough for things like an apprentice system to form around it, those rules can be analyzed and understood, just as surely as the laws of nature can. If magic can't be turned into science, there'd be no point in educating someone in it.
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Postby Psudo » Fri Aug 20, 2010 3:27 am

I thought that very clever to explain magic in real life terms. It made there be a reason they are special not just some mystical reason you have to take for face value. Makes magic that much more real when its based in real science.
But then why bother calling it magic? Magic is, by definition, not science.
I've always thought it's more interesting for magic to be about the human origin of power. It is explained by who causes it, not what (as science would be). It's a throwback to a dark age where authority was in a person, not an office or ideological party.

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Postby starlooker » Fri Aug 20, 2010 7:06 am

I saw The Sorcerer's Apprentice last night.

Trying to babble on about... "10% of your brain" just makes it sound stupid and jerks your audience out of the story.
I should actually quote this under "irrational irritations" and "things I hate."

GRRR.

I will never, ever watch that movie now.
I thought that very clever to explain magic in real life terms. It made there be a reason they are special not just some mystical reason you have to take for face value. Makes magic that much more real when its based in real science.
Allow me to clarify:

*clears throat to shout so that maybe Hollywood will hear her*

IT IS A MYTH THAT YOU ONLY USE TEN PERCENT OF YOUR BRAIN!

That has nothing at all to DO with science. Not even pseudoscience. It's a bunch of crap, garbage, annoying trope. I promise you, unless you've had some sort of head trauma, every lobe and structure in your brain is busy taking care of something.

It's not that I will never watch it because they try to use science to explain magic, but because using that bit of garbage is such a lazy, stale, annoying way to do it.
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Fri Aug 20, 2010 8:25 am

I thought that very clever to explain magic in real life terms. It made there be a reason they are special not just some mystical reason you have to take for face value. Makes magic that much more real when its based in real science.
But then why bother calling it magic? Magic is, by definition, not science.
I've always thought it's more interesting for magic to be about the human origin of power. It is explained by who causes it, not what (as science would be). It's a throwback to a dark age where authority was in a person, not an office or ideological party.
Huh?
But then why bother calling it magic? Magic is, by definition, not science.
Exactly. Sufficiently advance science and technology is indistinguishable from magic, and so sufficiently understood magic is indistinguishable from science. Assuming magic follows any set of rules at all, which it would have to for it to be at all reliable enough for things like an apprentice system to form around it, those rules can be analyzed and understood, just as surely as the laws of nature can. If magic can't be turned into science, there'd be no point in educating someone in it.
We teach people the principles of studying literature. We teach facts about history. We teach the "how-tos" of religion, art, cooking, many things. None of those things are science. Just because it's teachable doesn't mean it's scientific.

Also, you misunderstand my gripe. It's not that they developed a complex and harmonious theory of magic. They jumbled it all up with plasma physics! In a shoddy, shoddy way, too. It makes no sense for someone a thousand years ago to have a grasp of plasma physics and Tesla coils.
Allow me to clarify:

*clears throat to shout so that maybe Hollywood will hear her*

IT IS A MYTH THAT YOU ONLY USE TEN PERCENT OF YOUR BRAIN!

That has nothing at all to DO with science. Not even pseudoscience. It's a bunch of crap, garbage, annoying trope. I promise you, unless you've had some sort of head trauma, every lobe and structure in your brain is busy taking care of something.

It's not that I will never watch it because they try to use science to explain magic, but because using that bit of garbage is such a lazy, stale, annoying way to do it.
And while were at it, that too. Man that myth cheeses me off. Not as much as zona here, probably, but it's a pet hate nonetheless.

And because I forgot, freaking King Arthur was closer to 1500 years ago you morons, not 1000! Geez, is a little bit of fact-checking too much to ask?
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Postby Rei » Fri Aug 20, 2010 10:12 am

Stanzas of the Graves, is all I'm sayin'. If Arthur were going around a thousand years ago, we'd be studying him in history classes instead of English.
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Postby jotabe » Fri Aug 20, 2010 10:22 am

We teach people the principles of studying literature. We teach facts about history. We teach the "how-tos" of religion, art, cooking, many things. None of those things are science. Just because it's teachable doesn't mean it's scientific.
Sorry for being a bit ranty :D but being a nerd, i have given much thought to this, lol

The difference between what you said and magic, would be that magic is a mean to interact with nature, not a recollection of what people did. Any interaction with nature can be measured, even if the cause cannot (yet) be. If it can be measured, and you can systematize the conditions under which these "magical events" happen (as all magical fantasy literature assumes), then it's science. You don't need to understand the causes, or even know the causes... the causes of magnetic and gravitatory forces were not understood until much later after they had become a scientific topic.

In any case i agree with the "why bother calling it magic". Kinda. As i see it, magic is a concept empty of meaning outside the fantasy world (it's an inconsistent definition, same as talking about "unmovable mass" and "irresistible force" in the same universe). In the real world, if magic existed, it could be measured, systematized, and then it would be scientific knowledge. But a book's internal logic rarely has anything to do with the logic in the real world, so they could have some way to interact with nature, being able to systematize it, but still not being able to be a science.

Btw, all the subjects (to the exclusion of religion, as long as it escapes the interaction with the physical realm entirely) you mentioned are scientifical, or at least can be attempted to study from a scientific point of view. Many of them aren't (yet), due to emotional or practical reasons, but even the simple recopilation of data is the first step of the scientific process.

IT IS A MYTH THAT YOU ONLY USE TEN PERCENT OF YOUR BRAIN!
It is not a myth, really. The very proponents of that idea clearly prove that they only use 10% of their brains :lol:
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Fri Aug 20, 2010 6:08 pm

We teach people the principles of studying literature. We teach facts about history. We teach the "how-tos" of religion, art, cooking, many things. None of those things are science. Just because it's teachable doesn't mean it's scientific.
The difference between what you said and magic, would be that magic is a mean to interact with nature, not a recollection of what people did. Any interaction with nature can be measured, even if the cause cannot (yet) be. If it can be measured, and you can systematize the conditions under which these "magical events" happen (as all magical fantasy literature assumes), then it's science. You don't need to understand the causes, or even know the causes... the causes of magnetic and gravitatory forces were not understood until much later after they had become a scientific topic.

In any case i agree with the "why bother calling it magic". Kinda. As i see it, magic is a concept empty of meaning outside the fantasy world (it's an inconsistent definition, same as talking about "unmovable mass" and "irresistible force" in the same universe). In the real world, if magic existed, it could be measured, systematized, and then it would be scientific knowledge. But a book's internal logic rarely has anything to do with the logic in the real world, so they could have some way to interact with nature, being able to systematize it, but still not being able to be a science.
Well, for a long time in history (and still in some places today) magic is much more closely connected to theology. Magic was not a manipulation of the natural world to effect results, it was finding the right way to tap into the divine Being and hoping It was okay with you.

Not all fantasy literature makes magic systematized. Some barely even manage to make it internally consistent. Some, like Lord of the Rings, don't even bother pretending to explain anything.

Regardless, you really gotta see the clunky, stupid way they handled it in the movie before you criticise me. :)
Btw, all the subjects (to the exclusion of religion, as long as it escapes the interaction with the physical realm entirely) you mentioned are scientifical, or at least can be attempted to study from a scientific point of view. Many of them aren't (yet), due to emotional or practical reasons, but even the simple recopilation of data is the first step of the scientific process.
I can't argue with this much, myself. I find the classic elementary school model of the scientific process quite useful for vetting my theories about history, but that's because I'm not much into literary theory. People who do more abstract work would disagree with me, but I think their theories are fluff, so :p.

Religion, on the other hand, is often highly systematised and logical. Sure doesn't make it science, though!

Oh, and if nobody objects, I might branch this discussion off into another thread, okay?
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Postby jotabe » Fri Aug 20, 2010 6:28 pm

Oh, and if nobody objects, I might branch this discussion off into another thread, okay?
Not due to me, please :) i don't quite have much to add to what you said.
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Postby Phenious » Fri Aug 20, 2010 7:44 pm

You reflected my thoughts exactly Jota. Science is just a study of the world around us. Which really all of those subjects are a study of our world, but physical and imagined.

Also on the 10% of brain usage I believe is not a myth if you look into what they are referring to. Your right that the brain is being used all the time, managing something or other. What the 10% is referring to is conscious thought. Our ability to use our brain for "thinking" and problem solving is typically using only a small amount of the total power of your brain. If you used your full brain to think then it wouldn't be able to manage all the things that keep you alive with out you "thinking" about it. Like heart beating, breathing and all the other systems that just happen with out our conscious input.

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Postby starlooker » Fri Aug 20, 2010 7:58 pm

Except that is NEVER, EVER, EVER how it's presented. It all goes on to, "OOoh, we only use 10%. Maybe we are all telepathic if only we could figure out how to get ahold of that 90%." "Ooh, if I could tap into that 90% I could be like Wile E. Coyote, Suuper Geeenius." "I bet that people with ESP are using maybe 15% of their brains instead of 10% like the rest of us!"

I've never heard it used in the context you mentioned, Phin. And I've heard it tossed around a lot. There is absolutely no scientific backing to that statement. At all. Ever. It's a meme that was first formed back before we understood anything whatsoever about the brain, really. So, even if we find some random thing that we use 10% of our brain for, A) we still use the other 90%, I guarantee, and B) that's a coincidence with nothing to do with how that particular myth gets used in pop culture.

Also, if only 10% of your brain were allocated to conscious thought (which I doubt), in that case, you would still be using 100% of the brain that was allocated for that purpose. So what's the point of the statement?

I could see it as a metaphor or philosophical statement. But people treat it like a fact, and that really gets me irritated. There is no factual basis for it. At all.
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Postby Dr. Mobius » Sat Aug 21, 2010 12:39 am

So that's why Wile E. Coyote never dies when ACME's gadgets backfire on him! Having devoted his entire brain to conscious thought in his pursuit of the elusive Road Runner, he has nothing left over to process the signals from the rest of his body telling him he should be dead.
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Postby jotabe » Sat Aug 21, 2010 3:41 am

It's more than that we do not use the full brain for thinking. Iirc, all of our consciousness and "brainpower" happens in the very thin outer layer of the brain (which also takes care of sensory functions, which largely work unconsciously). The rest of the brain probably doesn't have the required "computing power".

As starlooker said, though, this isn't how it's used. Whenever you read, or hear about it, either they are trying to sell you a self-help book to learn to study, or they mean ESP.


Back in topic, i just saw Inception! :D awesome movie. Haven't enjoyed a movie in the cinema so thoroughly for a while.
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Postby Janus%TheDoorman » Sat Aug 21, 2010 11:12 am

I've got no real knowledge of neuroscience, but the way I understand it is that there are essentially three major sections of the brain - the forebrain, the mid brain, and the hind brain. The forebrain is where we live, the "10%" that's a recent evolutionary feature. The mid-brain does most of the actual thinking, processing of information, pattern matching, etc., but it has no capacity for language. All it can really do is run the algorithms that are built into it and spit out an answer, and send it up to the forebrain to let the forebrain sort it out. The mid brain doesn't even know whether or not what it's sending up is useful, it's just an incredibly complex Input/Output machine, like Google. The Hind Brain is the one that keeps you alive by breathing, etc. It's just an output machine, no input. It's got very basic programs that it runs continuously.

Suggesting that using more than the forebrain for forebrain tasks is exactly like saying you'll ask a lizards and birds to help you sort something out. Even many modern mammals have some forebrain and would be more useful than the "other 90%" of your brain for those tasks.
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Postby Phenious » Sat Aug 21, 2010 8:37 pm

So its a bit of a late or post rant but what the hell M. Night?! What was that pathetic excuse for a fan based film? Because from where I'm standing, you took the fan and tied him up to force him to watch the murder of their love. I am of course talking about Last Air Bender. Not with standing how horribly he portrayed the story line, as well as executed it, how can you screw up the concept that martial arts are able to control one of four elements? Missed the point of Fire Bending, make Earth benders a Joke and made the Water Benders seem like they where coaxing their element, rather then bending/controlling it. I could go on, but i have a feeling you all will do enough for me.

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Postby fawkes » Sat Aug 21, 2010 10:03 pm

So its a bit of a late or post rant but what the hell M. Night?! What was that pathetic excuse for a fan based film? Because from where I'm standing, you took the fan and tied him up to force him to watch the murder of their love. I am of course talking about Last Air Bender. Not with standing how horribly he portrayed the story line, as well as executed it, how can you screw up the concept that martial arts are able to control one of four elements? Missed the point of Fire Bending, make Earth benders a Joke and made the Water Benders seem like they where coaxing their element, rather then bending/controlling it. I could go on, but i have a feeling you all will do enough for me.
Oh, I could make a list a mile long with all the things wrong in this movie... SOOO here's a short one!

1. FIRE BENDERS DO NOT NEED TO HAVE A SOURCE OF FIRE. They can create their own! This pretty much sums it up.

2. Bending in general does not take a 5-minute kung-fu workout. If Aang can simply blow to create a wind storm, it should not take more than 3 stances to bend ANYTHING

3. GET THE NAMES RIGHT! I don't care if they're more "ethnically correct", or whatever crap he's spouting, if you've got a reference for pronunciation, USE IT.

4. Fer chrissake, learn how to storyboard! The shots made no sense, with waaaaay too many extreme close-ups, weird transitions, and just general, easy mistakes. Go back to film school, please!

5. There were so many characters we missed out on! Does M. Night just have a crush on Zhao or what? What happened to Suki? Haru? Jet, fercryinoutloud? Ya coulda cut down a bit on the north pole scenes and made a much better story.

Geh. So much wrongness...
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