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such a nasty woman | by maryann johanson

10 years of Flick Filosopher: James Cameron is such a geek

At this point, having been at this criticism thing for 10 years and having been at lots of press events where all manner of talent were also present, I’ve met quite a few big names. I’m still telling stories about meeting George Clooney. And Christian Bale. But I think my biggest thrill so far has been meeting James Cameron and having the opportunity to tell him that I appreciated enormously his recent documentary work that has been geared toward getting people excited about science who weren’t — like me — already excited by it. This was at a special screening of Aliens of the Deep, and I couldn’t resist the chance to shake his hand and thank him for being such a huge geek. From my review of the film:

Cameron’s idea (he directed with Steven Quale, and produced, and shot stuff, too) was to put researchers and theorists who don’t normally visit the ocean floor but whose work could benefit from it into those subs, and their excitement is contagious. I started thinking the film’s title was metaphorical — you know, we are the aliens of the deep, fragile humans in a hostile environment, et cetera — and then: Wow! Aliens! No, I mean really, creatures like nothing you’ve ever seen before: an achingly beautiful diaphanous thing waving in the water that makes one scientist wonder how something like that can even be alive; a blobby critter that you can’t tell which side is up on, that looks like a squishy plush toy or some pal of Pokemon’s; an octopus that, okay, doesn’t look all the alien but is clearly demonstrating some real smarts, genuine intelligent curiosity about the little robot camera called Jake that’s exploring away from the subs. It’s enough to give you chills, seeing how amazing these animals are and realizing that most of the surface of the Earth is two miles down under water and who knows what the hell else is down there that we don’t know about.

Just an FYI: Cameron was extremely gracious, and he’s actually kinda hot. That’s me: turned on by brains and talent.

review of Aliens of the Deep, posted 01.28.05

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