movies matter | criticism by maryann johanson
Mon Aug 31 2015, 07:45pm | 10 comments
I thought the book was pretty good (and it was written by a fellow GURPS author and webcomic artist). The trailers make it look as if they’ve fixed the grating edge on Watney’s characterisation, which would only make it better.
Cool video. Is Neil Tyson really going gray, or did they just give him gray hair as part of the conceit that he’s speaking from past 2029?
I think, though, that the movie itself probably won’t emphasize exploration and discovery as much as this video does. I really enjoyed the book and I’m looking forward to the film — but between this and Gravity (and Apollo 13), I may be close to my fill of “realistic” space movies whose main plot is “Space is killing me, I need to get home ASAP!” While we shouldn’t downplay the dangers and difficulties of space, I’m ready for more stories about the successful establishment of space colonies, and actual exploration and discovery of awesome stuff. If we’re to be inspired to make even a fraction of our space dreams a reality, we need stories that show us why we NEED to venture out, and not just how dangerous it is to do so.
just finished the book, loved it… not sure what you mean by the “grating edge” of Watney’s character. the only thing that kind of irked me through the book <<>> was the whole 70s thing that seemed a bit way too out of time for people from what is supposed to be 2029.
i believe it is mentioned that they added gray to NdeGT to make it seem as if he’s doing this vid from the future. frankly, although i loved the book, and am looking forward to the movie, i could just watch Neil de Grasse Tyson do this sort of thing for two hours straight.
It’s just an excuse to give the whole movie a disco soundtrack. I think it’s worth it for the dance numbers in zero-gravity.
Agreed, although I do think his “mellow narrator” mode for this kind of formal presentation is SLIGHTLY less compelling than the “agitated, excitable, passionate/outraged” mode that he shows during live speeches and Q&A’s.
Basically he came across to me as much more of an irritant than anyone you’d actually lock in a tin can with five other people for more than a year.
This may simply mean that I am not someone you’d actually lock in a tin can with five other people for more than a year.
I never got a sense from the book was Watney was a pain in the ass to be locked in a tin can with… at least not anymore than they all got a bit on each other’s nerves, as you would expect to happen.
2029 seems unlikely. Manned space exploration prob won’t take off until they start making Helium 3 fusion reactors on Earth and thus have a strong economic incentive to colonize the Moon. Retiring the Space Shuttle before developing an alternative, combined with NASA’s budget cuts is most likely the nail in the coffin of government funded space travel. The future is in privatized space travel until it becomes prolific enough for the military to get involved. I predict that the first manned mission to Mars will be primarily a corporate funded affair with government assistance.
to me, he came across as a guy who would want to be thought of as brave and resourceful, and (mostly) uncomplaining, in case his survival plans didn’t pan out and his log was found later on… just the kind of guy who would get locked into a tin can with other people, i would think.
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