Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Comprehensive Geek's Guide to Movies (C-G)

Contact (1997) IMDB Rating 7.3/10
Ok, his one is right about where IMDB rates it. Based on a novel by Carl Sagan, the movie is a story of an astronomer who discovers signals from an alien intelligence to build a machine. Nobody has any idea what the machine does. Is it meant to communicate or destroy? I liked the movie because it gives a non-traditional view of aliens. I think that non-traditional view has since become not that non-traditional. The movie is very intense. The only flaw is that is takes itself very seriously. But it is a good, interesting movie to watch and it will put you in a nice wow-haze for a day afterwards.

Dr. Strangelove (1964) IMDB Rating 8.7/10
I wasn’t sure if the Kubrick masterpiece was a geek movie. But in the end thought it was. It presents in a very absurdly comic manner the possibility of total annihilation due to nuclear warfare. This movie, I thought was a comic exaggeration of the “what-if”, but a year or so ago, I watched a Trinity and Beyond, a documentary about early experiments with nuclear weapons. I was gobsmacked to see the US military testing nukes and watching it from 10 miles. People back then really had no idea. (Also see this criticality accident that caused death of scientist called Lois Slatin due to irradiation back in 1946.)

Dude, where is my car (2000) IMDB Rating 5.0/10
No, no, no. not 5.0. Come on! This is one hilarious comedy. Absurd, crazy right up the Bill and Ted or Buckaroo alley. An amazing spoof of main stream sci-fi. The movie starts when two dopeheads wake up after a wild night of partying and can’t remember where they parked their car. While on their quest to find their car, they encounter many strange people. A transsexual stripper, street gangs, alien-seeking zombies, drop-dead gorgeous aliens. You name it, this movie has it. This is an immortal movie. Great lines. Sweet!

The Fifth Element (1997) IMDB Rating 7.4/10
I can never get tired of watching this movie. Or watching Bruce Willis. This is more main stream sci-fi than say Contact, it is a very well-made, slick film based in the distant future of 2200 where NYC is dirtier than ever and interplanetary travel is as common as jumping on a plane. Although the plot is quite predictable, the movie has an awesome feel-good factor because well, the Earth has risen to defend us from evil. And the fact that the US President is a shown as a black man – which is a reality today. Awesome movie.

Gattaca (1997) IMDB Rating 7.8/10
Again underrated. The movie is set in a future where genetically designed babies are common and genes determine your standing in life. Vincent is a naturally born baby, not genetically enhanced and according to the geneticists, will not make it to 30. He works as a janitor for Gattaca Corp. , an Aerospace company and dreams of being an astronaut. An intense movie, it has lots of very interesting scientific and ethical and philosophical undercurrents. One of my favorite movies. But its not your casual Friday night reel. This movie will make you unsettled and you will go back to it again and again, days after you have seen it.

Next post: Matrix (1&2 only), Monty Python, Office Space, Pi


Mahendra said...

How would you compare Contact the book with the movie? I thought it was pretty well-made.

Gattaca is on my wish list!

karmickids said...

Babe you've got two of my faves up there. The Fifth Element and Gattaca....

DotThoughts said...

mahendra: haven't read the book... should prolly pick it up now :)

karmickids: mine too. awesome movies, both.

Mom Gone Mad said...

You had me at Contact - totally cerebral goosie film!

And then again at Fifth Element and Gattaca. I love both!

Woman, we could do a filmfest together;-)

Meluhhan said...

Four out of five, I'm getting better! And Contact reminds me of the afternoon I spent with Seth Shostak. They chain us to the basement in grad school , but let us out occasionally to meet interesting people. Didn't you just love grad school? :)

Yes, Dottie, do read the book! Carl Sagan's awesome!

Poppins said...

just as I was thinking Office Space, I saw it at the end of the post!

What about Minority Report? Hope that is on your list

DotThoughts said...

MGM: Geek film fest??? :D

Mel: Had read Intelligent life in Universe a very long time ago.
Was quite taken by it. you met shostak? very cool:) Oh BTW speaking of SETI, BigGeek discovered a "candidate" that they are reobserving at Arecibo :)

Poppins: Actually, no it isn't :( sorry. We thought it didn't quite make the geek cut because it deals more with ethical issues, but I love that movie. very interesting.

Munchkin said...

What about, "Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind"? That movie blew my mind.
(Double checks to see if this time she got the letter arrangement right :))

DotThoughts said...

Muchkin: I think it was a bit confusing :) Eternal sunshine..yes..that was on the list, then decided no.. same reason as minority report.. too touchy feely.. its a great movie though.

Meluhhan said...

Yeah, Shostak's witty, very quick on the uptake, and was super extra nice to a nobody grad student like me. It's quite easy to see how he got where he is. Re BigGeek, was this SETI@home? What do they look for? Non-random patterns embedded in the signal? Awesome. :)