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Quint has seen SERENITY, OLIVER TWIST and A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE!!!

Y'all know me. Know how I earn a livin'. Quint here... usually I don't double up (or triple up in this case) on reviews, but I've been so behind since my little secret jaunt to LA last week that it's just hit me that tomorrow all of these films come out and I need to get my large ass in gear and type away.

Let's start with the one that's most likely to get me death threats...

SERENITY

I haven't been shy about my disinterest in Joss Whedon's worlds and have taken quite a lot of shit about saying that publicly. I fully respect the fan base the man has. I like some strange shit passionately myself (whether it's Fred Dekker's '80s work as a screenwriter and director or any Christopher Walken performance or my unhealthy passion for JAWS), so I respect someone really geeking on something.

However, the hardcore Whedonites do scare me. Let me say that up front. Also know that you can be a Whedon fan and not be a Whedonite. You know the difference, I'm sure. I once made the mistake of comparing them with Scientologists and for that I apologize. That really is an unfair comparison not to mention it doesn't really fit. What fits more is a comparison between the hardcore of the hardcore, those that scream and cry and make anonymous threats because you don't lick at Whedon's heels to Fundamentalist Christians. Both have a mission to convert the non-believers, both get radically offended if you challenge their belief system and both just looove to push their beliefs on any and everybody.

Believe it or not, I'm actually going to talk about the movie now and despite what you might be thinking it's not an out and out negative review. SERENITY turned out better than I expected it be. Of course, I expected to hate the movie, so anything above Uwe Boll quality would have been a pleasant surprise.

I found I came to kinda like Nathan Fillion's character, the swaggering captain, Mal. He's a walking, talking cliche of a character who goes out of his way to be the anti-hero (always more hero than anti, of course), but I didn't find him unenjoyable. The rest of the crew I didn't really get to know or care about during the film, except for Alan Tudyk, who is immediately likable in anything he does.

The effects work was likewise better than I expected, but still planted firmly in the void between high budget TV and low budget studio movies. There are moments that look ripped out of SG1 (like a lot of the first chase involving the crew of the Serenity and the Reavers, a bunch of crazy people with shit on their faces who wear furs), moments looking ripped out of PHANTOM MENACE (that love interest lady's palace) and then a few really nice effects like the crew sneaking through Reaver space bit near the end of the film.

The lighting and camerawork is very reminiscent of TV work. Good TV work, granted, but it still doesn't feel theatrical whenever there aren't space ships or planets on the screen.

There are many deaths in the film that I'm asked to care about and I'm told if I sat down and watched all the FIREFLY episodes then I might give more of a shit, but since they don't make me feel that in the film that's a failure on the film's part. I'm happy that this is a film made for the fans, but it shouldn't be made exclusively for the fans.

Look at Wrath of Khan, a movie I see lots of people bringing up when talking about SERENITY. WRATH OF KHAN was my first real exposure to Star Trek. I hadn't seen the first movie, maybe I saw a couple episodes of the original series on TV, but the movie worked as a movie, not just as a continuation of the TV series. Sure, you could feel the history the crew had together, but the drama between the characters was constructed to tell the story of the film. And the storyline of WRATH OF KHAN was even a direct continuation from an episode of the television series, let's not forget that, yet it stood firmly on its own.

Spock's sacrifice in WRATH OF KHAN worked not only because of the history the character had with the fans of the show and first film, it worked because you could see Kirk's heart ripped out when he hears "Live long and prosper" through the glass, could hear their history and lost friendship in his voice when speaking at Spock's funeral. The emotion and implied history was on the screen in front of you, not playing in reruns back home on TV.

My big problem with the ways the deaths were handled in SERENITY can be placed mostly on the way the characters react to them. I'm thinking specifically about a major death towards the end of the film that just seems thrown in there for no reason other than to shock the audience.

SPOILERS


The death is that of Alan Tudyk's character, who is married to Zoe, another crew member. He has a good moment after a harsh landing that is interrupted by a Reaver spike shot through the hull of the ship. The characters, including his wife, are shocked and look at him for about 3 seconds before going, "We have to move!" The next scene you couldn't tell that one of their crew had died, let alone one of the characters' husband. She's just going through the motions, like it was shot on a completely different day and she wasn't told that her husband died 10 seconds previously in the story. I know that sounds a bit nit-picky, but it really stuck in my craw for some reason. I guess if the wife of a dead character doesn't seem to give a shit, why should I? There's also another character who dies after we see him for about 2 minutes. I'm told he was a crew member on the show, but he's little more than a cameo here... at least in his death scene we get some real emotion out of Fillion, so it didn't bug me as much.


END SPOILERS

It just felt to me that Whedon was counting on those watching to bring the baggage of the TV series with him, which is fine for the small percentage of the movie going population who know every episode, but will be a big flaw to those who don't know.

This whole movie just reaffirms my thoughts on Whedon. I don't think he's a bad writer. I think he has his moments, but on the whole he just doesn't do it for me. To me, he's just mediocre. I don't start wishing his projects ill will until some douchebag says that he's the savior of modern pop culture and that Buffy and Angel are the best TV has to offer and the best TV will EVER have to offer and fuck you if you dare say anything different. It's people like that that make me want to just write Whedon off entirely and not give him a chance.

There is one part of the film where I glimpsed what it must be like to be a true blue Browncoat. It's the beginning of the big space battle in the third act of the film where the Serenity surprises her enemies who think they have her dead to rights. It's a well paced scene and the only moment where I felt an emotion one way or the other about the main villain of the movie (Chiwetel Ejiofor). In that one, big reveal (you'll know it when you see it), I think I saw what the fans see for the whole of Firefly/Serenity. I wish I could feel that way about the whole thing.

Like I said at the beginning, I'm not trying to make fun of Whedon fans or put myself above them. Not every person who loves Whedon's work falls into the Whedonite category, just like not every Christian are the bible-thumpers asking for your money on late night TV. I fully admit that this isn't my thing. I don't think it's god awful, but it's not my thing. Those who love Firefly will clearly love SERENITY, those who don't might not. Big surprise, eh?

OLIVER TWIST

I'm a big fan of Roman Polanski's film work as well as the 1968 musical adaptation of Charles Dickens' book, OLIVER!. I must admit to having never seen David Lean's OLIVER TWIST, which I hear is a fantastic movie and one I will seek out very shortly.

So, that's how I entered the film this evening. Polanski's eye for lighting and angles as well as his ability to work with actors is in top form in the film. He unflinchingly makes Oliver's life a living hell for most of the movie and creates a world around him that is beautiful in its ugliness. The hypocrisy of the establishment is shown in full view (the fat cats getting angry at Oliver for asking for an extra cup of gruel, all while sitting around a table absolutely overloaded with food) and one gets the feeling that Polanski reveled in taking shots at the aristocrats.

But the real success of the film is the cast. This story's been told so many times that really the only thing left is to see talented people trying on these famous characters. If the acting had been anything less than extraordinary then the movie would have fallen right on its face. Luckily for us, we got some great work here.

Barney Clark as Oliver Twist: This kid's a real find. He says damn near nothing in the whole movie, acting mostly through his face and sad eyes. He's very minimal in his acting and yet says so much with his face. He's a cute kid and has turned in a real great performance. I expect big things from this lad in the future.

Ben Kingsley as Fagin: Ah, old Fagin. Ron Moody played in so damn well in the musical, but Kinsgley does just as good a job here. Unfortunately we don't get to see him sing and dance, but Kingsley all but disappears into this character. See, Ben... we know you're still great... You were fantastic in THE HOUSE OF SAND AND FOG, even if the movie was a big downer... Whatever your debt or bills look like you don't need to run to Uwe Boll or THUNDERBIRDS! Keep doing stuff like this!

Harry Eden as The Artful Dodger: The Artful Dodger is my favorite character in the story of Oliver Twist and Eden does a great job in capturing the playfulness of the Dodger. Eden is immediately likable and someone you wish you could have palled around with when you were a kid. He's smart, funny and talented... Eden has two scenes to shine in in this film. The first is a small scene where Fagin is showing Oliver how to pick a pocket. There's a moment where one of the other kids nicks Fagin's wallet and tosses it over his hunched form right into the Dodger's top hat just as Fagin spins toward the lad. With a stylized spin, the hat goes onto the Dodger's head before Fagin spins around again. There's something perfect about that little maneuver, done with a confidence and a smile, that totally sums up the Artful Dodger in one motion.

The second moment is at the end (spoilers here if you don't know the story). The Dodger realizes how he unwittingly aided in Bill Sykes murdering Nancy, someone the Dodger clearly liked. It was partially the Dodger's fear of Bill Sykes that made him rat on Nancy's plot to save Oliver and you can tell he's crushed when he finds out about her murder. When Bill Sykes shows up at their hiding place, the Dodger stands up to him, making it full well known that his fear of the man is over, even if it does mean his death. (end spoilers)

It's a great scene and Harry Eden is great in it. I still prefer Jack Wild's Artful Dodger from the musical, but I think that has a lot to do with us getting closure on his character in the '68 film, whereas here he has his big moment and then the story shifts permanently over to Oliver, never going back to the good old Dodger.

Jamie Foreman as Bill Sykes: Foreman does a good job with this classic literary (not to mention stage and film) villain, but every time he was on screen I couldn't help but think of Oliver Reed in the role. The way Oliver Reed played the character was so much more disturbing, with that trademarked Oliver Reed rage always boiling behind his eyes. However, Foreman does great work here, just different work. He plays it more lifelike, where you can actually see a little bit of what Nancy sees in him, what keeps her with him. His part in the climax of the film isn't as well done as in the '68 film as well, but I have to reiterate... Foreman gets mean, mean, mean in this movie and steps into the boots of Bill Sykes well.

On the whole, the film is a great adaptation done by a master filmmaker with a fantastic cast. The film felt a little over-long to me, but I couldn't tell you what I'd cut out. It's just a huge story.

A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE

I saw this one in LA when I was out there last week. It was open in one theater there and even though I paid $12.50 to see the movie New Line handed out what looked suspiciously like test screening forms before the movie and asked the audience to fill it out. Weird.

So, needless to say I'm a big Cronenberg fan... THE FLY, THE BROOD, DEAD ZONE, VIDEODROME and on and on... Love his stuff, so of course I was looking forward to HISTORY OF VIOLENCE.

Going in I had no idea what the hell the movie was apart from what I saw in the trailer and the clip they showed at Comic-Con (the diner scene that sets the whole bloody story into motion).

I was thrown a little bit at the beginning of the movie. There's a great one take shot that begins the story, introducing us to who we think will be the main villains of the movie, a couple of sleaze-bags who would never think twice about killing any living person for the change in their pocket. This I had no problem with. It was actually the introduction of the Stall family that struck an awkward chord with me.

The little girl (who can't really act, I have to say, but she plays cute little girl very well) wakes up screaming from a nightmare and one by one the family is introduced to the audience as they check on her. First it's the daddy, Viggo Mortensen, who comes in. "Baby, what's the matter?" Then it's the mommy, the beautiful Maria Bello, who enters the room. "Baby, what's the matter?" Then the older brother, Ashton Holmes, comes in, "Hey, what's the matter?"

This scene just felt awkward to me and was shot in a very traditional, uninteresting way. Just seemed like, "Hey, let's meet the family! Here's mom! Here's dad! Here's big brother!" you know? I felt that first pang of, "Oh, God... what if this movie is crappy?" I didn't want that, but I can't deny that it crossed my mind.

That wasn't helped much when we followed older brother to school and he has a run in with the cliche jock asshole. I'm used to characters in a Cronenberg film always being a little off the norm and far away from cliche, but here they were...

But there is a reason for this. Cronenberg clearly wanted to divide the film and the tone of the film into a few different segments. The big slash being the moment that violence is introduced with that awesome and extremely disturbing diner sequence you can see a bit in the trailer. The film after that moment feels radically different than anything that came before it and I love that he highlighted the difference so well. It made me forgive the awkward opening immediately as I saw there was purpose behind it, not a lapse of judgment.

I don't want to talk much about the plot because the less you know going into it the better. Does the title refer to a hidden past for Viggo's character? Or is it more about the innocent realizing how easy it is to use violence to solve problems and the domino effect that ensues? You'll have to go to the theater to find out.

Viggo Mortensen: Does some really great, understated work here. He's a great actor given some great material and aided by a great director.

Maria Bello: Is cute cute cute and has a really complicated role here. She runs the gauntlet of emotion and has to say much without actually saying a lot. I know I'm being vague, but you'll understand when you see the movie.

Ed Harris: I love Ed Harris. He's one of my favorite working actors. He's a lot of the reason I really love ENEMY AT THE GATES. Just deliciously evil in this movie.

William Hurt: Fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. Just know he's great and a real scene stealer and this is coming from someone who runs hot and cold on Hurt's work. He was my favorite character in the whole movie. Any more than that I can not tell you.

There's lots of great character work in the movie and I can't recommend it enough. Cronenberg doesn't fail us and proves he's still the master at making onscreen violence HURT. I've seen people do better gore in films, but he's always the best at making it hurt!

BONUS MINI-REVIEW : Anchor Bay's EVIL DEAD 2 "Book of the Dead Edition"

I wanted to also write a few words on that new EVIL DEAD 2 DVD that came out on Tuesday... The edition has so little new that I didn't think it warranted its own story, but in case you were curious:

The squishy rubber Book of the Dead looks cool, but the only thing that makes this DVD worth picking it up for the extra $10 or $15 it'll cost over just grabbing a previous edition is the HD transfer of the film. It's very clean and I could tell the difference even on my shitty little 27 inch TV. There's also a new documentary feature called BEHIND THE SCREAMS which didn't really tell anything new. So, only for the purists who don't have this must-own film in their DVD library yet or those crazy bastards who buy each EVIL DEAD edition Anchor Bay shoots out.

Well, there you have it. A threefer plus bonus (does that make it threeandahalfer?) for you squirts. I'm now extremely pooped and I have to dig up some stories to post before I can rest. Hope you enjoyed the reviews. I got lotsa goodies (including a few set visits) in the works, so keep your eyes on the site!

-Quint





Readers Talkback
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  • Sept. 30, 2005, 8:16 a.m. CST

    *burrp*

    by Flummage

    tee hee

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 8:19 a.m. CST

    I take it back Quint!

    by Flummage

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 8:21 a.m. CST

    I miss beeing called a Squirt.

    by Flummage

    Someone saying "ahoy", and meaning it, can actually add a suprising amount to your morning. *sigh*

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 8:28 a.m. CST

    Loving the Wrath of Khan praise.....

    by Andy Dufresne

    .....sometimes I think that movie gets forgotten as it wasn't a massive box office smash or anything. But it seems to have endured well.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 8:34 a.m. CST

    Sorry

    by Quint

    Just read Mori's review and it seems we doubled up on discussing our dislike of the hardcore Whedon fans. Sorry for the repetition and again, before the talkbacks go out of control, I don't lump just anybody into that "Asshole fanboy" camp. I respect Whedon's audience, but some of them really, really need to take a chill pill, yeah?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 8:40 a.m. CST

    My opinion of Serenity

    by Quint

    Is shaky-hand. I won't buy it on DVD, won't see it again in theaters... Might watch some of it on cable or something. I'm "meh" on the movie, which is a solid step up from disliking it, the opinion I expected to have going into the film. Sorry that wasn't more clear.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 8:59 a.m. CST

    More Browncoat stupidity

    by Razorback

    The ninny above doesn't even get that he just did exactly what people expect him to do, as a member of the Church of Whedon. Man, you people are so sad. Trekkers just became cool.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 9:08 a.m. CST

    "but it still doesn't feel theatrical whenever there aren&#3

    by performingmonkey

    I've thought all along that this would probably seem more like a TV movie than anything else, apart from a higher effects budget. And Whedon just seems to rip off every piece of characterization from other writers. I know there's been a lot of sci-fi over the years and a lot of cliched wisecracking or anti-hero characters etc. but Whedon just rips them anyway in a way that isn't original. People treat him like some kind of god when he went fucking AWOL on Buffy in seasons 6 & 7, with his fucking 7 finale stinking of shit anyway.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 9:22 a.m. CST

    Serenity - whedonites??

    by Noeland

    I just saw my first episode of Firefly on sci-fi a few days back, along with a look at the upcoming film. I watched Buffy and Angel occasionally. But Quint, the real problem I think you are having with Whedon as a writer is that you are taking his work seriously. Everything he writes is tonque in cheek, and not really meant to be taken so seriously. The only work of his I have ever read that I thought was meant to be serious was his work on Alien Resurrection, which they butched as badly as my spelling! I've seen two episodes of the series, and I feel I'm ready to watch the film. I really felt like the sets looked like Star Trek Deep Space Nine sets, personally.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 9:48 a.m. CST

    On the death you mentioned, Quint

    by AeroB

    (Spoilers ahead obviously) You're spot on about the fact that Wash's death seemed planted for shock value. I didn't think it was necessary at all personally, and I can definitely see how those who didn't watch the series would be a bit unaffected by it. One point on which I have to object, though, is in the characters' reaction; the character's wife (Gina Torres) had some wonderful moments after her husband's death that had something Shatner's overwrought performance in Star Trek II lacked... subtlety. You can see that she's a soldier, she's doing her job, but the look in her eyes, the artificial set of her face--something just died inside her. Doesn't fix the writing mistake of Wash's sudden death, but for the record I think you're completely wrong about the reaction of the characters (namely the one that counts in that situation).

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 9:49 a.m. CST

    I used to hope this film would bomb, but now I don't. I wan

    by FluffyUnbound

    I want Firefly to be a franchise. [Unless all the character deaths I've heard about as spoilers make continuing the franchise impossible, and Whedon has brought real closure to his story.] I also want Trek to come back. I want these things because I just realized that the reason franchise venom has reached new heights lately is because we have three separate sci-fi franchises that each have dramatically different tones. This creates a situation where we have Firefly fans saying to BSG fans, "OUR show is entertaining and clever and fun, not depressing and dour like your show," and we have BSG fans saying to Trek and Firefly fans, "OUR show is serious and literary and philosophical, unlike your shows, one of which is a cardboard cutout of a utopia, and one of which is empty snark," and we have Trek fans saying, "OUR show has a glorious role in sci-fi and tv history, and inspires people to have hope for the future, unlike your shows, one of which is depressing and misanthropic, and one of which is just a western in space." It's the perfect fanboy storm, and these basic arguments can be infinitely elaborated and extended. It's hard to think of a better setup for satisfying flaming and counter-flaming, now that the Matrix is dead.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 10:02 a.m. CST

    strange family reunion

    by stvnhthr

    You apologize for a degrading characterizations of Scientology and then rip on the mainstream Christian church? Doesn

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 10:24 a.m. CST

    Wow, Quint, We See Eye-to-Eye on Whedon

    by www.valiens.com

    Damn. All this time I've been a closeted not-fan of Whedon. Not a hter, mind you, but just...eh. One of my roommates swears by all things holy that "Buffy" is god's gift to television. Better, even, than "X-Files." "Buffy" had some snappy one-liners and is interesting, but it's got that stuffy made-for-tv feel to it that "Next Generation" and all the subsequent "Trek" shows suffered. When I think excellent B-grade sci fi, I think Whedon. "Serenity" looks like "Supernova" to me. Not terrible but...well...kinda stuffy. His work, thus far, just doesn't feel like cinematic genius the way "X-Files" and even "Lost" do. Take another look at the 2-part opener for the first season of "Lost." It's as good as any decent action movie you'd see in the theater. "Serenity" is in the theater. Should it be?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 10:36 a.m. CST

    Hey Quint? You're a douchebag.

    by KeSoze3

    Talk about the movie on its own merits, 90% of that was a rant about Whedonites. If you've watched Firefly and don't care for it, great -- then just talk about why you don't care for the movie. If you haven't watched Firely then again, great -- just talk about why you don't care for the movie. I've watched a lot of entertainment media in my time and find that Whedon does a pretty good job of building and continuing both characters and long story arcs, but if you don't like his style, fine. While I appreciate your opinion, your job is to review movies and unless you're going to also spontaneously become funny (Vern) would also appreciate you NOT taking a lesson from Harry and instead focusing on the reviewing.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 10:44 a.m. CST

    I empathize

    by dale_cooper

    ...with Quint and Mori's fear of the Browncoats and Whedonites. And that's hard to say, because I love love love "Firefly," am going to see "Serenity" as soon as I get off work today, and watched pretty much the whole run of "Buffy" as well as the later seasons of "Angel." I *like* Whedon's work, is what I'm saying, but I think he's gone from being underrated to overrated, and the cult surrounding him is out of control. He's not God, contrary to the popular internet expression you see here and there. His shows have been a unique and cool blend of shallow snark and soapy melodrama layered on top of genre TV, but they've all had flaws out the yin yang, too. It's just that "Firefly" had fewer of those flaws than usual. ...Anyway I hope the movie does well and generates a couple sequels at least, but I could do with fewer psychotic conversations with people who self-identify as Browncoats and have the "Serenity" logo tattooed on their arm. Let us not willfully go the way of "Trekkies," eh? Do we really need to see a "Browncoats" movie with, say, Alan Tudyk interviewing some nut reporting for jury duty dressed up as Mal?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 10:58 a.m. CST

    Throwaway deaths...

    by Ashen

    I am a big Buffy fan and was with the series right from the start, so I really like and am grateful for Whedon's work, but it is true that he and his writing have some flaws. Those senseless deaths coutn among those. Whedon just seems to have short-circuit deep inside his mind that keeps telling him that he has to kill off some more characters before the end. Preferably in the last five minutes, thus creating some very, very cheap "instant" drama. It is a shame, really.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:03 a.m. CST

    Whether you like or dislike Whedon or his fanbase, you have to a

    by Voice O. Reason

    ...that review was really half-ass. No insight at all.

  • I remember when the early test audiences said that the big death at the end wasn't very satisfying and the crew's reactions felt off, like they didn't really care. I thought that had to be a mistake they'd correct during post production or something, only now it's apparently still there!? I don't get Joss when it comes to killing off characters. I know he wants it to hurt...but it often feels like it's a power trip for him, as if he's saying "see, I can make you cry, bitches!" This sounds like it could be more of that. I'm really sorry he feels the need to do that, but even more sorry he doesn't succeed at making it sting for new comers.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:08 a.m. CST

    SPOILER!!!

    by MovieWhore

    Thanks asshole ... maybe next time you could put a line or two between your spoiler warning and the actual spoiler ... I was in mid click to close the window when I saw the person who died in the first line of the spoiler ... Awesome ...

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:10 a.m. CST

    Thanks, MovieWhore

    by KeSoze3

    I did the same thing but convinced myself that the actor's name I saw in the first line wasn't the person who actually did the dying -- until I read your post.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:12 a.m. CST

    Sorry KeSoze3

    by MovieWhore

    I guees Im not as good as deluding myself as you when he says ... the big death ... SPOILER .. name .. hmmm maybe is was somebody else? ... Of course if dickhead had left a little room neither of us would be having this converstaion.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:13 a.m. CST

    I've seen worse reviews

    by BrunoTheDog

    I guess, Quint, that you've never met a rabid Scientologist before? There was one on the Today show a few weeks back...I think his name was...Tom Cruise? BTW, in this one set of reviews there is a disparaging remark about Christians and praise for a child molestor. Crazy!

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:17 a.m. CST

    "A TV show has too much of made for TV feel?"

    by www.valiens.com

    Well if you're gonna tell me you see no difference in cinematic quality between "Buffy" and "X-File" or "Lost" then I can't help you. I'm guessing most people understand the difference in cinematic quality between them: the directing, the production value, the cinematography, the scripts, etc. Yeah, they're all TV shows but that doesn't make them equals.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:18 a.m. CST

    Nathan Fillion character looks like Justin Bateman. Are they rel

    by Orionsangels

    How come no one ever mentions this?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:21 a.m. CST

    80%+ on RottenTomatoes

    by War_Tourist

    Quite simply: Owned.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:23 a.m. CST

    Television show quality

    by BrunoTheDog

    You can definitely see a difference in the quality of some shows. Compare, for example, Deep Space Nine to Andromeda. DS9 is clearly a much more expensive, much higher quality production than Andromeda. I do, however, think that Buffy suffered more from atmospheric limitations than budgetary ones. I never personally liked the show, but I did see a couple of episodes and the atmosphere gave it that 'afternoon serial' sort of feel.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:23 a.m. CST

    What is this "Whedon" again?

    by SalvatoreGravano

    I only heard this name (?) in connection with that bag of contaminated urine "Alien Resurrection", and in there, I heard that this "Whedon", whatever or whoever it is, wanted to add flying alien vampires to it, to actually make it even worse. Is the "Whedon" a project, a living being, a company, a program?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:24 a.m. CST

    nice warning dickface..!!

    by XXXDROID

    i too couldn't avoid the spoiler since it was written right below the word "spoiler".. you sir SUCK!!!! thanks very much for ruining that for me. you're a real pro.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:28 a.m. CST

    "except for Alan Tudyk, who is immediately likeable in everythin

    by Ribbons

    Totally agreed. Tudyk needs more love.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:32 a.m. CST

    Inappropriate comments

    by mistrmindqed

    Again AICN demonstrates it's inappropriate comments or slights against anyone with a belief in God. 1st it was Assawyrm's graphic of Christ jackhammerin' on the cross. Then we have Quinty with the slight to Christianity. Imagine what the outrage would be if Roger Ebert dropped the bomb on how right it was to Hitler to implement the "Final Solution" during a review of Charlie And The Chocolate Factory. AICN drops to new lows almost daily.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:39 a.m. CST

    Re: anchorite, mistrmindqed

    by MemBirdman

    I get what you're saying. I don't disagree with you and I am a Fundamentalist Christian (something Quint and I talked about a couple years ago). Your talkbacks merely give him the chance to go, "See what I mean?" We're supposed to expect his viewpoint. So, with respect, don't act like it's the first time EVAR you've heard it.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:39 a.m. CST

    Greatn

    by mistrmindqed

    Me too. I'm a Christian and I see the persecuted everywhere I turn. Last place I thought I'd see it would be a in stupid movie review.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:40 a.m. CST

    Glad to hear you loved(?) 'Oliver Twist,' Quint

    by Ribbons

    Liked a lot in any case. It's a movie that I've really wanted to look forward to but sort of turned me off to it with its promotional stuff. Well, consider me excited once more.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:48 a.m. CST

    MemBirdMan

    by mistrmindqed

    It's not the first time I've heard it. Believe me I have thicker skin than that. However, when I read a movie review, spoiler, what have you, I could do without the slight to a persons beliefs, be it Christian, Muslim, Jewish...what have you. I'm there for the review, not someone's narrow minded views of spirituality.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:50 a.m. CST

    BrunoTheDog - YES!!! Exactly!!!

    by www.valiens.com

    Hey, and to the ever-persecuted Christians: Don't let it get to ya. Atheists have to rag on you because they think they have it all figured out. Hey! Kinda like you do! Forming a conclusion in any direction about an unknowable is delusional. But dressing it up and giving it a personality and getting offended when someone else calls you on it is just plain silly. Personally I'm rooting for Zeus: the dude's ripe for a comeback.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:54 a.m. CST

    Quint, for the record...

    by Blue_Demon

    I don't push my faith on other people. Yes, we do believe we should tell the world about salvation. No, I don't get offended when somebody questions my beliefs ( as opposed to insulting them ) because if they question, I assume they want an answer and it gives me an opportunity to tell them what I believe. If you consider this "pushing," well then okay. We're clear on this one.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:54 a.m. CST

    With approx 2.1 billion Christians on the face of the earth

    by mistrmindqed

    Valiens. I'm not sure, but I think it's not a good idea to insult your readers when writing a review. Tends to fall into the category of "bad style".

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:56 a.m. CST

    Slight and right

    by mistrmindqed

    For the record, I don't push my beliefs on anyone, however there is a big difference between questioning my beliefs and insulting them. The rag of a review didn't even approach the question.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, noon CST

    mis...I get it

    by MemBirdman

    I didn't figure you hadn't heard it before. It's just not exactly a secret how Quint and Harry feel about our beliefs. I can't speak for Mori so much, which is a credit to him because I don't know anything about what he believes. And I don't want to know, either. So just as Q will chalk it up to another Christian being all uppity, I'll just chalk his reaction up to another person who doesn't get it taking a shot just because he has the forum to do so.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:02 p.m. CST

    In Quint's Defense

    by BrunoTheDog

    He didn't say anything about Christian beliefs, he was directly talking about Christians. Whether that's better or worse I'll leave it to you to decide.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:04 p.m. CST

    "a mission to convert the non-believers"

    by Immortal_Fish

    Oh, fuck!! That reminds me. What am I doing here reading this drivel?! I have to go knock over a few emo fans and Amway reps to convert some more sheep. Later!

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:05 p.m. CST

    I openly dislike Christians

    by KeSoze3

    I do. Why can't people just follow a logical moral code without there having to be some superior being telling them to do it? Can't we all do unto others... just because?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:08 p.m. CST

    Do you openly dislike Jews? Muslims? Scientologists?

    by BrunoTheDog

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:09 p.m. CST

    Everytthing That The Last Four Star Wars Did Wrong

    by The Outlander

    Serenity Did Right.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:15 p.m. CST

    KeSoze

    by MemBirdman

    Your statement implies that we've decided this. You also imply the logical moral code is there without a superior being. There is a God and he is the measuring stick for the moral code you speak of. Whether you agree with that or not, that's between you and God. Not you and I.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:21 p.m. CST

    Good question KeSoze3

    by Blue_Demon

    I think we cannot follow our own logical moral code because humans tend to have a wide interpretation of good and evil. Some cultures believe it is morally right to have a father kill a daughter because she has chosen her own husband or had premarital sex. Or chopping off the hand of a thief. Morals have to come from a higher being or they are simply "feelings." "I "feel" it is wrong to kill a murderer." "I "feel" it is okay to abort this child because he/she will inconveniece me for 9 months in utero and 18 years ex utero." Feelings fluctuate. Morals shouldn't.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:30 p.m. CST

    "Forming a conclusion about the unknowable"?

    by FluffyUnbound

    Well, unless Jesus Christ actually was the son of God, unless he rose from the dead, and unless the content passed down to us as his teachings is accurate, being a Christian is being a fool. And if you consider the above three things "unknowable", you are applying a false standard of skepticism and proof. Given the likelihood of those three things being false, "forming a conclusion" that this particular "unknowable" is true and "forming a conclusion" that this particular unknowable is false can't exactly be described as equally delusional. We can never really "know" that George Washington wasn't a space alien. But that doesn't mean that the people who form a conclusion in the negative aren't doing a better job of analysis than the people who form a conclusion in the positive. And, by the way, once again the religious pluralism of our political system has led certain people to falsely associate disapproval of a particular religion with disapproval of a particular race. The two are not comparable. No one chooses their race, and therefore a person's race cannot be said to be a reflection of their character. People do choose their religion, and thus it is perfectly appropriate to judge a person based on the choice that they make. Politically I wouldn't want to stop you from choosing a particular faith, but personally I have no choice but to think that you're all out of your gourds. And you should think the same way, if you examine your beliefs in a consistent way. But can we get back to Whedon bashing please?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:32 p.m. CST

    judging a movie by its fans

    by oisin5199

    is just adolescent high school shit. "I can't like "xxx" because people I don't like are into it." Waah! Have some balls and think for yourself - judge a film on its own merits, or at least admit to your blatant bias.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:43 p.m. CST

    I can only hope you're joking

    by War_Tourist

    NOBODY who matters in movies reads this bullshit. These tools could bray all they want, one way or another, and it will have ABSOLUTELY ZERO impact on Serenity. Don't get deluded your opinions mean anything except to your handful of "e-friends".

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:49 p.m. CST

    'People do choose their religion'

    by McBane

    Hardly FluffyUnbound. Most people's religion is the religion they first come into contact with that 'suits' their personality profile or the dominant religion in their family, culture or race.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 12:58 p.m. CST

    That is true, McBane.

    by FluffyUnbound

    Perhaps it would be better to say that people can choose to be religious, or not, and can choose to remain in the "family" religion they were born in, or not. But still, every time you get up on Sunday morning and go to church, or every time you positively witness for or affirm your belief in your religion by some statement, you are "choosing" your religion, all over again. So it might be wrong to think less of someone because they were baptized as a Catholic, for example [since they were born into that, and participated in the initiation rituals of the sect when they were too young to have a choice], but it would NOT be wrong to think less of them when, as an adult, they voluntarily continue participating in Catholic ritual and affirming Catholic belief and doctrine. Beliefs are thoughts, after all, and affirming belief in action, and it really isn't useful to claim that we can't judge our fellow men on the basis of their thoughts and actions. That's the perfect thing to judge them on, both as a practical matter, and in terms of basic fairness. Can we get back to the Whedon fellating now?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:01 p.m. CST

    FluffyUnbound - you're right and wrong at the same time

    by www.valiens.com

    I didn't mean to imply that all facts have equal opposite positions. We're talking about all things god-related and to that end, there is IN FACT nothing god-related. There's only belief. I WAS implying that some beliefs are wiser than others. There is a heirarchy in spiritual thought, from fundamentalism to interpretation to atheism to mysticism to the state of being that comes with giving it all up. Of course not believing in the holy magic of Jesus or Shinto or a chair is more logical than believing. Nevertheless, concluding that there is not "god" "truth" or whatever word you want to use has the exact same effect as concluding that there is: it allows you to rest in an untenable conclusion instead of remaining open to the question. Whether or not there is anything spiritual that isn't a product of human thought beyond that question can only reveal itself when we stop creating the answer. Plus, "Firefly" is boring. The end.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:15 p.m. CST

    "A lot of box office could have been lost due to these bad revie

    by dale_cooper

    Yo Timmy - this site has pimped the HELL out of "Serenity." I think they've paid their dues to the movie and then some. One last minute kinda-negative review and one last minute I-don't-like-the-fans-but-I-liked-the-movie review isn't going to put one tiny dent in what AICN has done for the movie already. There's no merit in this argument. There's also no merit in your argument that the site is somehow trafficking in bad faith with its "biased reviews." Every review on here is biased, usually horribly so, and most of the time they don't even pretend otherwise. The talkbacks are worse, being almost exclusively fanboy-wars. If anybody comes here for unbiased impressions of movies, they're idiots.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:18 p.m. CST

    Actually

    by BrunoTheDog

    The reviews here have convinced me to wait to rent the DVD as opposed to seeing it in the theater, which I had planned to do this weekend when I had no idea what it was about. Now I'm going to see A History of Violence instead.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:19 p.m. CST

    Anyone who watches movies on a 4x3 27" tv

    by zekmoe

    in this day of 16x9 HD sets is a wicked feeder. Get a job, and watch it like it's intended. I can't believe people still watch tapes, watch 4x3 tubes, and claim to be fans of the medium. If you don't care about it, that's cool, but if you work in the industry, nothing more than a full home theater setup should be used to judge anything. And yes, the pic and sound do matter in the experience. If they didn't they'd just be books.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:21 p.m. CST

    Okay then - how 'bout fuck all you religious hacks and brown

    by WeedyMcSmokey

    I look at all major religions; see how they decide on the treatment of women - and very easily discard them to the wastebasket of fine idiocy. Ah, Wheddon is not even that gifted as a writer. His strength is that he makes you feel smart in a pop culture kind of fashion - like you're in on the joke and none of this is serious. Brings hope to confused morons everywhere. It's writing as slacker art. I really like Firefly. I find it amusing and the characters fun to be with for a hour. Seeing this movie sounds like a good time, but if the browncoats show up in legion than the powerful stench of B.O. will likely drive me from the theatre. That or the wheezing - remember to bring your inhalers!

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:24 p.m. CST

    "The reviews here have convinced me to wait to rent the DVD as o

    by dale_cooper

    To give you an idea what I'm talking about, when I first read the advance reviews of "Serenity" (months ago now), I had never seen "Firefly" and knew nothing about the movie they were making. Since then, mostly due to the exposure on this site, I have borrowed the DVDs of "Firefly" from a friend; subsequently bought my own set and loaned it to two other friends, who eventually bought their own sets as well; and tonight me, those two friends, and all three of our significant others are going to see "Serenity." Now tell me again how much damage Ain't it Cool has done to Whedon's cause.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:31 p.m. CST

    Being closed to the concept of God is like...

    by seppukudkurosawa

    OK, bare with me on this one, this is the analogy I always give to those who say, "You're just as closed to the possibility of God as I am closed to the possiblity of there not being a God". OK, say that four thousand years ago we started throwing our dead ones into the ocean, whereby they'd sink to the bottom and come in contact with the QUICKSAND, our saviour, who would erode away all their flesh and bone and leave their chi, their essence, which would sink right through to the other side of the world whereby it would assume the form of a new foetus and start the cycle again. We should all pray to our lord QUICKSAND. Sounds quite ridiculous right? Well after four thousand years of indoctrination it sure as hell wont. In my opinion, if we stepped back for one second, this God concept would sound pretty barmy too. So, that being said, "Are you closed to the concept of QUICKSAND, our saviour, being true?"

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:36 p.m. CST

    greatn - the problem is twofold:

    by www.valiens.com

    1.) If you're just choosing willy-nilly to believe that then you're basically admitting it isn't true; you just prefer to live in fantasy land, which is fine. But if you really truly believe that that's historically accurate--there's this god who creates earth and then man sins and along comes Jesus--well that's just plain BS and I don't think it's disrespectful to call it what it is. In fact, I'd call that an intervention. 2.) The other problem is that when you wholeheartedly believe an untruth like that you still unconsciously know it's a lie. But that lie becomes you so you have to defend it. You have to convert others to your point of view because that's the only way you can continue to appear right. To be wrong means you're living a lie and to be right means you know what life is about, that there's this afterlife, and anyone who just believes what you believe will be saved. Awesome. Bring on the Inquisition. Bring on holy wars. Bring on Intelligent Design. Who cares about global warming when the Rapture is coming, right? I doubt anyone has a problem with Christian ideals or any religion's core moral teachings. But saying one needs to believe in something specific to hold those ideals lest we burn in hell or sit in prison is where the fantasy turns dark and involves the rest of us. And since that particular movement is back in play in 200friggen5, the hostility toward this junk is understandable.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:44 p.m. CST

    UMMM....DUH

    by stavx

    Viggo Mortensen: Does some really great, understated work here. He's a great actor given some great material and aided by a great director. that's real deep.....phew This is why I keep coming to this stinkhole?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:51 p.m. CST

    i dont actually listen to alot of

    by jonastheangel

    what this site says on sci fi projects when it comes to their reviews. i dont read harry's reviews at all anymore. after the way farscape was just thrown to the dogs by aicn because it had puppets, and they love the new bsg which i cant stand, its so freaking boring, i just dont concern myself with reviews of projects i already know about. its like star wars and star wars fans, doesnt matter how crappy the movie may be to you, but as long as i like it, i dont care. i still like quint and mori's reviews, i agree more often with them then not. but as far as serenity goes, i saw the 3rd test screening, so i already know i like it.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 1:59 p.m. CST

    "You can't earn heaven."

    by www.valiens.com

    Thank God. After my lifetime as an asshole, I can't wait to say "I believe" and cut to the front of the line. So the moral to the story is: Be as good or as bad as you want. Without this magic ticket, ya ain't gettin' in. Persecution or no, that's ridiculous.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 2:05 p.m. CST

    Valiens, don't worry

    by seppukudkurosawa

    Apparently all you've gotta do is say, "I believe in Jesus" with your mouth to be redeemed.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 2:08 p.m. CST

    To get into Heaven? I'm willing to do a lot more with my mou

    by www.valiens.com

    Think there's room for a lucky 13th disciple?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 2:12 p.m. CST

    Apparently Chris Rock's already booked that ticket.

    by seppukudkurosawa

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 2:50 p.m. CST

    You read me a bit too literally, greatn

    by Ban This User

    Obviuosly, most Christians don't believe that they have the power to condemn people to hell, but they believe that people will be so condemned, and that it is right for them to be. I find that morally reprehensible. Clearly, we differ. nor was I suggesting that most or all Christians do they otherl isted things. I put them forward as examples of immoral things that poeple of various faiths do, and arguing that they sohludn't be excused merely because they have a religious basis. As to the adult converts -- well, I suppose Fluffy is right about them.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 2:59 p.m. CST

    I think chances are, if you're an atheist you don't imag

    by seppukudkurosawa

    You just dont exist at all. Hence most people's need for heaven and hell. Even the most horrendous torture would still be better than being completely quashed out of existence.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 3:03 p.m. CST

    Again, greatn, I wasn't talking about your specific beliefs

    by Ban This User

    I don't know them. I was just offering examples of immoral things that religious people do, and arguing that they shouldn't be excuse merely because they are religiously based. Is this concept really so difficult? As to your specific beliefs about hell, you misapprehend the views of non-believers (or at least of this non-believer). I don't believe that after I die I will exist in some kind of "void", I don't believe I will exist at all. But I find the whole concept that people will be treated differently after they die on the basis of their religious beliefs to be morally objectionable. Evidently you don't. That's why the make the ice cream in 31 flavors. By the way, I don't believe that a moral distnction can be drawn between a religion "in theory" and the way in which it is practiced. To my mind, a religion is its practices.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 3:23 p.m. CST

    I remember reading the Bible many years ago just to be able to i

    by seppukudkurosawa

    and I distinctly remember reading a part where it said only ninety thousand people will ever go to heaven or something...

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 3:32 p.m. CST

    quint likes some "strange shit" -- you know, Jaws!

    by eraser_x

    Wow, quint, you are, like, way "out there", man. Jaws is so Avant-Garde!! ;-)

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 3:37 p.m. CST

    It was a long time ago so I can't remember, but if what you&

    by seppukudkurosawa

    Though it's doubtful. Revelations was always my favourite part of the Book by the way. Nice imagery.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 3:41 p.m. CST

    Enough bitching about the fans

    by Theta

    This isn't addressed to Quint but rather to the Talkbackers in general. We listened to you piss yourselves over "Episode I" and watched as a bunch of people who are frankly mostly old enough to know better Balkanize this place for years over a movie of dubious cinematic merit. Harry, we had to put up with you writing thousands of words about the brilliance of Scooby-Doo. Yeah, we're fanatical, but frankly, the Browncoats are nothing next to the Warsies. So, please, have a hearty dose of "shut the fuck up", stop using the fans as an excuse to hate the movie, and go see it. It's a good SF movie and deserves your buck. Or failing that, go see "A History of Violence."

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 4:23 p.m. CST

    "Why the hell did Transporter 2 not get ONE lousy review by a st

    by dale_cooper

    That's a good question. It should have gotten MANY lousy reviews, to reflect the large degree to which it sucked.

  • Honestly... how would that work? Even Roger Ebert, one of America's most loved critics gives positive reviews to crappy movies because he's a boob hound. At least the AICN guys let you know about their bias and WHY they are bias towards a movie. It lets you step into their head a little bit and get where they are coming from. Otherwise, why read reviews at all if you want an unbiased opinion. You can be just as biased AGAINST a movie because you don't like the genre as much as you CAN be biased FOR a movie because you love the actor/director/cinematographer/composer's previous work. Get what I'm saying? So shouting OH THIS REVIEW IS SO BIASED... is stating a bit of the obvious. But don't kid yourself into thinking that ANY critic's review is any more or less biased that your own opinions of certain movies. The point is, try to find a critic that most thinks like you do, and trust that opinion. Or perhaps I should say, find a critic that is just as biased as you are on the same level and stick with that critic; I think exposing your purposes and reasons for being biased helps a reader do just that. It

  • most of your review was spent bashing the fanbase, next time concentrate on the actual film itself. I agree that the fanbase is a rabid one, but I think your generalizing the whole fanbase because of a couple nuts.(Particularly the many faces of Tonay) I wager 95% of Whedon's audience are just passionate about his work and is undeserving of your "fear".

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 5:13 p.m. CST

    Matt Damon.

    by tango fett

    I'm a somewhat conservative Christian, and it kinda surprises me that fellow Christians on this forum are surprised at peeps talking shit about us, I mean Jesus said we'd get this kinda shit, big whoopie. As for Whedon, I watched a few episodes of Firefly not too long ago and it was alright, nothing ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE but pretty cool I guess. So uh, color me a lite whedonite. Out

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 5:21 p.m. CST

    Looks like none of the writers for this site liked it.

    by jrbarker

    At least not Harry, Mori or Quint. I feel pretty much exactly the way they do. I just walked out of the theater and felt pretty "meh" about the whole thing. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't great either, for all the same reasons mentioned in the review.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 5:38 p.m. CST

    I know you get your share of flack, but the first half of that p

    by seppukudkurosawa

    I'm pretty sure you're a pop culture machine that randomly blurts out references to Jane Seymour and defunct 70's cartoons. As far as your Viggo and Whedon obsession...well at least you're consistent.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 6:36 p.m. CST

    this thread went to hell...

    by johnnyangelheart

    just saw Serenity. liked it. wish they had been given a bigger budget for special effects though.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 6:43 p.m. CST

    Thank you Quint!

    by AnnoyYou

    You've said *exactly* what I feel about Whedon product and his acolytes (who I think ARE like Scientologists). He had a good run for five years on Buffy (and I was a big fan during those first five years) and Angel was a decent show, but anyone who doesn't think Serenity is just a piss-poor retread of Alien Resurrection is fooling themselves. Whedon may consider himself a lofty "auteur" (and I can't believe he actually had the balls to refer to himself as one -- hey, Joss, Truffaut, Kubrick and Allen are auteurs -- you're just a glorified TV writer like your dad and granddad before you), but this film is just serious wanking. What surprises me is that so many people want to lend him a hand in the wank.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 6:53 p.m. CST

    I just now realized that I hate parody trolls. It's so weak

    by FluffyUnbound

    Don't you realize that when you play his game you're just making Whedon stronger, Roy?

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 7:29 p.m. CST

    Watched the Firefly-a-thon on Sci-fi...

    by Neighbor Jim

    Found it about as entertaining as SG1. How is it post-Farscape and with the new Galactica running strong, Firefly is even recognized as legit scifi for this particular era in television? Space: Above and Beyond looked like it had a bigger budget. Of course there are ways of offset a lack of production $$$ by you know, having interesting characters and plots which worked for Babylon 5 pretty well. That show actually got through its initial arc, only who knows what Firefly's "arc" was going to be. I'm probably not cut out to like Whedon's masterpieces, but my brother, he loves Buffy/Angel/Firefly. He's also a 20 year old, anxiety-stricken, anti-social virgin who refuses to eat the unfrosted edges of his Pop-Tarts. True story.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 7:43 p.m. CST

    WHEDONITES!

    by AttackingClone

    I wish so called Whedonites would stop getting picked on. I'm probably one of em. I love Buffy, Angel, Firefly and saw Serenity last night, loved it. There's no difference between whats going on with Joss now and what happened with Peter Jackson over the last few years. Maybe there's just a few more haters. We love Joss' work, not the man. We just want other people to like it too, for no other reason than to see it be successful so we can get more of Joss' stuff on the big screen. It's as simple as that

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 7:47 p.m. CST

    Hey, who wants to hear about my personal religious beliefs?

    by kintar0

    Nobody?!? Then shut the fuck about yours! Keep that shit to yourself. Nobody cares and it means nothing.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 7:52 p.m. CST

    HD Sets are not expensive

    by zekmoe

    and if you think $2000 is alot of cash in the year 2005, then I feel sorry for you. I agree, you have more important things to think about than TV. If by your standards 2000 is close to a months salary, then around here you'd be barely above the poverty line. For us, it's less than a weeks' and we are no better than lower middle class finacially. I don't know where you can survive on 2000 a month.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 8:01 p.m. CST

    Yes Zekmoe, but some of us suffer from "You've gotta be kidd

    by FluffyUnbound

    It strikes when something costs a dollar amount that we, in our youth, decided was excessive, and having made that decision, can't take it back. I see an HD TV priced in the $2495 range and I say, "You've gotta be kidding me," and I refuse to buy it, because as far as I am concerned no TV should cost more than $599. Having the money makes no difference. I also have this reaction to 1) hockey tickets [which should cost no more than $20] 2) real estate and 3) auto repairs. On the bright side, all computers available now look cheap to me.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 8:25 p.m. CST

    Serenity U.K. release

    by DuncanDisorderly

    The U.K. release date for Serenity is 7th October 2005. This also happens to be my Birthday so I say "Thank you, Joss!", best damned Birthday present I could've wished for and I can't wait, 6 days and counting!!!

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 8:44 p.m. CST

    "You apologize for a degrading characterizations of Scientology

    by AristidesTheJust

    Fool.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 9:15 p.m. CST

    The hardcore Whedonites are just as fanatical as the Star Wars p

    by Thirteen 13

    And the prequel apologists get nowhere near the criticism that the hardcore Whedonites do. I mean look at the prequel apologists. These idiots camp out for weeks in front of a theater (when you can easily buy advance tickets online over the internet), dress up like Luke Skywalker and Amidala, and come out with the warm glowing fuzzies after watching 110 minutes worth of poo poo jokes and Jar Jar. And you all say the the hardcore Whedonites are weird. LOL!!!!!

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 9:39 p.m. CST

    Here's a whacky idea...

    by Voice O. Reason

    Judge the movie on its indivdual merits and not how much you liked Whedon's past work, how much Whedon's fans annoy you, or how much people who talk shit on Whedon annoy you. Who cares? That has nothing to do with whether the movie is any good or not. And I'm not so personally insecure that I need everyone on a Talkback to agree with me in order to feel good about myself.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 9:55 p.m. CST

    Bravo, Voice O. Reason!

    by DuncanDisorderly

    Well said, Sir!

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 10:28 p.m. CST

    SERENITY ROCKED!!!!

    by Hate_Speech

    OMG! That was intense, and awesome. Best sci-fi action flick in years! Finally, something out of Hollywood worth paying to see! that doesn't happen often enough. I'm actually gonna go back this weekend and see it again. AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:10 p.m. CST

    I went to one of the screenings of Serenity in May and was kind

    by Barry Egan

    I enjoy Whedon's work a lot, but do I really want to be lumped in with the rest of these people? There were some scary folks at the screening.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:15 p.m. CST

    greatn & mistrmindqed

    by Sir Loin

    I'm with ya, guys...it's hip to make fun of Christians but having a thick skin helps. I laugh out loud at the generalities about us cluelessly slung about, and it has indeed gotten worse on this site in particular (been visiting here since 1997). What was funnier was the success of THE PASSION last year, they just couldn't believe it and wrote it off as a "snuff film." BAHAHA

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:17 p.m. CST

    oh yeah, the movie

    by Sir Loin

    Saw SERENITY tonight and had a great time despite being pretty much a Firefly n00b. Hope they make more films with these characters.

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:35 p.m. CST

    Quint, Whedon, Polanski and Cronenberg

    by Ace Hunter

    That's a "Dinner for Five" I'd like to see. (Favs being the fifth, of course)

  • Sept. 30, 2005, 11:44 p.m. CST

    Christian Fundamentalists

    by Roger Thornhill

    Are too easy to make fun of but most of the ones I know are normal people who just happen to be devoutly religious. Yeah one of them told my gf that she'd burn in hell because she didn't believe in Jesus, but by and large I think they get a bad rap.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 1:11 a.m. CST

    A++++

    by MovieWhore

    Alright!! ... saw Serenity tonight and it surpassed my expectations. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience even though a certain someone spoiled a major plot point for me earlier today. I plan on seeing Viggo tomorrow but had to see this one out of the gate or I would go crazy. Don't beleive the haters ... the entire theater was laughing and cheering thoughout the whole movie ... YOU WILL LOVE IT !!

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 3:40 a.m. CST

    Thoughts From An Agnostic From Hell...

    by Meremoth

    Well, in the Bible it says that you have to repent and be baptized to be saved. Confession and beleif won't do it. Don't beleive me. OK, well even the demons believe in Jesus. Are they going to heaven. Trust me on this one. Ive been hearing biblical rhetoric for 18 years (forced into going to church by parentals). If you don't believe thats your choice. I don't what to believe other than dogmatic crazy relegious people and crazy dogmatic ready to kill me cuz the only thing I like about Buffy is Sarah Michelle Gellar's hot ass (Sp?) Whedonites piss me off. And I am going to see Serenity based on the fact that it looks like a good B Sci-Fi movie and Im a sucker for Sci Fi. Thats right I said B now suck it.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 3:43 a.m. CST

    Although in The Interest of Staying Alive...

    by Meremoth

    Serenity is propably not a B-Movie. It seems well acted and Ive never seen Firefly. I also want this to do well as I want more Sci Fi films. Please don't burn my house down. Please...

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 4 a.m. CST

    Poor little Timmy.

    by Meremoth

    Do you want me to leave my room in a pretty Brown Coat? I said I was planning on seeing it later. Maybe Im not the biggest idiot in here as you would have known the answer to your question through a more carefull (yet still broad) examination of my post. Still, thanks for getting angered onj acount of my post. It makes me feel special :)

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 4:01 a.m. CST

    The question being

    by Meremoth

    "do you ever leave your room"

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 4:17 a.m. CST

    so quint gets a different color? Is that better than "First"?

    by logofdoom

    I used to think the the "first" guys were pathetic.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 4:25 a.m. CST

    oh yeah... I like firefly. Haven't seen serenity yet.

    by logofdoom

    what else can I say? I haven't seen the movie.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 6:19 a.m. CST

    I'd like to see the pits some of you call homes

    by zekmoe

    Because around here, the average new house is $400,000, and the average car is $30,000 ish(Money Magazine). I have one child and one on the way, and don't see how I could possibly live on 2000 a month. I am hardly a conspicuous comsumer. But I'm not a Po-Boy who works at Walmart either. It's called making a decent living in this day and age.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 8:28 a.m. CST

    As A Big Fan Of Buffy And Angel......

    by Real Deal

    I'm surprised that I never have been able to warm up to Firefly. I've tried several times and have always been bored to tears. I don't know what it is maybe the cowboys in space stuff. Also let me say I've always liked the space opera. It's just that FF doesn't grab me. Wheadon's other work BTVS and Angel were fine examples of good TV. However I will note what Quint discribes about the emotions of the characters reacting ( or not ) to a death mirrors the way I felt about Anya's death in the Buffy finale. Xander didn't hardly shead a tear for someone he was going to marry at one time. Maybe this something Wheadon just can't get right?

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 10:12 a.m. CST

    Zoe's reaction (SPOILERS) and the Big Damn Movie

    by oisin5199

    I saw the movie last night, and yes, I'm a Firefly fan, not technically a Browncoat, and I loved it. All you people bitching it's a made for tv movie are on crack. It works as a MOVIE. There was nothing amateurish about the special effects, in fact they looked better than most of the recent Star Wars trilogy because it wasn't 100% green screen. And the Whedon haters who bitch about the dialogue can kiss my ass, because the snark, the Western-isms and the Chinese swearing are all significantly downplayed for a mainstream audience (just enough to keep people who appreciate unique dialogue happy - my favorite had to be Kaylee's "Twixt my nethers" line. LOL!). I agree (with people who disagree with Quint) that Zoe's reaction to Wash' death is totally there. Just like her, we don't get a moment to contemplate it until they're outside the ship and setting up for the Reavers attack. You can see the exact moment that it hits Zoe and it's completely in character. At first I thought it was shock value, but after I thought it about it, it reminded me of Anya's death on Buffy, in which someone who doesn't belong in a violence situation will inevitably die because it's WAR (a definite theme in a movie). And there's no time to mourn. And it makes sense as far as who it would hit the hardest. Far more realistic than the melodrama of Spock's death. The one thing that bugged me as a Firefly fan was the bit of retcon about how much Simon actually knew about River's condition, but that wouldn't matter to anyone who hadn't seen the show. And the Operative was one of the most interesting villains I've seen in a long time - I'd say how he ends up bucks most sci-fi/adventure cliches. I'm not here to preach the Browncoat gospel, but this movie is definitely worth it for anyone remotely interested in good scifi and whose mind is not clouded by Whedonhate.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 10:56 a.m. CST

    Not really, damnthetorpedoes...

    by FluffyUnbound

    It is precisely the "positive" things Whedonites say about his creations that puts me off them. He's a damn creative and talented guy, but his personal tastes seem to run to archness and snark, which people have chosen to call "wit". The problem is that some time ago I had my fill of archness and snark. There is certainly more than enough of it available in the market. [If you took the snark and the porn out of our society, the sudden reduction in background noise would probably made us all scream in agony from the sudden silence, a la the end of "The Machine Stops".] I just don't have any need to seek that product out anymore. I avoid snark DT's by reading TWoP and occasionally watching the Gilmore Girls, and with that little bit of maintenance, I'm good. Nowadays I find myself more interested in material that takes itself seriously - preferably too seriously. If Owen Gleiberman would find something tendentious, I'm there. I don't want blithe chatter or lovable rogues. All of this being the case, the better Whedon does at being Whedon, the less I will want to go. Frankly oisin's last post makes me more likely to see it than positive reviews on RT would - if Joss has dialed it down a notch, that appeals to me more than Joss being Joss and executing perfectly.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 12:14 p.m. CST

    Zoe

    by Quin the Eskimo

    did exactly what a soldier needs to do TO SURVIVE. Not everybody is like that asshole from Jarhead.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 3:39 p.m. CST

    re: The question of the existance of God

    by Jeff Dee

    No, in debate the burden of proof normally falls on the side making the affirmative claim. On the question of God's existence, that means the ones who say he does exist bear that burden. Of course you're right, it's unfair to pick on Christianity - all supernatural beliefs are equally silly.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 7:38 p.m. CST

    anchorite, once again, you're full of it.

    by oisin5199

    so hackneyed and juvenile that serious scholarly studies have been undertaken and published on his work? Many people take his work seriously and are fully functioning adults. Even the critics like it and people like you still have to diss it and act like you're just so above it. Just say it's not for you instead of pulling some bullshit superiority kick. Anyway, it's not meant to be genius, but a fun space adventure with more heart and humor than most in the genre.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 8:01 p.m. CST

    A History of Violence

    by BrunoTheDog

    WTF was so awesome about that movie? I just saw it this afternoon...it was an interesting film, but certainly wasn't in-depth enough to be a character piece, and the bits of ultra-violence were so out-of-place that it tore me out of the movie everytime. The ending was weak in my opinion too. No build-up leading to a non-ending. This was more of a premise than a story, and while the concept was interesting, it wasn't worth the ticket price.

  • Oct. 1, 2005, 10:38 p.m. CST

    Problems with the Church of Whedon points

    by Razorback

    First, it is "A History of Violence" that had the highest per screen average, not Serenity. Second, if critical acclaim validates Joss Whedon/Firefly/Serenity, then I suppose the Browncoats who have been slamming Lucas and the Star Wars prequels will all admit that Revenge of the Sith validates Lucas and the prequels. If not, then it doesn't work the other way either.

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 12:16 a.m. CST

    community colleges? I don't think so.

    by oisin5199

    Let's see - one of the first (of many ) anthologies on Buffy, "Fighting the Forces" - came out in 2002, while the show was still on, had contributors from University of Pennsylvania, Northwestern University, University of Chicago, Yale University, Stanford University, North Carolina University, as well as several London Universities and the University of Sydney. Should I go on? Hardly community colleges. Since then, the list of scholarly monographs and anthologies on all things Buffy/Angel/Firefly has increased steadily and are still being published, as well as conferences, university courses, etc. Will Buffy Studies last forever? Probably not. Is it Shakespeare? Of course not. But many people who appreciate Shakespeare also appreciate Joss. And Joss certainly appreciates Shakespeare. And when an author creates a pop culture icon, his work is worth studying and will be for some time, as long as the history of pop culture is important. Asshole.

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 1:35 a.m. CST

    A barely B grade movie that should have gone directly to DVD

    by Jerry_inMadtown

    SPOILERs I thought it was B- grade and should have gone straight to DVD. I guess I thought it was slow almost to the point of being boring and its attempt at adventure was flat and lackluster - same goes for all the jokes and the "Hee Haw" language/dialect. The crew had a history? a "connection?" I couldn't tell -maybe I was yawning. And the supposed-to-be meaningful deaths/burials at the end meant nothing to me - and most of the audience I saw it with. Maybe I missed something not being on the up and up with Firefly, etc.? I am a big Sci-Fi fan and love even Sci-Fi crap - but you couldn't pay me to sit through this movie again. And to compare it to The Wrath of Kahn is blasphemy. My 2 cents

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 1:45 a.m. CST

    Serenity

    by Magnethead

    OK first off. I'm ot a fanboy. yeah i know i come to this site, but its because i like hearing about movies before they come out. And i've seen only about five minutes of an episode of Buffy. And purposely didn't watch the show because the buffy fans annoyed me. I didn't see any of firefly. and at first glance this movie looked like a bad sci fi channel movie. Well I went to see it anyway. It was pretty damned cool actually. I think I will pick up the series now. But i'm still not watching buffy dammit.

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 2 a.m. CST

    Meh? Wow thats funny...

    by ripper t. jones

    ...thats what I usually think of your reviews.

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 7:45 a.m. CST

    Anchorite, the primary distinction one could draw would be one o

    by FluffyUnbound

    The scientific world view currently cannot explain the origin of the universe [and it may never do so, for the simple reason that it would require us to explain existence in terms of nonexistence, and the entire point of science is to understand that which exists, and not that which does not], but it is certainly attempting to do so, using what would seem to be pretty straightforwardly the best method to do so - looking for evidence where we can find it, and using critical inference where we cannot. And the scientific world view is, because of its process, flexible - any evidence that comes up to contradict a given scientific picture of the world, if proven, is simply subsumed into a new, revised scientific picture of the world; science isn't about picking one idea in the year 800 BC and sticking with that idea no matter what the future evidence. Religion has neither of these process advantages, as its history makes abundantly clear. Religion is based on "revealed" truth, and the thing about revealed truth is that it can't afford to be wrong in the smallest particular without being completely and utterly debunked. Since the traditions of the main religions rely on the claim that their founders received their information directly from the deity by inspiration, absolutely no part of that information can be false, or the claim is exploded. This is why religions have always fought so hard against science - they have been [properly] concerned that science would uncover something that would demonstrate that some element of their founding documents was false. It is a testimony to the credulity of the public that science [in almost too many fields to name - geology, biology, astronomy, history, archaeology, philology, etc.] has done precisely this, many times, but people persist in thinking that they can "adapt" their religious thinking to the new situation. Actually, it may precisely be the prevalence of the scientific method nowadays that leads people to think that they can do that in the first place. A scientist says, "I may have been wrong yesterday, but I'm tweaking my theory to try to be right today." That makes religious people think they can say, "Our religions were wrong yesterday, but we have corrected the excesses of the past today," or "Our religions were wrong yesterday, but all that wrong stuff in the Old Testament was just metaphor." Sorry, but revealed truth doesn't work that way. If it was wrong yesterday, it is wrong forever. All it really has on its side is the sanctity of inherited tradition, and if the tradition is exposed as false, it doesn't even have that. By the way, if you ask a scientist, "How did the universe begin?" he can credibly answer, "I don't know yet, but I'm trying to find out," because that is the nature of his process and method. But if you ask the religious, "Well, if God made the world, who made God?" and they have no answer, or attempt to avoid the question by saying, "No one made God, he is eternal," they're copping out. Neither side presents an answer, but they are still dissimilar. You could say that they are like two men facing a long walk: the scientist starts walking, even though he may never get there; the religious person does not start walking, because "Moses was down that way a long time ago and he already wrote down what's down there in this book I have here, so I don't need to make the effort." And if anything he sees ahead, on the stretch of road that is visible from his stationary position, contradicts what Moses said, the religious person deals with that difficulty by turning around and looking the other way.

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 11 a.m. CST

    I swear, some people are so weak. Are you really so swayed by o

    by Mista Mann

    I don't understand why so many people don't care about Firefly because of it's fans. Or hate it. Or almost ignore it. Are you really that weak to be affected like that? Can a group of annoying fans make you really hate what they love? That is just sad. I hate most of the super political left-wing nuts that listen to some of the punk and rock music that I love. But that doesn't make me stop listening to their music. I don't suddenly start finding all the faults I can in the songs. Hell, I'm in love with songs that have lyrics completely counter to my beliefs. And sometimes I'll feel bad, but most of the time I sing along, loud as I can. Because I love the music. You know, the goddamned focal point? My point is, you love something you love. Not love something... so long as it doesn't have outside forces ruining it for you. Ignore those forces. It's not hard. The funny thing is, if Firefly was just this generally, calmly loved show by a a few people, I think a lot of these people that don't like it so much would probably be trying to point out its brilliance to the rest of us.

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 11:52 a.m. CST

    We all know Whedon's problems

    by plkrtn

    He can't write for beans. His obsession with lesbianism, which runs through Buffy, Angel and Firefly showing his sensationalist WB attitude to writing. Lets not even start on Alien Resurrection. The difference between Whedonites and Star Wars freaks, is that Star Wars freaks are willing to criticise Lucas when he makes something really poor, Whedonites believe that talentless hack can do no wrong.

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 12:46 p.m. CST

    Not seeing it. The Whedonites made sure of that.

    by ZeroCorpse

    Yes. I'm a shallow fuck who is NOT seeing Serenity because Whedon's hardcore fans made it such a distasteful notion that I can't possibly consider going into the theater or giving Joss my $10 for his TV soap opera movie. And no- That's not sarcarm. You Whedonites actually DROVE AWAY the rest of us. You now have Serenity all to yourselves, which is just what you wanted, isn't it?

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 2:59 p.m. CST

    Well, its official...Serenity has TANKED!

    by jrbarker

    Take a look at the numbers for this weekend.

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 6:03 p.m. CST

    Its official: Whedon has made a critically acclaimed film

    by Whedon

    that will make Universal a nice little profit once it is released on DVD.

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 6:33 p.m. CST

    Per screen average means nothing

    by Bass Ackwards

    Per screen average is something taken into consideration when a film is released in limited release and they're trying to determine how wide to take it, when a film is released wide, as Serenity was, per screen average doesn't mean jack, the film pretty much as wide as its gonna get, all their money is in and they want totals. But just so we're clear, yes, it did better than Flightplan, per screen, in Flightplan's second week of release. But its per screen average for a film in its first week is still weak.

  • Oct. 2, 2005, 8:14 p.m. CST

    Let me summarize this talkback for everyone...

    by Voice O. Reason

    "I didn't actually see this movie, but I hate the fans of the guy who made it, so it must suck."

  • Funny, because while that was a good scene, it wasn't at all why I like the series. The two biggest things I loved about the series -- the humor and the character development -- were the two biggest things lacking from the movie.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 12:01 a.m. CST

    Joss gets kicked in the balls again.

    by TodayzSpecial

    He doesn't get credit for Toy Story. He's blamed for that horrible Alien Ressurection script. all his shows get cancelled. Yet, fans love him. I love him. kiss me, my sweet. Joss should just make movies in his garage and sell them on the internet.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 12:56 a.m. CST

    Crazy fans do have an impact

    by Mafu

    I hear other talkbackers saying moviegoers should ignore what hardcore fans say or do, and make up their own minds about a film -- in this case, "Serenity" -- after seeing it. I'm sorry, but the real world doesn't work that way. Not for me and not for most people. I saw "Serenity" last Friday, and I enjoyed it, but a few overly knowledgeable college students sitting a few rows behind me intermittently geeked out during the film, ruining it for me. With all the "Serentity" buildup over the summer, all the Whedon love flowing like an unstoppable river, I was trying to hold back the sense of overkill I felt. So when I endured more Whedon fellation in the theater when I was truly hoping for silence, I remember thinking, "Jesus fucking Christ, you losers. Shut the fuck up. No one cares how much you know about Mal or River. Stop ruining it for everybody." After the showing, I realized I didn't -- and don't -- want anyone to group me with the Browncoats. I'm sure most of them are solid, mindful folks whose company I might otherwise enjoy, but the extremist faction of the Whedon fan base kills it for me in a staggeringly big way. After seeing "Serenity" with those assholes three rows back -- in addition to all other over-Whedonizing I've seen on this site and others -- I couldn't (and haven't) recommend the film to any of my friends, and I'm not going to see it again. Crazy fans do have an effect. The "Firefly" DVD sales were great, but the honeymoon's over for me. Sorry, Joss. I'm an Alliance man now.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 4:39 a.m. CST

    Mafu...

    by SnowMann

    That's like saying I don't like trekkies, so I'm a romulan now.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 8:26 a.m. CST

    That's right, SnowMann

    by Mafu

    Dead on with your analysis.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 11:06 a.m. CST

    Gotta give a guy credit

    by CrichtonAstronut

    when thrown not only space opera and western style. But pay visual and conceptual homage to both Lord of the Rings and 28 Days Later. I may be alone in this but when I saw those Reaver ships I was thinking if the Orcs from Peter Jackson movies could build spaceships this is what they'd look like. As far as the both visual conceptual nod to 28 Days Later. Let me just say scary empty planet with a big secret.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 11:56 a.m. CST

    ChrictonAstronaut....

    by torpor_haze

    just the thing i was thinking..the beauty shot of the place where Inara was staying reminded me of LOTR too

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 12:24 p.m. CST

    Anchorite, the problem isn't the material itself, the proble

    by FluffyUnbound

    We're talking about religion and science as two competing methods for securing knowledge about the world. The scientific world view holds that one gains knowledge about the world by examining it, by forming theories about the phenomena you observe during your examination, and then attempting to devise ways of testing those hypotheses by making further observations or experiments. The religious world view holds that, for some things at least, that method is not a valid way to acquire knowledge, and that "true" knowledge is obtained through spiritual revelation. This spiritual revelation is not to be obtained empirically, but either through contemplation of one's interior life [as in many Eastern religions], by direct communication with a deity or his representative [as in Islam, Mormonism, etc.], or by the reading of "inspired" communications [such as the Gospels, which are not held to be dictated directly by any member of the Trinity, but to be the work of church members "inspired" to exact truth by the Holy Spirit.] Were it not for this distinction in method, there would not be any difference between science and religion for us to talk about. And here's the problem with this method: as soon as you admit that any part of the information you gained by it is untrue, you have to be prepared to explain how we are going to determine which remaining parts are true and which parts aren't. If you say, "Some parts of it are legend and some parts are true," that means that ANY part of it might be legend, and we need a method to determine which parts actually are. If we decide that the part of the Bible that talks about Adam and Eve is a metaphor, there is no way to not conclude that it's possible that whole bit about Christ rising from the dead on the third day is a metaphor, too. Or that the existence of a deity in the book to begin with is a metaphor. So what method do we use to figure out if a given section is a metaphor or not? We can't use revelation again, because they used revelation the first time and got something that, by your own statement, was at least partly false. If we try instead to critically examine the Bible as a document, and say, "Well, this part about the sun stopping in the sky is obviously a metaphor, because that would not have been possible, and it would exist in other historical records if it had in fact happened - but the rest of it is true," then what we have done is apply the method of science to the material that we initially told ourselves was religious. Doing so constitutes an admission that the method of revealed truth was wrong all along. And you can't unring that bell. Once the bell is rung you have to walk away from the method itself, because it doesn't contain a self-correcting mechanism like science does.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 12:30 p.m. CST

    OK, so which is more faithful to its source: Serenity or "The Pe

    by scrumdiddly

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 12:38 p.m. CST

    torpur_haze

    by CrichtonAstronut

    I hadn't thought of Inara's place but your right, there is a bit of Rivendell there.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 1:02 p.m. CST

    PK Wars

    by CrichtonAstronut

    Hard to say. I think they are both pretty consistent with characterization and dialogue. Serenity did well following up on the main plot with the Alliance and River. And it even picked up from Inara having left as she was planning at the end of the series. Ultimately though, I think PK Wars benegfitted from longer mini-series format so that it could include more of the supporting character's reltionships. Like D'Argo and Jothee, D'Argo and Chiana, even Scorpius and Sikozu. In Serenity's case Wash and Zoe's conflicts presented in the series could not be addressed in the movie format. And I think Whedon did right not to address them given the format. It would have been distrating and would have been hard to resolve by the end. It had the right focus for a film. So if I absolutely had to choose I'd say PKWars is a little closer to source. But that's Serenity made the changes neccesary for it's own transition to big screen film and is probably more accecible to new viewers.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 1:58 p.m. CST

    Pk wars vs Serenity

    by oisin5199

    Finally, someone wants to discuss the actual movie and not the box office, Whedon, or the fans. Let's see. Apples and oranges, imo. PK wars was a miniseries on the same network as the series. Could have been a four part story arc that ended the series nicely. Serenity, by necessity, had to depart quite a bit from the source material to be a stand-alone movie. Now whether you believe this worked or not is another question. The first thing I noticed is how everyone seems to have visited a hair stylist while they were on the outer edges of the 'verse. The ship was filmed differently, with lower lighting and harsher angles (Serenity was not quite as homey as in the series - intentionally so, I would venture). Mal was much harsher than on the series (the story was that Fox had insisted he be "lighter" on the series) and Simon was more of a badass (and even a bit of retcon on his backstory, which I was a bit bothered by) and Kaylee was certainly not as happy-go-lucky, but the tensions were much higher in the film, especially with Reavers being such a huge part of the plot - everyone's on edge. And Anchorite, I'm sorry - you're just flat out wrong. Serenity's dialogue was SO much more believable and human than anything in ROTS, which was either overwrought melodrama or elevated pseudo-Greek tragedy. I certainly don't agree that the special effects were bad - again this looked better than ROTS, which was all green screen. And [SPOILER] people didn't care that Wash died? WTF? Were you expecting weeping and wailing, like Amidala? Zoe's reaction was spot-on, brilliant and moving. And they were in the midst of battle. At first, I thought the death was cheap in its shock, but then I began to see how it would resonate for the characters in the battle scene and then in the final scenes. I will grant that Whedon could do what he does best in a series format when he can take his time in unfolding consequences, connections and character development. But it still worked and I can't wait for the sequel. Oh yes, like Book says, I believe in something! It will happen. As a final note, this post was not about bashing ROTS - I enjoyed that movie too, but on a totally different level. But people whining about derivative-ness, need to shut the hell up.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 2:58 p.m. CST

    History of Violence is magnificent....

    by The True Priapic

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 2:59 p.m. CST

    ...and mark my words...

    by The True Priapic

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 3 p.m. CST

    ...put your money on Maria Bellow for an Oscar nom/win...

    by The True Priapic

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 4:22 p.m. CST

    Happily, brobdingnag, I am right.

    by Jeff Dee

    http://www.geocities.com/phineasbg/kirklogic.html Scroll down to Fallacies of Distraction, number 3, Shifting the Burden of Proof. It says: "As a final example, in most cases the burden of proof rests on those who claim something exists (such as Bigfoot, psychic powers, universals, and sense data)." It also says, "In many cases, settling this issue can be a matter of significant debate." So don't feel bad that you were mistaken about this. But don't take it lying down when believers try to shift the burden of proof onto you, either. THEY say they know there's a god. Okay, then it is their job to explain how they can know that.

  • Oct. 3, 2005, 4:42 p.m. CST

    Oh any by the way, brobdingnag...

    by Jeff Dee

    I don't know which of your fellow atheists you were talking about, but *I* do not "hate" Christians. I just think their beliefs are silly, and I'm not shy about explaining why. Many Christians, by contrast, are not shy about saying that folks like you and me deserve to be TORTURED FOREVER. You're right, some atheists go over the line into hatred - and that's bad. But even worse hatred is *taught* by certain brands of Christianity.

  • Oct. 4, 2005, 1:24 a.m. CST

    Fred Dekker made like three movies

    by graycove

  • Oct. 4, 2005, 3:07 p.m. CST

    You compared this to STAR TREK??

    by Noeland

    By the time Star Trek 2 came out, Spock was a household name. The show was iconic. Killing off Spokc was BIG, it was like killing off Kirk. People are going to care when you off an icon even if they don't know anything about him. There is nothing iconic about Firefly or Serenity, they can't even be compared.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 12:58 a.m. CST

    Get over it.

    by AnnoyYou

    Serenity tanked. It will tank next weekend. End of story.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 2:35 a.m. CST

    I guess we'd agree to disagree

    by elab49

    about Zoe's reaction - because the last thing she was doing was forgetting her husband was dead. SHe basically wanted to die to. I thought that was pretty clear - and is usual these days becuase just as I agree with Quint about the extreme fans I also see a lot who are extremely anti- - for no really clear reason (I think many may be bitter SW fans who hate to see anything else doing well when their series went to shit). I was disappointed with Oliver Twist though. I mean, it looked gorgeous, was very faithful - and I thought Foreman's performance was superb. But it could have been made by anyone - I know Polanski said he wanted to make a film his kids could see, but he has done this by removing everything that says it is Polanski and made it a very anonymous piece of directing. WHich can be contrasted with the VERY accessible Cronenberg - that still remains, clearly, a Cronenberg film.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 3:08 a.m. CST

    I swear, some people are so weak. Are you really so swayed by ot

    by Magnethead

    Funny, I would think being weak would be to buy into something just because a bunch of other people told me I should. Any decision I made (to like or dislike) I made on my own. So... no, Some people aren't weak, Some are just reluctant to jump on the bandwagon. Especially when they think a bunch of kooks might be riding with them.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 3:07 p.m. CST

    Thanks for trying to alienate and insult a lot of people with an

    by Daredevil

    You might try looking up the definitions of the words "fundamentalist" and "Christian" before you make an idiotic statement like that. Just in case you have a hard time with that, I'll do it for you. Fundamentalism: "a movement or attitude stressing strict and literal adherence to a set of basic principles", and Christian: "Professing belief in Jesus as Christ or following the religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus. Manifesting the qualities or spirit of Jesus; Christlike." And the actual definition of fundamentalist Christian is also easy to find: "a movement in 20th century Protestantism emphasizing the literally interpreted Bible as fundamental to Christian life and teaching". Sounds SOOO bad to me, 'cause Jesus was such a terrible guy. The only thing you got right is that anyone who follows Jesus is supposed to do their best to spread the faith. Not in any crazy inquisition, like you seem to think of it. That's totally the opposite of what Jesus taught. So anyone who is out there PUSHING their beliefs on anyone certainly can't be called a fundamentalist Christian. They obviously haven't read their Bible closely enough. And I don't know any fundamentalist Christian clergyman who doesn't preach that we should question things, invite debate, and listen to opposing viewpoints. Because those are the best times to win converts, not when you go out and beat someone over the head with how religious you are. Again, this is just following Jesus' example. And He never asked anyone to send Him money on late night TV. Now, on to the actual point of your article, I really liked Firefly and I really liked Serenity. And not because I'm a Whedonite (by your definition) because I didn't like either Buffy or Angel...at all. (!!!SPOILERS FROM HERE TO THE END OF MY POST!!!) First off, the setting for Mal's final fight scene was way too obviously built specifically to have a dangerous place to fight. It was like the choppers and smashers hallway from Galaxy Quest. And I would have to agree with you that they needed to do more with the characters who die. Shepherd Book (Ron Glass)needed at least one more scene to solidify that he was a close friend of the crew. And seeing as the pilot Wash (Alan Tudyk) was with the main cast most of the movie, they should have played his part up more, given him a bigger role. Aside from some cool piloting, and a couple funny lines (less than he had in the series), he was mostly in the background, which is unfortunate. As for his wife's reaction to his death, I think that's pretty natural considering her character. She's a hard woman who's been through war. She had a quick emotional reaction at first, but when she realized they didn't have time to grieve, she put those emotions away...or more accurately, transformed them into anger and wrath. She was fighting those Reavers harder than she needed to because they just killed her husband. The fact that she was getting out of ranks and messing up the group tactics shows you that she wasn't herself. Non-fans wouldn't notice, but the fact that she was wearing a light-colored dress in the funeral scene is a HUGE change, since she never wore anything but leather in the series. Personally, I was very surprised that they killed him off. Between being the main "anti-violence" voice on the crew, one of the best sources of comedy, and being the ship's pilot, I figured he was safe. When I first heard that a couple characters die, I thought his wife, the doctor, River, and the preacher much more likely to be killed off. And I was sweating profusely that they would kill off my favorite character, Jayne, who I had to admit was THE most likely to be killed. Also, in the funeral scene, I didn't like the fact that Mr. Universe's tombstone was put in there along with the two cast regulars, considering that he was a brand new character, I don't see why he warranted being placed with them. But, I guess that's one of the things I have liked about Firefly, not going with all the conventions and cliches of storytelling.