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Star Wars, Star Trek and other Sci-Fi

edwest

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No one has greater "control" either. Not when 100 million plus is on the line
Amen to that. Still, some movies have turned out better than others, suggesting that some variation in decision and product quality is possible within the stringent limits of the movie production process while maintaining profitability.

I know what that process is. Generally, there are those with money but no creativity, making, or attempting to make, creative decisions. For movies and TV shows, before actor selection and before the first scene is shot, it's all laid out in black and white in a series of storyboards. Imagine a black and white comic book. Producers look these over and say things like, "How much is that scene going to cost me?" Some are willing to take a risk, most are not. That's all there is to it.

Before release, a movie is prescreened to a small audience of 'average' moviegoers. Afterwards, they tell whoever is in charge what they like and don't like. Then fans hear about reshoots and a delay. In the end, even the producers yield to that. But that still doesn't explain failures like the last Terminator movie. None of the trailers impressed me, and I have a creative background. Why James Cameron attached his name to this... The marketing... Nothing made me feel like this was going to be any good.
 

uk 75

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Another old man post from someone who grew up with 60s TV and film.Sci Fi. Anything after 1970 was a let down.
The Apollo.programme had done its job. Star Trek had been and gone. UFO became beige Space 1999 and short skirts were reserved for Eurovision and Buck Rogers.
Of course some brilliant sci fi gets done but those magical years have never been topped
 

edwest

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Well, there were the first three Star Wars movies. Then Alien - let's add lots of blood and gore, and profanity. Remember the first Alien creature toy? Parents didn't like it. If I was a kid, would I play with that? No, just no. Then lots of implied sex and profanity Terminator and Terminator 2. Can anyone imagine a Matrix playset? You are Neo in your enclosure, plugged in to suck out your life energy, awakened and flushed out... No, not going to buy that playset either...
 

chimeric oncogene

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Then lots of implied sex and profanity Terminator and Terminator 2. Can anyone imagine a Matrix playset? You are Neo in your enclosure, plugged in to suck out your life energy, awakened and flushed out... No, not going to buy that playset either..
I hear toy endoskeletons sold well though. Surely toy hunter killers would have been adequate merchandise.

I bought the heck out of the Star Wars Prequel toys. Lego made a small fortune off my parents partnering with Star Wars.

The Matrixes too dark too spindly machines were never going to fly. Too complicated to build, too hard to play with, too spiky and tentacled.

But kids these days arent buying toys anymore. Lego sets are getting dumbed down several years across the board.
 

edwest

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There was an attempt to kick kids out of the toy and comic book market in the 1970s. The sexually obsessed followed by the dark and gritty. I can hardly find a game without the word dark in the title. And what about cool original names for things? There are way too many unpronounceable things out there. How are retailers going to order? How will parents pronounce that strange word? Oh yes, we're livng in the "future" now and it all has to change.

Quality is quality, junk is junk. I get emails from an outlet trying to sell an overstuffed market at 70 to even 90% off. Take toys away from kids by closing outlets and putting collector magazines online. And then producing high end -- mostly not affordable -- toys, or statues that collect dust.

Nothing complicated about the Matrix, nothing. But mom or dad hearing "There is no spoon" from their boy? No, not going to go over with the average person.
 

Orionblamblam

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Consider James Cameron's Avatar. I hate hate hate the demonization of economic growth and human progress, rampant technophobia, fetishization of nature, blind ideologically-driven idealism, and disregard for human life and cumulative human happiness that the vile movie tries to brainwash people with, attitudes which have led to untold suffering through lack of support of policies that promote economic growth and which have driven forward the intolerant anti-practical ideological movements of the 2010s, especially on the left.

I love the movie all the same - a masterpiece of worldbuilding with beautiful tech and settings. If we dumped on everything we disagreed with, we'd all end up bitter and lack things to like and people to be friends with. Not everyone thinks like oneself, and that must be accepted.

"Avatar" ended about half an hour too early. After the last of the humans board the shuttles and zip off back into space, the orbiting starship fires up its antimatter engines and nukes the site from orbit, burning the rainforest down to bedrock for a radius of a hundred klicks or so. A week later the humans return and mine the area in peace and prosperity.

And come on, Orion, you know as well as I do that ten-year-old boys dig pretty girls as much as anyone else. Making action girls the main characters in cartoons pays off in so many ways, and has broad appeal to male and female audiences of all ages. To each their own.
See, this is a big part of the problem. "Strong female characters" are *not* the problem. Male fans, even the nerdliest among us, do *not* have an issue with badass chicks. Witness the popularity of Princess Leia. Ellen Ripley. Sarah Connor. Commander Ivanova. Delenn. Lyta Alexander. Kira Nerys. Major Colonel Doctor Sam Carter. Imperator Furiosa. Gamora. Wonder Woman. Uhura. Dana Scully. Captain Janeway, Destroyer of Worlds. Zoe Washburn. What a whole lot of people *do* have a problem with is *badly* *written* strong female characters, who tend to be of the "I don't need no man" variety... and especially when men dislike said characters, they're accused of being sexist. The response to Ghostbusters and Charlie's Angels being two clear examples. Or the failure of the latest "Little Women" to attract a male audience being blamed on "toxic masculinity" and such rubbish.

As I said, I was never a fan of "He-Man" or "She-Ra," but I understand why those who were are miffed by the new show. It's not because the main character is a Strong Female Character... the original one apparently was. The thing is, the original one was a *woman." The new one is an androgynous weirdo, apparently.
 

Orionblamblam

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I hear toy endoskeletons sold well though. Surely toy hunter killers would have been adequate merchandise.
I woulda bought *the* *hell* out of flying HKs and tank HKs back in the day... along with USCM Dropships and APCs. But they weren't available. A problem with all of them, though... no "opponents." X-wing toys probably sold well because there were toy TIE fighters to kerplode.

I woulda bought the hell out of decent toy phasers back in the day, too, but I had to wait until I was an adult to be able to indulge in such things. Art Asylum/Diamond Select seems to have made a pretty good pile of cash from their line of phasers, communicators and tricorders from the original series & movies. But they, like all the other vendors, avoided Discovery merchandise like the plague because they knew it wouldn't sell. With two brand new Trek series, you'd think there'd be Trek merchandise... but go to WalMart, you won't find it. No toys, no t-shirts, no *anything.* Macfarlane announced a line of Discovery items early on (figures and phasers and such), but they backed out when they actually got a look at the response to the show. Had the show been good and popular, would merchandise have sold? It certainly couldn't have hurt.
 

edwest

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I heard a purpose-bad review of the latest Terminator movie online. The term "purpose-bad" being my term for reviewers who want to add an unnecessary layer of nonsense to their reviews. Otherwise, the review was well done. The 'strong young female' in the movie was referred to as 'androgynous thing.' Rather accurate as later clips would show. And a real shame after the "James Cameron" approves or some such.

"Strong female" whatever is a purely political invention by venom-dripping radicals bent on injecting their "vision" into whatever media they can. Entertaining? No. Seeing women be heroic? I'm all for it. Seeing women act like equally bad men? 100% not entertaining from a male or female actor. From an instruction I recently got: "I want heroes who are heroic."
 

sferrin

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Eon by Greg Bear could work as a sci-fi series.
I'll have to take another stab at this one. I just could not get into it. Blood Music, Forge of God, and Anvil of Stars on the other hand. . .
 

Foo Fighter

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I really WANTED to like Disco Very but frankly not enough to go to 1AM to do so. Quite gutted about the cancellation of ST4 but I've been there before and there is nothing that can be done. The shear cost of the films more than anything else makes me wonder why they did it in such a fashion. It did not have to be that expensive to make an ST film imho.

There was talk of a fan film I cannot remember the title, that was so delayed by legal crap that it went from being a film to a glorified 45 minute single episode in a one series program and made no sense at all. No idea what happened to it in the end but doubtless quietly dropped.

 

martinbayer

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Oh, and speaking of excellent sci-fi:
The Humanist Inheritance by Matthew J Lineberger featured a slow-mo nuclear war, Zubrin nuclear saltwater rockets, and an actual nuclear attack site before it got pulled off the internet by the author.
Does anybody still have a link to the original posting? If so, it might be available on archive.org.
 

martinbayer

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Oh, and speaking of excellent sci-fi:
The Humanist Inheritance by Matthew J Lineberger featured a slow-mo nuclear war, Zubrin nuclear saltwater rockets, and an actual nuclear attack site before it got pulled off the internet by the author.
Does anybody still have a link to the original posting? If so, it might be available on archive.org.
Never mind - found it: https://web.archive.org/web/20071216054053/http://bbs.stardestroyer.net/viewtopic.php?t=93496
 

martinbayer

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That only gets you the first two chapters. I think if you fiddle with the top bar, you can squeeze two more chapters out of it, but archive.org is a dead end otherwise.
I haven't tried it yet, but I think you might be able to get the whole content by doing separate archive searches for each link in the table of contents for the late 2006 time frame.
 
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