Pixel Scroll 11/19 The Endochronic Pixils of Resublimated Scrollotimoline

(1) Randall Munroe has a piece on The New Yorker blog called “The Space Doctor’s Big Idea”.  He’s explaining Einstein and relativity, but doing it with his cartoons and quirky humor.

The first idea is called the special idea, because it covers only a few special parts of space and time. The other one—the big idea—covers all the stuff that is left out by the special idea. The big idea is a lot harder to understand than the special one. People who are good at numbers can use the special idea to answer questions pretty easily, but you have to know a lot about numbers to do anything with the big idea. To understand the big idea—the hard one—it helps to understand the special idea first.

(2) Steven Barnes’ new book Star Wars Saved My Life: Be the Hero in the Adventure of Your Own Lifetime has been released. Amazon Prime members can borrow it free, all others pay cash!

SW Saved My Life COMP

It’s finally here! The book I’ve been hinting about for months, STAR WARS SAVED MY LIFE is the first self-help book ever written for science fiction fans, the LIFEWRITING system applied to healing finances, career, health, and the wounded heart. A pure work of love, available FREE to anyone with an Amazon Prime membership, it is my way of saying “thank you” to all of you who helped me find my way, gave me friendship, support, and love.

(3) Downthe tubes.net reports that Star Trek comic strips published in various UK comics and annuals back in the 1970s (and never in the US) will be republished in a collection next year.

In all, the British Star Trek ran for 257 weekly magazines spanning five years and 37 storylines and in addition to its weekly appearances, more original material drawn by Ron Turner, Jack Sutter, Jim Baikie and John Canning appeared in the 1969 Joe 90 Top Secret annual, the Valiant 1972 Summer Special, the 1971-1973 TV21 hardcover annuals and the 1978-1979 TV Comic annuals.

An original Frank Bellamy Star Trek strip also appeared in the June 27, 1970 issue of Radio Times to promote the show’s return to BBC1.

These strips have never been published in the United States and were not written with strict adherence to Star Trek‘s core concepts. The U.S.S. Enterprise frequently traveled outside our galaxy, and the crew committed many violations of the never-mentioned Prime Directive along the way. Spock shouted most of his lines and often urged Kirk (or “Kurt,” as his name was misspelled in early issues) to shoot first and ask questions later.

(4) Nancy Hightower’s picks for the “Best science fiction and fantasy books of 2015” at the Washington Post include one that hasn’t been heavily discussed here.

THE ONLY ONES

By Carola Dibbell (Two Dollar Radio)

This fascinating first novel details the emotional journey of Inez Fardo, a 19-year-old who has survived terrible trauma and yet still manages to find life sometimes wondrous. In a time when most of the population has been wiped out by a series of superviruses, she makes a meager living cleaning up contaminated sites. But when it’s discovered that she is resistant to the viruses that continue to threaten the world, an amateur scientist and his team offer to harvest her DNA to make healthy babies for others. Inez goes along with the plan, but soon a series of events forces her to raise the one child produced by the experiment. What follows is a heart-piercing tale of love, desire and acceptance as Inez tries to give her daughter a different life from the one she’s experienced.

(5) Larry Correia turns off the game long enough to offer “Fallout 4, Initial Thoughts”.

The atmosphere is great. Unlike many post apocalyptic things, Fallout doesn’t take itself too seriously. So everything has that retro cool, 50s but blown up vibe.

It gets really buggy at times, but better than the last one. This engine is dated, and it shows. Sometimes you kill stuff and it flies up into the air and spins around for a while. Other times a body will get stuck in the wall and vibrate forever. I’ve had a few crashes, freezes, and once I had to unplug and replug in the Xbox to get it to launch. But still better than the last one, and less buggy than Skyrim.

I had to turn on subtitles, because the music has a tendency to get annoyingly loud when people are trying to tell you important things. Then I learned that the subtitles only show up about half the time. So I turned the music way down and the voice volume way up, and even then I miss lots of things my companions are telling me. Damn it, Piper. Speak up. My character has been in like 400 gun fights without hearing protection, so maybe this is just added realism.

(6) John DeNardo has a fun discussion of “Why I Love Retro Science Fiction” at Kirkus Reviews.

Simply put, retro-futurism is what people of the past thought their future might look like. It’s our great-grandparents’ depiction of today. Or, the future that could-have-been.

Retro futures can be observed in many mediums: books, television, film, even sculpture. When you see an “old school” ray gun, you’re looking at a retro future. When you see the people wearing shiny white uniforms on Moonbase Alpha in Space: 1999, that’s the show’s creators’ view of how people in their future might dress. When you see Captain Kirk pull out his cellphone—er, personal communicator—you’re seeing someone from the past predict what cool gadgets the future might bring.

(7) Jason Sanford calls for writers to “Stop Duotrope’s attempt to own authors’ personal submission data”. The service authors use to track submissions and research markets is now trying to restrict users’ rights to their data.

According to Duotrope’s terms of service, “Any data downloaded from this website, including but not limited to submission histories, is strictly for personal use and may not be shared with any third parties or used for commercial purposes.”

What does this mean? It means that if you upload your submission information to Duotrope, you no longer have the right to use your own data as you see fit. You can’t use the data to write an article about submissions for a magazine or upload your data to another online submission system such as the site run by Writer’s Market. Basically, once you use Duotrope you can’t leave and take your data elsewhere.

Duotrope also attempts to make a blatant copyright grab, with their terms stating “The website and its database are also protected as a collective work or compilation under U.S. copyright and other laws and treaties. All individual articles, pages and other elements making up the website are also copyrighted works. Use of any of these original works without written permission of Duotrope LLC is expressly forbidden.”

Duotrope is skating on thin ice here because you can’t copyright data. But combine this copyright statement with their terms of use for the data and Duotrope is essentially saying they own any submission data uploaded to their system by authors.

(8) Annie Bellet asks people not to nominate her for awards in 2016.

I don’t wish to have my work considered for awards this year. I’d like to just have 2016 to get stuff done, worry about my readers and my career, and (hopefully!) not be involved in any award business. I’m not attending Worldcon 2016 either (I’ll be there for 2017 though, yay excuse to go to Finland!).

So please… if you read and enjoyed something of mine that was published this year (and there were a few things I think are some of my best work),  thank you. But don’t vote for my stories.   I’ve got cool work coming out next year, and maybe by 2017 I’ll have healed the stress of this last award season, but for now… please, I want a year of not having to even worry about it, slim as my chances might be.

(9) Fantasy Literature has launched its “Second annual Speculative Fiction Haiku Contest”. Leave your entries in the comments. Can you improve on this entry from last year? I knew you could…

a meddlesome god
sows nightmares in childhood dreams
meesa jar jar binks

(10) Sarah Avery writes the kind of immersive conreport I like. Now at Black Gate — “World Fantasy 2015: It’s the Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead of Convention Reports”.

Lots of interesting stuff about trying to line up an agent is woven around accounts of WFC’s panels and conversations in the bar. I’m picking this passage for the excerpt, because Avery was actually on one of Mari Ness’ panels that made news here:

After reminding myself a couple of times that panels were not, overall, my mission, I prepared for the one panel I was on.

That panel turned out to be newsworthy not for its content, but because of accessibility issues. Author Mari Ness, who uses a wheelchair, was unable to get onto the stage because there was no ramp. This issue has been covered elsewhere, with all its ramifications for policy, conrunning logistics, and ethics. All I can add to the accessibility discussion is that the other panelists (David Hartwell, Darrell Schweitzer, Stephen R. Donaldson) and I were nearly as uncomfortable with the situation as Ness was. The hotel staff said they’d have to take the stage entirely apart to put their ramp on it, and we were late already, so Ness decided to do the fastest thing. She positioned her wheelchair close enough that we could pass her a microphone. Donaldson was an excellent moderator, and Hartwell and Schweitzer (who on occasion have been known to hold forth) kept themselves uncharacteristically concise to make space in the discussion for Mari. The physical space might not have been inclusive, but we were all determined that the discussion would be.

As it turned out, Mari was the only one whose remarks drew spontaneous applause. We were talking about the ancient epics, contemporary fantasy epics, and what kinds of lineages do or don’t connect them. What, Donaldson asked, were our personal favorites among the modern epics? And though the rest of us got more and more obscure with our picks, Mari’s was Star Wars. And that felt more personally foundational than any other epic we’d discussed.

(11) And as often as I’ve been invoking her name lately, I should also publicize Sarah Avery’s Kickstarter appeal to fund publication of her fantasy novel The Imlen Bastard, which has raised $6,695 to date, achieving its initial $4,500 goal, then a stretch goal that will pay for the audiobook, and finally aspires to raise $9,600 which will allow Avery to commission more Kate Baylay art.

(12) Movie footage was shot at the first Worldcon. We may see it someday, if it hasn’t been tossed, and if anyone can ever find it. Doug Ellis has been searching for years, as he explains in “The Elusive Film Footage of the Very First Worldcon” at Black Gate.

I have a carbon copy of a letter dated August 16, 1939 that Darrow wrote to his friend, Walt Dennis, concerning the first Worldcon. In part, it reads as follows.

The following day was the big day of the convention. [NOTE – DARROW IS REFERRING TO SUNDAY, JULY 2, 1939, THE FIRST DAY OF THE CON.] Otto [BINDER] picked up Bill, Jack [JACK WILLIAMSON], Ed Hamilton and myself and we took a bus to the convention hall. Bill and I had had no breakfast and it was almost noon, so we deserted the gang long enuf to invade an Automat. Arriving back at the hall we found a mob gathered at the door. Somebody shoved an autograph book in my face. [PERHAPS THIS IS WHAT’S CAPTURED IN THIS PHOTO] They way they worked this was to ask every stranger they saw for their autograph and then look to see who they got. I took several snaps (enclosed) and Bill took snaps and movies. There seemed to be a lot of excitement when Forrest J. Ackerman and I met for the first time. Bill took movies of the handshake. Forrie was quite a surprise to me. Tall, handsome and quiet. A very pleasant fellow. He was dressed in an outfit out of Wells’ pic Things to Come.

(13) Gregory N. Hullender has posted Rocket Stack Rank’s evaluation of “Future Visions: Original Science Fiction Inspired by Microsoft”, and adds this incentive to click the link – “The fact that I not only worked at Microsoft for a long time but actually worked on some of these technologies might make this a bit more interesting.”

(14) Yes, I can imagine.

(15) This just in from 2009! “Moon landing tapes got erased, NASA admits”. We now join our conspiracy theories already in progress.

The original recordings of the first humans landing on the moon 40 years ago were erased and re-used, but newly restored copies of the original broadcast look even better, NASA officials said on Thursday.

NASA released the first glimpses of a complete digital make-over of the original landing footage that clarifies the blurry and grainy images of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walking on the surface of the moon.

The full set of recordings, being cleaned up by Burbank, California-based Lowry Digital, will be released in September. The preview is available at www.nasa.gov.

NASA admitted in 2006 that no one could find the original video recordings of the July 20, 1969, landing.

Since then, Richard Nafzger, an engineer at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, who oversaw television processing at the ground-tracking sites during the Apollo 11 mission, has been looking for them.

The good news is he found where they went. The bad news is they were part of a batch of 200,000 tapes that were degaussed — magnetically erased — and re-used to save money.

(16) Jeremiah Moss at Vanishing New York asks friends to help Jerry Ohlinger

A couple of years ago, I visited Jerry Ohlinger’s amazing movie material store in the Garment District. In business since 1976, it was the last store in New York City dedicated to movie photos.

Struggling with the rent, Jerry closed his shop and moved most of his “one million and one hundred thousand” photos to a warehouse in New Jersey as he downsized to a much smaller shop on West 30th, with limited hours.

Now Jerry needs help. The items in the warehouse need to be moved again, and there’s no money to do it. Visit <https://www.gofundme.com/996j7zvc> and consider giving him a hand.

Jeremiah wrote about the old store for The New Yorker a few years ago in “The Last Picture Shop”.

Jerry Ohlinger’s Movie Material Store has been in business since 1978. It started on West Third Street, moved to West Fourteenth, and eventually ended up on West Thirty-fifth, in the Garment District. With the Internet stealing customers, business isn’t what it used to be, and the nine-thousand-dollar-a-month rent is more than movie photos can pay. Jerry will be closing his shop and selling just online in the next three to six months.

This is unfortunate, because a computer screen will never provide the physical, sensory experience you get when you step into Ohlinger’s. An obsessively organized clutter of movie posters and postcards, stacks of DVDs, and boxes full of eight-by-seventeen poster reproductions, the small front of the store is walled by towering shelves packed with shopworn three-ring binders, all strapped with duct tape and hand-labelled in Magic Marker with the names of the movie stars contained within. The space smells of Jerry’s cigar and the musty vanilla aroma of old paper slowly decaying.

“We’ve got about two hundred and fifty thousand to three hundred thousand photos in all these books,” Jerry says, waving his gummy, unlit cigar in the air.

(17) NPR is impressed —  “Amazon’s ‘High Castle’ Offers A Chilling Alternate History Of Nazi Triumph”.

Many of the goose-bump-inducing moments in this new drama are visual and are startling. Picture this: In Times Square, a giant neon swastika emblazons a building. Or an American flag with the familiar colors — but instead of stars and stripes, there’s a swastika where the stars used to be. Even the map of the former United States of America is disturbing to witness — much more so than those wind-up maps of opposing territories opening each episode of HBO’s Game of Thrones.

The alternate-history American map in The Man in the High Castle is made even more jarring, and creepy, by the sound, and the song, that accompanies it in the opening of each episode. It’s the sound of a film projector whirring into action — underscoring the importance of those illicit films — followed by the old familiar song “Edelweiss” being sung in a much more haunting performance than you’re used to from The Sound of Music.

(18) Rachel Swirsky collected writing advice from novelists about how to start your second book – quotes from Steven Gould, N. K. Jemisin, Ken Liu, and Helene Wecker.

Helene Wecker, author of The Golem and the Jinni:

First, celebrate. Turning in your novel is a huge hairy deal. Go out for a fancy dinner with a significant other or something. Give yourself permission to relax for a few days. You’ve probably been holed up for a while, so go talk to some humans. Send a few emails to friends, accept an invitation to coffee. Go for a walk outside.

Ok, now back to work. It’s a good idea to focus on marketing during the pre-pub months, and to that end you’ll want to prep a master Q&A about the book. My publisher sent me one with about a dozen questions (“How did the idea come to you?” “Who were your favorite characters to write?” “Describe your research process,” etc). It took forever to fill out, but it meant I didn’t have to think on the fly during interviews or readings. If your publisher doesn’t do it for you, make one yourself, with what you’d guess are the most likely questions that a reader or interviewer would ask. It might feel tedious, but you won’t regret it.

(19) Songwriter P. F. Sloan died November 13 at the age of 70. Though best known for his hit “Eve of Destruction”, Sloan also wrote the theme song for Secret Agent Man, which became a hit for Johnny Rivers. The Wikipedia entry for “Secret Agent Man” sets the song in context of genre history:

The lyric “They’ve given you a number and taken away your name” referred to the numerical code names given to secret agents, as in “007” for James Bond, although it also acts as the setup to the “continuation” of Danger Man, the cult classic The Prisoner.”

(20) Wonder if the rest of the book lives up to this line?

 [Thanks to Janice Gelb, Michael J. Walsh, Martin Morse Wooster, Andrew Porter, Mark-kitteh, Tasha Turner, and John King Tarpinian for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day ULTRAGOTHA.]

256 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 11/19 The Endochronic Pixils of Resublimated Scrollotimoline

  1. FANTASY MOVIE BRACKET – SIXTH ROUND

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)
    The Princess Bride (1987)

    LOTR

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    Something that passes the very low bar of the Bechdel test

    nanowrimo: 47,222 words

  2. 1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)

  3. FANTASY MOVIE BRACKET – SIXTH ROUND

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    The Princess Bride (1987)

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    All of them

  4. Forehead Cloths! Getcher Ultimate Fantasy Movie Bracket Official Forehead Cloths! Collect the whole set! Guaranteed to almost never spontaneously combust if used properly!

  5. 1 Princess Bride.

    2 All of them. Really. Because each one, even the ones I didn’t like, almost certainly struck a spark in somebody’s heart out there; made them forget their cares and dream.

  6. 1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    The Princess Bride (1987)

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    Wizards (1977)

    “They killed Fritz!”

  7. FANTASY MOVIE BRACKET – SIXTH ROUND

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    The Princess Bride (1987)

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    Time Bandits

  8. FANTASY MOVIE BRACKET – SIXTH ROUND

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)
    The Princess Bride (1987)
    Oh, golly. Um. Er. I’m sitting here staring at my screen trying to decide. I’m going with LOTR due to sheer bredth and beauty. Too bad Jackson lost it so badly with The Hobbit.

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    Stardust

    Though David Bowie’s trousers are good, too.

  9. FANTASY MOVIE BRACKET – SIXTH ROUND

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)
    The Princess Bride (1987)
    I knew this would happen. ::pats forehead with cloth:: LotR. Because there were some moments that made me choke up, and laugh, and gasp in wonder. Only by a microbean, though, because it is *that* close.

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?

    Howl’s Moving Castle (Miyazaki plus DWJ!)

  10. 1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    The Princess Bride (1987)

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    Spirited Away

  11. Tintinaus: Well, it was my 4 year old’s favourite movie until Inside Out came along… actually, I like Cars 2. Not “Best fantasy movie of all time” like, or even “rewatch as often as a preschooler wants to” like, but it ain’t bad.

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)
    The Princess Bride (1987)
    Huh. Mark Knopfler vs. Howard Shore. Aragorn vs. Westley. Legolas vs. Buttercup. Eowyn vs. Inigo Montoya . Gimli vs. Fezzik.
    Flawed as the adaptation is, I think Lord of the Rings has it, if only because Frodo, with the help of Sam and Gollum, slipped through uncontested.

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    I could make a good argument for Spirited Away. There’s even a dragon.

  12. 1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    The Princess Bride (1987)

    I think the books were better for both, but The Princess Bride movie was nearly as good as its source material.

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?

    Wizard of Oz. It still activates my sense of wonder after countless rewatchings..

  13. 1. LOTR. I do love TPB, and LOTR is more flawed, but also, I think, reaches greater heights. It’s not a perfect adaptation, but it is, I think, a brilliant one, and (blasphemous as this may be) one that I think improves on the source material in some areas. Really a tremendous achievement, despite what he later did to The Hobbit. It restored my faith in the possibilities of movie adaptations.

    2. Oh no you don’t! I sweated through these choices enough already! I’m not repeating that pain now. All the movies that people have loved deserve to win.

  14. The Princess Bride again gets my vote.

    What should’ve won? Again, I will say The Seventh Seal, but Time Bandits (and where was Brazil?) coulda been a contender, as well.

  15. FANTASY MOVIE BRACKET – SIXTH ROUND

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)
    The Princess Bride (1987)

    I do understand the serious flaws in LoTR, but if I’m being honest, I have to vote my re-watching habits.

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?

    Please for the love of all that’s holy, SOMETHING WITH LOTS OF GOOD, INTERESTING, THREE-DIMENSIONAL FEMALE CHARACTERS IN IT!!!!

  16. Hampus Eckeman on November 23, 2015 at 12:39 am said:
    FANTASY MOVIE BRACKET – SIXTH ROUND

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)
    The Princess Bride (1987)
    face cloth, please

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    I’m content enough with either of these, though I’d also have been happy with Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle, My Neighbor Totoro, Monty Python…. lots of quite reasonable possibilities.
    Come to think of it, I wonder if Miyazaki would have fared better with fewer candidates?

  17. I change my answer to 2nd this:

    Please for the love of all that’s holy, SOMETHING WITH LOTS OF GOOD, INTERESTING, THREE-DIMENSIONAL FEMALE CHARACTERS IN IT!!!!

  18. Oooh, I’ve got to go with TPB for the quotability and for actually IMPROVING on the book. I mean, the book’s great and I was Very Angry when I heard there was a movie (Rob Reiner and Billy Crystal? Wut?). I just knew they’d ruin it, like 99% of movies do to books. I was grumpy.

    But there was a free screening at NASFiC, so I went and then went back to the con across the Anvil of God* and told everyone who’d missed it that they should have gone and yes it was different from the book, but BETTER. (Even the kissing parts.) I evangelized that movie.

    So I gotta go with that.

    Classic and game-changer and all, I never evangelized LOTR, nor quoted it in daily life (‘Cept maybe when speaking of taters).

    We went to a Mandy Patinkin concert in the late 90’s and after enjoying a couple of hours of amazing show tunes and classics, and some encores, he ran back on stage “Wait! I almost forgot!” And then he struck a fencing pose… waited for the reaction to die down… and said, “Hello…” and the entire crowd chanted it with him and he left to a standing ovation and cheers.

    Should have: Summat Miyazaki, or else David Bowie’s pants. I think we need a special award for Best Supporting Trousers.

    *you old timers who went to cons in Phoenix back in the day are nodding and sweating, aren’t you?

  19. 1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)

    Because seeing Gandalf driving his cart into the Shire at the start put a big sappy grin on my face as for once an adaptation looked exactly like I thought it should.

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    Hawk the Slayer

  20. Yes, wondered why no one nominated Hawk The Slayer. I’ve watched it more times than Lord of The Rings.

  21. 1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)
    The Princess Bride (1987)

    Headcloth please. These two problematic pieces of work were duking it out in my brain for which is less problematic. Ultimately they came out about even on that, and LotR has depth that TPB doesn’t. The music alone is a better fantasy movie than, say, The Brothers Grimm, even if you leave out the latter’s trashing of one of the great men of science.

    So much as I hate to give Peter Jackson any credit for anything, and much as I hate him for his stupid dwarf jokes and Star Wars references, LotR is it for me.

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    Oh, I dunno. I missed most of this bracket. The Helen Mirren version of The Tempest?

  22. FANTASY MOVIE BRACKET – SIXTH ROUND

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)
    The Princess Bride (1987)

    I just can’t. TIE.

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?

    Hmm… I’m not unhappy with these? There are films I like as much or even a little better, but not many that I love way more. It would have been nice to see a Ghibli in the final or a Harryhausen get further, and I’m sad about Time Bandits going out when it did. I would have liked to have seen The Phantom Tollbooth, Enchanted, or Clash of the Titans in the running. Otherwise this bracket was really good for me – so many tough choices meant I was hardly ever too upset when my pick lost, because I liked the other one nearly as well.

  23. 1. The Princess Bride
    Because the whole family enjoys watching and quoting

    What should have won?:
    LOTR
    But too many times I have said “That wasn’t in the book”
    I have worn a Lord Of The Rings belt buckle almost every day for the last 37 years and still I vote for The Princess Bride because it doesn’t make me crazy

  24. 1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    The Adventures of Prince Achmed

  25. Well, shoot. . . .

    FANTASY MOVIE BRACKET – SIXTH ROUND

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003)

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?

    Oh, lordy. No idea, but LotR would be fine with me. 🙂

  26. 1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    The Princess Bride (1987)

    2. WHAT SHOULD HAVE WON?
    The Wizard of Oz (1939)

  27. FANTASY MOVIE BRACKET – SIXTH ROUND

    1. WE COME TO IT AT LAST, THE GREAT BATTLE OF OUR TIME
    Lord of The Rings – Series (2001 – 2003) – 20 votes
    The Princess Bride (1987) – 18 votes

    The voting was close with most of the time, only one votes difference with both contestants alternating in the lead. I’m quite sure they would have continued to alternate if I had left the voting open. Lord of The Rings and Prince Bride mostly outclassed all other contestants. Princess Bride was actually the one with the most decisive victories before this.

    This is no surprise, these are the contestants with most votes in the nominating phase. In the end, a winner had to be proclaimed and Aragon would always make a better king than Prince Humperdinck.

    WINNER: Lord of The Rings

    AFTERWORD

    It is quite clear that Wizard of Oz should have gone further in this bracket if it hadn’t been placed against Lord of The Rings in the first round. If we look at the third round and add Time Bandits and Wizard of Oz, I think we have the top 11 of the Filers.

    Lord of The Rings
    Pans Labyrinth
    Highlander
    My Neighbour Totoro
    The Princess Bride
    Monty Python and The Holy Grail
    Labyrinth
    Stardust
    Spirited Away
    Time Bandits
    Wizards of Oz

    I think most of you had your favourite and possibly a high amount of your favourites on this list.

    And with this I thank you all for your participation. Now time for a break and we’ll return later with the Science Fiction Movie Bracket. My guess is that it will be larger and contribute to even more anguish and curses .

  28. Thanks for running the bracket, and I definitely think that list of 11 provides an incredibly solid basis for anyone’s, um, streaming list? Download queue? What’s the right phrase for it now that even DVDs are passé…

  29. THANK YOU, HAMPUS!!!!
    Fantastic bracket, looking forward to tearing my hair out over the SF bracket.

  30. Hampus, thank you for all the work you put in. I’m definitely looking forward to the SF bracket (also stocking up on forehead cloths) as most of my movie collection is SF.

  31. Thank you, Hampus, for running this (and for all the other bracket-runners as well). Looking over my choices in this bracket it becomes clear to me that one of my deep-rooted preferences is for “serious” over “comedy”. I can enjoy a story that also has fun in it, but I don’t care as much for ones where the primary theme is comedy or piss-taking (if I am using that expression correctly).

  32. @lurkertype: Boy do we have incredibly different view of the move TPB. For me, it almost ruined the book, and I had to pretend I had never seen it to be able to go back to a deeply loved favorite. It was not an improvement in any way at all.

    Even when I was much too young to understand what I was seeing, the thing I loved about the book is the blend of the bitter and hopeless with the sweet and optimistic. I saw a description once that claimed that it was a Viet Nam War book, and that rings true to me. The ways in which our love of pat stories and heroes ring in our souls, and lead us astray, the ways in which our love of princesses and castles are so very important, and yet lead us into the depths of despair because life — life it is not like that.

    The biggest difference, of course, between the movie and the book is that the movie completely loses the “deleted” scenes from the great S. Morgenstern, and that aspect of the book highlights and limns the ways in which the things that we think are important aren’t, really, and the things that really are important are weirdly different from what we thought. I think that the book totally gets how close and vital the story of the noble lover and the captured princess are, totally gets how we need that shining mythic past that never was, and at the same time sees all the ways in which we betray ourselves when we believe our dreams rather than reality. All of this is missing from the movie. All the disillusionment of growing up, all the despair and deliberate joy, all the ways in which we mistake our priorities, our needs. And the sad fact that, in the end, we all die, and that whether we tell ourselves pretty stories about it or not, we get old and die. I love the book so very much. And the movie, the movie was cheesy.

  33. Great job Hampus. Thanks for the need for forehead cloths, debates with my husband, and fun commentary. I look forward to the break and seeing what you do with Sci Fi movies after.

  34. Brilliant work, Hampus. Looking forward to the Sci-Fi movies bracket. Will be watching File770 closely for nominations.

    That’s all I got.

  35. Thanks, Hampus! 😀 Awesome job! And I’ve seen half of the “finalists” and like them all a lot.

    @Lydy: I haven’t read the book (blush) but I’m thinking maybe I should.

  36. Thanks for your hard work on that, Hampus, especially the clever titles and match summaries. 🙂

  37. @Lydy Nickerson: The biggest difference, of course, between the movie and the book is that the movie completely loses the “deleted” scenes from the great S. Morgenstern, and that aspect of the book highlights and limns the ways in which the things that we think are important aren’t, really, and the things that really are important are weirdly different from what we thought.

    The funny thing for me is that my first experience of The Princess Bride was my dad reading it to me as a bedtime story when I was 10 or 11. He left out all the “deleted” Morgenstern parts, so for me the movie is much truer to my own experience of the book. When I was old enough to read it for myself, there was a definite “eh? what’s this? oh. huh. okay, continuing on” feeling.

    I should probably reread it as an adult and pay closer attention to how the framing sections relate to the narrative sections.

  38. @Lexica: I was young enough and naive enough when I first read The Princess Bride that I spent some time and effort trying to find the “complete” Morgenstern. I genuinely didn’t udnerstand what the framing stories had to do with the “main” story, and I really, basically, didn’t get it at all, intellectually. But there was an instant emotional resonance, and it was more than just with the fairy tale. Although I couldn’t quite see what was going on, I could feel the ways in which the three…maybe four narratives wound through each other, and although I didn’t understand that I was seeing despair and disillusionment as well as hope and joy, I could see the shadows of that, and it spoke to me even thought I didn’t yet speak that language.

    Over the years, people have told me that the reason I don’t like various adaptation of favorite novels into movies is because I’m too picky. I’ve been told that I just don’t understand that the two are different media, and that not every detail can be replicated. That isn’t what’s going on, though. It’s not that the movies usually get various details wrong. The movies that make me crazy angry are the ones that betray the story itself. the ones that turn their back on the theme and substance, even if the plot and characters are similar. Lynch’s Dune, the atrocity that calls itselfStarship Troopers, and The Princess Bride all do that to me. I’m least upset with the last, since it doesn’t outright betray the themes, it just ignores most of what makes the book great in favor of a simpler, slighter story.

    A random additional question: It’s been some time since I’ve seen the movie, but I don’t recall that the framing story in the movie actually does anything for the story. The three framing stories in the novel actually play in complicated ways against each other and the main story. Is there a point to the story being told to the little kid aspect of the movie?

  39. I saw the movie first, read the book later and yes, I do think the framing adds to the movie. It adds nostalgia and it is easier ti emphasize with the kid than with the more cartoony characters. As a matter of fact, I do think the framing worked better than the book.

    But I was older when seeing the movie and it was even longer after that I read the book. Which might be one of the reasons why I love the movie and only like the book.

  40. Lydy Nickerson: the atrocity that calls itself Starship Troopers

    I know that most people hate Verhoeven’s rendering of the book, but I thought that it captured perfectly the senselessness and irrationality of the governmental system as described in the book. It was like an exaggerated caricature of the “America — Love It or Leave It” crowd, one which makes it clear just how ridiculous, unworkable — and even unpatriotic — that attitude is. The movie emphasizes just what a load of shit it all is.

    But then I read Starship Troopers in the late 70s or early 80s, and I remember thinking at the time, “I love Heinlein’s books, but WTF is this? He’s doing a pisstake on these sorts of people and government, isn’t he? Please tell me that Heinlein did not intend for this to be taken genuinely as written!”

    My personal retcon is that Heinlein intended the book to be a caustic criticism of the government and attitudes it portrayed, rather than a reverent paean to them.

  41. That’s how I feel about the Lord of the Rings adaptations. It’s not about whether a detail from the book makes it to the film, its that the books were Disnefied.
    But Starship Troopers the film is much better than the book, because it refused to take the book at face value. Jackson filled his film with shiny, stupid people and shiny, stupid CGI because that’s how you make a big movie. Verhoeven added the shiny because that’s how war is sold, and the stupid because that’s what people are…

  42. I can’t see Starship Troopers as a satiric take on the book, scathing or otherwise. There are too many stupids. I generally start and stop with faster-than-light asteroids. I can’t even even, I can’t even odd. The fact that they generate enough gravity to disrupt a starship I can almost hand wave, if I have to, but the fact that the earth survives an impact — I’m back in the land of nope.

    There are huge problems with the book. The attack on the skinny city is arguably a war crime, since the troopers are very deliberately targeting a civilian population. The casual hand-wave of “our morality is scientific” is, at best, eye-rolling, and clearly self-serving. I have so many problems with the book.

    The scene that makes me froth, though, is the boot-camp scene. In the book the knife-throwing episode is a contemplation on the proper application of force, a discussion of a measured response and a repudiation of all-out war. It is also an attempt to show the best of boot camp, the ways in which even very hard instructors can empathize and teach. In the movie, it is a casual exercise of sadism, and a defense of same. It utterly fails to be a critique of the issue, and rather just steals some set dressing and dialog, and recasts it.

    But, again, the thing that really ruins it, for me, is the incredibly stupidity strewn all through the movie. Nothing makes sense, even on its own terms. It’s glitzy, has some strong visual images, but the story doesn’t hang together, the science is insane, the military tactics gratuitously stupid. The only thing I liked about the movie is one of the things it’s usually criticized for, the co-ed shower scene. Pretty people without clothes, and a perfectly good in-world explanation for it. If the fighting force was co-ed, the showers would be, too, and the troopers would be used to it.

  43. My favorite thing about the Starship Troopers movie was 7-person indoor football. It makes much more sense to me than the 8-man teams in the Arena Leagues.

  44. I understand your objections, but to me they have no force. Yes, the science is stupid, but no more stupid than any random SF film (or SF book, for that matter). The film is about “Do you want to know more?” and “They’re afraid!” more than the realism of asteroids as a weapon of interstellar war.

  45. @Ray: I plead consistency. I get upset about scientific nonsense in most of the available visual media sf. I actually love Buffy the Vampire Slayer but still spend a fair amount of time excoriating it’s logical lapses. Most sf movies and television shows I can’t take at all.

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