metaphortunate: (at one with the universe)
[personal profile] brainwane premiered a new vid at Wiscon 2015!

It's called "Pipeline".

Because the tech industry's got a blank space, baby. And it'll write your name.
metaphortunate: (wonderful)
Everyone who has been needing to see characters with disabilities in more fiction knows that MAD MAX: FURY ROAD is all made up of disabled characters, right? 
  • Furiosa uses an artificial hand. (Maybe she's born with it. Maybe it was Valvoline (exploding.))
  • Immortan Joe uses some kind of assisted breathing device.
  • Joe's brother or whatever is a little person in a mobility chair.
  • Nux has tumors on his trachea that affect his breathing.
  • The warboys in general have some condition that causes them to require regular blood transfusions. (Admittedly, that condition could be "very dangerous lifestyle.")
  • The Doof Warrior has no eyes.
  • The leader of Gas Town has a Tycho Brahe-style decorative metal artificial nose and a wicked case of foot edema.
  • Max has intrusive hallucinations, possibly PTSD flashbacks.


And I'm resigned to the fact that we're about to see a glut of movies made by people who saw FURY ROAD & thought "Great! People don't WANT explanation or backstory or worldbuilding or character or reasons for anything to happen!" Because moviemakers are going to notice that this movie did not stop to provide any infodumps and people loved that. And the kind of hack-ass storytellers who can't provide information except in an infodump are not going to bother noticing the wealth of information that the movie steadily, nonverbally, delivers.

The obsessive ornamentation on everything drives home that these are a people who have lost television. They aren't spending their evenings playing World of Warcraft, they're spending it painstakingly coiling recycled metal wire into skulls to enhance the fetishistic power of their steering wheels.

Furiosa has one word about her character arc: "Redemption." One word. The movie then goes on to reveal, in a completely non-Joss-Whedon-clever-dialogue kind of way, that spoiler ) I could see how that would leave a person with a score to settle.

Joe - I know I keep coming back to Joe, but since he is the one who ran the citadel, the citadel and the army speak most to his character. And - weirdly, considering his motivation in the whole film is spoiler ) - his character is that of a despot who allows his subordinates considerable initiative.

Consider the argument that ends in strapping Max to the front of Nux's Chevy:
spoiler )

Mallory Ortberg correctly noted that if Joe had been serious about spoiler ) And all of this the movie suggests without a spoken word.

And all the characters with disabilities, are not there because this is a Very Special Episode of the Apocalypse. They're there to show that this world is goddamn hard on human bodies - and to show the state of medical and assistive technology - and to show priorities. The people are like the things in this world in one way: the valuable ones are too valuable to waste just because some part of them isn't working to spec. Instead they weld on part of some other machine, to make it work; and add weapons capability while they're at it. And they don't bother trying to make the prosthetics look naturalistic. In a way, in this mutated world, the aesthetic celebrates physical variety, somatic change. spoiler )
metaphortunate: (wonderful)
  • Fury Road. FURY'S ROAD. It's her road.

  • @xatharine was admiring the near-total lack of worldbuilding & I realized what that was like: fanfic. Fic where they didn't waste more than like a minute setting up apocalyptic yadda yadda or Max's numbingly predictable manpain past because lol, you already know it from canon! Fuck explaining the fucking fridged girls, okay? he's HAUNTED. GO WITH IT. Give it a minute to make it clear it's not an AU, eat that lizard, hit that pedal & chilly down with the warboys! We have some truly great OCs to get to here.

  • …seriously, did this movie remind anyone else of Labyrinth? When the rock dwellers were boppin' their motorcycles all about, IDK, I kind of got "Chilly Down" stuck in my head! The polecats too, man!

  • (Note: in a labyrinth, you walk the spiral all the way in, then you turn around and walk all the way out. I'M JUST SAYING.)

  • You have probably heard the hype and all so let me not oversell it. It's not Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. It's Aliens. It's a Shit Blows Up Real Good movie. But as an example of that genre, it is GLORIOUS.

  • Let me steal [personal profile] hradzka's thoughts again, because this is perfect:
    FURY ROAD headcanon: Immortan Joe’s obsession w/ perfection gave Furiosa chance to rise. She didn’t lose that hand. She was born without it.
    Right! That's why she got to be War Smurfette instead of just more livestock!

  • Oh, my god, Immortan Joe. I am so sorry for everyone I have been blithering about this to for days. I have Mad Max Mentionitis, it's terrible. But anyway. Immortan Joe. You know who I keep comparing him to? Dr. Doom. Immortan Joe does not have Dr. Doom's problem there. Immortan Joe has an army that runs like a well-oiled machine! His minions are an energetic, competitive, dedicated, psychotically bloodthirsty Cirque de Soleil troupe of hundreds! They are all covered in white clay which is actually quite good thinking because Coppertone is probably not in business anymore and these are all white people (why are these all white people? All of them? I can't help thinking that if anyone was going to survive in an Australia devoid of mechanized civilization a fair percentage of them would be Aboriginal Australians?) and without some kind of sun protection they would crisp like chicharrones. Despite a lot of moving parts and a desperate shortage of fuel, his citadel runs smoothly: he could have used water power, but instead he keeps the young male population busy (good thinking); he's not abusing their strength because the great weights work on a system of counterbalances; the citadel not only functions well but expresses its function through its form in the best tradition of Louis Henry Sullivan! Everything in Immortan Joe's stronghold is horrifyingly beautiful, okay? His armor is carefully designed to look like muscles at the distance from which the plebs get to see him. Every bit of machine or weapon features painstakingly handcrafted skull ornamentation, it's like the Arts & Crafts movement via Iron Maiden. I love it so. This is the setup of an evil mastermind who helps his people to excel.

  • And then there's the way his army rides into battle. What a sense of style! Goddamn, no wonder the warboys are having so much fun!

  • ALSO THE WAR GUITARIST.

  • WE COULD NOT GET OVER THE WAR GUITARIST.

  • Actually I could not get over the soundtrack in general. I am not usually a big one for movie soundtracks, but I am trying to find a way to make out with this one, because I need to consummate my love for this music.

  • No, seriously, personnel decisions are key to being a successful evil overlord! Even Immortan Joe falls down there eventually. I think his fetish for blood family was his downfall: I think the weird little dude in the chair was his brother or something. Man, if I am ever an evil warlord, and you are my second in command, and my renegade Imperator and a raggedy band of [SPOILERS] shows up with my [SPOILER], like, immediately spray them with gunfire and roll up the gates, okay? Joe was almost a truly great evil leader, but a truly great evil leader inspires his followers to develop the evil from within themselves, not to just kind of run out of evil when the boss is not right there to inspire them.

  • For a while I wondered why we kept coming back to a bolt cutter, of all things, in a Shit Really Blows The Hell Up movie. Then I realized: the movie is about liberation.

  • Speaking of the Anvil of Subtlety, let's not even talk about the seeds. Ah, fuck it, I enjoyed it. :D

  • Really, it's fic. Within the first 5 minutes Max announces that he is going to be the least interesting character in the movie. "The only thing I want anymore is to survive. I am here to provide canon continuity as you meet OCs who actually have desires and will therefore be providing motivation and a plot. In the meantime, please enjoy my muscular physique, my sad, haunted eyes, and my pouty, full lips."

  • Kameron Hurley has more cogent things to say about the film, including just how nice it is that it skips the pervy camera.

  • Seriously. Even when the nearly naked supermodels are cutting off (bolt cutter! Liberation!) the terrifying-looking chastity belts (Arts and Crafts! Iron Maiden!) and splashing water all over their diaphanous translucent gauze wisps. It's a shock! These extremely well-cared-for well-groomed women are the shock they should be, after the way everyone else is living in this apocalypse! But it's not…it's not quite the wet t-shirt Slave Leia scene that every iron-clad rule of genre is straining to turn it into. Not quite. It's a crave-inducing scene, but through Max's eyes, it's honestly a question: are the girls more eye-catching than the water?

  • And the other thing, they addressed my problem with Snowpiercer! They should have been delighted to have nice proteinaceous bugs to eat by then! Actually in this one I was so relieved to see him eat that bug because I know it's set in Australia and I figured either he killed it or it killed him.

  • I saw this movie by accident! I had a plan with @xatharine to go see Avengers! And then we accidentally bought tickets for the wrong day. And then it turned out that Avengers wasn't even showing in that theatre anymore, Mad Max was. And by the time we'd figured that out, we were like, fuck it, we're at the goddamn theatre, we're gonna watch the movie that's here. IT COULD NOT HAVE TURNED OUT BETTER.
metaphortunate: (Default)
Free to Be You and Me was released 40 years ago this year. Slate has a fascinating article on it.

The Junebug and I have been listening to the copy we got for him. (Of course we did.) It's not perfect. I particularly note how there are two songs criticizing kids for performing femininity. They're different, though. In "William's Doll", William is mocked by his peers for wanting a doll; the nyah-nyah "William wants a do-oll! William wants a do-oll!" is by far the catchiest part of the song, unfortunately, but the authorial viewpoint validates and supports his behavior. Whereas in "Ladies First", the little femme girl is hatefully annoying and gets eaten up by tigers and the authorial point of view is definitely that this is a good thing, too. (Per the Slate article, it was written by Shel Silverstein, and suddenly I am much less surprised. Not particularly feminist, that guy.)

Apparently the nobody-actually-likes-doing-housework-so-everyone-better-pitch-in "Housework" poem turned out to be problematic, to the point that they wished they hadn't put it on the album. I have to say that we were hoping to Tom Sawyer the Junebug into wanting to help with chores, so it won't be particularly helpful to have this album telling him that everyone hates housework and he will to. However, to me, it is completely worth it for its introduction to the concept that TV lies to you and marketing is manipulation. Never too young to start.

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