Sunday 19 August 2012

Haven't posted for a while. So here's a movie review and a suggestion for arming Curiosity.

Been recovering.
Then getting sick again.
Bloody weather.
Although I tend to think it's psychosomatic.
With the emphasis on psycho I fear.
As you will see as you read on...

Anyway. Where was I? Oh yes. That's what I want to blather about.
Normally I watch absolutely frickin' ludicrous movies so I can rip on them.
"Two Headed Shark Attack" and the like.
Different last night.
Watched a bevy of old "good" movies.

"Things to Come" 1936
"The Way Ahead" 1944
"It Came From Outer Space" 1953

And "It. The Terror from Outer Space" 1958
Now this is a good movie.
Sorry to bring billy goats into this, but. But...
There are some serious "Wait. What? WTF?" moments in this movie that deserve mention.
So what's this movie about anyway?

Well this dude is the last survivor of an expedition to Mars.
His mates all got grabbed by some strange entity one by one.
In any case, the relief expedition arrives, pick him up and starts to return to Earth.
But they had an extra passenger.
The "thing/entity/badass alien" had hitched a ride. 
So ensues the standard battle between the crew and the almost indestructible thing.
Now it wouldn't have been so bad really. 
The acting was very good. 
The sets were good. 
The effects were good. 
The movie hailed from the 50s military-industrial complex world we have forgotten about today. 
So all the crew are armed to the frickin' teeth.

I just want you to think about this. 
I grew up in that world, and you young whipper snappers have no frickin' idea what it was like.
Frickin' guns, tanks, nukes, large clanky killing things every frickin' where.
For example I remember whooping at a Vulcan flying overhead.
It had a Blue Steel clearly visible in it's belly.
Frickin' mega-thermo-nuke bastard. There in the sky. Just overhead. In a jet.
And once my father showed me how to field strip his FN.
As a Christmas present.
That world.


At one point, the crew are standing about shocked at the fact that some bad ass alien has just crapped on them.
Then one crew member points at a box.
With the word "GRENADES" stenciled on it.
Why the frickin' hell does a spaceship have grenades on board?
They then festoon, and I'm not using that word blithely, FESTOON two air shafts with about 40 grenades.
What the frickin' hell is that ships hull made of?

They all go off. 
It doesn't work.
This bad ass alien is immune to grenades.
They are all frickin' armed to the teeth with .45 calibre pistols, Tommy guns and Garand M1 rifles.
This isn't a space ship it's a frickin' space marine assault craft!

They shoot enough ammunition that would mean the frickin' alien wouldn't be able to stand upright for all the bullets laying around.
It doesn't work.

So one crew member suggests gas.
Gas? What frickin' gas?
Apparently he "knocked it up on the trip to avoid boredom".
Frickin' tons of it.

FYI: I do not want this man on any international flight I take.

Anyway, they unload enough mustard gas into the level with the alien to suffocate a European city.
It doesn't work.

They try electrifying the ladders.
It doesn't work.

So there they are trapped in the top of the ship.
Facing certain death.
And the alien bad ass is climbing up to them.
And they have...
Wait for it...
They've got a frickin' bazooka?

It doesn't work.
They finally dispatch the frickin' alien by evacuating all the oxygen in the ship.

That works.
Erm... It's never explained how they get home of course.
A dog barks.
Everyone laughs.

Who was the quartermaster for this trip? Some "Scot Mc-Nutter-Looney-Mc-F**k" I'm thinking.
"Ah yes. Now ye'll be needin' some weaponry. I've packed some basics. VX, Tabun and the like. But also a 45 calibre pistol for each of you, several M1 rifles, a few Thompson sub-machine guns, 60 or so grenades, a bazooka, flamethrower and some assorted maces, broadswords, pikes and a walking tank. Now I know that sounds like a lot, but it's just the basics mind. If this was a military expedition we'd be adding gatling guns, missiles and a company of marines. But you're only a rescue mission, so you just need the basics. Now don't complain about the weight... We've included two nuclear reactors and just enough oxygen to get you there and back."
But it was a good movie.
4 out of 5 stars.
Cheered me up somewhat.

Actually... Now I think about it... 
Let's lobby NASA to allow crew to carry guns. 
Lots of guns! 
Yeah, that works. 
Let's see the replacement shuttle with a pair of 20mm mini-guns mounted on it. 
Let's go back to the days when astronauts all had pistols at their sides. 
Works for me. 
And after all we're not that far from it.
Most commercial air liner pilots have access to pistols and ammunition. 
So why not extend that a bit...
For example, why the heck didn't curiosity have gatling guns and missiles?
"What's that over there? Some interesting geological formation! Let's blow the shit out of it! Oh wait! Is that a foreign space craft landing on our frickin' Mars? Let loose the missiles!"
Now that would have tripled the audience and got the US government on side for more funding.

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