Things someone else just wanted to say......

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Tue Jul 12, 2016 12:51 pm



To judge from Black Lives Matter protesters and their media and political allies, you would think that killer cops pose the biggest threat to young black men today. But this perception, like almost everything else that many people think they know about fatal police shootings, is wrong.

The Washington Post has been gathering data on fatal police shootings over the past year and a half to correct acknowledged deficiencies in federal tallies. The emerging data should open many eyes.

For starters, fatal police shootings make up a much larger proportion of white and Hispanic homicide deaths than black homicide deaths. According to the Post database, in 2015 officers killed 662 whites and Hispanics, and 258 blacks. (The overwhelming majority of all those police-shooting victims were attacking the officer, often with a gun.) Using the 2014 homicide numbers as an approximation of 2015’s, those 662 white and Hispanic victims of police shootings would make up 12% of all white and Hispanic homicide deaths. That is three times the proportion of black deaths that result from police shootings.

The lower proportion of black deaths due to police shootings can be attributed to the lamentable black-on-black homicide rate. There were 6,095 black homicide deaths in 2014—the most recent year for which such data are available—compared with 5,397 homicide deaths for whites and Hispanics combined. Almost all of those black homicide victims had black killers.

Police officers—of all races—are also disproportionately endangered by black assailants. Over the past decade, according to FBI data, 40% of cop killers have been black. Officers are killed by blacks at a rate 2.5 times higher than the rate at which blacks are killed by police.

Some may find evidence of police bias in the fact that blacks make up 26% of the police-shooting victims, compared with their 13% representation in the national population. But as residents of poor black neighborhoods know too well, violent crimes are disproportionately committed by blacks. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, blacks were charged with 62% of all robberies, 57% of murders and 45% of assaults in the 75 largest U.S. counties in 2009, though they made up roughly 15% of the population there.

Such a concentration of criminal violence in minority communities means that officers will be disproportionately confronting armed and often resisting suspects in those communities, raising officers’ own risk of using lethal force.

The Black Lives Matter movement claims that white officers are especially prone to shooting innocent blacks due to racial bias, but this too is a myth. A March 2015 Justice Department report on the Philadelphia Police Department found that black and Hispanic officers were much more likely than white officers to shoot blacks based on “threat misperception”—that is, the mistaken belief that a civilian is armed.

A 2015 study by University of Pennsylvania criminologist Greg Ridgeway, formerly acting director of the National Institute of Justice, found that, at a crime scene where gunfire is involved, black officers in the New York City Police Department were 3.3 times more likely to discharge their weapons than other officers at the scene.

The Black Lives Matter movement has been stunningly successful in changing the subject from the realities of violent crime. The world knows the name of Michael Brown but not Tyshawn Lee, a 9-year-old black child lured into an alley and killed by gang members in Chicago last fall. Tyshawn was one of dozens of black children gunned down in America last year. The Baltimore Sun reported on Jan. 1: “Blood was shed in Baltimore at an unprecedented pace in 2015, with mostly young, black men shot to death in a near-daily crush of violence.”


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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Tue Jul 12, 2016 8:20 pm







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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  pinhedz on Wed Jul 13, 2016 11:11 am

“We went through the revolution of Granite [1990], the revolution of orange [2004] and then the revolution of Maidan, so I know what to expect. … These people are of the old generation, of the old type of thinking, of the old connections, and of the old system, …we know when they are just handing us an already made decision. …
If they finally proposed someone from outside their system I might change my mind.”
   


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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Sun Jul 24, 2016 9:30 am





One of the greatest science fiction franchises of all time celebrates its 50th birthday this year, and the festivities reach their zenith as Star Trek Beyond — the 13th outing for the crew of the starship Enterprise — hits theaters this weekend. The third chapter in a rebooted incarnation of the original Star Trek television and film cast of characters, it hopes to finally win over Star Trek fans who have thus far had mixed reactions to the reboot while further expanding the appeal of the franchise among mainstream filmgoers.

The Star Trek franchise hadn’t hit the $200 million mark during it’s first 31 years of 10 feature films. But in 2009, the series reboot leapt past $200 million territory at warp speed and scored north of $385 million. The sequel Star Trek Into Darkness upped the ante with a global haul of $467 million. Both of those films likewise enjoyed mostly positive critical reception and high audience scores, revitalizing the franchise for the modern era.

Star Trek Beyond has the best reception of the reboot series of films, and the third-best Rotten Tomatoes score. Praise is high for the film, and I expect audience reactions to mirror the critical success. The crowd-pleasing nature of the film and such strong positive buzz should help its box office prospects among mainstream audiences who already helped the franchise earn back to back box office increases for the previous two releases. However, tracking suggests that despite those advantages, the film appears headed for a smaller opening than its two predecessors.

Like everyone, I expect an opening weekend in the $55 million range, and legs about equal to those of the previous two films. A low-end 2.5x multiplier gets it to $137 million domestic and presumably $275+ million worldwide — not the territory it wants to wind up in, but this is surely the lowest possible outcome. A 3x multiplier would translate into a $330 million final tally, which is a considerable comedown from the 2009 and 2013 films. I’m hoping, however, that the significant increase in foreign box office from the 2009 to the 2013 film is a sign of growing overseas Star Trek fandom, and if so then a continued boost in those markets could help the film toward something closer to $350+ million. Should it prove more popular with domestic viewers and earn strong word of mouth surpassing that of the previous two movies, then maybe we wind up with a slightly higher multiplier and a final cume in the $375 million vicinity.

The math suggests the box office potential for the series seems to have a ceiling, since after so many years the actual ticket sales and high audience scores haven’t been able to push the film beyond a certain degree of popularity. It’s popular, don’t get me wrong, but it reminds me of the situation faced by the X-Men franchise, which couldn’t top the $500 million bar until scoring big success with the breakout X-Men: Days of Future Past, only to settle back toward the $500-600 million range with the follow-up X-Men: Apocalypse.

X-Men pretty much got their maximum exposure and audience buy-in with Days of Future Past, and revealed a likely high-end ceiling for the franchise somewhere in the $700 million range while the new average will probably wind up being roughly $500-600 million going forward, give or take.

So applying that thinking to Star Trek, I think we haven’t necessarily seen the series reach its full box office potential yet, but we’re getting close, and I suspect the comfortable settling-in range (after a breakout entry that reaches full potential) could wind up being in the $400 million range, give or take a few million. Meanwhile, whatever breakout full-potential success Star Trek might achieve will probably be closer to the $500 million range, not the $700 million of X-Men. But hey, anything’s possible, as X-Men clearly showed us.

The lesson there, though, is to try to make the best possible Star Trek movies while recognizing a best-case ceiling of around $500 million, which suggests expenses need to be kept under control. No $200 million production budgets, in other words. The $150 million budget for the 2009 film should set the standard in terms of spending, and ideally it would be possible to deliver the goods on a slightly lower budget, perhaps in the $130 million range.

Now, let’s get to the full review — read on, and find out where Star Trek Beyond ranks compared to the rest of the series!

Yesterday, I ranked all of the Star Trek movies and TV shows to pick the best and worst from the franchise’s 50 year history. My list excluded Star Trek Beyond, since obviously I didn’t want to let the cat out of the bag until my full review was published. But now, I can tell you Star Trek Beyond will take the #3 spot on my list, bumping everything else on the list down one spot. Yes, it’s really that good.



Star Trek Beyond maintains the best aspects of the first two reboot films, but ups the humor and — most importantly — the character development and relationships. The result is far more emotional impact than either of the previous reboot entries, and more than any of the Next Generation films. You have to go all the way back to the very best pictures from the original cast’s run of movies to find comparable emotion and characterization.

Which means Beyond finally brings to the new cast that crucial tone and personality to make it the sort of Star Trek story fully faithful to the original cast and series. This is the film that will probably win over most Star Trek fans who previously didn’t take to the reboots yet, and anyone who hasn’t seen a Star Trek film before will find lots to love and plenty of reasons to come back next time.

The cast give their best performances to date, settling into their roles and finally moving past establishing themselves as new iterations of these characters. When Kirk and McCoy share a private moment, when Spock and McCoy share lots of time bickering, and when Kirk and Spock admire one another and express their friendship in various ways, its familiar and what we’ve been waiting for. Uhura and Spock meanwhile have a relationship that isn’t familiar from the original series, but we’ve seen it develop over the prior films and it takes a new turn this time that cements it within the larger narratives of both characters.

The action sequences are exceptional, and rather than feeling simply like big action set pieces around which the story was shaped to justify the visual extravaganza as popcorn fun, the action is approached as storytelling — there’s a fantastic chase sequence where characters run around through the remains of a damaged ship, and the camera swoops around and finds them at different levels and spots within the wreckage, then the stakes are raised and the ship is moving in a particularly dizzying way that sends everyone rolling and walking up walls, and then everything flips again. But rather than just being an elaborate chase, the characters are there for a specific and very good reason, and their pursuit and dialogue advances the plot while it all plays out within a larger context of action and visual effects taking place around them.

This distinction is important, because it informs how the filmmaker approaches the shots and action. A fistfight confrontation is used to explain why a collection of other characters are on a certain planet and why they are behaving in an aggressive, hostile manner toward Scotty, so it imparts information and quickly demonstrates the desperation of even background characters in the story due to the circumstances bringing them all to this particular world.

Good writing and good directing can achieve this sort of balance between the story needs and the pure cinematic need for action and visual effects in blockbuster filmmaking. The story doesn’t simply stop for a few minutes to make way for an action-driven CGI-fest, the story continues apace and the action has to feed the story and advance the characterizations and plot — a simple enough concept in filmmaking and storytelling, yet one too few blockbusters seem to fully appreciate or pay attention to.

Star Trek Beyond doesn’t just pay attention, it’s among the very best examples of such story/character-driven action in the entire franchise history and stands out as one of the best examples among summer releases for the past decade. I can appreciate a simple, straightforward action-driven popcorn vehicle, and I can even excuse and enjoy big set-piece moments that stop a blockbuster’s story for requisite action spectacle while only in the narrowest sense “advancing the story.” But it’s always better when the action has more direct connection to the characters and story, so the more a picture allows action to serve more of a role than just thrilling eye-candy, the better.

This film also looks great, a vivid, bright presentation that benefits from having a lot more outdoor settings and varied locations than we’ve seen in the rebooted series so far. We get multiple types of planetary environments, different ships with very different technologies, and a cool space station and city with some of the most awesome design work of any Star Trek film or location. There are also lots more aliens, so unique and with such imagination, to create greater sense of a vast universe teaming with life. In short, Star Trek Beyond is visually and environmentally more textured and diverse than any previous Star Trek movie, and all of this is achieved with gorgeous visuals, effects, and colors.

As for the story, it’s exactly the sort of complex, serious set of sci-fi concepts fans love about Star Trek. And as noted, there are some unexpected twists involved — especially if you avoid the trailers, which I highly recommend, to maintain the mystery and the impact of certain reveals — that make it one of the few Star Trek films to really hold big surprises you really won’t see coming unless somebody spoils them for you first. The way in which it provides an unexpected link between the reboot cast and the original cast is simple yet powerful, and it’s a moment sure to choke up more than a few fans in the audience. The link resonates throughout the film even before the precise moment arrives, and uses subplots for different characters as the foundation upon which the more literal link rests.

The only thing I’ll say about the actual plot is that it slowly unveils a whole background and mythology for the antagonists, their world, and a particular weapon that contributes to the sense this is a gigantic universe with rich history stretching far back in time for limitless numbers of alien species. This is, again, the sort of thing fans love about the best stories from the 50 years of Star Trek history, and it’s exciting to see Star Trek Beyond is capable of this sort of original, smart, compelling storytelling. It bodes well for the franchise going forward, and is unfortunately in contrast to the several Next Generation series of films (which was a shocker, in light of how original and terrific that TV series was).

If you’re a fan of the previous reboot films, you’ll love Star Trek Beyond. If you’re a Star Trek fan who didn’t feel a connection to the previous reboot films, you’ll probably finally feel that connection to the reboot series this time and love Star Trek Beyond. If you’ve seen a Star Trek movie before, you’ll probably love Star Trek Beyond. It’s very hard for me to imagine any Star Trek fans not at least “liking” Star Trek Beyond, even if they don’t love it as much as I did. And it’s hard for me to imagine most mainstream audiences not enjoying the heck out of it at the very least, even if they don’t outright love it.

Star Trek Beyond is the third-best Star Trek film of all time, creating the sort of emotional connection and familiar, powerful characterizations we loved in the original series while delivering top-notch action and the best Star Trek movie villain since First Contact’s Borg Queen. And for audiences underwhelmed by a lot of other recent summer releases that failed to make a better, bigger impression, Star Trek Beyond offers a much-needed dose of fun, funny, exciting blockbuster entertainment.

Box office figures and tallies based on data via Box Office Mojo , Rentrak, and TheNumbers.

Please follow me on Twitter, on Google+, and on Quora. Please read my blog. Please listen to my new Popular Opinion Podcast (POP) with Sean Gerber. Please.


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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Sun Jul 24, 2016 6:29 pm

Yakima Canutt wrote:



One of the greatest science fiction franchises of all time celebrates its 50th birthday this year, and the festivities reach their zenith as Star Trek Beyond — the 13th outing for the crew of the starship Enterprise — hits theaters this weekend. The third chapter in a rebooted incarnation of the original Star Trek television and film cast of characters, it hopes to finally win over Star Trek fans who have thus far had mixed reactions to the reboot while further expanding the appeal of the franchise among mainstream filmgoers.

The Star Trek franchise hadn’t hit the $200 million mark during it’s first 31 years of 10 feature films. But in 2009, the series reboot leapt past $200 million territory at warp speed and scored north of $385 million. The sequel Star Trek Into Darkness upped the ante with a global haul of $467 million. Both of those films likewise enjoyed mostly positive critical reception and high audience scores, revitalizing the franchise for the modern era.

Star Trek Beyond has the best reception of the reboot series of films, and the third-best Rotten Tomatoes score. Praise is high for the film, and I expect audience reactions to mirror the critical success. The crowd-pleasing nature of the film and such strong positive buzz should help its box office prospects among mainstream audiences who already helped the franchise earn back to back box office increases for the previous two releases. However, tracking suggests that despite those advantages, the film appears headed for a smaller opening than its two predecessors.

Like everyone, I expect an opening weekend in the $55 million range, and legs about equal to those of the previous two films. A low-end 2.5x multiplier gets it to $137 million domestic and presumably $275+ million worldwide — not the territory it wants to wind up in, but this is surely the lowest possible outcome. A 3x multiplier would translate into a $330 million final tally, which is a considerable comedown from the 2009 and 2013 films. I’m hoping, however, that the significant increase in foreign box office from the 2009 to the 2013 film is a sign of growing overseas Star Trek fandom, and if so then a continued boost in those markets could help the film toward something closer to $350+ million. Should it prove more popular with domestic viewers and earn strong word of mouth surpassing that of the previous two movies, then maybe we wind up with a slightly higher multiplier and a final cume in the $375 million vicinity.

The math suggests the box office potential for the series seems to have a ceiling, since after so many years the actual ticket sales and high audience scores haven’t been able to push the film beyond a certain degree of popularity. It’s popular, don’t get me wrong, but it reminds me of the situation faced by the X-Men franchise, which couldn’t top the $500 million bar until scoring big success with the breakout X-Men: Days of Future Past, only to settle back toward the $500-600 million range with the follow-up X-Men: Apocalypse.

X-Men pretty much got their maximum exposure and audience buy-in with Days of Future Past, and revealed a likely high-end ceiling for the franchise somewhere in the $700 million range while the new average will probably wind up being roughly $500-600 million going forward, give or take.

So applying that thinking to Star Trek, I think we haven’t necessarily seen the series reach its full box office potential yet, but we’re getting close, and I suspect the comfortable settling-in range (after a breakout entry that reaches full potential) could wind up being in the $400 million range, give or take a few million. Meanwhile, whatever breakout full-potential success Star Trek might achieve will probably be closer to the $500 million range, not the $700 million of X-Men. But hey, anything’s possible, as X-Men clearly showed us.

The lesson there, though, is to try to make the best possible Star Trek movies while recognizing a best-case ceiling of around $500 million, which suggests expenses need to be kept under control. No $200 million production budgets, in other words. The $150 million budget for the 2009 film should set the standard in terms of spending, and ideally it would be possible to deliver the goods on a slightly lower budget, perhaps in the $130 million range.

Now, let’s get to the full review — read on, and find out where Star Trek Beyond ranks compared to the rest of the series!

Yesterday, I ranked all of the Star Trek movies and TV shows to pick the best and worst from the franchise’s 50 year history. My list excluded Star Trek Beyond, since obviously I didn’t want to let the cat out of the bag until my full review was published. But now, I can tell you Star Trek Beyond will take the #3 spot on my list, bumping everything else on the list down one spot. Yes, it’s really that good.



Star Trek Beyond maintains the best aspects of the first two reboot films, but ups the humor and — most importantly — the character development and relationships. The result is far more emotional impact than either of the previous reboot entries, and more than any of the Next Generation films. You have to go all the way back to the very best pictures from the original cast’s run of movies to find comparable emotion and characterization.

Which means Beyond finally brings to the new cast that crucial tone and personality to make it the sort of Star Trek story fully faithful to the original cast and series. This is the film that will probably win over most Star Trek fans who previously didn’t take to the reboots yet, and anyone who hasn’t seen a Star Trek film before will find lots to love and plenty of reasons to come back next time.

The cast give their best performances to date, settling into their roles and finally moving past establishing themselves as new iterations of these characters. When Kirk and McCoy share a private moment, when Spock and McCoy share lots of time bickering, and when Kirk and Spock admire one another and express their friendship in various ways, its familiar and what we’ve been waiting for. Uhura and Spock meanwhile have a relationship that isn’t familiar from the original series, but we’ve seen it develop over the prior films and it takes a new turn this time that cements it within the larger narratives of both characters.

The action sequences are exceptional, and rather than feeling simply like big action set pieces around which the story was shaped to justify the visual extravaganza as popcorn fun, the action is approached as storytelling — there’s a fantastic chase sequence where characters run around through the remains of a damaged ship, and the camera swoops around and finds them at different levels and spots within the wreckage, then the stakes are raised and the ship is moving in a particularly dizzying way that sends everyone rolling and walking up walls, and then everything flips again. But rather than just being an elaborate chase, the characters are there for a specific and very good reason, and their pursuit and dialogue advances the plot while it all plays out within a larger context of action and visual effects taking place around them.

This distinction is important, because it informs how the filmmaker approaches the shots and action. A fistfight confrontation is used to explain why a collection of other characters are on a certain planet and why they are behaving in an aggressive, hostile manner toward Scotty, so it imparts information and quickly demonstrates the desperation of even background characters in the story due to the circumstances bringing them all to this particular world.

Good writing and good directing can achieve this sort of balance between the story needs and the pure cinematic need for action and visual effects in blockbuster filmmaking. The story doesn’t simply stop for a few minutes to make way for an action-driven CGI-fest, the story continues apace and the action has to feed the story and advance the characterizations and plot — a simple enough concept in filmmaking and storytelling, yet one too few blockbusters seem to fully appreciate or pay attention to.

Star Trek Beyond doesn’t just pay attention, it’s among the very best examples of such story/character-driven action in the entire franchise history and stands out as one of the best examples among summer releases for the past decade. I can appreciate a simple, straightforward action-driven popcorn vehicle, and I can even excuse and enjoy big set-piece moments that stop a blockbuster’s story for requisite action spectacle while only in the narrowest sense “advancing the story.” But it’s always better when the action has more direct connection to the characters and story, so the more a picture allows action to serve more of a role than just thrilling eye-candy, the better.

This film also looks great, a vivid, bright presentation that benefits from having a lot more outdoor settings and varied locations than we’ve seen in the rebooted series so far. We get multiple types of planetary environments, different ships with very different technologies, and a cool space station and city with some of the most awesome design work of any Star Trek film or location. There are also lots more aliens, so unique and with such imagination, to create greater sense of a vast universe teaming with life. In short, Star Trek Beyond is visually and environmentally more textured and diverse than any previous Star Trek movie, and all of this is achieved with gorgeous visuals, effects, and colors.

As for the story, it’s exactly the sort of complex, serious set of sci-fi concepts fans love about Star Trek. And as noted, there are some unexpected twists involved — especially if you avoid the trailers, which I highly recommend, to maintain the mystery and the impact of certain reveals — that make it one of the few Star Trek films to really hold big surprises you really won’t see coming unless somebody spoils them for you first. The way in which it provides an unexpected link between the reboot cast and the original cast is simple yet powerful, and it’s a moment sure to choke up more than a few fans in the audience. The link resonates throughout the film even before the precise moment arrives, and uses subplots for different characters as the foundation upon which the more literal link rests.

The only thing I’ll say about the actual plot is that it slowly unveils a whole background and mythology for the antagonists, their world, and a particular weapon that contributes to the sense this is a gigantic universe with rich history stretching far back in time for limitless numbers of alien species. This is, again, the sort of thing fans love about the best stories from the 50 years of Star Trek history, and it’s exciting to see Star Trek Beyond is capable of this sort of original, smart, compelling storytelling. It bodes well for the franchise going forward, and is unfortunately in contrast to the several Next Generation series of films (which was a shocker, in light of how original and terrific that TV series was).

If you’re a fan of the previous reboot films, you’ll love Star Trek Beyond. If you’re a Star Trek fan who didn’t feel a connection to the previous reboot films, you’ll probably finally feel that connection to the reboot series this time and love Star Trek Beyond. If you’ve seen a Star Trek movie before, you’ll probably love Star Trek Beyond. It’s very hard for me to imagine any Star Trek fans not at least “liking” Star Trek Beyond, even if they don’t love it as much as I did. And it’s hard for me to imagine most mainstream audiences not enjoying the heck out of it at the very least, even if they don’t outright love it.

Star Trek Beyond is the third-best Star Trek film of all time, creating the sort of emotional connection and familiar, powerful characterizations we loved in the original series while delivering top-notch action and the best Star Trek movie villain since First Contact’s Borg Queen. And for audiences underwhelmed by a lot of other recent summer releases that failed to make a better, bigger impression, Star Trek Beyond offers a much-needed dose of fun, funny, exciting blockbuster entertainment.

Box office figures and tallies based on data via Box Office Mojo , Rentrak, and TheNumbers.

Please follow me on Twitter, on Google+, and on Quora.  Please read my blog.  Please listen to my new Popular Opinion Podcast (POP) with Sean Gerber. Please.




dude, what is so tuff about adjusting for inflation?  

1 Star Trek Par. $299,185,800 - $257,730,019 - 5/8/09
2 Star Trek: The Motion Picture Par. $283,808,100 - $82,258,456 - 12/7/79
3 Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home Par. $250,013,900 - $109,713,132 - 11/26/86
4 Star Trek Into Darkness Par. $236,422,800 - $228,778,661 -5/16/13
5 Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan Par. $232,444,300 - $78,912,963 - 6/4/82

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Sun Jul 24, 2016 7:14 pm


Star Trek Beyond began its domestic box office voyage yesterday with a $22.5 million Friday gross, which includes $5.5m in Thursday previews. The Paramount/Viacom VIAB +0.55% release, produced by Paramount, Skydance Entertainment, and Bad Robot, is the third entry in the rebooted Star Trek franchise and the thirteenth Star Trek movie since 1979. The $185m production (cheaper than the $190m Star Trek into Darkness) reunites the core cast (Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Karl Urban, Zoe Saldana, John Cho, Simon Pegg, and Anton Yelchin) and pits them against Idris Elba on an unfamiliar alien planet. Like a lot of debuts this summer, this one is big, one of the biggest of the season, without necessarily being a home run.

To wit, the $22.5 million Friday is larger than the $21m Friday for Star Trek into Darkness but that 2013 sequel opened on a Thursday and had $35m in the can by the time Saturday rolled along. And the 2009 Star Trek began with $4m in Thursday previews and a $26m Friday for a $30m “opening day.” So, as was somewhat predicted, this is a comparative comedown. Still, it is the third-biggest opening day of the summer for a live-action film and the second-biggest opening day of the year for a non-comic book superhero live-action film behind only The Jungle Book.

The well-reviewed installment was directed by Justin Lin, who took over when J.J. Abrams went off to direct Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The film didn’t have anywhere near the heat of the first two films, and the marketing didn’t give much of an indication of what the movie was about beyond “the crew is back, and the Enterprise is getting destroyed again.”  



Oddly enough, Paramount didn’t do much to trumpet the whole “50th anniversary of Star Trek“ thing like Sony did back in 2012 with Skyfall. Yes, they had a fan event in mid-May where they unveiled the second trailer, but otherwise they somewhat went on radio silence between the first teaser trailer in December of 2015 (which didn’t go over well with the hardcore fans who felt it wasn’t Star Trek enough) and that second trailer (which was a more conventional “sweeping epic” sale) on May 20th.

The good news is that I would argue that doing most of the marketing in the last two months didn’t hurt the movie. This wasn’t necessarily a case where a third Star Trek reboot was going to go nuts in North America and vastly outperform its immediate predecessors. This franchise arguably peaked in buzz back in May of 2009. If Star Trek Beyond ends up having legs, and it very well might, it will be a good example “wait until the last month” marketing. By the end, most of the media was focused on the strong reviews and the reveal that John Cho’s Sulu was gay, a reveal that unexpectedly did not please original actor George Takei. Now hopefully the narrative can shift to “Hey, fans really like this movie and you will too!”

The relative comparisons in play (Star Trek, Lucy, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Ant-Man, Pixels, Mission: Impossible Rogue Nation, etc.), giving this thirteenth Star Trek film a likely opening weekend of between $56 million and $61m.  Both would be below the first two Trek reboot entries ($79.2m Fri-Sun and $83.7m Thurs-Sun) but still the third-biggest live-action debut of the summer and the second-biggest “non-superhero” live-action debut of the year behind The Jungle Book. Like Ghostbusters and The Legend of Tarzan, this is an expensive film that snagged arguably a “best case scenario” debut winecessarilysarily putting the studio at complete ease.

The last two Star Trek movies were both relatively leggy after their mid-May debuts despite somewhat crowded post-opening frames, so the hope is that this relatively crowdpleasing installment goes the distance (again, like Rogue Nation) and thrives alongside Jason Bourne and Suicide Squad. The issue is that it is not the last big action movie of the summer, as I imagine those two biggies will be better received than Fantastic Four and The Man from U.N.C.L.E. And, as always, the real box office battle will take place overseas. Paramount is releasing the film in around 46% of the globe this weekend, so we’ll have a better idea of overseas grosses tomorrow.

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Mon Jul 25, 2016 9:11 am


expecting Star Trek to do peak Marvel (or Star Wars) numbers is bonkers - those properties have loads of product, shows, books, games, aimed at youths, developing the kiddie market - Star Trek currently has close to NONE of that (not to mention that the bulk of Star Trek - 726 TV episodes - would be considered slow or boring to juveniles of today)

the lack of merch, games etc. - partly this is JJ Abrams doing - he was exasperated at the rights sharing between CBS and Paramount and gave up - I think a dumb move

so the question is why is Paramount spending 185 mill on a franchise with currently negligible kiddie appeal? BECAUSE PARAMOUNT HAS FEW OTHER OPTIONS FOR TENTPOLE PROPERTIES

thus the 60 mill opening weekend is about as good as one could expect, and if Paramount/Bad Robot wants more, they should have been developing the youth market - certainly the 2009 Abrams Star Trek was dumbed down enough/actioned up for such purposes


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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Mon Jul 25, 2016 10:57 am



Aldo's Story

Like most great family restaurants, Aldo's Pizza began as a dream for founder Aldo Scaliucci. When he opened his pizzeria on Norfolk St. in 1958 it was one of the first in town. It was a simple idea - serve great pizza made with the freshest ingredients. But what really set the restaurant apart was the famous thin crust. The secret recipe for crispy crust that Aldo brought with him from Italy made an authentic, delicious pizza. The quality and taste kept people coming back, and today Aldo's is the oldest operating pizzeria in San Mateo.

As San Mateo grew so did the business, expanding to 4 locations under the name Pee-Wee's Pizza. As pizza become more and more popular, word began to spread about the great pizza served by Aldo. He was so proud that changed the name of his restaurant from Pee-Wee's to his own name. When Aldo retired he passed along his secret recipe so customers could continue to enjoy terrific Italian pizza in the neighborhood.

When Manuel and Ana bought Aldo's in 1986, they had been looking for a neighborhood pizza parlor that they could run as a family business. One taste of Aldo's original pizza and they knew that they had found their place. They continued Aldo's tradition of using only the freshest, highest-quality ingredients. They also knew that different people have different tastes, so they began expanding the menu to include other Italian dishes like scrumptious pasta and calzones, as well as traditional favorites like hamburgers, sandwiches and salads. But the most popular addition was three new types of crusts, one for every taste. Manny put his decades in the pizza business to good use. He spent countless hours in the kitchen to develop the recipes for a perfect deep-dish Chicago style, a healthy whole-wheat version of the original thin crust, and his hearty but thin California style.

But Manny and Ana didn't stop there. They added a delivery service to make it more convenient for customers to get their pizza. When customers began asking for unique toppings and combinations, Manny listened and created a variety of specialty pizzas such as the Star of India, the Greek Favorite and the Ultimate BBQ Chicken.

Times have changed since Aldo opened one of the first pizza parlors in town. But at Aldo's the quality and flavor hasn't changed.

In the Community

The Lucas family at Aldo's Pizza are proud to be a part of San Mateo. We give back to the community in a variety of ways.

Aldo's works with the Samaritan House Food Bank to collect canned goods for the needy. Donate a canned good and get $2 off a large pizza. We also sponsor local recreational sports teams in the community such as softball, soccer and volleyball.

Aldo's Pizza partners with local schools to turn the restaurant into a hands-on learning experience. School children have a great time on field trips to Aldo's Pizza, where Manny shows them how the pizza they love to eat is made. The kids get a chance to see how the kitchen operates and even make their own pizzas!


Yakima Canutt

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Fri Jul 29, 2016 10:58 am

It was among the worst-kept movie secrets of 2013: the identity of Benedict Cumberbatch's villain in Star Trek Into Darkness. Long before the movie's release, speculation had swirled around the character's anonymous-sounding name: John Harrison. Clearly, fans realized, it was a cover for something far more dramatic.

Wasn't it more likely that Cumberbatch was actually lined up to play a recognizable character from the Star Trek canon? Some suggested Harrison might actually be Charlie Evans, the sinister teenage boy with psychic powers who terrorised the Enterprise in the second aired Original Series episode, "Charlie X." Others suggested Cumberbatch might be taking on the role of Khan Noonien Singh, a character first introduced in series one's "Space Seed."

The broader consensus, however, was that Cumberbatch would play Gary Mitchell, a Starfleet commander and former friend of Captain Kirk who's granted increasingly godlike powers in the Original Series episode, "Where No Man Has Gone Before." Indeed, Star Trek Magazine had concluded that there was a 75 percent chance of Cumberbatch playing Mitchell in its 172nd issue. Bones actor Karl Urban added weight to the theory when, in a July 2012 issue of SFX, he said of Cumberbatch, "I think his Gary Mitchell is going to be exemplary."

Star Trek Into Darkness co-writer denied that Mitchell was in the screenplay, arguing that he couldn't come to terms with the idea of an "ultimate villain named Gary." But then again, lots of people connected to the movie also denied that John Harrison was in fact Khan - including Cumberbatch himself, who told Access Hollywood in December 2012, "I play a character called John and not that other name [Khan]."

With hindsight, there were actually clues buried in Star Trek history for those with sharp enough eyes. Back when Khan Noonien Singh was still just a character on a page in the mid-1960s, he was a Caucasian villain with the name Harald Ericsson. Put the front half of his first name with the second half of his surname, and you get Harisson - not too far from the John Harrison bandied about by JJ Abrams and his team in the run up to Star Trek Into Darkness.

As we now know, John Harrison really was genius super-villain Khan, thawed out, given a new identity and put to work on designing high-tech weapons by Peter Weller's Admiral Marcus. The revelation was more widely greeted with gasps than groans by movie-goers, and JJ Abrams himself later admitted that hiding Khan's identity was a mistake.

"When we did Star Trek Into Darkness," Abrams said in 2015, "we decided that we weren’t going to tell people that Benedict Cumberbatch was playing Khan. And that was a mistake, because the audience was like, 'we know he’s playing Khan'."

What made the revelation doubly strange was Cumberbatch's casting as Khan when so many fans know the character as a Sikh villain played by Mexican actor Ricardo Montalban. Surely having a British actor with a cut-glass accent was a bit of a stretch, even in a universe where events have been shaken up by Nero's antics in the first Star Trek reboot?

Even the casting process for Star Trek Into Darkness' villain seemed a bit murky. Before Cumberbatch was given the part, Benicio Del Toro was in talks to play the then-unnamed villain. When those talks fell through, other actors considered included Edgar Ramirez and Jordi Molla. All of those actors bear at least a vague, passing resemblance to Ricardo Montalban; so why did the film's makers change tack so drastically and cast Cumberbatch instead?

It's here that an intriguing question arises. Is it possible that, behind the scenes, the makers of Star Trek Into Darkness were having trouble deciding exactly who should be its central villain? While the evidence supporting this theory is only circumstantial, there are at least a few tantalizing clues.

First, it's worth noting that it took four years for Star Trek Into Darkness to appear in cinemas, even though screenwriters Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman began to put ideas together for a sequel after the Star Trek reboot hit in 2009. Even after two years, the pair, along with returning director JJ Abrams, admitted that selecting a worthy villain for the piece was tough; "The universe created is so vast that it's hard to say one particular thing stands out," Abrams told SFX in 2010.

While Orci didn't rule out Khan as a possible villain, Kurtzman seemed to like the idea of bringing in a threat that hadn't been seen before. "Introducing a new villain in the sequel is tempting because we now have this incredible new sandbox to play in," Kurtzman said. "The trick is not to do something that's been seen before just because you think it will be a shortcut to likeability."

There were initially reports that Star Trek 2, as it was then known, would begin filming in early 2011, but by the time January of that year came around, Abrams hadn't even seen a finished script. Keen to get the project going, Paramount approved financing for Star Trek 2 while the script was being worked on; Orci announced that a first draft had finally been finished in April 2011.

Speaking to Total Film, however, Orci said that that "We'll be working and tweaking that story through shooting. This time we don't have a strike, so we'll actually be able to change things on set."

What's strange is that, although that first draft was finished in April 2011, casting didn't begin until November that year - as pointed out by this exhaustive article at Comic Book Movie. By this point, Star Trek 2 had been moved to its new summer 2013 release date, and rumours began circulating that Khan was the villain of the piece. As we've already covered, Del Toro wound up departing from the role, with Vulture's sources suggesting that a salary disagreement was the root of the problem.

Also in November, Peter Weller and Alice Eve were cast in unnamed roles; Variety reported that Eve's character would be "new to the Star Trek universe."

In the final film, Alice Eve wound up playing Carol Marcus - not a new character at all, but an established one who famously appeared as Kirk's love interest in Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan. Could it be that Eve signed up for the Star Trek reboot sequel without knowing who she was playing? Or alternately, that her role changed after she was cast?

When the first trailers for Star Trek Into Darkness emerged in 2012, many noted that Alice Eve's character looked mighty familiar - not as Carol Marcus, but as Dr Elizabeth Dehner, a major character in the episode "Where No Man Has Gone Before."

Now, this resemblance might not mean much  by itself, but there are other glancing similarities between Star Trek Into Darkness and "Where No Man Has Gone Before," too. (see: the CumberKhan in glass prison sequence)



Aside from the echoes in the set design, it's also arguable that Cumberbatch looks and acts far more like Gary Mitchell here than Khan Noonien Singh. While you might counter this by saying that appearances don't really mean much in this rebooted universe, consider how much time and effort the creators of the 2009 Star Trek put into finding actors who could successfully remind us of Kirk, Spock, Bones and the rest of the Enterprise crew. Why, then, do Khan and Carol Marcus look so wildly different from their counterparts in The Wrath Of Khan? Was it simply to throw fans off the scent?

Alternatively, could it be the case that Orci, Kurtzman, Damon Lindelof and Abram had more than one treatment for their sequel - one featuring Khan and Carol Marcus, the other concerning Gary Mitchell and Elizabeth Dehner?

If there was, it provided something of a quandary for Star Trek Into Darkness' makers. On one hand, "Where No Man Has Gone Before" seems like the perfect fodder for a loose movie adaptation. The story sees the Enterprise investigate a distress signal in an unknown part of space. There, the ship is struck and damaged by a huge wave of energy, which also knocks out Mitchell and Dr. Dehner.

While Dehner seems unchanged, Mitchell's eyes have turned silver. Thereafter, Mitchell begins to show signs of enhanced intellect and extra-sensory powers, which grow at an increasing rate until Kirk is forced to conclude that he has to kill his old friend before his powers become too great to control.

The writers of Star Trek Into Darkness could have done all kinds of things with this scenario, with Gary Mitchell reappearing as an old friend of Kirk's who's gone rogue after gaining otherworldly powers on the other side of the galaxy. It certainly would've given Cumberbatch a more direct link to the Enterprise than Khan, who, in an alternate Star Trek universe where the events of "Space Seed" never happened, has no prior connection at all.

The existing themes of loyalty and friendship would also have been strengthened by having Cumberbatch play Mitchell. Early in Star Trek Into Darkness, Kirk and Spock's relationship is tested when, after Kirk saves Spock from certain death, Spock betrays Kirk to his superiors for violating the Prime Directive. How much more effective would it have been, therefore, if the second half of the movie saw Kirk's loyalty to Mitchell tested past breaking point when Mitchell emerges as an all-powerful, manipulative terrorist?

There was one thing counting against the inclusion of Gary Mitchell, at least from Paramount's perspective: recognition. Orci may have said that having a villain named Gary wasn't dramatic enough, but really, it all comes down to Khan's stature as one of Star Trek's most recognizable villains. Even casual Star Trek viewers are likely to have fond memories of The Wrath Of Khan and its antagonist; a far smaller percentage would've known who Mitchell was or seen the 1966 episode in which he appeared.

An internal struggle over writing the most effective story and shoehorning in a well-known Star Trek villain might explain Into Darkness' lengthy writing process, and why the casting was so odd. Consider this hypothetical scenario:

When Del Toro, Ramirez and Molla were being considered, Khan would've been the main choice of villain. When that didn't work out, they opted for Gary Mitchell as a fall-back option and cast Cumberbatch based on his growing fame as the star of Sherlock. As filming grew closer, the movie's producers changed their minds again and insisted that Star Trek Into Darkness contain more references to The Wrath Of Khan to maximize its chances at the box office.

Even though character designs, hairstyles and sets had already been finished by that stage (post-production began before the script was even finished, remember), Elizabeth Dehner became Carol Marcus and Gary Mitchell became Khan, while their distinctive haircuts and outfits remained unchanged due to the looming start date. A jail cell set aboard the Enterprise, specifically designed to recall "Where No Man Has Gone Before" for full-on Star Trek fans, is used to imprison Khan instead of Mitchell.

Other references to the classic episode are left in Star Trek Into Darkness' script but rewritten. That opening sequence on the planet Nibiru? As originally penned, that took place on a planet called Dimorus, populated by a species of rodent-like creatures that could fire poison darts. It would've established Kirk and Mitchell's friendship and how Mitchell risked his life for Kirk, as referenced in this line from the 60s episode:

"Remember those rodent things on Dimorus? The poison darts they threw? I took one of them for you."

A couple of other plot points from the TV episode remain in modified form. In "Where No Man Has Gone Before," the Enterprise is left stranded in unknown space, just as it is in Star Trek Into Darkness. When the ship's repaired, Kirk manages to isolate Mitchell on a deserted planet and says to a crewmember, "Proceed at maximum warp to the nearest Earth base with my recommendation that this entire planet be subjected to a lethal concentration of neutron radiation." In Star Trek Into Darkness, Khan escapes to a planet in Klingon-controlled territory (Kronos), and Kirk is instructed to fire on that planet with experimental torpedoes from a safe distance.

Again, this is conjecture on my part. But based on the conflicting information given by just about everyone involved during Star Trek Into Darkness' making, and the curious echoes of "Where No Man Has Gone Before" in the finished film, it certainly feels as though Gary Mitchell was once in the movie, only to vanish like a ghost just before the cameras rolled.

While Cumberbatch's performance was an effective one, I'd also argue that he'd have made a far more interesting Gary Mitchell than an in-name-only incarnation of Khan. In fact, it isn't difficult to imagine an alternate universe not unlike the one torn open in the Star Trek reboot, where Star Trek Into Darkness would've seen Cumberbatch gradually transform from ordinary mortal into godlike being before our very eyes. Mitchell's powers of telekinesis could've been dazzling with a feature film budget, and the story could've been given a more emotional, dramatic ending than the one in the old TV show, which ended on something of an anticlimax.

At the very least, Cumberbatch would've looked amazing with silver contact lenses.

Yakima Canutt

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Sun Jul 31, 2016 4:31 pm


Star Trek Beyond opened last weekend with $59 million at the domestic box office, plus another $30m in overseas grosses. It was a solid opening by any reasonable standard, yet it was below the last two entries and perhaps smaller than it needed to be considering the $185m production budget as well as the franchise’s not-quite-surefire overseas prospects. [tho Beyond is positioned to do well in Chiner] Like a handful of films this summer, it basically has to play at peak potential just to justify itself. So, if this newfangled Star Trek is to continue as a cinematic franchise, what’s the answer? Well, go smaller and win bigger.

Here’s the weird conundrum that exists in the current Star Trek cinematic universe: The films cost so much that they are barely profitable even when they do make quite a bit of money. Yet, the massive action scenes and set pieces that demand said budgets are basically everyone’s least favorite part of any given Star Trek film. When people rave about a Star Trek movie, they are usually talking about the winning cast, the emotional payoffs, and/or the would-be social topicality. In short, nobody ever went to a Star Trek movie primarily for the action scenes.

Even if you argue that the J.J. Abrams-directed reboot needed to establish Star Trek as a big-scale, blockbuster-y franchise, that job is done and the films never actually reached true “blockbuster” ($500 million+) numbers. Star Trek made just $385m on a $150m budget in 2009 while Star Trek into Darkness made $467m on a $190m budget with a 3D bump in 2013. And now Justin Lin’s Star Trek Beyond is merely hoping that it will pull in similar numbers to the last film, even with a likely smaller (under $200m) domestic total, because it cost $185m to produce.

Fair or not, the common complaint among the fans is that this new Star Trek is too much of a conventional “bigger/faster/louder” blockbuster series. Those big-budget action scenes are causing the films’ budgets to soar beyond the point of reasonable expectations of high return on investment. There seems to be a “have your cake and eat it too” solution here. I am not saying that Star Trek in its current form should return to being a lower budget sci-fi offering. But there must be a happy medium between a $50 million cheapie and a $185m extravaganza.



Having one or two fewer action scenes, sequences that generally earn the ire of critics/fans and (I would argue) the comparative indifference of general audiences anyway, and/or somewhat toning down the scale of the existing action scenes, could potentially reduce the budget. Thus, the next Star Trek film wouldn’t have to clear $400 million worldwide just to hopefully break even or make a small profit. And if the result is a Star Trek movie that doesn’t periodically stop in its tracks for a big action sequence and is thus a comparatively better movie, everybody wins.

For the record, there are strong action beats to be found in the 13-film series. Think the terrifying Enterprise destruction scene in Star Trek Beyond or the deflector dish standoff in Star Trek: First Contact. But, for fans, these scenes are at best a bonus as opposed to the main event. Audiences are invested in the cast chemistry and the storytelling in this pumped-up Star Trek series. Even if lured by promises of spectacle, no one will complain if an otherwise good movie doesn’t have an extra phaser shoot-out or vehicle chase amid the drama and periodic outer-space ship battles.

Star Trek isn’t the only franchise that gets more from its character relationships than from its sometimes arbitrary action sequences. I adore the Harry Potter films, but I can’t think of a single “classic” action beat in all eight of those movies. The Fast & Furious franchise is equally rooted in character loyalty and action spectacle. Since comic book superhero movies now are soap operas in tights, the Marvel Cinematic Universe fans come as much for the melodrama as for the smackdowns. But those franchises do (or did) pull in blockbuster numbers that justify the enormous budgets.

The Star Trek franchise cannot carry the weight of top-tier blockbuster budgets. If it hasn’t broken out at this point, it’s probably not going to. That’s okay. There is plenty of money to be made from a mid-level franchise that still pulls in big bucks, think the shitty Sherlock Holmes films for example. If Paramount/Viacom VIAB -1.04% Inc. and Skydance Productions can manage to make a $120 million Star Trek film, one that has a bit less action and spectacle while losing little of the character development or sense of topical optimism, that would be a “yes win” scenario.

Fans will be happier with a Star Trek franchise that doesn’t feel required to be a hard action movie, general audiences will get more of a series they seem to enjoy, and Paramount will be (presumably) thrilled at the idea of a theoretical $120 million Star Trek 4 coasting to $350m worldwide. Just because Star Trek can be a near-$200m-a-pop tentpole franchise doesn’t mean it has to be. If this rebooted Star Trek series wants to live long and prosper, going cheaper and smaller is the way to please the fans and the pocketbooks in one fell swoop.

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Tue Aug 02, 2016 5:47 am


marketing budgets are huge for contempo blockbusters, but my best guess looking at the public data is that both Abrams Trek films made over 100 mill in profit for worldwide theatrical gross, and when you factor in home video sales, i think both would be considered more than "barely profitable" - but yeah, this isn't "Captain America: Age of Star Wars"

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Tue Aug 02, 2016 5:53 am


"You see, their young enter through the ears and wrap themselves around the cerebral cortex. This has the effect of rendering the victim extremely susceptible to suggestion... Later, as they grow, follows madness and death..."

- Khan Noonien Singh

At school the next day, it was all we could talk about. Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan had aired on TV the night before, and for many of us impressionable youngsters, it was the first time we'd laid eyes on the movie.

We were too young to have heard about the "Spock must not die!" fan backlash that erupted before the sequel's release in 1982. We didn't know about the film's emotional ending, which was moving in a way that few of us could have expected. And we most certainly weren't prepared for what we can only describe as That Ear Scene.

If you've seen the film, you'll know the bit I'm referring to.

Pavel Chekov (Walter Koenig) lands on a seemingly deserted planet with Captain Terrell (Paul Winfield), and discovers that it's the residence of Khan Noonien Singh (Ricardo Montalban). A genetically-manipulated genius with an alarming appetite for despotism, Khan was left in exile 15 years earlier, and he's plotting to exact his revenge of Kirk for the inadvertent death of his wife and 20 of his men. As part of his plot, Khan introduces Chekov and Terrell to his household pet: a loathsome, slug-like critter called a Ceti eel - an example of the creatures that had killed those close to him years earlier.

Grasping a couple of the creature's greasy young with a pair of tongs, Khan explains that the eels have a tendency to worm their way into their victims' ears and attach themselves to their brains. Khan takes Chekov and Terrell's space helmets and drops an eel into each one. Chekov and Terrell, held down by Khan's minions, can only gawp in fear.

"Let me introduce you to Ceti Alpha V's only remaining indigenous life form," Khan says with a grim smile. "What do you think? They've killed twenty of my people, including my beloved wife..."

Now, if you happened to be (say) a nine-year-old kid growing up in the late '80s, this was strong stuff already. We weren't yet versed in the dark world of body horror. We hadn't seen Alien, or The Exorcist, or any of those infamous movies of the '70s, though we'd heard hushed stories about some of their more extreme moments. Okay, so we'd watched a bunch of Nazis' faces alternately explode or melt at the end of Raiders Of The Lost Ark, but that was more a hide-behind-a-cushion scene - or, if you were feeling macabre, a cackling-with-glee moment.

This bit in The Wrath Of Khan, however, was something else. Even the suggestion of something from another planet burrowing into our ears wasn't just shudder inducing, it was the out-and-out stuff of nightmares. Add to this the disgusting design of the creatures - all segmented bodies, leech-like movements and icky ooze - and the suggestion that Chekov, one of the sweetest characters in all of Star Trek, might succumb to one of these things, was terrifying.

Surely Kirk would sweep in at the last moment, brandishing a phaser and rescue Chekov and Terrell at the last moment. Wouldn't he? Well, no. The space helmets are crammed onto the victims' heads, and we're forced to watch, in horrifying close-up, as the absolute worst happens: one by one, the eels slither across faces and burrow into ears. Chekov and Terrell scream.

So do we.



The slug and the newspaper

Early in Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan's production, the Ceti eels weren't really eels at all. As originally written, the creature would control its hosts' minds by attaching themselves to their necks - a plot point which might have been inspired by Robert Heinlein's 1951 novel, The Puppet Masters. Producer Robert Sallin didn't think much of this idea, however - it sounded too familiar, he thought - and so he resolved to come up with a better concept for a mind-controlling parasite.

The inspiration came from an unexpected angle: a newspaper lying outside his house one morning.

"I went out to pick up my newspaper," Sallin told Cnet in 2013, "and there was a slug on the pathway. I thought, what if that slimy thing was able to go into the ear?"

The design of the Ceti eel came courtesy of ILM's Ken Ralston, a visual effects supervisor charged with making the most of Star Trek II's relatively meagre budget; after the so-so performance of the incredibly lavish Star Trek: The Motion Picture in 1979, Paramount had decided to reign in its spending. Ralston came up with a range of concepts for the eel, some with legs, others with flowing tentacles.

The one Sallin ultimately chose was both the simplest design and the most abominable: a segmented, tough-looking creature which lay on its belly. In a masterfully brilliant touch, Ralston imagined that the eel's larvae nested among the segments of its mother's back, and had to be pulled free with a forceful yank from a pair of tongs.

The effects which brought the eels to life were simple and low-tech. The full-grown creature is simply a latex puppet, operated from below. The larvae which crawl across Chekov and Terrell's faces are pulled along with a piece of monofilament. The close-ups of an eel crawling into the ear were created by fashioning an oversized portion of Chekov's head from rubber. In a brilliantly nasty touch, the larval eels were slathered in a translucent substance to make them look more slimy and unpleasant. That substance was little more than raspberry jam.

It's worth noting that Ralston and his designers were, whether they knew it or not, following in the footsteps of director David Cronenberg. Seven years earlier in 1975, he'd made his feature debut with Shivers, a low-budget horror in which a Canadian high-rise building is taken over by fleshy, slug-like parasites very like the ones in The Wrath Of Khan. Cronenberg had, like the makers of the Star Trek sequel, originally envisaged a more complex creature - something like a spider - but when he realized that would be too difficult, he came up with a more simple design instead.

Like Ralson, Cronenberg and his team fashioned the parasites out of latex and moved them around in front of the camera with thin, mostly invisible lengths of monofilament. The results, as creatures crawled into hosts through mouths (and other orifices), turning them into raving sex maniacs, was quite controversial at the time. One headline at the time read, "You should know how bad this movie is, you paid for it," referring to the revelation that Shivers was funded at least in part by tax-payers' money.

The obvious and major difference between Shivers and Star Trek II, though, was that the former was rated R while the latter was given a PG (at the time, PG-13 didn't yet exist). When test audiences were shown an early cut of The Wrath Of Khan, they were left squirming in their seats; Sallin recalls that one audience member exclaimed, "That's the grossest thing I've ever seen!"

Indeed, the original edit was reportedly considered slightly too gross, and was edited down slightly for Star Trek II's theatrical release. "I loved sitting in the theatres when everybody cringed," Sallin admits.

No really, make it stop

Even in this form, the Wrath Of Khan ear scene is still a toe-curling moment. The joins in the special effects might be more glaring to modern eyes, but it hardly matters - what makes the sequence so effective is not only the sheer nastiness of the creature design, but the quality of the performances (look how coldly Khan stands there as Chekov and Terrell writhe in agony) and also the simple concept itself. There's something about being powerless to stop a creature crawling in our ear that strikes at a primal, gut level.

Over 30 years later, the ear scene still works as an effective horror moment, and I'd argue that there's an entire generation who've grown up with the after-image of the Ceti eel burned into their memories. The suffering that Khan meted out on two innocent space travellers - Terrell wound up obliterating himself with his phaser rather than kill Kirk; Chekov survived after the eel oozed out of his ear - set him up as one of cinema's most imposing villains. The eels gave Star Trek II a horror edge which set it apart from the more stately Motion Picture.

Writers Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman were certainly affected by the Ceti eel, since they wound up putting a remarkably similar parasite - a Centaurian slug - in their 2009 Star Trek reboot. For pure shock value, nothing can beat the first appearance of Khan's hideous eels in The Wrath Of Khan.

The beasts prompted horrified discussions at our school in the late 80s, and even now, we remain vaguely fearful of things crawling about in the dark, waiting for us to sleep, hoping to find somewhere warm to hide in our ears...

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Tue Aug 16, 2016 4:02 pm



During the last L'Age d'Or of Star Trek on television from 1993-2005, fans became ever more connected due to the internet, and specifically fan sites dedicated to Trek and message boards. While this was wonderful in bringing us together, every episode and series was analyzed, criticized, and the writers sometimes vilified. Of the many who faced the ire of Trek fans during the respective runs of Voyager and Enterprise, none received as much vitriol as Brannon Braga despite him being responsible for some of the most celebrated Star Trek episodes in the entire franchise.

Like many of you, I was part of this internet community back then, often posting on the now-defunct Trekweb.com about the latest episodes, and specifically my gripes with VOY and ENT. In my opinion, both series failed to live up to TNG and DS9, and my newfound-love for Babylon 5 made me yearn for serialized storytelling that was absent in VOY and ENT. With the perceived decline in the quality of Trek on television and in the cinema, many of us (myself included) directed our ire at the so-called “powers that be,” which became synonymous with Rick Berman and Brannon Braga, who would become known as B&B.

Over the years, as Star Trek began to suffer from so-called “franchise fatigue,” many fans blamed B&B for the decline of the franchise and, unfortunately, the comments directed at both men were vitriolic and hateful. Fans blamed Berman and Braga for running what we held so dear into the ground. I was one of these fans, as I would often post on Trekweb.com how I could not stand the two men and wanted them to have nothing to do with the franchise. I viewed everything they touched in a negative light, and was one of the many posters who viewed them not as people trying their best, but as scapegoats for not producing the type of Trek I was looking for.

Now that we are roughly eleven years since the cancellation of ENT, and twenty years since VOY premiered, I decided, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary, to revisit both shows for the first time. While neither show was perfect, much to my amazement, I found numerous episodes to be incredibly enjoyable and thought-provoking. I appreciated VOY and ENT much more the second time around with the maturity of my 30s, whereas when they first aired I was a teenager with intractable views of what each show should be.

After watching both shows again this year, I can not believe how wrong I was and how ashamed I am for acting the way I did.

Following the Writer’s Room panel on the final day of the 50th anniversary convention, Ronald D. Moore, Naren Shankar, and Brannon Braga signed autographs on a complementary basis. Being a massive fan of Battlestar Galactica, I was prepared with something for Moore to sign. However, I had nothing for Shankar or Braga to sign. Initially, I did not plan on approaching either. However, I went up to Shankar first and we chatted about The Expanse, an intriguing show that he runs.

Next was Braga, and I decided to do something that I had not planned to do: apologize.

I told him how, during his time working on VOY and ENT, I was one of the many who had vilified him. I said that it was completely unfair and immature of me to do so, and that I had recently revisited VOY and ENT and found that there was so much to love in both series. I told him that, had I been in his shoes, I did not think I could have handled such intense, and unwarranted, criticism. I told him that I felt terrible for being one of the cacophony of voices on the internet who had blamed him for everything, and that it made me feel terrible looking back on my behavior. I thanked him for his involvement in the Trek franchise, and pointed out that he had so much to be proud of. Braga seemed genuinely touched by my comments, and he stood up and shook my hand, telling me how much my words meant to him.

If we were to objectively look at Braga’s contributions to the Trek franchise, it is difficult to overlook episodes like VOY’s “Threshold” and ENT’s “These Are The Voyages” as examples of his obvious failures. However, it is easy to overlook how many fantastic episodes and films he brought to the franchise. Here is a list of but a few that stand out to me:

TNG: “Reunion,” “Cause and Effect,” “A Fistful of Datas,” “Frame of Mind,” “Timescape,” “Parallels,” and “All Good Things…”

VOY: “The 37’s,” “Flashback,” “Future’s End,” “Scorpion,” “Year of Hell,” “Prey,” “The Killing Game,” “Living Witness,” “Timeless,” “Someone to Watch Over Me,” “Equinox.”

ENT: “Broken Bow,” “The Andorian Incident,” “Shadows of P’Jem,” “Shuttlepod One,” “Carbon Creek,” “Shockwave,” “A Night in Sickbay,” “Cogenitor,” and “Azati Prime.”

Let us not forget that Braga and Moore penned Star Trek: Generations simultaneously as they were writing “All Good Things…” I have found Braga to be an introspective man who knows his mistakes, rather than stubbornly sticking to every decision he made so many years ago. At the 50th anniversary convention, he conceded that “All Good Things…” should have been the first TNG film instead of Generations.

It is of note that Braga first joined TNG as an intern at the age of 25. Three years later, he was simultaneously writing the series finale and first TNG film. He co-wrote the beloved Star Trek: First Contact at the age of 31 and then took over showrunning duties on VOY that same year. He helped conceive ENT at 35 and parted with the Star Trek franchise before he was even 40. Moore, commenting at the 50th anniversary convention, believed that perhaps they were too young for the responsibilities that he and Braga were given during TNG’s final season.

Following Star Trek, Braga became executive producer for 24‘s seventh and eighth seasons, co-created Threshold and Terra Nova, and helped revived Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, where he earned an Emmy for his efforts. His latest creation, Salem, was WGN’s first scripted show and was nominated for a coveted Saturn Award in 2015.

Whatever you may think of the direction both VOY and ENT took from season to season, there is no doubt that there are standout episodes whose stories were created by Braga. He brought us the best TNG film in First Contact, and some of the most memorable TNG episodes such as “Frame of Mind” and the series finale. Looking back on how I treated him all those years ago, it simply was not fair. As I am now the same age he was when he ran VOY, I cannot imagine the pressure involved in running a Star Trek series. I also cannot fathom continuing in such a role when fans are ripping me apart on the internet.

There can be no doubt that Braga is, and always shall be, a Star Trek fan. He sought to do the best he could as showrunner, storyteller, and writer, and more times than not, he hit it out of the park. There are times when he failed, just as we all do in our professions. As a writer myself, there are many pieces that I cannot stand to look back on because of their poor quality by my current standards. However, my reflection upon his work shows me that he succeeded far more often than he failed, and that we have him to thank for countless hours of some of the best Trek ever written.

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Tue Aug 16, 2016 4:04 pm


Soran wrote:

During the last L'Age d'Or of Star Trek on television from 1993-2005, fans became ever more connected due to the internet, and specifically fan sites dedicated to Trek and message boards. While this was wonderful in bringing us together, every episode and series was analyzed, criticized, and the writers sometimes vilified. Of the many who faced the ire of Trek fans during the respective runs of Voyager and Enterprise, none received as much vitriol as Brannon Braga despite him being responsible for some of the most celebrated Star Trek episodes in the entire franchise.

Like many of you, I was part of this internet community back then, often posting on the now-defunct Trekweb.com about the latest episodes, and specifically my gripes with VOY and ENT. In my opinion, both series failed to live up to TNG and DS9, and my newfound-love for Babylon 5 made me yearn for serialized storytelling that was absent in VOY and ENT. With the perceived decline in the quality of Trek on television and in the cinema, many of us (myself included) directed our ire at the so-called “powers that be,” which became synonymous with Rick Berman and Brannon Braga, who would become known as B&B.

Over the years, as Star Trek began to suffer from so-called “franchise fatigue,” many fans blamed B&B for the decline of the franchise and, unfortunately, the comments directed at both men were vitriolic and hateful. Fans blamed Berman and Braga for running what we held so dear into the ground. I was one of these fans, as I would often post on Trekweb.com how I could not stand the two men and wanted them to have nothing to do with the franchise. I viewed everything they touched in a negative light, and was one of the many posters who viewed them not as people trying their best, but as scapegoats for not producing the type of Trek I was looking for.

Now that we are roughly eleven years since the cancellation of ENT, and twenty years since VOY premiered, I decided, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary, to revisit both shows for the first time. While neither show was perfect, much to my amazement, I found numerous episodes to be incredibly enjoyable and thought-provoking. I appreciated VOY and ENT much more the second time around with the maturity of my 30s, whereas when they first aired I was a teenager with intractable views of what each show should be.

After watching both shows again this year, I can not believe how wrong I was and how ashamed I am for acting the way I did.

Following the Writer’s Room panel on the final day of the 50th anniversary convention, Ronald D. Moore, Naren Shankar, and Brannon Braga signed autographs on a complementary basis. Being a massive fan of Battlestar Galactica, I was prepared with something for Moore to sign. However, I had nothing for Shankar or Braga to sign. Initially, I did not plan on approaching either. However, I went up to Shankar first and we chatted about The Expanse, an intriguing show that he runs.

Next was Braga, and I decided to do something that I had not planned to do: apologize.

I told him how, during his time working on VOY and ENT, I was one of the many who had vilified him. I said that it was completely unfair and immature of me to do so, and that I had recently revisited VOY and ENT and found that there was so much to love in both series. I told him that, had I been in his shoes, I did not think I could have handled such intense, and unwarranted, criticism. I told him that I felt terrible for being one of the cacophony of voices on the internet who had blamed him for everything, and that it made me feel terrible looking back on my behavior. I thanked him for his involvement in the Trek franchise, and pointed out that he had so much to be proud of. Braga seemed genuinely touched by my comments, and he stood up and shook my hand, telling me how much my words meant to him.

If we were to objectively look at Braga’s contributions to the Trek franchise, it is difficult to overlook episodes like VOY’s “Threshold” and ENT’s “These Are The Voyages” as examples of his obvious failures. However, it is easy to overlook how many fantastic episodes and films he brought to the franchise. Here is a list of but a few that stand out to me:

TNG: “Reunion,” “Cause and Effect,” “A Fistful of Datas,” “Frame of Mind,” “Timescape,” “Parallels,” and “All Good Things…”

VOY: “The 37’s,” “Flashback,” “Future’s End,” “Scorpion,” “Year of Hell,” “Prey,” “The Killing Game,” “Living Witness,” “Timeless,” “Someone to Watch Over Me,” “Equinox.”

ENT: “Broken Bow,” “The Andorian Incident,” “Shadows of P’Jem,” “Shuttlepod One,” “Carbon Creek,” “Shockwave,” “A Night in Sickbay,” “Cogenitor,” and “Azati Prime.”

Let us not forget that Braga and Moore penned Star Trek: Generations simultaneously as they were writing “All Good Things…” I have found Braga to be an introspective man who knows his mistakes, rather than stubbornly sticking to every decision he made so many years ago. At the 50th anniversary convention, he conceded that “All Good Things…” should have been the first TNG film instead of Generations.

It is of note that Braga first joined TNG as an intern at the age of 25. Three years later, he was simultaneously writing the series finale and first TNG film. He co-wrote the beloved Star Trek: First Contact at the age of 31 and then took over showrunning duties on VOY that same year. He helped conceive ENT at 35 and parted with the Star Trek franchise before he was even 40. Moore, commenting at the 50th anniversary convention, believed that perhaps they were too young for the responsibilities that he and Braga were given during TNG’s final season.

Following Star Trek, Braga became executive producer for 24‘s seventh and eighth seasons, co-created Threshold and Terra Nova, and helped revived Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, where he earned an Emmy for his efforts. His latest creation, Salem, was WGN’s first scripted show and was nominated for a coveted Saturn Award in 2015.

Whatever you may think of the direction both VOY and ENT took from season to season, there is no doubt that there are standout episodes whose stories were created by Braga. He brought us the best TNG film in First Contact, and some of the most memorable TNG episodes such as “Frame of Mind” and the series finale. Looking back on how I treated him all those years ago, it simply was not fair. As I am now the same age he was when he ran VOY, I cannot imagine the pressure involved in running a Star Trek series. I also cannot fathom continuing in such a role when fans are ripping me apart on the internet.

There can be no doubt that Braga is, and always shall be, a Star Trek fan. He sought to do the best he could as showrunner, storyteller, and writer, and more times than not, he hit it out of the park. There are times when he failed, just as we all do in our professions. As a writer myself, there are many pieces that I cannot stand to look back on because of their poor quality by my current standards. However, my reflection upon his work shows me that he succeeded far more often than he failed, and that we have him to thank for countless hours of some of the best Trek ever written.


“A Fistful of Datas” ??? r u fucking serius?

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Wed Aug 17, 2016 8:14 am

Soran wrote:
If we were to objectively look at Braga’s contributions to the Trek franchise, it is difficult to overlook episodes like VOY’s “Threshold” and ENT’s “These Are The Voyages” as examples of his obvious failures.


no, "Threshold" has more nutball camp value than most bad episodes of Voyager. And for "These Are The Voyages" - it was Rick Berman's mandate that the farewell episode of Enterprise be centered around Riker & Troi mucking about on the bloody holodeck. If you're going to "objectively look at Braga's contributions" - you have to remember that Berman always had seniority.

As for Braga's youth at the time, well ... now he's 50 and he's writing-producing bloody WGN's Salem!, so la dee dah






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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  pinhedz on Tue Aug 23, 2016 12:05 pm

"Date Russian Women."

Evidently it's a thing. Suspect


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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Tue Aug 23, 2016 4:38 pm



http://memory-alpha.wikia.com/wiki/Helena_Rozhenko

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Fri Sep 02, 2016 10:46 am



As I’m here in Africa, I’m deeply disappointed to hear that SpaceX’s launch failure destroyed our satellite that would have provided connectivity to so many entrepreneurs and everyone else across the continent. Fortunately, we have developed other technologies like Aquila that will connect people as well. We remain committed to our mission of connecting everyone, and we will keep working until everyone has the opportunities this satellite would have provided.

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Mon Sep 05, 2016 7:21 am


Statement from Chief Sellers
Post Date:09/03/2016 12:06 PM

Statement from Chief Sellers

Yesterday, the Santa Clara Police Officers Association (SCPOA) sent a letter to the 49ers organization requesting that they take action against their employee, Colin Kaepernick, for his recent statements and behavior towards police officers.

The SCPOA suggested that if the 49ers did not address his behavior, members of the union might choose to not work Levi's Stadium events.

Many of us in the law enforcement community have been saddened and angered by Kaepernick's words and actions. His blanket statements disparaging the law enforcement profession are hurtful and do not help bring the country together. As distasteful as his actions are, these actions are protected by the Constitution. Police officers are here to protect the rights of every person, even if we disagree with their position. Police officers have sworn an oath to uphold the Constitution.

In Santa Clara we are fortunate to have excellent police-community relations that are built on trust and mutual respect. We have gone to great lengths to engage with our community to listen and understand their needs. As the Chief of Police, I am committed to continuing the relationships we have with our residents.

The men and women of the Santa Clara Police Department are highly trained and professional law enforcement officers. The safety of our community is our highest priority. I will urge the POA leadership to put the safety of our citizens first. I will work with both sides to find a solution. In the meantime, I will ensure we continue to provide a safe environment at Levi’s Stadium.

Chief Michael J. Sellers
Santa Clara Police Department

Lieutenant Dan Moreno
Public Information Officer
Administrative Services Division
(408) 615-4865

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  pinhedz on Wed Sep 07, 2016 8:40 am

So, some people asked Sergey "Was it hard when you had to settle in California after you left Vladivostok?"

Sergey said "It would be much harder moving in the other direction. It's not that hard moving from stuff that doesn't work to stuff that does."


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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  pinhedz on Fri Sep 16, 2016 1:58 pm

Colin Powell just wanted to say:

-- about HRC: "... A 70-year person [sic] with a long track record, unbridled ambition, greedy, not transformational ..."

-- about Trump: "... a national disgrace and an international pariah, ..."

He's right about lots of other things, too, like birthers and Benghazi.

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Fri Sep 16, 2016 4:35 pm




"Memba when Colin Powell had credibility?"

"Ooo, I memba! I memba!"


-The Memba Berries


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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Sat Sep 17, 2016 11:28 am



This column is directed at all the high school football players around the country who are pulling a Kaepernick — kneeling during their pregame national anthems to protest systemic racism. I’m going to try to persuade you that what you’re doing is extremely counterproductive.

When Europeans first settled this continent they had two big thoughts. The first was that God had called them to create a good and just society on this continent. The second was that they were screwing it up.

The early settlers put intense moral pressure on themselves. They filled the air with angry jeremiads about how badly things were going and how much they needed to change.

This harsh self-criticism was the mainstream voice that defined American civilization. As the historian Perry Miller wrote, “Under the guise of this mounting wail of sinfulness, this incessant and never successful cry for repentance, the Puritans launched themselves upon the process of Americanization.”

By 1776, this fusion of radical hope and radical self-criticism had become the country’s civic religion. This civic religion was based on a moral premise — that all men are created equal — and pointed toward a vision of a promised land — a place where your family or country of origin would have no bearing on your opportunities.

Over the centuries this civic religion fired a fervent desire for change. Every significant American reform movement was shaped by it. Abraham Lincoln wrote, “If ever I feel the soul within me elevate and expand to those dimensions not entirely unworthy of its almighty Architect, it is when I contemplate the cause of my country.”

Martin Luther King Jr. sang the national anthem before his “I Have a Dream” speech and then quoted the Declaration of Independence within it.

This American creed gave people a sense of purpose and a high ideal to live up to. It bonded them together. Whatever their other identities — Irish-American, Jewish American, African-American — they were still part of the same story.

Over the years, America’s civic religion was nurtured the way all religions are nurtured: by sharing moments of reverence. Americans performed the same rituals on Thanksgiving and July 4; they sang the national anthem and said the Pledge in unison; they listened to the same speeches on national occasions and argued out the great controversies of our history.

All of this evangelizing had a big effect. As late as 2003, Americans were the most patriotic people on earth, according to the University of Chicago’s National Opinion Research Center.

Recently, the civic religion has been under assault. Many schools no longer teach American history, so students never learn the facts and tenets of their creed. A globalist mentality teaches students they are citizens of the world rather than citizens of America.

Critics like Ta-Nehisi Coates have arisen, arguing that the American reality is so far from the American creed as to negate the value of the whole thing. The multiculturalist mind-set values racial, gender and ethnic identities and regards national identities as reactionary and exclusive.

There’s been a sharp decline in American patriotism. Today, only 52 percent of Americans are “extremely proud” of their country, a historical low. Among those 18 to 29, only 34 percent are extremely proud. Americans know less about their history and creed and are less likely to be fervent believers in it.

Sitting out the anthem takes place in the context of looming post-nationalism. When we sing the national anthem, we’re not commenting on the state of America. We’re fortifying our foundational creed. We’re expressing gratitude for our ancestors and what they left us. We’re expressing commitment to the nation’s ideals, which we have not yet fulfilled.

If we don’t transmit that creed through shared displays of reverence we will have lost the idea system that has always motivated reform. We will lose the sense that we’re all in this together. We’ll lose the sense of shared loyalty to ideas bigger and more transcendent than our own short lives.

If these common rituals are insulted, other people won’t be motivated to right your injustices because they’ll be less likely to feel that you are part of their story. People will become strangers to one another and will interact in cold instrumentalist terms.

You will strengthen Donald Trump’s ethnic nationalism, which erects barriers between Americans and which is the dark opposite of America’s traditional universal nationalism.

I hear you when you say you are unhappy with the way things are going in America. But the answer to what’s wrong in America is America — the aspirations passed down generation after generation and sung in unison week by week.

We have a crisis of solidarity. That makes it hard to solve every other problem we have. When you stand and sing the national anthem, you are building a little solidarity, and you’re singing a radical song about a radical place.

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Sat Sep 17, 2016 11:39 am



The sociologist Daniel Bell once argued that capitalism would undermine itself because it encouraged hedonistic short-term values for consumers while requiring self-disciplined long-term values in its workers.

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

Post  Yakima Canutt on Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:52 am


We’re not going to go out here and say, ‘Oh, we’re embracing this villain thing, and it’s great.’ Who cares what somebody’s trying to make us out to be? We’re trying to win basketball games. If they want to make us the villain, that’s fine. They’re going to boo us anyway, everywhere we go. So that’s fine.

The most fun I have in this game is going on another team’s floor and quieting their crowd. So boo. Eventually you’ll shut up. And I’ll laugh. And we’ll laugh. And we’ll keep it moving.

There are some arenas we go to, and it’s like we’re a home team. But at the same time . . . I got booed, along with KD, along with Klay, in the United States – with USA jerseys on. I mean, Jesus Hector Christ, give it a break.

I just don’t understand some people. Even if I hate you and whatever team you play for, if you’re going to wear a USA jersey and represent my country, for one day, I can give it up and say I’m going to cheer for this guy. They booed us, still.

If they’re booing us with a USA jersey on, I can only imagine how it’s going to be with a Warriors jersey. So, more power to those people. They’re angry about something in life, and I’m not sure what it is.

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Re: Things someone else just wanted to say......

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