Thursday, 10 June 2010


So, my first proper experience with opera. I quite liked it; this version, staged in 2009 for the Bregenz Festival, was certainly a spectacular piece of theatre (you can see a couple of photos of the huge set at the link above). Seems to me that opera is rather like a classically-scored foreign-language musical... which I'm sure many opera fans would like to lynch me for saying.
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Battlestar Galactica [2004]
1x01 33
1x02 Water
1x03 Bastille Day
I'd only intended to watch one episode, but got rather drawn in and... well, you can see. It's nice to have a bit of politics with your sci-fi -- it makes a change -- and a series that treats the viewer with a little bit of respect. For example, it's obvious what's going on in 33 -- the Cylons are attacking every 33 minutes -- but in the whole episode no one states it. Few genre shows would have the confidence not to have the very first line be, "so this will be the 237th time they've attacked after a 33 minute gap", or whatever.
The worst I would say about the series so far is that you can sometimes tell the writers' background is in genre/Star Trek TV, rather than 'proper drama'. Occasionally the story or way it's constructed reminds you that this is, really, a bunch of Star Trek writers putting all their efforts into making a 'proper drama' instead of just another space opera, rather than some 'proper drama' writers choosing to use sci-fi as a medium for social/political comment (like, for example, David Milch was aiming at with Deadwood, which was originally going to be set in the totally-different time period of Ancient Rome before Rome turned up). But it's loftier aims largely keep it above stuff we've all seen numerous times before... so far, at least.


Die Hard 24/7 Starring John McClane & Jack Bauer Is The Wrong Call, But The Right Direction by Josh Wigler
(from MTV Movies Blog)
20th Century Fox once mulled over the idea of teaming the Die Hard and 24 heroes together in a movie called — wait for it — Die Hard 24/7. The source reports that "the project didn't pan out because Kiefer was more interested in launching his own 24 movie franchise ... than doing buddy shtick in Bruce's already established series."
Well... hm...
Be warned, the full article (which doesn't contain any more details on the project than that, just some opinion) has massive spoilers for 24 season 8.

Even New Line Execs Can’t Figure Out Why the Fourth Final Destination Made Nearly $200 Million, But Here Comes No. Five by Claude Brodesser-Akner
(from )
It's quite incredibly how much of a turnaround the franchise has seen with its fourth entry --
it’s made $115 million internationally, which is $55.5 million more than the next highest-grossing entry, the first one. Some areas seem particularly crazy about death: Colombia’s grosses quintupled from the third film in the franchise. Australian grosses are three and a half times greater. Dutch, Israeli, and German grosses tripled. And French and Brazilian grosses doubled.
-- and no one, least of all the studio who released it, seems to know why.

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