Two nekos: credits for other people’s merits -3 Dream, my prince & The processing center&Thought-Birth-Existence

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Dream, my prince, by Nintin.

Originally this was the last picture. It is Dream, my prince by Nintin.  I decided that it should not be last, but first. There is this single object, but it has a little story around it, and a machinima.  Here is the  text from the notecard of the artist

While advances in technology give us exciting entertainment and allow us to play and dream, “we are put to sleep with a lullaby.” The installation reminds us of how vulnerable we have become and how crucial it is to stay alert and fight, if necessary, to keep our freedom.

Description of exhibit: A sphere made of graphic figures, representing the global network, rotates around a sleeping figure. A lullaby starts playing when someone steps on the exhibition parcel via collision script.

The Machinima:


The Making: https://www.facebook.com/Nintinarts?ref=hl

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The processing center: Merit and Taubie

We kinda cut loose from the original two nekos concept, so instead of two nekos we are doing a bunch of nekos and a raptor, but we are still calling it two nekos. The processing center was a quaint little building with various displays inside it.  There seemed to be no connecting theme, but that didn’t seem to spoil the fun. And we kinda went overboard with a few pictures. Above is a picture of me and Taubie. Me is to the right and Taubie to the left. We liked the cardboard trees, so Taubie gave a bit of cardboard feel to the picture.

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The processing center: the entry

The second picture shows the entry of the processing center. We wanted a kind of strange feel, like they do for covers of albums, with people standing around.

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Nekos and.. a raptor.

No comment really. Yes, it is a raptor in the back and it is wearing a tophat and a tutu.

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The processing center: happy birthday!

The processing center can be found here: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/SL11B%20Spellbound/59/198/22

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Thought-Birth-Existence

Before visiting the processing center we actually landed on  Thought-Birth-Existence and we spent a while there to get some good shots, but it was all wasted. So after some tweaking in photoshop Taubie made this.  The real installation looks totally different.,  but it was this or nothing. Thought-Birth-Existence can be found right across the processing center: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/SL11B%20Spellbound/36/202/22

 

That is all folks.

For now.

Two nekos: credits for other people’s merits -2: Elin Egoyan and Snail On A Virtual Razor Blade

The first two nekos post hasn’t cooled off and there is a second already, Jenney says.

That is because there is so much to see! O.o, Krisp replies.

 

So here we go.

 

Elin Egoyan

 

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Crossroads of Life by Elin Egoyan

(Jenney to Taubie) A bit vivid. Think we overdone it a bit in photoshop?
I thought it would come out closer to real life that way?
 

Elin-Egoyan-1
Entry to Exhibition

(Taubie to Jenney) Words, words, word. Why?
(Jenney)Well, cause we wanted to experiment with them, don’t we? Broken narration and all. Fractured story telling.
(Krisp)Look at the umbrella.. it is flying!! And the tail.. so cute.

 

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Elin Egoyan – Crossroads 1

No comment needed!
That is a comment!
Oh dillydally.

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Elin Egoyan – Crossroads 5

More crossroads?  http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/SL11B%20Enchant/217/56/22
http://www.shan-newspaper.com/web/second-life-page/411-interview-to-elin-egoyan.html
http://www.star-journey.com/artists/elin-egoyan

——

Snail On A Virtual Razor Blade

This is a philosophical and metaphorical art work

that delivers a cautionary tale about the potential for a nightmarish VR experience.

Inspired by movies like eXistenZ, The Matrix, Inception, and The Naked Lunch. By Tesla Miles and Liz Venenbaum.


vr-1

 
We asked Butcher(he is sitting in front of the other butcher) if he minded to be on the picture and he said he was okay with it as we were showing his best side. So there you go. I forgot your last name Butcher, and since there are so many butchers in second life it’s kinda hard to find it. Guess he was right, Second Life must be a meat market, considering all the butchers. (Incidentally we typed meatmarket as meatmaket and the spelling checker  suggested matchmaker as alternative. Go figure).

 

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Thought we make a composition^^

 

Snail On A Virtual Razor Blade can be found here: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/SL11B%20Enchant/230/179/22
Mind the puddles of green gooey though.

 

Two nekos: credits for other people’s merits -1

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Two Nekos: Krisp

Time to do some exploring again and what better place to be at the moment than SL11B: the eleventh  birthday, a representation of Second Life spread out over six simulators., Jenney says

Wasn’t there some fashion event someplace,? Krisp asks.

Aren’t there always fashion event someplace?

Oh, there might be. Just saying..

We can always look at those later can’t we? The birthday is just once a year.

Yessa.

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Two Nekos: Jenney

 

 

So Jenney, why credits for other people’s merits?

Cause  we are sort of using other people’s work to fill our blog with and thus taking credit in a way for other people’s work aren’t we? They make the stuff, we make the pictures..

Oh, right.

Or rather Taubie does. We just have to be in them.

Hard work!

Then we have some icecream.

Yus.

While Taubie edits them pictures.

And have some pineapple juice.

While  Taubie uploads them pictures.

And then you type some words.

And we are done.

Need lot’s of clothing for them though. To look right in the pictures. Don’t want to look like we never have a change of clothes!

Let’s have a look at the first pictures..

Gotz us in them.^^

 

krips&jenney

 

Notice: the imagery you see in these posts are my interpretations and do not necessarily represent the imagery as intended by the makers involved.  In addition my nekos will often be in the pictures because I want to prevent these pictures from being taken from our website and used without  the  original creators permission.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SL11B: Monkey Mind-4 Ohmy Shalala

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Ohmy Shalala

You will not be surprised that with a lighthearted name the art of Ohmy Shalala would be lighthearted. And visually it certainly has a lighthearted look, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t  any substance behind it.  What I have seen of Ohmy’s art has usually bright colors, which associates it with candy or a fantasy land or fairy like,  lighthearted so to speak.  But it thought I ask her what her idea was behind the art expression she made at Monkey Mind. Now  to be honest, I am not much for asking interpretations and explanations because I rather have people explore things in their own way and make up their own mind, but someone – I forgot who – once said that people also require guidance. They beg for meaning and context.  It might have been Jim Jarmusch who said that in a documentary  Behind Jarmusch about the making of  his movie Limits of Control.

The art expression tries to capture the the influence of our unknown unseen past on our selves and on what we will become and not just in an individual context, but in the wider context of family and nations and humanity.  And so Second Life is influenced by unknown and unseen pasts and changed. The past in the art exhibition is expressed in the black and white image and the mask express the many changes of the selves. It reminded me of something else Jarmusch mentions in the documentary. That we are intrigued by that which we don’t know. Unexplored lands, unseen movies, books we haven’t read, people we haven’t met. The unknown is a bit like a carrot that entices the donkey to move forward and drag a cart with it.

The cornfield is a reference to Second Life legendary Corn Field a place cut of from Second Life where naught avatars were banished to.

Next to her art expression Ohmy also used the Monkey Head to make her own version of the Monkey Mind and she made a version of the Futuravi.  The latter I will try and make a picture of.

 

 

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The unseen past and the many changes.


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The extent of control.

 

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Monkey Mind
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Ohmy Shalala. Variance 1

 

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Ohmy Shalala. Variance 2

 

 

SL11B: Monkey Mind -3: Veleda Lorakeet

The other day I asked Veleda what inspired her  to make the talking and moving robot heads for our Monkey Mind build at SL11B(Seconds Life’s 11th birthday) and she said it something along the lines of that is seemed like a fun idea. And here you thought I would write down some overarching philosophical artistic expression. I could make one up of course.. but let’s leave it at this.

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Data Towers

It is interesting to see that the builds is actually never quite finished. When Veleda was done with her heads, she added a core to the build, which is funny as I was doing the same. But my idea went along other line’s and it ended up as an arty thingy you can walk through. It is called data towers and the idea I had was to have the data stream upwards towards the central processing unit. But this is not a post about me, but a post about Veleda’s contribution.

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Robot heads

 

Veleda made these robot heads who say Monkey Mind in binary. The name Monkey Mind is a Buddhist  concept, meaning “unsettled; restless; capricious; whimsical; fanciful; inconstant; confused; indecisive; uncontrollable” .  This made me think of the movie Koyaanisqatsi. In the hopi language, the word Koyaanisqatsi means “unbalanced life”. Seems something philosophical filtered into the build after all, ey.
The robot heads are scripted to travel around the exhbition along piplelines of the same color as the eyes. Eventually they end you up at the top level.  Veleda showed me the formula that makes the heads go. If I can find it I’ll post it here someplace. It’s quite mind-boggling. For me that is (not for Taubie).

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Robot heads at the ready
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Lift off!
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Robot heads on the move

 

 

 

Next to the robot heads Veleda made a central core unit to which Almut added this warped binary texture.

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Robot heads and core.

 

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Into the core…looking down on the data pool.

 

The core revolves with the various parts having different speed. Will look better on the movie I am trying to make.

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The end..

And once you are done, you end up in the monkey house. If you take the blue head I think. Otherwise you end up next door.

SL11B : Monkey Mind -2 – Merit Coba

This post about Monkey Mind goes a little bit deeper into the details of our build at SL11B.
The idea behind Monkey Mind was to create a framework in the shape of a computer that would contain the various expressions of the contributing artists. Since artists tend to have their own shenanigans(:)), a project like this, that starts almost at the spur of the moment will somewhat lack overall consistency. While I am writing this down I realize that it might be nice to ask each participant their views on their own contributions, so I will have to add those later, if any.
I am always a bit in doubt of providing explanations. Personally I rather have people make up their own mind instead of having artists spell out what they meant to convey. But then again, how else would we know if what we want to state actually is perceived in that way?
Enough words, let’s provide some pictures and they will be mostly about my contribution as to give me time to ask the others about theirs.

future-boy-girls

Some time ago I went on holiday to Barcelona. Barcelona has an excellent subway system which, besides providing a fast way to travel around the city, also provides some coolness for the intrepid tourist who braves the heat of the day. Even in May the temperatures rose above the thirty degrees centrigrade(that is into the eighties for you Fahrenheit users). In Barcelona people aren’t much different from people in other cities and during their travels they chase away their boredom by plugging themselves in. Walkman’s, handhelds and various other electronic devices isolate them from their surroundings and transport them into another world . One of the mind. For some people this might be a deplorable experience, I don’t see it as such.  People might not talk to the person sitting next to them, but then again they might be talking to someone at the other side of the world. There is a certain liberty in that you can now choose with whom to communicate and befriend, which might be a good thing, but at the other end, you probably stick with people you feel comfortable with and thus avoiding people who might be different and give you new insights. It opens the eyes and closes them.

This concept inspired me to make the futuravi. Which is this guy/girl.

sl11b-futuravis

The futuravi contains two aspects. It is connected to the rest of the world by various devices that opens it’s eyes and ears to a world of the mind.  Incidentally there are lines in the song Jumbo by Underworld that refer to this(the song by the way expresses a great deal of the concept.) So let me quote some lines:

you pick up the phone  and i’m imagining you.”

“the telephone breath between us
there are no borders between us
only these wires”

The futuravi pushes the idea a bit further because, as in the song, you can imagine the other. That is, you as an outsider can change the way someone looks. This might be a technological possibility of the future. Since our world becomes virtual it is technologically possible for you as viewer to determine the looks of the person you are watching. You might see the one you are talking to as a dragon, while the person sees himself as a human.

To capture this aspect I made this connector-device which allows an other person to change your looks.

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This is a pictural instruction I made so that people would follow it regardless of the language they speak. The futuravi jumps on the connector.

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There is a console connected to the device.

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People can use this connector device to change the looks.

future-avi-control-5

 

future-avi-control-6

 

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This is the texture I made for an elevator that we didn’t add to the build.

Here is a link to the song Jumbo by Underworld.

 

Bookreview: V is for Vengeance

V Is for Vengeance (Kinsey Millhone #22)V Is for Vengeance by Sue Grafton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Does a voluminous book require an equally voluminous review?
I gather that it doesn’t, for some books, either good or bad, can do with a short verdict. V for Vengeance is such a book. It was a rather copious book for me and I am surprised I managed to read it and even like it. In fact I am even more surprised because crime novels aren’t actually my thing. But then again it was unavoidable because my local library’s collection of English books consist of three bookcases, about shoulder high and two meters in length, and two of them are filled with crime novels, just to give you an idea.
V for Vengeance is also a surprise because the leading character, Kinsey Millhone, is not your typical hard boiled private detective. You know, the kind Humphrey Bogart plays in the Maltese Falcon or in the Big Sleep, a cynical loner with no love for the police and almost no social life to speak of. Kinsey Millhone is more akin to Gittes from Chinatown. She is a stickler for the rules, tries to stay on the good side of the police and avoids violence.
The story is also somewhat unusual in that the it isn’t actually a whodunit, but rather a howdoesitallfittogether kind of tale. From the start you know who has done it and you follow Kinsey on her investigations knowing that somewhere down the line she might run into the killer. Just you do not know how and when. You also know that Kinsey isn’t aware of this because her job has got nothing to do with figuring out who killed the victim – because it is assumed she has committed suicide- but with finding out about her shoplifting past. This against Kinsey knowing better, for she has caught the victim redhanded. Interspaced with Kinseys story is that of Nora and Dante. Nora is a woman who finds out that her husband is cheating on her and Dante is a loanshark with ties to the maffia, who wants out of the business. A love relation of sorts develops between Dante and Nora, but a dark secret is between them.
All the story-lines come together at the end. I found it a nice read, although at times Grafton relies a bit (too) much on coincidences. But for me it was a untypical crime novel with a low violence level and believable characters.
There are a few annoyances.
The book is copious because Grafton takes her time in spinning out her tale where she could have kept things interesting by trimming the text. For instance she has a tendency to describe chores in detail while this serves no purpose but to bore the reader. It could have saved maybe a hundred pages if these superfluous lines had been removed.
Also I find Kinsey’s enmity towards the reporter Diana somewhat too ‘classical’. PI’s either dislike the police or the press or both. And everyone hates politicians. It would have been nice if Grafton had avoided this overused story feature.
The last thing I found strange was that one of the cops – the corrupt one- seemed to be everywhere. I find it just hard to belief that he happens to stonewall the right persons, manages to manipulate the press and the evidence and also has a lot of cop friends who are doing him favors beyond the call of duty. It was a weak plot element to rely on such a typical omnipresent bad guy and it should have been avoided.
I did like the book and would like to read another one(I understand it is part of a series).

Hmmm.. this review is longer than expected.

View all my reviews

SL11B: Monkey Mind -1



So I haven’t been posting much to this blog of late because we were busy with SL11B.

So what is SL11B?

SL11B is the name given for the celebrations organized around the 11th  birthday of Second Life and it  runs from the 22nd of June till the 5th of July of this year.  The celebrations are held at a group of connected places(called sims from simulators) where people of different backgrounds  exhibit their enthusiasms.  As such one can find art exhibits next to stands promoting books, people reciting poetry or showing off the latest of fashions or promoting understanding for things like gender dysforia and disability, so basically everything that  you can do or make in Second Life. Except for the things we don’t want to know about, such as porn. No worries there mate, for there are festivals for that to.

As is usual we always got in a bit late so we had to make up for lost time by working extra hard. It wasn’t different during SL8B, SL9B or SL10B.  In addition I was actually not counting on Emphatic Eccentricia(EE) doing something this year, so I organized my own exhibit, which is called The Box and inspired by Schroedinger’s cat.  But EE did something this year, so I joined in that one as well. So this post is about the Emphatic Eccentricia exhibit which is called Monkey Mind.

Now let’s look at some pictures.

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Monkey Mind – Initial design

This was the first design which was mostly made by Almut Brunswick who took care of the infrastructure. We put my Monkey Head on it, for reason I do not quite know. It was an moment of inspiration, but I can’t actually recall who came up with it.
The idea behind the built is that it was inspired by the SL11B theme: the empires of the future are empires of the mind. The general idea is that the building represents a computer.

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Monkey Mind – Improved design

This one is a later design in which Veleda Lorakeet add these pipelines which represents data transfer.

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Monkey Mind – SL11B design

The initial build on the SL11B ground. It was considered to be too tall so….

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Monkey Mind – SL11B 2nd design

This is the almost final built.  Note the rerouting of the vel’s pipelines. Ohmy Shalala changed the monkey head by replacing the head with brains  and Almut replaced most of the primary objects (called prims) of the infrastructure with mesh. Mesh items are far better looking and take up less space than prims. The ground floor was replaced by and now has a hole with digital texture in it.

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Monkey Mind – SL11B final design

This is the final design. Veleda added a core to the system and various other items have been added. In the next post some more details.

Monkey Mind can be found here:  http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/SL11B%20Enchant/140/31/22

 

Added one more because Almut said she like to see it with the surrounding buildings.

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Monkey Mind -Raw-Final

Another one. with a more normal light setting.

Monkey-Mind-3

 

 

 

Vending machines

The employees trickled into the room by the twos and threes depending on who shared an office with whom. A few went out again to form a short line in front of the vending machine in the hallway. But eventually they all gathered into the windows less meeting room with it’s yellowish walls at the appointed time. There were only two noticeable pieces of furniture in the room. A large table surrounded by chairs in the middle of the room and a whiteboard against one of the wall full of intelligible scribbles .

There they were joined by two managers. These were so called mid-level managers: men already too high up the ladder from them to speak to on a daily basis, but still low enough to be encountered in the corridors. Sometimes even greetings were exchanged during those awkward moments in the morning when an employee had a run in with one of those managers at one of the three vending machines in the building. Mid-level managers also used vending machines.

The men -there were only men-  had been informed by mail to attend the meeting on a short notice, the trigger being the removal of their direct superior, the news of which had arrived earlier on the day.   The highest manager took a seat at the table. Then the employees choose theirs.  Finally the other manager sat down at one end of the table and although he did not sit exactly opposite the other manager, he also did not sit next to him. There was a certain reserved distance between the two. The highest manager, a small man with hair as grey as his suit, was going to break the news, the other manager, a man with glasses and a pensive expression dressed in a buttoned shirt like the employees, was there because he was expected to attend, The hierarchy of the company positioned him in between the higher manager and the one that was leaving.

“Your manager will join us in a moment,” the highest one remarked, “In the mean time I bring you the news that he will step down from his current position.”

None of the men said a thing..

“At the moment we will have no replacement for his position. Instead we expect the foremen to take care of business. We will have individual talks during the week with some of your key people about the future of this department and its reorganization.”

The men accepted these words in silence as well, but they did look at each other, not entirely sure who of them were considered to be the mentioned key people, but also uneasy about their prospects if they were not  considered to be part of the group of key persons.

The highest manager, triggered by the uneasy stares,  tried to get a feel of the mood, but also avoided to look the men straight in the eye.   “Men, the company needs you all and we need you in the future as well. Some important projects are coming our way. Especially we will be needing you to work on the desktop replacement project. That will be some ten thousand desktops that need replacing, urgently. An important job which has been delayed far too often.”

At that moment there was a short interruption when the leaving manager arrived. He nodded to the men and sat down at the other end of the table. He didn’t say a thing, but folded his arms across his chest. It was a posture that was familiar to them all. employees and managers alike. It meant defiance, the kind that he had showed towards the other managers when it had been announced, earlier in the year, that the department was being considered for outsourcing to external interested parties.

One of the men asked the question that was foremost on their minds: “Does this have anything to do with the outsourcing project?”

There was another moment of silence before the highest manager braved himself to look the questioner straight in the eyes and deliver his answer, “No, this has nothing to do with it.”

“Then why does he leave? He has been our manager for twelve years!”

The manager looked away while he reacted with a lot of words. But those were simply meant to obscure the lack of a proper straightforward answer to the first question, which would have been very short and it would have sounded like: yes.  After the flood of words he stressed again the importance that the men would continue working as they had done before and mentioned their importance for the future of the company.

“Remember.. we need you.. for we got some important projects ahead of us.”

But who would believe a man that could not give a straight answer to a simple question everyone knew the answer to already?

Henry and Kristl met The boys from Brazil (1978)

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For movie posters there is the advantage(or disadvantage) of being able to use imagery from the movie. This one is Spanish.. I thought it was more fitting in relation to the title.

 

 

“I confess that I am prejudiced,” Kristl said as she turned to Henry.
She had to blink a few times before she refocused, because the lights had flooded the theater and temporarily blinded them. Henry had yet to fix that. He meant for the light to gradually increase in strength with the music, but instead it suddenly bathed in a blinding white light. He had however managed that the music would start softly and then rise to an acceptable level. Acceptable meant that they both could hear each other. Normally they would start talking when the credits started to roll, but on request of Kristl they had sat in silence until the black at the end of the credit roll would show.
“Why is that? Because it is an old movie?”
“No… It is because it got some of the best actors from around that time in it. Laurence Olivier, James Mason and Gregory Peck. I can not help to like movies which contain the latter two. I am a bit so-so on Olivier, but he is considered by most to be one of the best actors to date.”
“Is it insulting when I say that it’s an old men movie?”
“It depends on what you intend. Is an old man movie, something bad? It is true, that it is a remarkable movie in that way. It stars people who are well into the sixties.”
“Yeah. That fight at the end had something funny. Those two old men beating each other up. ”
“Oddly enough, I found that struggle quite unsettling. Shocked me more than fights from action movies. Maybe because I had not expect it.”
“And bloody to.”
“So.. no scantily clad ladies waving swords about.. did you like it?”
“It was okay. The story has an interesting angle. Actually you know what the bad guys are doing and how, but you don’t know why. And you follow Lieberman, Olivier that is, trying to figure it out. I bet a lot of people figured it out halfway through..I didn’t. Although it wasn’t much of a surprise in the end..”
“Only an very implausible plot. It is impossible to recreate the same conditions that shaped the people in the early twenty century, in the second half. The world was just completely different. Just to name a few important changes: you got cars, airplanes and television. This alone changed the world. Totally impossible.”
“Yeah, but fun.Besides, maybe they thought: let’s give it a try.”
“If you are a fanatic you do not even to think that. You just do it..”
“Right. And Nazis are fanatics… just look at Raiders of the Lost Ark…”
“Yes.. or you can be a scientist obsessed with a project.”
“Like Mengele.”
“A fanatic and a scientist.. a dangerous combination. They can make the world go boom just because they want to.”
“And it is fun just seeing them old actors act. Peck seems very there in every scene he is in. And his boisterous overbearing personality contrasts with the down on his luck old Olivier. Yet these nazis can not touch the vulnerable Olivier because then other people will get on to them. Publicity has its advantage,” Krisl said.
Henry nodded.
“It is a nice movie.. based on a story of Ira Levin. Yet again.”
“And there was this German guy in it.”
“You noticed?”
“Yeah.. that guy from that German movie we once saw. Der himmel uber Berlin.. and the one that played Hitler in Downfall.”
“Bruno Ganz.”
“Ah, that is his name?”
“Yes.”
“Another movie about Nazis and that Hitler guy.”
“It is an infinite source for stories,” Kristl nodded.
“Yeah.. he sure casts a long shadow over Germany.”
“It is a sad thing… It sure is.” Kristl sighed.
“We call that..FUBAR!” Henry said.

 

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0077269/

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/99894.The_Boys_from_Brazil

 

The-Boys-From-Brazil
One of the many book covers.. Most of the book covers are more abstract and stylized than the movie posters.