New Year, and a new documentary to watch: a sequel to “Triumph of the Nerds” by Robert X. Cringely, that is telling us the brief history of the Internet, from highly experimental university’s and government’s labs networks to the global telecommunication revolution. It also points out the interesting fact, that original inventors of the computer networks, like guys behind the invention of PC’s, didn’t earned much money and fame (and that fact puts the term “innovative economy” in totally different light).
Like before, this mini-series is an excellent time capsule of the 1990’s; frivolous times just before Internet bubble crash and other crises of the 21’st century…
I must confess, that for a long time in my life, I have never watched the original trilogy of “Star Wars”. And something interesting happened when I finally did it few years ago: despite the fact that it was my first screening of George Lucas’s masterpiece in my life, I had a uneasy feeling that I had already did it before, and everything related to these movies was very familiar to me. After short deliberation, I realised that I have this peculiar feeling because popular culture of today is oversaturated with shout-outs, homages and blatant ripoffs of the “Star Wars”.
It doesn’t matter, if we are talking about “South park”, “Asterix and Obelix” feature film, “Family Guy” (the worst offender, when it comes to references) and many other films and TV-series, “Robot Chicken”, some obscure C-grade kid’s movies from my country (that were tormenting whole generation of kids in the 1980’s), parodies (like Mel Brooks’s “Spaceballs”) or advertisements, what really matter is than in these cases we always see some part of original “Star Wars” to the point that we are familiar with them without actually watching them…
I am not safe even in the supermarket: the “Star Was”-related toys, lunch boxes, rucksacks, notepads and so on are assaulting me with familiar images of Master Yoda or Darth Vader. Personally I am fed up with this all, It feels like being in companion with a buddy, who keeps telling all the time the same jokes that are no longer funny.
As I mentioned in an earlier review of “RoboCop” from 1987, the main selling point of that film was social satire on American corporations, the economic reforms of President Reagan and the culture of yuppies.Unfortunately, the 2014 remake is watered down and lacks the black humour, over-the-top characters, grotesque advertisements and tragic news interrupted with jolly music and comedies from the bottom of the barrel ( “I buy this for a dollar!” ) on in-movie television programme.
In the nutshell, the adventures of officer Alex Murphy in “RoboCop” 1987 were a populist and satirical allegory of life of the average citizen, who is exploited by the guys in suits, and the plot has been consistently built around this, in particular the motif of revenge and regained identity.
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