More 'Doctor Who' Set Photos, Geek News, Trailers + Links

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Here's another look at Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman on the set of 'Doctor Who' Season 8. It looks like this week's episode may be medieval themed! Cool! Here are some more set photos for your viewing pleasure.

Watch this sweet little SciFi short film from Anton Chistiakov about a lonely robot who sells ice cream. It's really charming and beautiful.
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Check out the real-life 'Star Wars' Tatooine shooting locations on this blog, called Strange Pegs. This is on location in Tunisia. The sets were used for 'The Phantom Menace.' Some of these are actual ruins.

So after axing all of Anna Paquin's scenes from the "over" hyped 'X-Men: Days of Future Past,' 20th Century Fox has overruled Bryan Singer and added Paquin back in as a cameo. I guess someone finally told 20th Century Fox that Paquin was still in the credits and all of the marketing so...eh. Here's a hint-- please stop giving Bryan Singer comic book movies to direct.



The much anticipated trailer for 'Gone Girl' has just been released. 'Gone Girl' is based on the best selling novel of the same name.



Second teaser trailer released from 'The Leftovers,' which is a show about the rapture and its effect on human civilization.




Very cool Khal Drogo and Daenerys Targaryen cosplay.
Via Fashionably Geek


Alex does a Retro A to Z Challenge
The Flick Chick reviews 'The Thin Blue Line'
Howling Wolf listens to 'Captain America: Winter Soldier' Soundtrack
Sati and Brittani both awesomely dissect and analyze the latest episode of 'Game of Thrones'
Cinema Viewfinder reviews 'Transcendence'
Film Sketcher reveals some great 'Hunger Games' concept art
The Geek Twins explains why there are 2 different Quicksilvers. Thanks guys!!
Spacer Guy has a post about 'Star Trek' bloopers
French Toast Sunday's Babe of the Week is Kate Mara
Cinematic Katzenjammer reviews 'Under the Skin'
David has posted a funny video about 'Frozen'
Films and Coke reviews 'Divergent'
Alex Withrow talks about dual roles

Thrones Fun, Jlaw in Mystique Movie?, Cosplay, + More Geek News

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Via Facebook
Between the months of April and June, there will be lots of Thrones talk. As the season premiere debuted this past Sunday, this week was particularly plentiful for 'Game of Thrones' spoofs and memorabilia. I typically don't do full reviews of television shows or films anymore, but I will post something I find interesting or humorous. If you want to see a great recap of this week's episode, head over to Sati's. She has a great review of 'Two Swords.'

'Game of Thrones' theme as song by goats. Yes goats. They are fascinating little creatures.


Jimmy Fallon did a great "Pros and Cons of watching 'Game of Thrones.'


And last but not least watch the opening credits with the "Social Media" 'Game of Thrones.' Admittedly, I'm actually still amazed that Facebook is featured so prominently. Facebook is so 2008. I barely use it. I have to give Zuckerberg credit though he bought Instagram before it became too big of a threat. Thank goodness he didn't buy Twitter. That's my main social media vein these days.


Rumor has it that Marvel is planning to give Jennifer Lawrence her own Mystique film. I complain constantly about how there aren't enough female-led superhero films. So I'm all for a female-led superhero film. That said, I don't think Mystique should get a film before Black Widow. Marvel President of Production Kevin Feige just gave the comic book community a whole song and dance about how we don't need to see female-led superhero films. But now all of a sudden when JLaw's in the mix, they want a female-led Mystique film?

In the interest of full disclosure, I'm not a Jennifer Lawrence fan. I really didn't care for her as Mystique. Likewise, Unlike other female super heroes, I have never known Mystique to be a leading lady. She's always been a supporting member. Unlike the stand alone 'Avengers' films, the X-Men has always been an ensemble. Likewise, I didn't think the stand-alone Wolverine films were very strong without the supporting characters. The X-Men seem to do better when they're together.

Lastly, Bryan Singer is no Joss Whedon. I have no doubt that Bryan Singer will continue his assault on the X-Men Comics with 'X-Men Days of Future Past.' I limit this discussion to Marvel super heroes. Don't get me started on DC Comics and Wonder Woman.



I don't know about you, but I'm a kinda tired of fast food superhero marketing. Don't get me wrong I partake in fast food, probably more than I should, but these stupid commercials of superheroes eating fast food irritate me. The worst offender is the commercial with Mystique (not played by JLaw) and the Western X-Tra Bacon Thickburger at Hardees (and Carl Jrs). The theme is "Man Up" and eat the burger. Mystique has to turn into a man in order to enjoy it. Ok, fine, but I don't think any superhero could eat a 1,000 calorie burger (no fries/drink included) on a regular basis and still look like a superhero.




Here is a trailer for the new Scarlett Johansson and Luc Besson film, 'Lucy.' ScarJo has become quite the action star in her own right, so I'm excited to see how this movie turns out. It has an intriguing concept and of course lots of action, which is a Besson staple.



The scourge of 'Lost' and 'Prometheus,' Damon Lindelof is coming back to television with a new show called 'The Leftovers.' HBO's 'The Leftovers' is about the rapture, which has taken two percent of the world's population or about 140 million people. It's based on the Tom Perrotta novel of the same name. The series will star Liv Tyler, Christopher Eccleston, and Justin Theroux. The first episode will be directed by Peter Berg ('Lone Survivor' and 'Battleship'). IMHO, Lindelof is a creative, but messy writer, so I'm curious, but cautious about any tv series he's in charge of writing.




This one proves that you're never too old to dress up! God willing I live as long as these dear people, I will be cosplaying into my 90s.

I can never see enough of Daenerys cosplay, especially when a baby dragon is involved.

I love this gender bending female version of the Comedian. Dani Nyan absolutely nailed it. She even has the right attitude. Great job.

Last, but certainly not least, these ladies did a great job with their Punisher cosplay. When I see a picture with stomachs that flat it reminds me not to eat fast food.

My Top 10 Favorite Space Marines

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The space marine is an archetype of science fiction. The quintessential space marine is tough, stoic, an alpha male (or female), off-world (sometimes on world), and always armed to the teeth. The earliest use of the actual term "space marine" appeared in 'Captain Brink of the Space Marines,' a 1932 'Amazing Stories' comic, which was a science fiction anthology. Steven Spielberg used this same material for his 1980s television series of the same name (available on Netflix).

An even earlier version of the archetype was John Carter of Mars, the protagonist in the Edward Rice Burroughs series. Yes, the same 'John Carter' that bombed the box office a few years ago. Carter was a former soldier before finding himself on Mars. The John Carter series was also Avatar's predecessor. If you've read any of the 'Barsoom Stories,' you notice the similarities between James Cameron's 'Avatar' and John Carter. 'Avatar' of course was full of space marines. Whether the archetype begin in 1912 or 1932, it stuck and has been a staple of science fiction ever since.

So Huzzah to Space Marines! Here are my favorites, some of whom may come from the same film and television series. Please note that I did not necessarily like all of the films on this list, but I liked that particular space marine.
10.  Dizzy (Dina Meyer), Starship Troopers (1997) - Based on the 1959 novel of the same name, 'Starship Troopers' is more of a guilty pleasure than a good movie. In the future an insectoid race has launched asteroid attacks on earth. The troopers invade the bug world to put a stop to it. It could have been a serious film, but perhaps it wasn't meant to be. The film is all camp, gore...and fun. It's a signature of a Paul Verhoeven film ('RoboCop,' 'Total Recall').

Like wine, 'Starship Troopers' improves with age. The more I watch it, the more I enjoy it. It's like 'Shawshank Redemption.' Hands down my favorite character is Dizzy. I liked Dizzy more than the lead character, Johnny Rico (Casper Van Dien), or the beautiful, yet boring Carmen Ibanez (Denise Richards). Dizzy was the jock girl who liked to hang out with the guys. Writing for a science fiction blog, I can relate. Although Dizzy's fruitless obsession with Johnny Rico did her no favors, Dizzy was still tough and smart. Lest we forget, she went down fighting. If the writers had any sense they would have ditched the Dizzy/Johnny/Carmen love triangle and just went with Dizzy. In the end, Johnny's infatuation with Carmen (and his cold shoulder to Dizzy) just made him look stupid.
9. John Grimm (Karl Urban), Doom - Let me preface this by saying that I hated this movie. 'Doom' is perhaps one of the worst video game movies ever made. It was terrible and it even had a first person shooter scene right out of the video game that was beyond awful. But anytime I get to see Karl Urban muscled up, dressed in gear, with weapons is good. So there you have it. You just can't go wrong with Karl Urban as a space marine. Yes, I'm a fangirl.

8. Ssgt Mike Nantz (Aaron Eckart), 'Battle Los Angeles' - I thought this film was ok. I reviewed it a few years ago. You can see my review here. It's another film I would put in the guilty pleasure category. It's just an action movie. There is basically no plot. Aliens invade for unknown reasons and a lone squad of marines is our last line of global defense. What I liked about the movie was Aaron Eckhart. If Eckhart stuck to these aging battle-hardened military man roles, he could increase his fanbase. His 'Frankenstein' movie this year was a disaster.

7. Samantha Carter (Amanda Tapping), 'Stargate SG-1' - What can be said about the lovely Amanda Tapping. She's played an immortal in 'Sanctuary,' an angel in 'Supernatural,' but my favorite Tapping role was in 'Stargate SG-1.' The 'Stargate' universe is way too difficult to explain. You can read about SG-1 here. Tapping is a great actress and she made one heck of a "space marine" in the original 'Stargate SG-1' and later in 'Stargate Atlantis.' I say "space marine" in quotes, because technically Carter was an Air Force Captain (later Lt. Colonel) and an astrophysicist, but you get the gist. Carter was tough, yet always kind and considerate. She had a curiosity about things around her and a longtime crush on Col. Jack O'Neil (Richard Dean Anderson). Carter will always be a SciFi fan favorite.
 

6.  (Entire Cast) 'Space Above and Beyond' was a short-lived underrated space drama from the 1990s. The re-imagined 'Battlestar Galactica' owes its shirt to this show. This show is the true predecessor to 'Battlestar Galactica.' Ron Moore clearly took notes. Unfortunately, the Fox Network didn't. The show was created by 'X-Files' alums Glen Morgan and James Wong, but only lasted one season. Despite being cancelled too soon, its become a cult classic.

'Space Above and Beyond' was set in the late 21st century and focused on a group of space marines. The human race has colonized other planets by travelling through naturally occurring wormholes, when suddenly an alien race called 'The Chigs' attacks and destroys earth's first colony outside of the solar system. The war wages as the space marines are outgunned. The Chigs appear to have some sort of faster than light (FTL) technology. It only gets worse for our space marines when a race of genetically engineered artificial humans known as "In Vitroes" rebels against them. Sound familiar? The show starred primarily character actors, led by James Morrison (Lt. Col. Tyrus Cassius), best known for costarring with 
Kiefer Sutherland on '24.' 

5. Trudy Chacon (Michelle Rodriguez), 'Avatar' - Michelle Rodriguez is the ultimate tough girl femme. Rodriguez's debut role as a female boxer in 'Girlfight' probably set the tone for her career. Rodriguez may be best known for her role in the 'Fast and Furious' franchise, but she's no stranger to the SciFi community. Rodriguez has played so many soldier-type roles ('Resident Evil,' 'Battle Los Angeles,' and 'Swat') that she's almost been typecast.  I'm convinced that when a casting director looks for a beautiful tough girl who can hold a gun they automatically cast "Michelle Rodriguez." Thankfully, she always delivers.

4. Battlestar Galactica (2004), Starbuck (Katee Sackhoff) - Starbuck was a loudmouth, an occasional screwup, and a show off. So what's there to like about Starbuck? A lot. Starbuck may have been a showoff, but she could back it up. Starbuck was gutsy, reckless, an ace pilot, smart, loyal, and destined for great things. Katee Sachoff's portrayal of Starbuck was raw and emotional. I never doubted her for a second. She wasn't just a tough as nails space marine (or space pilot), even though she was in fact tough as nails. 

What made Sackhoff's Starbuck so special was that her character was so multi-dimensional. Starbuck was a dichotomy of opposites, she was religious and a believer in destiny, despite being a victim of child abuse. She was tough, yet vulnerable. She was a substance abuser, yet a perpetual overachiever. She hated Leoben, yet she relied on him. She loved Apollo, yet married Sam. Starbuck was a walking contradiction and aren't we all?

After the success of the reimagined series, most people can't imagine another Starbuck other than Sackoff (or Dirk Benedict from the original series), but there was a time when this wasn't always so. Dirk Benedict's Starbuck was it. There was no room for Sackhoff in that equation. Before the reimainged 'Battlestar Galactica' became iconic onto itself, it was booed at the 2003 Galticon Convention and Sackhoff herself was booed at the 2004 Comic Con. There were a lot of die-hard fans who were not happy about all of the changes, especially about Starbuck becoming a woman. Sackhoff said she even received death threats

Both Starbucks were exceptional fighters, gamblers, cigar smoking brawlers, lotharios, and Apollo's best friend, but for some reason making the character female upset people. Most people wouldn't question Starbuck's qualities in a male character, but in a woman these characteristics take on a whole different meaning. Ron Moore said "what if Starbuck was a woman, if she sleeps around, chomps a cigar, and gambles, is always getting into trouble, but is still the best pilot in the fleet? It's something I hadn't seen before."
3. TIE BETWEEN Hudson (Bill Paxton) and Vasquez (Jenette Goldstein), 'Aliens.'

Hudson - For some reason some people find Hudson (Bill Paxton) from 'Aliens' to be irritating. I personally found him to be hilarious and iconic. Every line Paxton delivered in this movie is quotable. The lines themselves weren't necessarily all that creative, but Paxton's delivery was spot on perfect. Hudson was slightly cowardly, but he more than made up for it with his smart mouth. Hudson did not have what I call "3:00 in the morning courage." Meaning he wasn't someone who could wake up at 3:00 in the morning and be ready to face a crisis. Despite being slightly shaky about meeting a hostile alien species for the first time, Hudson could still be depended on when it counted. Lest we forget, Hudson did go out in a blaze of glory.

Vasquez - I've always admired James Cameron for putting strong women on screen. Think about--Sarah Connor, Lindsey (from 'The Abyss'), and Ripley (no he didn't create Ripley, but he made her even more iconic). When people think of Ripley they think of the Ripley of 'Aliens.' We will try to forget about Jamie Lee Curtis' character from 'True Lies.'  

Despite the missteps in 'True Lies,' I have to give Cameron credit where credit is due. Vasquez was the first female space marine I ever saw onscreen. I'm sure that some enterprising movie buff can come up with an earlier example, but Vasquez is the first female space marine that made an impression on me and she's influenced countless female roles after her. Besides female body builders, I had never seen a woman with muscles like that onscreen before. Not only did she have muscles, but she was just as tough as the guys were. She carried the biggest gun, she was braver than Hudson (which wasn't hard), and she valiantly sacrificed her life so that others could survive.

Jenette Goldstein's portrayal as Vasquez was so good that I didn't realize that she wasn't actually a Hispanic woman. Goldstein has primarily been a character actress throughout her career. She has appeared in two other Cameron films, 'Terminator 2: Judgment Day' and 'Titanic.' But she is such an incredible chameleon that you may not even recall what roles she's played.
2. Colonel Miles Quaritch (Stephen Lang), 'Avatar' - Quaritch was the ultimate alpha male space marine. Cameron handpicked Stephen Lang after seeing him perform a one-man show called Beyond Glory. In 'Beyond Glory' Lang portrayed eight different military men who had received the Medal of Honor. Lang was so good that Cameron passed over his favorite long-time leading man, Michael Biehn. Biehn fought hard for the role of Quaritch, but it was Lang's role to lose. Also, Cameron didn't want anyone associating Sigourney Weaver's and Biehn's character with their roles from 'Aliens.' 

Perhaps there is something wrong with me, but I liked Lang's character more than the main characters, Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) and Nyteri (Zoe Saldana). Admittedly, 'Avatar' was not one of my favorite science fiction films. 'Avatar' may have been a technical marvel (it has since helped films like 'Gravity' be made), but in my opinion 'Avatar' was basically 'Dances with Wolves' meets 'Fern Gully.' 

I know that Quaritch was technically the villain of this story, but he was by far the most interesting character in the movie. Cameron deserves some credit for writing Quaritch as a three-dimensional villain with some good qualities and a lot of bad ones. But Lang deserves most of the credit for bringing him to life. The best villains are always complicated.
1. Hicks (Michael Biehn), 'Aliens' - Admittedly, the space marine genre owes quite a bit to James Cameron. Seriously, like five out of 10 of the space marines on this list are from Cameron films, including my favorite space marine of all time: Corporal Hicks of 'Aliens.' Hicks (Michael Biehn) was an ideal marine. He knew how to take orders, but he also knew how to give them. He was smart, level-headed, strong, and moral. When everyone else around him fell apart at the seams, Hicks calmly and cooly picked up the pace. At some point, even Ripley fell apart, but not Hicks. It didn't hurt that Hicks came in the form of a young Michael Biehn. I remember Corporal Hicks being one of my first crushes. Yes he was tough and battle hardened, but Hicks was also kind and thoughtful. He held his own with Ripley without being aggressive or dismissive. He was also very protective of those in his care. Hicks was good looking, good natured, and a trained killer. Corporal Hicks is literally the perfect man. 

Rabid Fandom, 'GoTs' AutoTune, Reboots, Spoilers, + Trailers

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This is my favorite 'Game of Thrones' autotune from @musicalscience, appropriately titled, 'The Dragon's Daughter.' It has all of your favorite characters singing their little hearts out. Yay. It actually has a cool little beat to it.


I've also enjoyed the 'Game of Thrones' and 'House of Cards' mashup. This guy's impression of Frank Underwood is spot on.


Batman turned 75 yesterday, which means he looks pretty good for someone who is almost an Octogenarian. I've always said that Batman is the guy you date. Superman is the guy you marry. So here's to you Batman. Happy Birthday.
via HitFix




Gal Gadot imagined as Wonder Woman 
So supposedly I've turned into a bitter Wonder Woman fan because I don't understand why every male superhero under the sun is getting their own film or television series. You can see a full list of all of the new potential superhero films and series here. I've also started to keep tally of all of the reasons (excuses) we still don't have a Wonder Woman film or series yet. Listed below are my favorites.

1.  Wonder Woman is just too epic for television. 

So Superman isn't too epic, but Wonder Woman is? Superman is the definition of epic.

2.  Wonder Woman doesn't have the brand recognition that Superman and Batman have.

So 'The Arrow,' 'The Flash,' and now Jim Gordon ('Gotham' series) (I limit this to DC Comics) have more brand recognition than Wonder Woman? I don't think so.
3.  'Arrow' has done so well because there was a substantial change to the titular character. The fans won't tolerate those type of changes to Wonder Woman.

So DC Comics is afraid of the fans? Why would they be afraid of the Wonder Woman fans more than any other fan group? Fans are fans.
4.  Gal Godot has already been cast as Wonder Woman and she has signed on for three films, including 'Superman versus Batman,' a separate Wonder Woman film, and a 'Justice League' film.

Yes, this is true. Gadot has signed on as Wonder Woman, but the only film that has been greenlit has been the 'Superman/Batman' project. So Wonder Woman's debut will be as 3rd wheel to Superman and Batman in a Zach Synder ('Sucker Punch') film no less. And then there's still no guarantee that she will get her own films afterward.
5.  Most of the comic book fans are male, so they have to appease the male comic book fans.

Yes, it's true that most comic book fans are male, but there was recently an article on i09 that the fans don't make or break a film. Fans are responsible for the film's legacy or how the film is perceived, not the film's box office success. Also, I know plenty of male fans who love Wonder Woman and who would watch her on the big or small screens. 

This problem isn't exclusive to DC Comics. Marvel's 'Black Widow' was supposed to get her own film, but now Marvel is backsliding...big...time. Yes, we get it, female superheroes are in ensemble films, but when will a female superhero carry her own film again? The last one I recall was 'Catwoman,' which admittedly was disastrous, but not because it was female-led, but because it was a terrible movie. Halle Berry's ripped pleather Catwoman outfit didn't help matters.

Rant over. Until the next time.

Amy Acker returns to Whedonverse as Agent Colson's love interest in 'Agents of Shield.' Remember the cellist Colson talked about in 'The Avengers?' Yeah, I guess that's her. Yay for Amy.

Photos of the Scarlett Witch and Quicksilver from 'Avengers 2' have surfaced. Elizabeth Olson looks fantabulous.

Ready for some 'Sleepy Hollow' Season 2 spoilers? Here ya go.

So supposedly 'The Walking Dead' spinoff is definitely happening. Sigh. Really? It's not like this is a 'Law and Order' franchise or something.

The Rock will play Hercules in a live action film. Actually I think this is pretty good casting. He fits the part.



This one is for the book lover in your life. You can buy a brooch made from classic literary works, like 'Sherlock Holmes,' 'Pride and Prejudice,' and 'Alice in Wonderland,' etc.
Artist Dave Vancook adds a 'Star Wars' flair to thrift store paintings. Very cool. I have a few paintings he can touch up.


Do you like to bake? Why not try baking a scientifically accurate version of the planets? You will be the King or Queen of any bake sale. Take the CakeCrumb Tutorial.


Do you want to learn Dothraki? I do.



'The Grudge' is being rebooted. Come on folks, can't you wait at least 10 years to reboot a series? The original 'Grudge' came out in 2004 and admittedly it was a successful little horror flick, unlike the two follow-up sequels. Yes, there was a 'Grudge 3.' No, I don't remember it either. The original Japanese film it was based on, 'Ju-On' came out in 2002. Screenwriter Jeff Buhler (Midnight Meat Train) is rewriting. I will withhold my judgment, but I'm skeptical, especially considering he wrote 'Midnight Meat Train.' At least the first film was produced by Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert. I'm not sure what the reboot has going for it?









New trailer for 'Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' looks pretty good. It's more of a teaser trailer, but you get the gist of it. The apes have taken over and it's on. Us humans are in trouble.


New Trailer for 'Jupiter Ascending' with Mila Kunis is out. I can never tell how a Wachowski film will turn out. 'The Matrix' was great. 'Matrix 2' and 3 were not. 'Cloud Atlas' was both hit and miss. Hopefully 'Jupiter Ascending' will make sense (and be good).


'THX-1138' Review - Blind Spot

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This android's got some swagger.
'THX-1138' is the third film in the Blind Spot Series with TheMatinee.Ca. You can see my Blind Spot movies list in the right hand side bar. Blind Spots are films that I've never seen before and are posted on the last Tuesday of the month. The first film on my list was 'Quest for Fire,' the second blind spot was 'Attack of the 50'-Foot Woman.' I accidentally skipped 'Fahrenheit 451' (1966). So 'Fahrenheit 451' is now on my list for April!

Starring: Robert Duvall, Maggie McOmie, and Donald Pleasance
Directed and Written by: George Lucas

I always enjoy watching science fiction movies from the 1960s and 1970s, not just because of the apparent visual differences, but also because of the social commentary. This may be debatable, but it seems like filmmakers in the 1970s were in some ways braver with regard to artistic expression. I'm sure there are exceptions, but somehow I doubt films like 'Alien,' 'The Exorcist,' 'Jaws,' 'THX-1138,' or on a lighter note, 'The Rocky Horror Picture Show,' would have been made had they not been made in the 1970s.
Take your pills.
After the atomic age of the 1950s, there seemed to be a cosmic shift in filmmaking. Films in the late 1960s and the 1970s were edgier, filled with more depth and meaning. If films reflect the era they are created in, then it makes sense. The late 1960s and 1970s were tumultuous times. Although every new film likes to think of itself as exactly that, "new." In reality "all of this has happened before and will happen again." There's a little 'Battlestar Galactica' (2004) quote for you, which actually stole the quote from 'Peter Pan.' So there you have it. Nothing is new. Not really. So let's just acknowledge that most modern films are spun from the same thread as their 1970s counterparts.
Robert Duvall (THX-1138)

'THX-1138' came out in 1971 and was George Lucas' first full length feature film. It's based on a student film Lucas did, which was similarly titled 'Electronic Labyrinth: THX-1138_4EB.' I guess that title was too long. There was also a novelization of the film afterward by Lucas and Ben Bova, similar to the '2001: A Space Odyssey' collaboration between Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke. This isn't 'THX-1138's only similarity to '2001.' Similar to '2001,' 'THX-1138' is a visually provocative film with the intent of provoking an emotion from the viewer. As '2001' had just come out a few years prior, one could see Kubrick's influence on Lucas. And although I admire Lucas' ambition, George Lucas is no Stanley Kubrick.
Robotic sweat shop.
Similar to George Romero's original 'Night of the Living Dead,' 'THX-1138' is a critique of consumerism. However, 'THX-1138' goes one step further and delves into prescription drug use. The film's critique is ahead of its time, especially considering the decadence of the 1980s, the hyper growth and consumption of the 1990s, and the prescription drug abuse in the 2000s.
Maggie McOmie as LUH-4371
'THX-1138' is a sterile world, filled with drug addled drone-like people, policed by uniformed androids, all of whom are controlled by a faceless dictatorship. Everyone is dressed in all white. Their surroundings are all white, as are their furnishings. Everyone (including women) have their heads shaved. In this world, sex and emotion are strictly prohibited. The 2002 film 'Equilibrium' owes its shirt to this film.
Maggie McOmie (LUH-4371) and Robert Duvall (THX-1138)
'THX-1138' begins inside the main character's medicine cabinet. The main character is of course named THX (Robert Duvall). The cameras inside his medicine cabinet allow the powers that be to monitor his "required" drug use. These drug are called "sedation." Sedation makes the city's inhabitants cold, emotionless, and perfect worker bees. They can concentrate on mundane tasks for hours and hours at a time. THX is literally just a working stiff, working in an unsafe factory handling radioactive materials to make more androids.
Robert Duvall (THX-1138)
Similar to the Eloi from 'The Time Machine,' the people in the world of 'THX-1138' are tasked with two things: increase production and be happy. Messy emotions like love and anger don't mix well in this world. A potential interruption in production is the primary reason people are not allowed to love one another or reproduce on their own. They are given libido inhibitors and other drugs to inhibit their sense of self. If and when they do feel the need for self-reflection, they are provided with religious telephone booths with pre-recorded video screens.
THX-1138 gets ready for a beat down.
THX's roommate, LUH-4371 (Maggie McOmie), is noticeably different. LUH doesn't seem to have the same dead look in her eyes that everyone else does. LUH-4371 works in a control room monitoring "illegal" activities, like love. She feels disgust when a factory similar to the one THX works in, explodes with all of its workers still at their duty stations. When THX arrives home, we see that LUH has been tampering with his medication cocktail, which causes him to start feeling repressed emotions. He starts "not to feel well," which he comes to realize is love for LUH.
Donald Pleasance (SEN 5241) and Robert Duvall (THX-1138)
As THX and LUH face the repercussions for their feelings, LUH discovers that she pregnant. It's at this point that THX and LUH are separated and imprisoned. THX is forced into his own odyssey to escape and find LUH. There are a few supporting roles throughout the film, including Donald Pleasance (SEN 5241) who plays another malfunctioning person, who THX himself has turned in. During his odyssey, THX meets another malcontent named SRT (Don Pedro Colley). SRT is an unhappy hologram who helps THX and SEN plot their escape from their repressed world. THX's conclusion reminded me of Charleston Heston's astronaut (George Taylor) at the end of 'Planet of the Apes.' Yes, that's another film Lucas was likely influenced by.
THX-1138 steals a car
I really wanted to like this film, but it loses steam somewhere in the middle. Thankfully, the film's visuals carry it. What I liked about the film was how stark and raw it felt. Maggie McOmie was the most emotionally raw and intriguing character, but instead of utilizing her more, Lucas buries her underneath a Duvall-centric film. Admittedly, Duvall is wonderful as THX, but McOmie had a sad intensity that none of the other actors matched.
Robert Duvall (THX-1138)
To be fair, I'm viewing 'THX-1138' through modern movie goggles. However, 'THX-1138' was hardly a new concept even in 1971. 'THX-1138' is really just a watered down version of George Orwell's dystopian novel '1984' and the 1967 novel 'Logan's Run,' which was also subsequently turned into a 1970s film. My main critique of the film is that Lucas cobbled together about four or five classic science fiction films and novels and proceeded to slap his name on it.

That said, had films like 'THX-1138' (or similar films of that era) not been made, there wouldn't be anything to imitate or escalate from. Modern filmmakers seem to think that escalation means more gore and brutality, but the filmmakers of the 1970s were psychologically focused. These films wormed their way into your psyche and stayed there. It's part of the reason these films have stood the test of time so well. Fortunately, modern filmmakers like Ti West are trying to recapture some of what was lost.

I remember my dad telling me that when 'The Exorcist' came out in 1973, movie theaters had to place signs up warning people with heart conditions not to see the film. The last time I remember movie theaters felt compelled to place signs up was for 'The Tree of Life.' Evidently the movie was so boring, that people were asking for refunds. So although I don't require a refund for the $9.99 I paid to purchase this film on Amazon Prime, I do wish that I had only rented it for $2.99. 
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