I was no rogue. I went to see the latest in the Star Wars film dynasty, Rogue One. I paid the extra money for the 3D glasses and was impressed with what were improvements to the 3D effect, since the last time I paid that extra money it took me less time to stop observing and judging the quality of the effect to allow myself to be carried away by the show. Same thing with the sound. Less early head turning to check to see if there were visual signs of the theatre cracking to go along with the auditory ones. No, it’s just the movie’s sound track. Cool.
It was fun to escape the planet for a couple of hours. It was nice to get reacquainted with familiar characters and well-worn story lines. There were some “Wow” moments, in terms of what I was seeing, but what was I not seeing, while I was sitting in the dark being hypnotized by the screen?
Rogue One had been released to the theatre two days ago. I shared my movie-going experience with about five other people. I didn’t know any of them. At least I don’t think so, but I can’t be sure because of the darkness.
I remember as a kid, standing in long lines to see movies as being the norm.
How convenient we have it today. I do rather miss the conversations I used to have with friends, anticipating what we were about to see, as we waited in line to see it.
In those days, when you saw a movie for the first time, you saw all of it for the first time. There were no “trailers.” I often would stay until the end of the rolling credits, not wanting to leave. I would be amazed at how many people it took to make a major motion picture, many of whom had job titles that gave me no clue as to what their contribution was.
I remember the magic of first watching a movie at home that played on a VCR machine that I rented. I remember going to video tape stores and spending more time than I used to spend waiting in movie lines to pick out a title. The time was seldom spent choosing from an abundance of rich offerings.
It was only then, that I came to fully appreciate how many bad films there were.
I do not consider myself to be a film snob. I do believe that having the opinion that most films suck is very mainstream. It is staggering how much money lousy films cost to make and how easily a lousy movie can make millions. It is incredible how much work can go into making something so worthless.
There are ever-increasing ways to access films. More and more people are spending more time trying to decide what to watch than they are watching. Rare, to never, does a show grab me from beginning to end.
Time spent contemplating and talking about a good film doesn’t last for long, before it’s time for the next one.
I am beginning to believe those who claim the masses are continuing to be hit with bad movies, in order to distract them from wanting to stop what powerful elites are up to.
This distraction can work on many levels. Through the virtual reality of film, I can visit many pristine and magical places and pay less attention as to how powerful elites extract resources from real formerly pristine and magical places, leaving big ugly messes in the process.
The more time I spend siting in the dark being entertained, the less time I spend thinking about social injustice and what I could be doing about it.
The brain isn’t real good at discriminating between the factual and the fictional. Rogue One continues the Star Wars tradition of teaching that evil is easy to spot and it doesn’t look much like what is all around you. It teaches that evil is focused on using weapons of mass destruction to wipe out uppity rogues, but such weapons are no match for the good intentions of the heroes that represent the masses. Really?
It teaches that social justice warriors keep their secrets well and powerful elites try very hard, but just can’t pry those secrets from their lips. Now, how does that play in real life?
A core theme of Rogue One is that rebellion can be begun and sustained by hope. Take a cold look at the means of power controlled by elites with no interest in social justice. Then, don’t despair. There is always hope that somebody other than you will do something about this.
While you are waiting, how about watching another movie? Can I come too?
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