Archive for the 'Film' Category

Page 2 of 2

alternate wednesday: “Impossible Dreams”

AltWed_Logo

Somebody described the experience of reading great fiction as being caught up in a vivid continuous dream, and I think movies do that better than any other kind of story. Some people say the best movie isn’t as good as the best book, and I say they’re not watching the right movies, or else they’re not watching them the right way.

One of my favorite alternate universe stories–indeed, one of my favorite short stories in general–is “Impossible Dreams” by Tim Pratt. I first read it in the July 2006 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction, and it instantly felt like one of those things that was made just for me. You know, like that Thundercats/Superman crossover comic, only way way better.

impossibledreamsWithout spoiling more than I have to (considering I’m featuring it in this blog series), the story is about a cinephile named Pete who happens across a video store from another reality… Which means it offers films from another reality. Think about that for a moment, and then think about all the movies that might have been if the whims of Hollywood had turned out a little differently. “Impossible Dreams” is a love letter to film geeks, calling out some of my own favorite movies and tantalizing me with versions of them I wish I could experience.

I love films–if I could, I’d watch at least one movie a day–and this story hits two other big loves of mine: The Twilight Zone (no surprise) and parallel universes. More than that, it accurately conveys some of the joys of watching films, and the particular pleasure in sharing them with others. I can’t recommend “Impossible Dreams” highly enough, and I hope you’ll take a moment to read it. (Don’t take just my word for it; it won the 2007 Hugo Award for Best Short Story.)

Other_Worlds_Than_These-200x300

Conveniently enough, you can find it online for free at Wired, have someone else read it to you over at Escape Pod, or purchase it as a $0.99 eBook for Kindle or Nook. But I also think that if you enjoy stories about alternate universes, you have to pick up Other Worlds Than These, a reprint anthology edited by John Joseph Adams which features this and many other wonderful stories that I plan to mention in the future on this blog.

Finally, it seems only fitting that a short story about loving movies should be turned into a film of its own. As it happens, Israeli director Shir Comay has done just that with his 2011 short film, Impossible Dreams, starring Ori Yaniv and Ayala Zilberman. It took me a while to get around to watching it, but I saw it yesterday and it’s a terrific adaptation. I think it works especially well in its 22-minute run time, as it feels like a modern Twilight Zone episode–and even seems specifically designed to evoke that. Check out the full film below in Hebrew with English subtitles. (Here’s the trailer.)



What nonexistent films would you most like to see?

Share

tribbles talking star wars

I should have mentioned this sooner, but I think the weeks around the holidays are caught up in some kind of time warp:

Tonight at 9:00 p.m. EST, I will be a guest on the wonderfully geeky Black Tribbles on G-Town Radio. Rasheeda Phillips, Jared Axelrod, Stephen Segal, and I will be plotting the next three chapters of Star Wars! You can listen to the program live online. And I hope you will.

Share

alternate wednesday: wonderful lives

What is it you want, Mary? What do you want? You want the moon? Just say the word and I’ll throw a lasso around it and pull it down. Hey. That’s a pretty good idea. I’ll give you the moon, Mary.
– George Bailey

Strange, isn’t it? Each man’s life touches so many other lives. When he isn’t around he leaves an awful hole, doesn’t he?
– Clarence

I didn’t intend to focus so much on Christmas on my blog, but no discussion of alternate universes would be complete without mentioning the film It’s a Wonderful Life—which happens to be one of my favorite movies.

It’s a terrible cliché, but I do like to watch It’s a Wonderful Life every year, though I don’t always get to. I didn’t see it last year, and I haven’t yet this year, but with the artificial deadline of Christmas still a week away, I think I can probably fit it in. It’s a long movie, and I’ve seen it plenty of times, so it isn’t always a priority. I’m not so into Christmas that it’s about the holiday–in fact, the director, Frank Capra, didn’t really consider it a Christmas movie either, and it was originally scheduled to be released in January of 1947, but it was bumped up to December 1946 in New York for Oscar consideration.

Continue reading ‘alternate wednesday: wonderful lives’

Share

Superman Classic

If Disney made an animated Superman film, I think you’d pretty much end up with Hercules (1997). But Disney animator Rob Pratt has followed his own vision with this 60-second animated short, Superman Classic. Like Coke Classic, this labor of love brings back some of the things he’s enjoyed from the franchise, including stirring music from the Kirk Alyn serials, character designs inspired by the many looks of Clark Kent and Superman, and notably the voice work of John Newton, who originated the role of Superboy in the 1988 live-action The Adventures of Superboy. The storyline echoes Max Fleischer’s 1941 short film, The Mechanical Monsters, and Pratt’s hand-drawn animation is just as fluid and beautiful; nothing makes me believe a man can fly more than these cartoons. Anyway, check it out for yourself:

(via blastr)

Share