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Author Topic: Worlds of Tomorrow: Armageddon  (Read 6378 times)

Russell Nash

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on: May 24, 2009, 08:11:46 AM
Worlds of Tomorrow: Armageddon

Welcome to Worlds of Tomorrow, an occasional feature we’ll be running looking at some of the best in science fiction cinema. From acknowledged classics to forgotten gems we’ll be covering them all. Some of them you’ll have seen, some you won’t, some you’ll agree with me on and some you’ll wonder what I was drinking when I watched them but that’s half the fun. Spoilers abound so if you haven’t seen the movie and want to be surprised, go rent it now, we’ll be here when you get back. Otherwise, prepare for a different take on a story of vast asteroids, vast machismo and vast guitar solos…


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Russell Nash

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Reply #1 on: May 24, 2009, 08:21:42 AM
YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!!  This piece of shit has got to be one of the worst movies I have ever seen in my life.  This is a perfect example of the pure evilness that is Jerry Bruckheimer. 

The review by Roger Ebert said it all:

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The movie is an assault on the eyes, the ears, the brain, common sense and the human desire to be entertained. No matter what they're charging to get in, it's worth more to get out.
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"Armageddon'' reportedly used the services of nine writers. Why did it need any? The dialogue is either shouted one-liners or romantic drivel. ``It's gonna blow!'' is used so many times, I wonder if every single writer used it once, and then sat back from his word processor with a contented smile on his face, another day's work done.
Quote
"Armageddon'' is loud, ugly and fragmented. Action sequences are cut together at bewildering speed out of hundreds of short edits, so that we can't see for sure what's happening, or how, or why. Important special-effects shots (such as the asteroid) have a murkiness of detail, and the movie cuts away before we get a good look. The few ``dramatic'' scenes consist of the sonorous recitation of ancient cliches. Only near the end, when every second counts, does the movie slow down: Life on Earth is about to end, but the hero delays saving the planet in order to recite cornball farewell platitudes.



Russell Nash

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Reply #2 on: May 24, 2009, 10:45:48 AM
Al, Your defense of this turd of a film is that in a couple of places it is almost a shadow of a much better film?  If anything that just makes me hate this film more.  It shows that the original story may have actually had a purpose.  That before Bruckheimer and Bay got near it, there may have been the chance to have a watchable film. 

Just because they only wrecked 99% of the film doesn't make it a good film.



Talia

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Reply #3 on: May 25, 2009, 03:13:49 AM
Watching a pile of horse manure festering in a field holds more entertainment value and enjoyment than this film ever possibly could in 10 million years.

BLEH! ;p



Listener

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Reply #4 on: May 25, 2009, 05:23:58 PM
I watch movies for the enjoyment factor. Armageddon was a fun movie to watch. Of course, I saw it when I came out and haven't seen it since.

"Farts are a hug you can smell." -Wil Wheaton

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alllie

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Reply #5 on: May 27, 2009, 02:28:12 AM
Once again Alasdair has written about a movie I thought of as minor and made me question my own opinion of it.

Alasdair is starting to remind me of ... Lester Bangs, the great rock critic. Lester's reviews of records or artists were always enjoyable even if I rarely shared his opinions. Despite that I was never willing to miss Lester's writing on any subject.

I'm starting to feel that way about Alasdair. I found his review of 2010 better than I remembered the movie being. He made me question if 2010 was better than I thought.

Now he's done it again with his review of Armageddon, drawing comparisons to the real life emergency of Apollo 13, making me think I missed something essential in dismissing this movie. 

I really enjoy Alasdair's writing even if I don't plan to rent Armageddon any time soon.

Go Alasdair!



Zathras

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Reply #6 on: May 27, 2009, 07:53:37 PM
I found Armegeddon enjoyable.  I, like Listener, haven't watched it in years.

The content here was great, but the quality was shit.  Sorry, Al.



eytanz

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Reply #7 on: May 27, 2009, 09:20:08 PM
Let me start by saying that I don't hate Armageddon. Far from it - I thought it was a fun movie. Stupid as hell, but fun.

That said, I agree with Russell when he says (though not with the tone):

Quote
Your defense of this turd of a film is that in a couple of places it is almost a shadow of a much better film?

Specifically, your analysis seems to be describing a movie this could have been, if themes that seem to be just accidental in this film were instead developed and important. In many ways, I learnt more about Alasdair and how his mind works that I did about the movie. Which is cool, because I think given the choice, I'd much rather listen to Alasdair talk about stuff for two hours than see the movie again.



stePH

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Reply #8 on: May 27, 2009, 10:11:35 PM
Specifically, your analysis seems to be describing a movie this could have been, if themes that seem to be just accidental in this film were instead developed and important. In many ways, I learnt more about Alasdair and how his mind works that I did about the movie. Which is cool, because I think given the choice, I'd much rather listen to Alasdair talk about stuff for two hours than see the movie again.

Alasdair is a joy to listen to, when the sound quality doesn't suck.  I enjoyed the hell out of the Pantechnicon/Doctor Who podcast.

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deflective

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Reply #9 on: May 27, 2009, 10:49:42 PM
so, the intro's credibility is pretty much shot.  selecting the best sf movies to revisit?   this feels like a challenge that Alasdair has made with himself, anybody can find nuance in a good film but it takes a deft eye to make armageddon interesting.

btw, it sounds like the microphone is being touched or bumped during recording (maybe the work surface).  this is pretty noticeable with headphones.



Russell Nash

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Reply #10 on: May 28, 2009, 09:47:40 AM
That said, I agree with Russell when he says (though not with the tone):

sorry, Al.


I'd much rather listen to Alasdair talk about stuff for two hours than see the movie again.

I fully agree with this.



Father Beast

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Reply #11 on: July 11, 2009, 04:02:33 AM
Once again Alasdair has written about a movie I thought of as minor and made me question my own opinion of it.

Alasdair is starting to remind me of ... Lester Bangs, the great rock critic. Lester's reviews of records or artists were always enjoyable even if I rarely shared his opinions. Despite that I was never willing to miss Lester's writing on any subject.

I'm starting to feel that way about Alasdair. I found his review of 2010 better than I remembered the movie being. He made me question if 2010 was better than I thought.

Now he's done it again with his review of Armageddon, drawing comparisons to the real life emergency of Apollo 13, making me think I missed something essential in dismissing this movie. 

I really enjoy Alasdair's writing even if I don't plan to rent Armageddon any time soon.

Go Alasdair!



Admittedly, he does give good review, and makes me question my thoughts about it. I had the same feeling as you when I listened to his review of 2010.

I would have thought something similar about Armageddon after his review....-IF I hadn't actually seen the movie.

Good heavens! I can swallow a pile of idiocy concerning the science of a movie if it's fun to watch. Hey, I liked Independence Day, and the science in there was almost as bad.

The problem with Armageddon was that it wasn't fun. Probably because I hated the people in it. Not the actors, mind you, but the characters! Everyone I was supposed to be rooting for was a first class jerk. I found myself hoping that the asteroid would hit the planet, just so they would have no place to go home to and all die of asphyxiation and shame. I had no respect for any of them. Well, maybe a little for the psychopath. and when the most feeling a movie can generate is that, it is a big loser in my book.



kibitzer

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Reply #12 on: July 27, 2009, 11:25:10 PM
Props to you Alasdair for having an opinion and not being afraid to (a) say it and (b) define it. And you do so without sounding pretentious. Whether or not I agree is irrelevant. Nicely done.


Sylvan

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Reply #13 on: August 01, 2009, 04:18:08 PM
In essence, it is one of the worst films I have ever seen from the science, to the underlying "blow 'em up good" mentality of the story, to the poor acting that even my favorite Buscemi was unable to fix.  But the review of the film was fascinating to listen to even as I was shaking my head, disagreeing with the conclusions.

Fascinating, really:  the review was infinitely better than the crap it was reviewing...



Unblinking

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Reply #14 on: January 25, 2010, 06:11:41 PM
I hope Alasdair has more reviews in store for us!  He's a great reviewer, whether I've seen the movie or not, whether I intend to see it or not, I love to hear his breakdown of what he liked and what he didn't, spoken eloquently and with details I wouldn't have thought of.

Me, I haven't seen Armageddon since I was 14 or so.  I loved it at the time, but I was 14, so I loved a lot of movies that I would consider really stupid if I saw them for the first time now.  Even at the the time I doubted the science made any sense, but I had fun with it anyway.  I've avoided seeing it for many, many years for the sole reason that I know I will probably hate it and I'm loathe to burst the nostalgia bubble time capsule it is encased in.