1 Star of the Magi

The flaws in the first movie of the new trilogy grow worse in the second, and any pretense of following a narrative is abandoned for first generation blip-vert style impressions. This is worse than the prequels: Bad storytelling graduates to mindless visual diarrhea.

Incoherence continues. The complete inability to sustain a scene and allow character plus setting to resolve as a coherent situation. Distance and time are continually ignored for a confusing form of hack transitionalism. Everything is conveyed to the audience through fiat and illusionism.

The driving attitude of the film is audience contempt. Fan feeling is openly mocked. Audience enjoyment of the story and connection to its history is undermined with sneering, cavalier stances while at the same time attempting to maintain irrational allegiance to the consumerism of the film.

The movie is surrounded with apologists who defend it based on juvenile realism over the romanticism of the original trilogy. They appeal to the value of acceptance of banality as superior to the striving elation of mythology, while at the same time turning a blind eye to poor movie craftsmanship and their own inability to recognize bad storytelling.

I won’t go over the ridiculous turns of character, nonsensical behavior, and lifeless conformity of the old characters. Clue one for the writers/directors/producers of the endless dumpster dive: If it has to be explained to the audience then it’s not in the script. You have to earn your moments.

I like the new characters. I just wish they were actually in the movie. They may as well not exist in this story: That’s how little agency they have. How’s that for a pro-feminist, pro-people of color, pro-LGBT Star wars universe? You can be in the show but you still won’t matter.

Rey: Confused Enigma
I think she is exactly what Star Wars needs: Ultra-powerful woman with a journey of self-discovery. You know, PURE FUN. I don’t care if she’s a Mary Sue or not. If she’s a nobody that’s awesome. If she’s Luke’s long lost daughter/cousin/niece so what? If she’s the second coming of Anakin, sounds great. Choose a position and run with it people. This is narrative dynamite waiting to be set off and rock the audience.

Instead, we get a refusal to embrace or explain her power. There’s no personal development for her, she must always remain a blank slate so the audience can endlessly project their dreams onto her. It’s lame and it reinforces sidelining of women as legitimate carriers of power or consciousness.

Finn: Cowardly Buffoon
He is also exactly what Star wars needs: An Imperial traitor who can cross both lines and serve as a bridge between the two worlds. If the movies were in the least bit interested in knowledge, healing, and understanding, then he would be making a huge impact on the story and the audience. Scriptwriters, heal thyself!

Instead we get reinforcement of stereotypes through the inability to allow situations to resolve and evolve. The incoherence of the script is arresting the development of a character of genuine interest and forcing him to resort to conventional responses of the lowest common denominator when he isn’t being completely random.

Poe: Dullard Hotshot
He too, is exactly what Star wars needs: A new heroic boy consciousness who pushes the limits hard and establishes his own maturity through the recognition of limits. He too, appeals to the joy of adventure, but in a different way. Poe and Rey could be delivering a one-two punch of exciting storytelling and awakening of the aesthetic sense.

Instead of wisdom for what needs to be encouraged in him, the legitimate expressions of his need for self-expression are demeaned. This is how you make a monster, folks: Deny the growth of a character who needs to understand and come to terms with his inability to love the feminine. Only then can he seek the help he needs. This is reinforcement of patriarchy through violence to vulnerable boy psychology. Good job, writers!

Kylo Ren: Desperate Sadist
This kind of villain is also what Star Wars needs: A dysfunctional boy on a path of malfunction and ruin as indicative of the kind of scary acting-out we experience every day in our lives–both in ourselves and from others. The warrior whose goal is cruelty without passion rather than disciplined service to a transpersonal goal is a deep well of possibility. It can be a tragedy or a redemption of meaningful inner exploration that reflects back to us images of our own participationism to domination and control.

Instead we get a refusal to commit to consequences, either internal or external, and a denying of the character actions that entails. Is his pathology ever going to crystallize into something meaningful? If his evil remains forever undecided and unrealized, then so does his good. His depth will never go beyond crazy guy, the same person he was when we first saw him.

You see what a dumpheap this trilogy is now?

186_portlandoregoninanutshellUnless you’re a nega-psychic*, living in The City That Works Your Wallet is a daily choice between saving throw versus poison or serving evil.

I’ve been on a sooper secret mission to figure out what happened to me when I was in this place during my college years. It seemed like such a magical place then, with beautiful treasures.

Yet I wasn’t able to find a job and support myself back then. Not even as a dishwasher! Go back to Parental Tiger Cage, do not pass Go and do not collect 200 dollars.

So here I come many years later with a full on psychic starfleet and a posse of awesome abilities. This time, if I can do it I’ll make it and find out what’s what. I got the Beagle Active Star-Probe sniffing for hidden units, you read me?

I come to this place with trust and sincerity, opening myself to the possibility that it was me that was the problem before. In a way I am baiting the trap with a juicy morsel—myself—in a situation in which I have let go of all my past advantages in order to attempt a new life.

Mistakes were made: It wasn’t me at all.

Portland Oregon is a conformist, insular, reactionary place with no room for boundless life. It’s a bloodsucking operation for rich people who have moved on from the farmer and woodsmen producers to young and hopeful dreamers.

This is performed through an unconscious public relations beacon phenomena that lures people into the city’s orbit with the promise of a progressive, liberal land of opportunity where the kids are hip.

It’s none of those things!

The entire city is overrun by a psychic colony of giant spiders waiting to snare you in their complex web of misfortune. Once you’re caught they insert a vacujac and connect you to the blood bank.

Your money, sanity and youth are drained away to feed the psychological mechanisms that maintain the city as a playground for rich people who enjoy west coast flavor in their victims.

There are a few spider predators here, and those lucky folks who happen to be nega-psychics are able to do the total dodge. But oh man, the majority of people here end up processed in one of two ways.

You either succumb to the conformity and descend into some form of depression, or you suffer a violent reaction to the spider venom and hit the eject. The people who flee the place are denigrated as losers by the bitter victims who haven’t the strength themselves to escape.

It’s sick.

One of the running gags in this place is the campaign to “Keep Portland Weird.” This is complete misdirection. Portland isn’t weird at all. It’s what I would describe as “Desperately Strange.”

That is, the symptoms of “weirdness” are really an autoerotic response to a dwindling life force. People are acting out because their blood, brains, and souls are being fed into a machine nightmare from which they cannot escape, and they have to fill the void with something.

I’m too weird for square, isolationist Portland Oregon. I’m leaving before the giant spiders and evil spirits drain my tank.

If you’re thinking this place is the land of your dreams, pinch yourself hard and rethink your plans before you become a take out meal on legs. For those of you trapped in the Portland Oregon deathtrap already, hey you’ll be in my thoughts and prayers.

Those who are nega-psychics? You and the people close to you are fortunate indeed to not see what goes on, but do know that the delights of the city are made from the remains of the victims.

1 out of 5 Stars of the Magi

*A nega-psychic is a concept from the Beyond The Supernatural RPG. It’s a person whose psychic power is an unbelief or dislike for the supernatural. Their power weakens or dispels supernatural manifestations.

183_stardrekI thought the 2009 Star Trek movie was horrible. The newest movie makes that junkyard of half-baked grandstanding look like a decent flick.

The director and his posse make their handling of the re-imagined Star Trek a modern day Phaethon and the sun chariot. This movie is the moment when the horses sense that a newb is at the reins and begin to run amok.

I can’t wait to see how incoherent the new Star Wars films will be.

I’m going to dodge all the obvious problems everyone else has pointed out and focus on one very important thing I haven’t seen anyone mention.

There’s no action in the film at all.

I mean, isn’t that what this director dude is known for? Action?

Nothing happens in the movie. Nobody does anything that matters. At the end of the film everything is the same as what it was in the beginning.

The evil admiral dies. Some people die. It doesn’t matter. Nothing changes as a result of these deaths.

The big evil starship is destroyed and it doesn’t matter. Its existence is completely irrelevant.

Khan looks badass for the audience and then is put back into deep freeze. This has no effect on the story at all.

The crew of the Enterprise are right back where they started at the beginning of the film.

There are no consequences for anything that happens in the movie. There are no stakes to the story. Nobody loses or gains anything.

A waste of material.

1 out of 5 Stars of the Magi