Sunday, July 29, 2007

"What Would I Do?"

One of the many soulful topics that TPTB have given LOST-o-philes to chew on is the idea of the Losties having to face their true selves in the midst of their trials and challenges on the Island. An early tag-caption for Season 3 was the question of whether or not the Losties could stand to face what they might find, if they did take a good look at themselves. Or perhaps the real question was what they would do after they looked at the image in the mirror of their Island circumstances -- into their own "heart of darkness" if you will.

Today I saw another new movie, "Rescue Dawn", starring Christian Bale as Viet Nam Navy pilot POW Dieter Dengler in his escape from capture in Laos. All I can say is "Wow!" It's not the typical war movie one would expect, and it is extremely thought provoking. The photography puts you squarely into the dirty reality of captivity and the escape through the jungle, yet not in an overly done fashion. And although the script is not heavy on intense dialog at all, the feel of being captive and alone in a strange land and horrible circumstances with fellow prisoners really crept into my head as I watched.

What really shines out, is Dengler's optimism in the face of the overwhelming fatality of the POWs' situation. In spite of his desperate surroundings he kept visualizing his escape until it finally happened. Watching Bale portray Dengler really got me thinking about what I would, or could, do in the same situation -- or even just in the Losties shoes on the Island. And for all the complaints we make about how the Losties never do what we think that they should be doing in their creepy island scenarios (e.g. not communicating productively, not exploring better, etc.), I really didn't know if I could survive any better then they each are, when I thought about it.

It's not that I haven't been through my own "dark nights of the soul". I've seen some hard times in my life just like most people, the last being getting through very aggressive cancer treatment and now surviving the debilitating after effects. And I'm usually one of those in rough situations that keeps a cool head and wants to shake the people who are freaking out (like Shannon!) into their senses. Though if it came down to living on the beach or in the jungle with Smokey, coma inducing spiders, and having no toilets or showers, who knows. I'd like to think that I'd try my best like Hurley, and to help anyone else if they wanted me to. I suppose none of us can ever know how we would behave until we are in that situation. We can only ask that the Lord would keep us sane and use us to alleviate whatever the dire straights might be for everyone involved, if the need arises.

((Above image borrowed from the website for the movie "Rescue Dawn"

Friday, July 27, 2007


Today I went to see a new Scifi movie titled "Sunshine", that I would not have known about if I did not see a short review on it in the entertainment section of the paper. It looked interesting and I ran out to see it right away, before they could rip it off the marquee as fast as any other good artsy and cerebral Scifi movies that disappear before I get a chance to view them. I thought that it was good Scifi movie art, and I'm glad that I hadn't seen the previews for it at any of the other films that I've seen this month. To describe it would be to say that it's got the sweeping sensations of 2001, some of the ship claustrophobia of Aliens, the art-house feel of Solaris, and the fantastic colorings of The Fountain. And some of the action in the modular corridors are reminiscent of "Saturn 3". You don't remember that movie? Not surprising. It was a quirky movie about an off-planet outpost manned by Kirk Doulgas and Farrah Fawcett, that is intruded upon by psycho Harvey Keitel and his equally psycho Decepticon. I liked that movie also for the fun of it, but it has pretty much been forgotten by most people and all TV movie channels. But, I digress as usual.

"Sunshine" places you on a trip to the sun to save the world, of course. But the movie really is a voyage. The visuals allow the you the sensation of knowing what it would be like to fly straight into the sun, with or without being inside a spacecraft. Obviously the science in the movie could be picked apart to pieces if you wanted to do that, but it sure looks good. Most of the acting is well done, and only a bit boilerplate Scifi. Michelle Yeoh is in it, which was a nice surprise, as well as Chris Evans from "Fantastic Four". I just went for the ride, to let my imagination go with the story without pressing my brain to nitpick the details. I had a feeling before I went in that this was the kind of film that it would be, and I was right. Although it is an intense story (I realized that I had been clenching my teeth through most of it), it's not really a brain-buster. Overall I enjoyed it and was glad that I didn't wait until it got to the $2.00 theater to see it, because I know it won't make it there, since very few commercial theaters appreciate high-brow, non-blockbuster Science Fiction movies. So if it's playing at a theater near you and you enjoy this sort of film, go out and see it quickly. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

"Nephilim Schmephilim"

Some recent LOST blog talk about Mr. Four Toes has gotten me wondering lately about our favorite stone Foot. I know that I shouldn't think about it, because there's really no point in trying to speculate about something so odd (odd for LOST even!) that TPTB have given us so very little info about. One sighting, that's what they gave us, a long time ago (it seems). As well as some brief cryptic talk about a temple, and a bad man tied to a lone ancient style column in a field, that could be hints to the origin of The Foot and it's creators. The possibilities are endless, and to speculate without more clues would merely cause my brain to run in pointless circles around itself, the way it does with the rest of the LOST mysteries. So I have to keep what few brain cells that I have left working on the more important LOST clues.

But the large size of the statue gets me thinking about the entities that the Israelites in the Bible called the Nephilim. They were giants of a sort, believed to be the offspring of the "sons of heaven" and the "daughters of man" -- "The Nephilim were on the earth in those days...when the sons of God went to the daughters of man and had children by them" (Genesis6:4). Unfortunately the Bible doesn't tell us how many toes they had though! We also don't really know where they came from either. Were they the offspring of fallen angels similar to Lucifer? Or were they just a tribe of people who were able to eat and live well so that they grew very tall?

The book of Numbers (13:31) also mentions a people that "...were of great size. We saw the Nephilim there...We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we seemed the same to them." Genesis says that the Nephilim were heroes and men of renown in the eyes of men. Celebrities of a sort for that day, I suppose, which means that they could have been famous or infamous. But ultimately the Bible tells us that they were up to no good. The Hebrew word for Nephilim means "fallen ones" (and God wasn't happy with them) so I guess that they didn't get that moniker by being peaceful or charitable creatures.

I really do hope that TPTB eventually tell us where The Foot came from. All we know so far is that it has four toes, and it is wearing a sandal and some kind of ankle legging or guard similar to Roman gear. I suppose that the fact that the statue remnant is huge, does not mean that the subject of the statue was necessarily a giant. Many statues have been made by mankind in larger-than-life proportions to give homage to gods and masters. Or for the mere purpose of making sure that everyone can see it and get the message, such as in the Statue of Liberty. But it's kind of fun to wonder if maybe the Island was visited by giants or that the original inhabitants were mutated into overgrown humans by the strange Island properties.

Note: if anyone is interested in this subject, and also likes scifi/space fiction, there is an excellent book that I read a few years ago called, "Ice", by Shane Johnson. I can't explain what it's about other than it's a speculation about what might have happened if the final Apollo missions were not cancelled....and then some. I've already said too much, and don't want to spoil the surprise. You can read more about Johnson and "Ice" here:

Friday, July 20, 2007

"Giant Leap Day"

Happy "Man On The Moon Day" to everyone on the planet Earth!!

Did you know that:

1) The percentage of NASA's federal spending for space exploration is usually less than 1% of the total federal budget funding.

2) America's early space program returned $7.00 for every $1.00 spent in technological advancements for use on earth.

3) Technology "spinoffs" from the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo projects include;

a) Heat-retaining insulation for premature baby incubators from helmet applications
b) Hydrogen/oxygen fuel cells that are now being integrated into transportation vehicles
c) Advanced fire retardants and fire resistant materials used by fire fighters
d) Electronic tracking devices to monitor migrating birds, mammals, and fish
e) Specialized shock absorbing materials used in modern athletic shoes
f) Creation of the first global telecommunications system
g) Miniature batteries that made use of artificial pacemakers possible
h) Scratch resistant lenses
i) Solar energy cell technology
j) Smoke detectors
k) Water purification and treatment applications
l) Satellite systems used for weather prediction, and cell phone and GPS transmissions

These are just a handful of the uncountable ways that everyone on the earth has benefited from mankind's communal advancements in space exploration technology. To learn more, visit the NASA spinoffs page at and search "spinoffs".

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

"Davy Jones' Looking Glass"

Hopefully our swim with Desmond and Charlie to the Looking Glass last season is not the only chance we'll get to inspect the D.I.'s underwater station. In spite of Charlie's fate and Patchy's surprises, compared to the other stations it was a pretty tame outpost from our vantage point. After seeing a lone eyeball, missing arms, strange movies and experiments in the other stations, and the mutated sharks during The Lost Experience, I thought that any underwater Dharma expedition would be manned with entities more like those in Davy Jones' locker. Imagine if that could have been where the D.I. hid all their cloning experiments that went wrong, manning the LG with the mutated results of trying to clone living creatures in petri dishes on an Island with too much magnetism. Or they might have been crossing humans with sharks to create superhuman aquamen! Instead what we found there were two angry buff chicks with guns and a moon pool with a small communications room. But that's OK too. And besides, Patchy's re-resurrection and scary underwater demolition mission put the creepy edge into that Dharma location. The look on Patchy's face when he pulled the pin will be imprinted in our brains forever.

What we did see was speculation provoking for sure, but also limited. It was a compelling station with an interesting look that TPTB gave us, and I liked it. It answered a lot of questions, and added more as expected, but there weren't as many objects inside the LG station that we could glean clues and hints from, like there were in the Swan. A scouring of the walls inside the moon pool doesn't give up much and I had hoped that TPTB would have thrown us some more bones to chew on concerning the LG. After all, we have been anticipating some kind of underwater equipment to show up since Sayid and Hurley each came across the mysterious cable on the beach! We would have had the entire hiatus to pick apart all the items that TPTB could have thrown at us inside the LG, the way we could and did with the Swan accouterments and paraphernalia.

I get the feeling though, that we won't be going back to the LG very soon if ever at all. It might be that TPTB told everything that they need to tell with that station visually. Any future visits to the LG lore might only be via the Others' conversations and maps. I hope that I'm wrong, but there is probably more important storyline to tell within the other elements of the Island and its past, to be illustrated before the end of Season 6. It seems less likely also, since the sub is no longer usable if Locke did indeed blow it up. Unless they have spare subs on hand!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

"The LOST Ruins"

I don't know about anyone else yet, but I am so looking forward to what the LOST creators have in store for us concerning "the Temple" that was mentioned at the end of Season 3. I very much hope that it will be something really mysterious, detailed, and juicy when it is revealed. In short, I want it to be a mystical complicated set of ruins such as Machu Pichu for instance. Not much to ask for, right?

I will be disappointed if all TPTB can give us about the Island Ancients are just another couple monolithic columns in a field again, with some kind of stone altar. If this implied ancient civilization that inhabited the Island before the D.I. (and possibly the Hostiles) got there is going to be an integral part of the overall story, it could be revealed in the same way that the Swan station mysteries were revealed. After TPTB gave us many hints in Season 1 about the hatch and station, in Season 2 we and the Losties were totally immersed in the underworld of the Swan station. Of course we weren't told everything about the Swan, but hinting was over by Season 2 and we got to know, to a comfortable extent, much of what the station was about, e.g. what it looked like, who lived there, what its purpose was, what was done there, etc. And what wasn't explained we at least got to see a lot of, like the failsafe switch, the blast door map, the magnetic enclosure, the books on the bookshelves and the gun closet. Even in Season 3 we were absorbed into the homes of Othertown, the grimy work of the Hydra station on Falcatraz, and the underwater Looking Glass.

The scene that I am dreaming will happen in Season 4 could be one such as this: a group of the Losties, Juliet, and some Others will be hiking to meet the rest of the Others at the Temple. As we walk with them through the jungle, the Losties begin to get a visual of a clearing through the dense foliage. As they reach the edge of the jungle, the eyes of the Losties get huge, their mouths drop open, and the camera slowly pans up and away from them to incrementally reveal the rubble and remains of an expansive array of ancient, vine and moss covered stone structures surrounding a larger building, which would be the Temple. Statues (of four-toed humanoids of course) are sprinkled throughout the ruins, and grass filled broken stony walkways grid the area.

It would also be nice if there was evidence that this ancient society was scholarly and science oriented, in that there would could be placed throughout the village some primitive observational instruments, teaching arenas, and small libraries. Any of the types of things that would indicate that these Ancients were fully aware of their special Island and its powerful scientific and paranormal qualities. And that they knew how to utilize them peacefully to the fullest extent to create an intelligently crafted lifestyle for themselves. Basically along the lines of what we believe the fabled civilizations of Lemuria and Atlantis were like. It would be a community possessing all the qualities that Alvar Hanso was hoping to study, produce, and give to the human race by secretly using the Island in the same way.

So, if Season 1 unfolded survival after the crash on the beach, and Season 2 answered the mystery of the Hatch in the ground, and Season 3 unveiled the Others and their habitats, then Season 4 should be about revealing the ancient secrets of the Island. Oh yes, a season like that would make me very happy!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

"Summer Hosing?"

It looks like we may have gotten tricked, intentionally or not. The Ethan Haas deal seems to possibly be about a new game coming out, and not the new Abrams movie. A Wikipedia article maintains that Paramount may own the rights to both, speculating that they still might be related but that only means that Paramount owns the two of them. A connection between them is not necessarily a given, IMHO. So confusion still surrounds both at this point, unless we find out that Abrams' reported denial is fact.

But another seemingly legit website has surfaced though, in addition to the 1/18/08 site, and is a very strange add for a very strange drink:

A logo for Slusho was found on a T-shirt worn by a someone in the trailer. We don't know for sure yet whether this movie thing and Slusho are a real ARG to play, or just some crazy online advertisements for the movie. Bad Robot productions always seems to push the envelope of style and substance in its creations, so who knows. Stayed tuned to Dennis' Cloverfield clues blog below to keep up to date on the daily changes and speculation. He's got great screencaps from the trailer up now as well.

Monday, July 9, 2007

"More Summer Fun From J.J.Abrams??"

Just as Lost fans are feeling the disappointment of there being no TLE2 follow-up to last summer's TLE during the Season 2 and 3 LOST hiatus, someone has given us something else to play with. As most movie-goers know by now, a cryptic preview was shown before the "Transformers" movie for a new mysterious Abrams movie to be released January 2008. A title for the movie has not been revealed yet. Nor does the preview disclose too much of what the movie is about, other than to show the celebration for some fellow embarking on a major change of life, being interrupted by the roars and rumblings of "something" blowing things up in the distance of the city.

A day or two of Internet buzz and research came up with a few sites that seem to pertain to the preview, which have included an interesting online game to play. The first part of the game involved some puzzles, videos, and then a message to keep vigilant until August 1 when we will apparently be getting some more info and/or puzzles to solve. Meanwhile, there have been some videos and messages posted for players to ruminate over, emails to receive from a character in the game, and a lot of Sanskrit to decode. And the first underlying theme of the game seems to be the kind of juicy conflict and mystery that we usually get from Bad Robot, which is that each side says that they are the Good Guys and that the others are the Bad Guys. Which puts us, the viewers/players, into the position of not knowing which side we are supposed to trust in the middle of all the mystery and action that is going on. Sweet!

Here are a few of the official sites to help anyone get started with what's going on:

Here is a good blog from a TLC member that will be posting events as they happen, as well as any of the websites involved, and sites with forums and clues from players.

There is tons of speculation on what the movie is going to be about, from Godzilla to Cthulhu, but they are covered in the Internet leads from the clues blog posted above, so I won't go into them here. Follow the clues and solve the puzzles and wait for more fun!

UPDATE: According to an interview with "Ain't it Cool" news, J.J. Abrams has stated that the Ethan Haas websites do not pertain to the 1/18/08 site or movie. We'll see what happens.