Monday, November 15, 2010

Skyline is not Worthy of a Review

Despite its flaws, Skyline was good for one thing:

A How-To Guide on How Not To Make A Sucky Science-Fiction Flick:

1. Do not make your characters unlikeable.

This includes axing the following tropes:

if characters have premarital sex, they will meet their final judgment in the gooey jaws of a freaky alien who wants to eat their brains.

That's just not cool, dudes. Complicated characters, people. Nobody's perfect, so why don't you just put down that stone like it's hot and burning your holier-than-thou palms off.

Also - don't kill off the token black character because he cheated (and because he's black). That just ain't cool either.

If you want to have shiny objects being displayed on the arms of rich, privileged men here's an idea: make sure they're not women. Because, last time I checked, they're people too. Women don't just have to wail the names of their lovers out when shit happens. Or cry. Or run around like hysterical idiots. They can pick up axes, too you know, and kick some major ass (which you at least acknowledged by throwing a bone to the female members of the audience -- but yeah, we saw right through it, didn't we ladies). Also -- the only survivor is a pregnant woman? We can fulfill more roles than that of the Mother. Jerks.

Also, homosexual couples are not the butts of jokes. So shut the fuck up with the jeers.

Science fiction looks ahead to the future. It does not reinforce the hetero-normative, white-centric, patriarchal standards of the current society without commentary.

2. Science Fiction also requires that some amount of technology be an issue within the story.

Rampaging aliens hellbent on destruction and BRAAAAIIIIINNNNNNSSSSSS do not count. Because, if it doesn't go beyond that, then it's just about as deep as an evaporated lake.

3. Story requires showing not telling, continuity, and character development.

Unlike the deceased members of earthling society, the audience does have their brain. They don't need to be told what they just saw happen on the screen.

Major dialogue fail, writers. Of epic, cringe-worthy proportions. I hope you're all ashamed of yourselves and made Fs on your coursework.

Continuity means that everything fits together and we don't have random things happening. Like night turning miraculously into day. Or people being unable to open doors like normal folks.

Character development would have meant that whiny-assed protagonists change into mature heroes. Or something. And no, possessing an alien by the end of the film doesn't count.

I got nothing else. I'm still reeling by how incompetent, incoherent, disappointing, lackluster, and awful the whole thing was.

People are better than this.

I wonder, back in the day, it used to be a conflict over art for art's sake or social reform or some other significant thing.

Now I think we're even beyond art for art's sake. I think we're more into "art" for the shininess -- the explosions, the boom, the spectacular visual effects that are hollow with a story to wear it -- sake of it all.

Of course, I shouldn't romanticize the past.

Chaucer used bathroom humor too.

Which, thankfully, Skyline did not. For that, it gets a silver star of the sticker variety.

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