PROFESSOR MARSTON AND THE WONDER WOMEN (2017) D(IS)C Comics

A normal person could not have invented Wonder Woman. Most other superheroes seem like obvious creations in retrospect: a man with super-strength who fights crime, a man who fights crime to avenge his murdered parents, a teenager who gets superpowers and must use them to perform mitzvahs before becoming a man; all stories that really didn’t need specific people to tell them. All characters with clear and historical antecedents.

But a Woman who fights crime through imploring willful submission to authority? One who comes from an island without men as an ambassador to teach men how to love away hate? An inherently kinky dominatrix who compels her foes to enjoy bondage? That takes someone special. And Professor Marston and the Wonder Women finally tells that story.

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Blade Runner 2049 – Exodus for Replicants

In my review of Blade Runner 2049, I off-handedly observed that the movie’s plot-line regarding a son of seemingly impossible birth was likely an allegory to Jesus, who was born of a virgin mother; but in doing so, missed a reading that in retrospect is even more obvious and works better through the movie as a whole. In my fervor to put the movie in a greater sci-fi context, I had neglected a religious reading of it, and made the same mistake that so many people make with Superman. Blade Runner 2049 doesn’t set up a Jesus metaphor, but a Moses one. And that makes the movie, not a story about the coming of the messiah, but of the Exodus of a people.

This post is mainly made up of quick parallels I noticed in hindsight a few days after seeing the movie, and seeing that I am not a talmudic scholar (I haven’t even been bar mitzvahed) please don’t read this expecting a deep dive into the Jewish sacred texts. Also, things won’t be neatly 1-to-1, so if there are gaps, it’s because Blade Runner 2049 isn’t exactly the torah.

Oh, and, spoilers.

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BATMAN VS. TWO-FACE (2017) So Long, Old Chum

It is impossible to review Batman vs. Two-Face without acknowledging it as the last performance of Adam West as Batman before his sudden passing on June 9th, 2017. This is the end of his over 50 year tenure in the role, which he brought to life with a constant effervescent camp and square-jawed sense of justice and righteousness. Batman would not be the character he is today without Adam West, whose performance turned a simple comic hero into a multimedia icon.

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THE FLORIDA PROJECT (2017) Child Poor-nography

The term “poverty porn” is problematic because it each word in it has negative cultural baggage despite objectively being ethically neutral. That someone is impoverished says nothing about their character, and that an art object is functionally pornographic – in this context, meaning that it’s primary goal is to provide emotional gratification – is not a review of quality. That being said, The Florida Project is poverty porn.

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BLADE RUNNER 2049 (2017) There is Another

Fair warning, this is less of a review of Blade Runner 2049, and more of a discussion of where I believe the movie fits in relation to science fiction. So, upfront, Blade Runner 2049 is transcendent. As I hope to impress in this piece, more than just a sequel deserving of the Blade Runner name, 2049 is the culmination of almost every major theme in popular science fiction today.

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