All I can say is wow….
For years my friends have told me that Donnie Darko was an amazing film. I continued to put in on my long list of to do’s and brushed it off to the side, until now.
Donnie Darko is a psychological/science fiction thriller at its best. It changed the way I viewed time travel as a dorky journey through time, to a twisted ‘mind-fucked’ ride through sanity. *excuse the language* I imagine by now that I am the only person left on this planet who has just seen the movie, so I feel no need to give you the “spoiler alert” warning.
In class we’ve discussed a type of dark hollywood crime drama called “film noir”. I am quite familiar with this style due to me and my grand mother’s favorite author, Agatha Christie. She was a writing genius when it came to dark, yet comical mystery novels, which in many cases were turned into tv movies.
Hercule Poirot was 1 of her many characters that lit up the pages with his smart, sarcastic, and witty personality. As a Belgium detective, Poirot was famous for quotes such as “Ladies and gentlemen, you are all aware that a repulsive murderer has himself been repulsively, and, perhaps deservedly, murdered”, and “If all these people are not implicated in the crime, then why have they all told me, under interrogation, stupid and often unnecessary lies? Why? Why? Why? Why?”.
I believe that when examining the film noir style, in reference to Agatha Christie, Hercule Poirot is your best starting point.
Here is a funny clip from my favorite Poirot movie called “The Orient Express”
In the process of reading the book The Kindred, it reminded me of a 1991 movie called Brother Future. In addition to the discussions we’ve had in class, I found this to be a great example of the similar ideas that Octavia Butler had in her book.
Brother Future is a film that starts off with a boy named Tj. He becomes involved with selling stolen items to his neighbors, and living a life of crime. One day while selling on the streets of his neighborhood, he gets chased by the police and hit by a car. While unconscious, he relives the life of an African American slave living in South Carolina in the year of 1822.
The story begins with him waking up beside a tree. Once found, he is sold onto a slave plantation to a man named Mr. Cooper. While going through the struggles of slavery, he stumbles across many obstacles. One day Tj comes across a palm reader who tells him that in order to go back to his life in the future, he must help impact the life of a slave. In attempts to do just that, he meets a fellow slave named Josiah. They build a bond, and Tj ends up teaching him how to read and write. Unfortunately as a result of this, Tj finds that he is in more trouble than he could have ever imagined.
…To save myself from spoiling the movie to those who choose to watch it, I will end by stating that because of Tj’s journey to the past, he learns to have more respect for himself, and the heritage of African Americans. I strongly urge any one who’s interested to watch this movie, and compare the similarities to The Kindred, as well as how time travel seems to play a remarkable role in slavery and the African American culture.
I decided to add an element of humor to the subject of Time Travel by posting these episode clips from two popular Fox network shows, Family Guy and Furturama. Both cartoons mock the idea of time machines in an amusing way that most may find funny. Yet, they also bring to light the cons of traveling through time.
In this clip from Futurama, the main characters build a time machine that unfortunately can go forward in time, but not back. So they conjured up a plan to use their machine to travel through the years until a “backwards time machine” was made, and they could return home.
In this clip from Family Guy, Stewie also builds a time machine that him and Brian use to go forward in time to save their friend. Upon returning home, Brian and Stewie see their body doubles in the backyard. As they confront their future selves, more begin to appear, and things start to get out of control.
After watching these clips, and thinking back on the movie Primer, all I could focus on was the question of “what if?”
What if I were able to actually go forward in time, but lost the capability to go back? Or, what if I went forward in time, yet with each stop in my journey, multiple replicas of myself kept forming? Ultimately, these unanswered questions is what makes time traveling so intriguing. Futurama and Family Guy were simply a great laugh in the process of comprehending the idea of time travel.