Friday, January 22, 2021

"Fractal": curious sci-fi horror, very personalized


Model railroad 

Fractal” (19 min), from Bad Media Student (“Bad Robot”???), directed and written by Blake Hurford, looks enticing.  The title is interesting (self-replication of a pattern, common in nature). 

A young special ops student Maya (Skye Butcher) has finished her training and is sent back to her boyfriend (Zach Raabe), who had expected a relatively “conventional” relationship. 

She keeps relapsing into memories of her trainer (a fattish guy played by Jaxon Graham-Wilson) and deteriorates mentally.  Her genuine (and lean) boyfriend doesn’t notice the danger he is in, until too late.

I don’t think the physicality of the climax will be very clear to most viewers.

The film’s scenes are shot with different color filters to suggest various kinds of color-blindness.

There is some interesting background music:  a Chopin mazurka, and then some music that sounds rather like Max Reger.

Thursday, January 21, 2021

"I Can't Actually Believe This": comedy by Connor Franta ("Pigeons and Doves")


w Hollywood 2012

Connor Franta does another short monologue in his “Slice of Life” series, “I Can’t Actually Believe This”, alternative title, “Pigeons and Doves”. After publication he changed the title to "This Is a Lie

Connor uses pixie-like effects in his minimalist townhouse in West Hollywood, where he draws an analogy between the differences between pigeons and doves, and the dichotomy “Black Lives Matter” v. “all lives matter”.

There’s also the issue of his plants, which seem to be conscious life forms.

I have pigeons on my balcony, but it Is the crow, who will watch me work at my computer for 15 minutes at a time and return, like this unit is his.

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

TRT World: "What Is Antifa?": can it morally barge in on "gentrified" outdoor dining?


Philadelphia, 2006

TRT World, from the Turkish Public Broadcast Service, presents a short narrated by Yunus Paksoy, “What Is Antifa?

Paksoy interviews Antifa activist Jason Charter, who makes three “demands”.

In the middle of the 11-minute film he migrates to interview Ford Fischer, who owns his own media company News2Share from Washington DC. 

Fischer points out that Antifa groups believe it is perfectly legitimate morally to protest in “gentrified” neighborhoods to point out to new residents and property owners that they have personally become part of the problem.

Later Paksoy presents some footage of the Capitol riots and then questions Charter about when violence against ordinary civilians is warranted.  He thinks he does have a right to barge into gentrified, privilege people having dinner and demanding allyship from them. He thinks that is not too much to ask given the circumstances. 

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

"Life on Gas Giants" (Dreksler), gas bag intelligent beings in the upper atmosphere of Jupiter?



The Dreksler channel describes “Life on Gas Giants” (Sept 2018)

Organisms like bacteria could float in the atmosphere indefinitely because of the strong winds below, in a zone of reasonable temperature and pressure.

Larger, bag-like and possibly quite large organisms could evolve (something like our own coelenterates or even octopi) and might even be intelligent and self-aware.  But it would be hard for them to find materials to build things (with ocean bottom organisms on Earth can do).

Wikipedia embed of comet collision with Jupiter in the 1990s, click for attribution. 

Monday, January 18, 2021

"Coronavirus Complications: Life After the Virus" (DW Documentary, Germany)



DW Documentary presents “Coronavirus Complications: Life After the Virus”, from Dec. 2020.

Filmed in Germany, the documentary examines the course of patients who go to the Schoen Klinik in Bavaria.  People who thought they had mild cases find their endurance and breathing capacity severely reduced even months later.  This is being reported more recently.

People go down to it for physical rehabilitation of their lung capacity.

Maria is a physician and is unable to meet the physical demands of the job with emergency treatment of patients.  On the other hand, Christopher finally recovers well enough to train for a marathon, after six months.

Recently, medical journals have reported that even asymptomatic cases often show significant damage on chest X-ray.  Among people whom I know, this has not really been confirmed. 

Wikipedia picture embed from Bavaria, click for embed 

Sunday, January 17, 2021

"What's Up with those COVID-19 Variants?" from Sci-Show

SARS-CoV-2 without background


SciShow asks, “What’s Up With Those COVID-19 Variants?” (January 12).

In six minutes, the short covers the B1.1.7 variant (UK) and B.1.351 (South Africa).

The variants have spike protein changes, making them attach to ACE2 receptors more easily, and another change that may make it harder for the immune system to recognize that a cell is infected.

The UK mutation may have occurred in a single patient who was ill a long time.

People with these variations seem to have several times the viral loads in their nasal passages.

An increase in transmissibility will increase the death rate downstream a few weeks later because of more cases.  The sudden explosion of the UK variant in early December 2020 has led to a new strict lockdown. 

Image, embed from Wikipedia, click for attribution. 

Friday, January 15, 2021

"Here Comes Frieda": a young woman expects a lottery ticket to grant her an escape from a category 6 superstorm


My model O'Niell Cylinder, 2015

The DUST short film “Here Comes Frieda”, directed by Robin Takao D’Oench, presents a young woman Lilly (Ellie Wallwork) cowering in a basement apartment in a big city as a superstorm, category 6, approaches.

She has bought a lottery ticket for a lifetime in a paradise in low orbit (presumably an O’Neill Cylinder). It’s 2040 and climate change is closing in.

But other people come to her apartment to take the ticket away from her, or to show it fake.