I like Trek ‘the original series’ way better than Star Wars ‘Part IV’ because…

I like Trek ‘the original series’ way better than Star Wars ‘Part IV’ because Trek gave us Spock. That’s it, really. But let me explain some more. When Lucas developed Star Wars (by which I mean the original 1977 movie) he deliberately wrote a story that spoke to our deepest senses of mythic self –for… More I like Trek ‘the original series’ way better than Star Wars ‘Part IV’ because…

OK so what are your favourite SF movies?

These holidays I thought I’d share a list of my five favourite sci-fi movies. In no particular order they are: 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) – quintessential, thoughtful mid-twentieth century sci-fi with (mostly) proper physics. And a vision of a twenty-first century future that should have been… Forbidden Planet (1956) – one of the smartest… More OK so what are your favourite SF movies?

Humanity won’t ‘science the’ anything out of Mars while NASA’s plans are wrapped in corporate-speak

I’m going to have to go see The Martian. Apparently they get up to one of my favourite activities – ‘sciencing the shit’ out of things. The problems involved in actually getting to Mars are so huge that we’ll have to science the shit out of them, just to reach the place. If we ever try.… More Humanity won’t ‘science the’ anything out of Mars while NASA’s plans are wrapped in corporate-speak

Tolkien made real – a visit to the Hobbiton movie set. Part 1.

It’s early morning and light rain is falling as we depart our motel for a tour we’ve been planning for years but never got around to. Until now. Hobbiton. When The Lord Of The Rings was being made, my wife and I were living under the shadow of the hills that hosted the Minas Tirith and… More Tolkien made real – a visit to the Hobbiton movie set. Part 1.

Stories of aliens versus us are really commenting on our own dark side

I got to see the movie Battleship (2012) on TV the other week. I’d eschewed it on first release because it looked dumb on so many levels. And I wasn’t disappointed. The dumbness was monolithic. I suppose any story that’s been squeezed out of a game is going to have problems. Add the inevitable studio requirements… More Stories of aliens versus us are really commenting on our own dark side

Essential writing skills: how to avoid being ‘derivative’ at all cost

News that Terry Brooks’ Sword of Shannara books are going to be made into a TV series for US distribution, in New Zealand, set alarm bells ringing in my mind. Plus side is that, twenty years on from Hercules: the legendary journeys, Auckland will once again be venue for a major US TV production. That’s excellent.… More Essential writing skills: how to avoid being ‘derivative’ at all cost