The creeping melancholy of belated sequels

By Ryan Lambie

For the most part, we go to see mainstream movies to forget about the outside world. In the cinema realm, mundane horrors such as aging and chronic illness seldom apply. But belated sequels allow the door back into the real world to open just a little, and the results are often as perplexing as they are entertaining.

When we watch Die Hard or Raiders Of The Lost Ark, we can still experience the movie pretty much as we did the first time we saw it. We may have grown older and more jaded, but watching those movies again fills us with the same youthful cheer we may have felt all those years before – even if we do occasionally dryly note the voluminous hairstyles in Die Hard, or the suspect make-up on the actors in Raiders who clearly aren’t Nepalese.

But when we watch belated sequels, we’re seeing them with older eyes. Even if we approach them with the rose-tinted goggles of nostalgia, we can’t avoid the reality that things have moved on in the intervening decades. And this, perhaps, is the real problem with belated sequels – not the effects time has on the actors, but the people watching them.

When we watch a belated sequel, we’re reminded not only of how much Harrison Ford or Bruce Willis have changed, but how much we’ve changed, too.

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(images from Empire)

The pros and cons of a third Bill & Ted movie
by Shahid Khan

Con: it’s been 20 years since the last movie
…in 20 years, attitudes will have changed, in terms of music, fashion, language, technology – I could go on. One of the joys of the Bill & Ted movies is that they are very much of their time as well as being, in many respects, timeless, and so are rightly regarded as childhood classics for those who grew up with them…
How would Bill & Ted fit into today’s world? Is there still room for a light-hearted, cheerful goofy movie about two guys with a skewed sense of perspective of the world, or have they missed the boat by leaving it so long? After The Hangover, Bridesmaids, and Horrible Bosses, and other R-rated comedies like them, will a movie with no gross-out moments and no swearing work?
Also, in these politically correct times, can Bill & Ted still hug each other, back off suddenly and call each other ‘fag’?
Pro: it’s been 20 years since the last movie
As the trend in recent comedies has moved away from the total gross-out fad of a few years ago to R-rated movies with elements of gross-out comedy, its not like the new movie will be competing with anything else out there if it continues in the same vein as the first two. For one thing, it’ll probably be PG-13.
Anyway, it could be refreshing to go to a comedy that isn’t cynical and where the overriding philosophy is, “Be excellent to each other”, and “Party on, dudes!”

Read the rest

The pros and cons of a third Bill & Ted movie

by Shahid Khan

Con: it’s been 20 years since the last movie

…in 20 years, attitudes will have changed, in terms of music, fashion, language, technology – I could go on. One of the joys of the Bill & Ted movies is that they are very much of their time as well as being, in many respects, timeless, and so are rightly regarded as childhood classics for those who grew up with them…

How would Bill & Ted fit into today’s world? Is there still room for a light-hearted, cheerful goofy movie about two guys with a skewed sense of perspective of the world, or have they missed the boat by leaving it so long? After The Hangover, Bridesmaids, and Horrible Bosses, and other R-rated comedies like them, will a movie with no gross-out moments and no swearing work?

Also, in these politically correct times, can Bill & Ted still hug each other, back off suddenly and call each other ‘fag’?

Pro: it’s been 20 years since the last movie

As the trend in recent comedies has moved away from the total gross-out fad of a few years ago to R-rated movies with elements of gross-out comedy, its not like the new movie will be competing with anything else out there if it continues in the same vein as the first two. For one thing, it’ll probably be PG-13.

Anyway, it could be refreshing to go to a comedy that isn’t cynical and where the overriding philosophy is, “Be excellent to each other”, and “Party on, dudes!”

Read the rest


Six Films with Insane Time Loops
But one of the most compelling models of time travel is that of the closed time loop. In a closed time loop, time is immutable and there are no alternate timelines. You can’t change time because you already traveled back in time before. You always hopped in that time machine to go have one last bottle of Crystal Pepsi. It’s already a part of history (just like Crystal Pepsi, sadly). Yes, that does mean that in the normal flow of time, you popped in from the not-yet-defined “future”, drank your Crystal Pepsi, and disappeared again, creating a paradox that would only be solved when you built the time machine and… yeah, let’s not get into all that.
The point is, closed time loops can lead to some pretty clever storytelling and fun brain hemorrhages for the audience. But not only that, they’re really the only type of time travel that’s actually relatively stable. (Technically, alternate timelines are stable, but if they’re infinitely growing based on every branching decision, that opens up a whole other can of worms.) So here then, are six movies whose stories hinge around closed time loops and thus, only have relatively minor predestination paradoxes. Isn’t science fun?
12 Monkeys
Donnie Darko
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Planet of the Apes series
The Terminator series
Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure

Six Films with Insane Time Loops

But one of the most compelling models of time travel is that of the closed time loop. In a closed time loop, time is immutable and there are no alternate timelines. You can’t change time because you already traveled back in time before. You always hopped in that time machine to go have one last bottle of Crystal Pepsi. It’s already a part of history (just like Crystal Pepsi, sadly). Yes, that does mean that in the normal flow of time, you popped in from the not-yet-defined “future”, drank your Crystal Pepsi, and disappeared again, creating a paradox that would only be solved when you built the time machine and… yeah, let’s not get into all that.

The point is, closed time loops can lead to some pretty clever storytelling and fun brain hemorrhages for the audience. But not only that, they’re really the only type of time travel that’s actually relatively stable. (Technically, alternate timelines are stable, but if they’re infinitely growing based on every branching decision, that opens up a whole other can of worms.) So here then, are six movies whose stories hinge around closed time loops and thus, only have relatively minor predestination paradoxes. Isn’t science fun?

  • 12 Monkeys
  • Donnie Darko
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
  • Planet of the Apes series
  • The Terminator series
  • Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure
Time travel series and films that don’t suck. Listed in the order I’ve watched them:

Back To The Future I II & II : With Eric Stoltz


Bill And Ted’s Excellent Adventure : Trailer


Groundhog Day : Bing!


12 Monkeys : Read this review


Terminator 1 & 2 : How It Should Have Ended


Red vs. Blue : Episode 1


Primer : Primer Explained or Wild Guessing Page


Returner


The Sarah Connor Chronicles : Watch


Les Visiteurs


La jetée : I II


Frequently Asked Questions About Time Travel : Watch


Le Visiteur du Futur : http://www.thevisitorfromthefuture.com

Time travel series and films that don’t suck. Listed in the order I’ve watched them:

This is the closest Bill and Ted’s are ever going to be to Marlon Brando.