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comment by Meriadoc
Meriadoc  ·  2066 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Hubski Movie Club - Voting Thread #7

Second this. Possibly the only real choice. I can't think of any other really good cyberpunk... well, anything.

Wait does 12 Monkeys count?

mknod  ·  2066 days ago  ·  link  ·  

If you want to do 12 Monkeys, does that mean you'll include "Le Jetée?" ;D

The ethos in 12 Monkeys isn't really there for cyberpunk when I think about it. It's much more of a cyclical tale then one of questioning ethics. I guess there is the whole angle of "should we even be messing with time travel", but I think cyberpunk deals with a much more personalized tale of the push and pull of morals. (Please correct me if I'm wrong, I only have a passing interest in the genre)

For example, in Johnny Mnemonic there is a tradeoff between being able to keep the data in his head or losing his mind.

In Robocop, Murphy has to deal with the fact that he may no longer be seen as human. That he once had an entire life that's all but been erased.

So in these type of scenarios, it seems like the morality tale is much more character focused whereas in 12 Monkeys there is an overall theme of the morality of humanity.

kleinbl00  ·  2066 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Cyberpunk seems to hinge on a rebellion or crime in a supersaturated technological environment. There's a dystopic, anti-authoritarian streak a mile wide through cyberpunk.

The real problem, I think, is it's an abortive genre. Nobody's writing cyberpunk anymore because it leveraged the alien nature of computing. Write a book about a freelance hacker hired to break into an advanced computer network in 1981? Neuromancer. Write it in 2014? It's a memoir. Yeah, Neuromancer had space stations and AIs... but the elements that make it cyberpunk are reality now.

I first read Bruce Stirling's "Islands in the Net" in '87. It's about a woman in Texas who:

- survives a drone strike

- then investigates a crime ring out of Asia

- only to be kidnapped by terrorists

- who hold her hostage and threaten to blow up the world with surplus ex-Soviet nukes

That was the fuckin' fyoooochur back then. Nowadays? Might as well be an episode of Frontline.

I think that's why it all sort of stopped with Matrix - ZOMG computers was kind of where the AOL generation was at that point. We'd done Hackers two years before to try and capitalize on the Packard Bell Pentium 1 that everyone was buying at Costco but Matrix came out right about the time that people were comfortable enough with the whole "computer" thing that they were willing to distrust what it does instead of what it is. I mean, beepy beepy beepy:

Meriadoc  ·  2066 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Wait if this is the case

And I hesitate to suggest this one

but should we do Blade Runner then?

(have we done Blade Runner? Let me know.)

camarillobrillo  ·  2066 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Blade Runner was my first thought.

user-inactivated  ·  2066 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I like Blade Runner and we haven't watched it yet. Not a bad idea!

kleinbl00  ·  2066 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Since we aren't defining anything, sure it counts! ;-)

Best friend did his graduate thesis on cyberpunk in cinema. Made the point, over the course of 80 pages, that The Matrix stole every trope cyberpunk had, misappropriated it and threw it on a tired, archetypal messiah story. Thus, the flopping, abortive attempts at movies like Johnny Mnemonic and Lawnmower Man were completely beaten into the ground by The Matrix the same way hard sci fi died a 30-year death upon the release of Star Wars.

I mean, Christopher Walken and Willem DaFoe in New Rose Hotel. I'll bet you didn't even know they made it. Meanwhile, Neuromancer has gone through 4 directors without even once hitting concept art. Wanna see their most credible director choice?

Hollywood wants the look of Cyberpunk. They have zero interest in the ethos.

Makes me sad.

mknod  ·  2066 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Hollywood wants the look of Cyberpunk. They have zero interest in the ethos.

So true, and it reminds me of this related work: