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BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter

GUEST,kendall 11 Feb 11 - 01:41 PM
MikeL2 11 Feb 11 - 02:30 PM
Donuel 11 Feb 11 - 02:34 PM
Slag 11 Feb 11 - 07:15 PM
Andy Jackson 11 Feb 11 - 07:34 PM
mousethief 11 Feb 11 - 08:12 PM
HuwG 11 Feb 11 - 08:38 PM
GUEST,Alan Whittle 11 Feb 11 - 10:56 PM
Genie 12 Feb 11 - 09:52 AM
GUEST, topsie 12 Feb 11 - 10:02 AM
MGM·Lion 12 Feb 11 - 10:12 AM
GUEST, topsie 12 Feb 11 - 10:26 AM
mousethief 12 Feb 11 - 11:22 AM
Will Fly 12 Feb 11 - 02:30 PM
mousethief 12 Feb 11 - 02:36 PM
kendall 12 Feb 11 - 02:51 PM
kendall 12 Feb 11 - 02:52 PM
GUEST, topsie 12 Feb 11 - 02:55 PM
GUEST, topsie 12 Feb 11 - 03:04 PM
mousethief 12 Feb 11 - 03:19 PM
Bert 12 Feb 11 - 03:20 PM
Dorothy Parshall 12 Feb 11 - 03:32 PM
Jim Dixon 12 Feb 11 - 03:52 PM
Bert 12 Feb 11 - 03:53 PM
MGM·Lion 12 Feb 11 - 04:14 PM
Micca 12 Feb 11 - 04:24 PM
josepp 12 Feb 11 - 08:27 PM
Roger the Skiffler 13 Feb 11 - 03:58 AM
GUEST, topsie 13 Feb 11 - 05:14 AM
GUEST,PeterC 13 Feb 11 - 05:35 AM
GUEST,Eliza 13 Feb 11 - 05:46 AM
GUEST,kendall 13 Feb 11 - 08:33 AM
mauvepink 13 Feb 11 - 08:34 AM
GUEST,PeterC 13 Feb 11 - 11:56 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 13 Feb 11 - 12:17 PM
pdq 13 Feb 11 - 12:22 PM
MGM·Lion 13 Feb 11 - 01:56 PM
Bettynh 13 Feb 11 - 02:10 PM
Micca 13 Feb 11 - 06:52 PM
Dave MacKenzie 13 Feb 11 - 07:18 PM
Jim Dixon 13 Feb 11 - 09:30 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 13 Feb 11 - 10:11 PM
GUEST,DonMeixner 13 Feb 11 - 10:19 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 13 Feb 11 - 10:48 PM
Jim Dixon 14 Feb 11 - 12:13 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 14 Feb 11 - 04:13 AM
Dave MacKenzie 14 Feb 11 - 04:19 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 14 Feb 11 - 05:26 AM
Dave MacKenzie 14 Feb 11 - 05:37 AM
Will Fly 14 Feb 11 - 07:30 AM

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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST,kendall
Date: 11 Feb 11 - 01:41 PM

What about pictures of the TITANIC that show smoke coming out of the aft most stack? That was a dummy made to make her look bigger than she was. It was actually an engine room vent.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: MikeL2
Date: 11 Feb 11 - 02:30 PM

Hi

We watch Foyle's War and laugh at the inaccuracies. Like Will we too wondered where Milner received his miracle treatment that enables him to walk ( and occasionally run) since he lost part of his leg. In the forties !!!!

I also cringe at many period films that contain current word usage and phraseology. Absolutely is one overused word in such films.

I also read a lot and I find that nowadays there are many typing and spelling errors creeping into the texts. I suspect that computers and word-processing have much to do with it.

Cheers

Mikel2


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Donuel
Date: 11 Feb 11 - 02:34 PM

To certain kinds of people it matters foremost.

I once wrote a truely profound insight of great importence but the only comment was of a spelling error.

To **** all she saw was a fly in the pudding, so it was all inedible.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Slag
Date: 11 Feb 11 - 07:15 PM

Getting it right is what it is all about whether fiction or fact. In a work of finction, the setting, the historicity, the details all serve to draw the reader/viewer into the created reality of the piece. When a detail is wrong it defeats the author's purpose and jars you the reader out of that reality. If the work is good and tight in all other aspects one can generally find their way back in with a little suspension of disbelief. If I can't do that, I'm finished. I can't read or watch any more of it.

Right now I am reading Tragedy & Hope: A History of the World in Our Time by Carroll Quiggley, which my son gave me as a gift. Well, it's not really a history. It's an opinion piece made to look like history. It is indexed but saddly lacking in footnotes and corraborating evidence. Some of it is heresay, some purported inside information and much of it is fact which tends to provide camoflage for the opinions. Some of it is self contradictory within a page or two of previous statements. I am annotating the margins for my son's sake as he expressed a desire to read it himself. Ever the father, that's me. I hope he appreciates it.

But YES! Those details matter. In films and other visual productions that is the job of the "Best Boy". It is his to make sure that all the props are in exactly the same place between takes which may be months apart. Sometimes I watch for shadow variations or ships passing by in a harbor shot, things which the film crew has little or no control over. I'm no fun to watch a movie with!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Andy Jackson
Date: 11 Feb 11 - 07:34 PM

Just to drag it back to Folk for a bit...
The scene in, I think a Miss Marple, where the cops chase a car along the esplanade at Sidmouth around the corner at the Ham and then emerge in the next shot in open countryside. All done with mirrors you know.
As to clean cars referred to earlier I like to think that those cars were probably new at the time and cherished much like the modern owner with fancy tin boxes, of course they were gleaming!


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: mousethief
Date: 11 Feb 11 - 08:12 PM

I watched a movie about something (crime? footware? donut makers? I forget) set in Chicago. A longish scene involves people running along the top of the "el" trains. If you had ever ridden the various train lines in Chicago you would know that they were heading north on the red/green line one second, then west on the blue the next, then south on the ....

It was hilarious. Ruined the movie for me, but had a lot of fun laughing at the impossible scenery changes. I mean, why? How hard could it have been to make that scene work right geographically?


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: HuwG
Date: 11 Feb 11 - 08:38 PM

Knowing a locale can sometimes spoil things. In Rebecca's Daughters, a film I love and which is set and shot in South Wales, Anthony Raine (played by Paul Rhys) and Rhiannon, daughter of Lord Sarn (played by the ever lovely Joely Richardson) go for a ride on horseback. Between two shots, they gallop from the seashore near St. Donat's Head to the feet of the Brecon Beacons, a distance of over 20 miles.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST,Alan Whittle
Date: 11 Feb 11 - 10:56 PM

I worked with a guy who reckoned he had been one of the moving trees in Birnam Wood in the Tynan/Polanski Macbeth film.

Anyway he reckoned one day, all the trees got a banana in their pack lunch - so they hung the banana skins on the trees so they would be able to see themselves when the film came out.

However I looked carefully through the film and I can't see it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Genie
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 09:52 AM

Why is that in mysteries/suspense movies, nobody ever hears anyone sneaking up on them, and nobody ever smells dead bodies before seeing them?    The characters walk, even run, through buildings surreptitiously without others in the area hearing them, and people will walk right up to, and stumble over, a long-dead corpse, with apparently no clues beforehand that there's any decaying matter about.

"Titanic" was full of unbelievable things. E.g., Kate Winslett running through frigid sea water up to her middle, in a sheer gown for 15 min or more, with her muscles & joints apparently not affected by the icy water, then staying alive on top of a floating piece of wood for well over an hour. This in the same movie where Leo DiCaprio, earlier in the film, dissuades her from considering jumping off the ship by pointing out that you'd be dead in about 4 min. if you were in that water.

It's distracting to me when movie characters use verbal idoms that are blatantly out of place for the time. E.g., idioms that were spawned by technological developments - e.g., "turned on," "tuned in," etc. - that occurred much later than the period of the film.

And a LOT of songs are used in movies that are set in times long before those songs were composed or generally known.

TV westerns of the 1960s and 1970s often had the characters wearing hairstyles of those decades, though set in the late 19th or early 20th C.

How about all the spare time - not to mention privacy - that medical interns and residents always seem to have on TV doctor shows to "get it on" in the supplies closets?

Thelma and Louise make the cop get into the trunk of his police car and try to leave the audience with the impression that he will be OK, when he is eventually found by someone after who knows how long in the hot desert sun inside that 'oven', because they have shot a few "air holes" into the trunk.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST, topsie
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 10:02 AM

Dr Who running along with night buses while Rose's mother is shopping - surely not a problem for a Time Lord.

I'm surprised the Archers haven't surfaced in this thread yet ...
When Caroline and Oliver got engaged he surprised her by giving her an engagement ring which fitted perfectly. When she asked him how he knew what size to get, he said he had borrowed a ring from her dressing table. So are all Caroline's fingers exactly the same size? Unlikely.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 10:12 AM

Isn't it amazing that there is always a derestricted parking space right outside the city centre building which the character who has just driven up is about to enter!

~M~


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST, topsie
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 10:26 AM

Of course nobody hears people sneaking up on them in films. The sounds of footsteps are drowned out by the 'atmospheric' music.

And it's not just in Westerns that sixties fashions ruled. The hair and makeup in Far From the Madding Crowd were pure sixties.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: mousethief
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 11:22 AM

Isn't it amazing that there is always a derestricted parking space right outside the city centre building which the character who has just driven up is about to enter!

There was one scene I remember from the cheesy old Batman TV show where they pull up in the Batmobile outside City Hall, and Robin is about to go running into the building when Batman stops him and says they must first feed the meter because they are good and law-abiding citizens. Pure camp.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Will Fly
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 02:30 PM

As to clean cars referred to earlier I like to think that those cars were probably new at the time and cherished much like the modern owner with fancy tin boxes, of course they were gleaming!

Mmmm... so after a 20-mile car chase through muddy country roads, my car would be spanking clean, eh? :-)

The luckiest driver in the world, as far as being able to park exactly where he needs to, is Morse - in Oxford. Ho ho ho. As if.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: mousethief
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 02:36 PM

Also people who wake up in bed after a long night's rumpy-pumpy and (one presumes some) sleep, and their hair is perfect.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: kendall
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 02:51 PM

How about those two pirates in Pirates of the Caribbean who sailed a brig from Jamaica to Tortuga? Talk about multi tasking.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: kendall
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 02:52 PM

Now, a question, Why the hell do we care?

One of our tv stations insist on announcing the weather...We've got you covered! I asked them if they know the difference but no reply.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST, topsie
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 02:55 PM

And those women with perfect makeup after several days in the jungle.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST, topsie
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 03:04 PM

I don't think Pirates of the Caribbean was meant to be realistic.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: mousethief
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 03:19 PM

Now, a question, Why the hell do we care?

Because it's a fun thread topic and we got tired of kicking the dog?


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Bert
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 03:20 PM

josepp, Yes the ducts they are always wrong.

In a large building they can be up to six feet square at first, but when they get to the individual rooms they are very small. I've built some that were 4 inches by 3 inches.

Hardly big enought to crawl through.

Then on the inside they are joined together by sharp sheet metal screws that are screwed in from the outside leaving their sharp points pointing inwards. So if you ever got one to crawl through you'd get torn to pieces at every joint.

----------

Then there's the welding or burning (oxy-acetylene cutting) it is always wrong. In The Full Monty they showed someone arc welding and commented that the gas mixture was all wrong. There is just the possibility that they were trying to make the character seem ignorant but I don't really believe that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 03:32 PM

Geez! Just when I was wondering, like Kendall, why anyone cares!! But I don't even have a dog to kick and the darn worms don't even talk back. (In my new worm composter.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 03:52 PM

I'd like to see a scene in a comedy movie where they would spoof the crawling-through-the-ventilation-duct cliché.

First the bad guys would hear the loud rumble of the sheet metal flexing and bending under the weight of the crawler. They would also hear coughing and sneezing. Of course the intruder would be lost, since there are no signs saying, "This way to the secret laboratory." The hero's path would take him right over the table where the bad guys are playing poker. They look up in amazement at the sound. They draw their guns and take aim at the noisy bulge in the ductwork. Then the supports give way and all the ductwork collapses onto the floor.

Did I actually see a scene like that, or did I just imagine it? I am picturing Mike Myers as Austin Powers.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Bert
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 03:53 PM

We care because it brings us right back into our living rooms staring at the television and spoils the movie magic.

They might just as well have shown televisions in Ancient Greece.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 04:14 PM

I also cringe at many period films that contain current word usage and phraseology. Absolutely is one overused word in such films. MikeL2···

Not a very good example, MikeL, tho I agree with general point about later vocab ~~ like Craig greeting Bentley at beginning of Let Him Have It, about famous 1950s murder, "You've been keeping a very low profile lately" ~~ a computing-based usage no older than the 60s at earliest. But 'absolutely' I can recall for the whole of my long life ~ a fave word of my dear Aunt Lille, who used to call people "Poppet" right back in the 30s ~~ absolutely!!.

In the film of Fredric Raphael's The Glittering Prizes, Tom Conti & friends cycle wrong way along Trinity Street, Cambridge, which is a one-way street.

And Chariots Of Fire, film about 1924 Olympics, opened with a screen caption saying "Caius College, Cambridge" over a shot of the gate of Trinity Hall.

~Michael~


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Micca
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 04:24 PM

Jim Dixon, Re:-Ducting,its been done a bit, see the Abrams, Zucker Bros(the Guys who gave you Airplane) Movie "Top Secret" That spoofs Elvis films and Spy films, for more info try Here


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: josepp
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 08:27 PM

The boot camp sequence in "Stripes" was laughable. I don't know what military those guys went to but it wasn't the U.S. I especially thought it was funny when the CC (company commander) has everybody in the company (about 6 guys when there would be more like 60) taking turns talking about themselves and what they were looking for in the Army and all this boyscout shit.

Your CC doesn't give a rat's rotting asshole about where you come from or what you're hoping to get out of your experience and if you tried talking about it, he'd scream right in your face "SHUT THE FUCK UP, ASSHOLE!!!" The whole idea of bootcamp is to strip your of every vestige of your former civilian life and transition you to a soldier of a sailor or a marine. They shave your hair off, take away your civilian clothes, and everything you need to have they will give you--towels, soap, toothpaste, sewing kit, uniforms, dental/medical checkups. You might as well bring nothing with you other than the clothes on your back because they won't let you have it anyway. You have to learn to march, to carry a piece, to recognize rank symbols, to know your chain of command, to say "yes, sir" and "no, sir." You don't have time to talk about where you came from and what your buddies called you and they won't give you that time. That part of your life is over and you ain't gonna dwell on it.

Full Metal Jacket was a bit more realistic. In fact, the barracks and everything was just like how it really looks. Getting woke up in the morning was like that too. And when they wake you up--you better get your ass out of that rack right the hell now. Don't keep laying there. They don't like that. At all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 03:58 AM

Well, I've just read a very sloppily proofread Clive Cussler book: "partisan" for "partition", several other spelling & factual errors (ignoring the pseudoscience of the plot) the worst being "The Algentinians call the Falkland Islands the Maldives" ! Even in a formulaic potboiler like his such errors do irritate.

RtS


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST, topsie
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 05:14 AM

Nowadays publishers quite often send books to India for copy-editing - much cheaper but you get some curious results.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST,PeterC
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 05:35 AM

Knowing a locale can sometimes spoil things.

Early episodes of The Bill was filmed near the office where I was then working in the East End.

To film a conversation in between driver and passenger in a car they shoot all of one side then all of the other and edit them together. The driver was driving along The Highway towards The City and the passenger was travelling up Cable Street towards Limehouse.

Never watch Morse too closely if you know Oxford. He regularly drove off in the opposite direction to wherever he was supposed to be going.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 05:46 AM

Sometimes the whole film is excruciatingly wrong. I'm thinking of a ghastly version of Mansfield Park, with Billie Piper as Fanny Price. The whole point of the book is the timidity and submissivness of Fanny, and her consequent suffering by bullying and selfishness. In the film, she's a hoyden, feisty, sexy and bold. I was amazed and disgusted. Also, the recent 'Marple' series blatantly changes the story beyond recognition. I do feel that Jane Austin and Agatha Christie can't really be 'improved' upon like this!


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST,kendall
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 08:33 AM

Crabapple Cove doesn't exist. Cabot Cove doesn't exist.
Suck it up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: mauvepink
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 08:34 AM

Iinternet Movie DataBase (IMDb) had lists of gaffs for most films

I find some really annoying. Almost like they are treating the potential audience as not intelligent enough to notice when something glaringly wrong is done. I like aviation films, as an example, and they are often so full of holes. They really rattle me sometimes! lol

B727 (3 jet engines, rear mounted) takes off, a B747 in flight (4 wing mounted jet engines) and B767 landing (two wing mounted jets). B747-400 shown from the outside and crew of three (including a flight engineer) in the cockpit. B747-400's have a two crew cockpit (as do most modern generation aircraft). The amount of twin jet engined helicopters that have single piston engined Bell 47 sound when flying or on the ground is quite remarkable. And the real major annoyance are the jets that are diving toward the ground complete with the sound of a single piston engined fighter type diving. Cockpits are always massive and have loads of space. In fact most cockpits are quite cramped because there is no money to be made from the space being used for the poor pilots. Very few aviation films have kept my respect for good efforts. For me it is poor attentiuon to detail and an insult to the audience. They spend millions on films, I doubt it would be any more expensive to dub authentic sounds rather the sound archive ones that get used. Obviously I am touchy on this as it an area of interest I have. I am sure many notice it on many other topics.

The Airplane parodies are not short of material from the true aviation films to be able to mock. I think there is less excuse for such glaring errors these days than there were in the past. The technology now is so good they can make things accurate.

I'll shush now ;-)

mp


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST,PeterC
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 11:56 AM

Crabapple Cove doesn't exist.
You mean M.A.S.H. was fiction????


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 12:17 PM

I particularly despise TV and cinematic 'Sci-Fi'. As a lad I was obsessed with (written) Science Fiction (which was abbreviated to 'SF' - never 'Sci-Fi'!). I suppose that I was (and still am - to a certain extent) a bit of a nerd. But written SF was stirring and fascinating and left me with an understanding of the human race's place in the Universe. In addition most SF writers were capable of thinking their creations through.

In the visual media, though, the writers seem completely and utterly incapable of thinking anything through! Most of their work appears to be soap opera with undigested and misunderstood SF tropes stuck on with wall paper paste. It's also glaringly obvious that the writers know absolutely NOTHING about science. Any science content in their creations seems to have been gleaned from the 'News of the World' Science column ("Elvis clone found in wormhole!"). Most of them haven't got a clue about interstellar distances and don't seem to know the difference between a planet and a star.

An example of not thinking things through is in Spielberg's 'War of the Worlds'. Why did the aliens bury their war machines and then wait for centuries, until humans had evolved, and only then invade?
Another example is 'Alien'. This was supposed to be set on a "mining ship" - who the f**k would transport minerals or metal ores over interstellar distances!!

The latest abomination is the new BBC serial 'Outcasts' - which appears to me to be 'Eastenders' set in outer space. I stopped watching it after the first episode, during which some silly tw*t attempted to land a starship (presumably the size of a city) on a planet - and, not surprisingly, failed. Oh dear - there goes 10 trillion quids worth of technology - not to mention the passengers and crew!


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: pdq
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 12:22 PM

Somebody asked if "Sweet Betsy From Pike" was old enough to be sung authentically in a Western.

It was pulblished in 1858 so it is old enough to be in a Western, but not in a story about the early days of the Gold Rush.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 01:56 PM

Not sure about that, pdq. It probably existed in oral tradition from the Days Of 49, but only achieved actual book publication a few years later. Its well established 'Villikins' tune would be just the sort of thing that travellers towards the diggings would improvise words to as they went.

~M~


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Bettynh
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 02:10 PM

Hollywood seems to have a warped idea of New England, it's language and particularly, geography. There have been tv shows based on glaciers in the White Mountains, abandoned gold mines, hot springs, and creek beds. We have NO glaciers, hot springs or tunnelled mines (I'm not absolutely sure about the mines, but if we have them, they're very rare). We have brooks, not creeks. And for all the effort to paak cahs, nobody in New England takes "the 128," which is a peculiarly LA term for using a highway.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Micca
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 06:52 PM

On the subject of Sci Fi in the movies and on TV a colleague some years ago did a lecture on the Physics of Superheroes. 2 of his suggestions were
1 Supermans X-Ray vision would kill him because the heat generated in his skull by generating X-rays would cook his brain, he used the correct equations to show the energy produced.
2 that a motor cycle that had a particle beam weapon on it ,to raise enough energy for the beam to work as the show suggested would weigh several hundred tons, but, more importantly, be 3/4 of a mile long!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Dave MacKenzie
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 07:18 PM

Then again, I believe that it was proved conclusively in the late nineteenth century that travelling at more than 30mph would be fatal for humans.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 09:30 PM

There was a scene in the first Superman movie in which Lois Lane, skeptical that Superman really had X-ray vision, challenged him to prove it by telling her what color panties she was wearing. He answered (if I remember correctly) "blue" and convinced her.

That wouldn't work. Have you ever seen an X-ray image that showed you, for example, what color your liver was? X-ray IS a color. It's just beyond the range of visibility for ordinary humans. If X-rays were visible to us, they would appear as another color added to the spectrum as we know it.

If you shine a pure red light on anything, it looks either red or black. You can't use a red light to see any color other than red. Likewise you couldn't use X-rays to see any color other than X-ray.

(I'm ignoring fluorescence, but that's not likely to be a factor.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 10:11 PM

But who's to say that Superman's "X-ray vision" literally works via the mechanism of X-ray generation? Maybe "X-ray" is simply an analog or metaphor used to explain, in human terms, something so far removed from our ubderstanding that we have no words for it. Maybe Sup doesn't literally see through things at all, but projects some seeing part of his psyche through space - something more akin to astral projection than X-ray vision.

Yeah, I know the guy who wrote the comic called it X-ray vision, but he was human. Superman isn't.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST,DonMeixner
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 10:19 PM

I remember when Master and Commander came out all the grief that was generated in this forum because Aubrey had too many epaulets on his uniform. Now thats nit pickin'.

I get bent when westerns have the wrong guns for the time. But a lot of slack has to be given just so there is enough room in the Sub or the log cabin or miners home just for the camera to record the story. I remember reading what a nightmare Barry Lyndon was to shoot because Kubrick insisted that it be shot with available natural light.

Don


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 10:48 PM

I recently read a Stephen King short story with a couple of glaring errors in it.

The main character was driving from Jacksonville, Florida to Sarasota, Florida. The route between those to cities is quite simple: drive west from Jacksonville on Interstate 10 for about an hour and then turn south onto Interstate 75 for another four hours or so. The I10/I75 interchange is just north of Lake City. Mr. King had his protagonist stop at a rest stop on I75 toward the end of his trip, but he had yet to reach Lake City. As I understand the geography of Florida, and I've lived in the state my entire life, Lake City should have been a couple of hours behind him.

And the rest stop on I75 at which the driver stopped was indicated by a sign pointing to the left. Now, we drive on the right-hand side of the road in Florida, and a rest stop sign pointing left is going to mean the rest stop is in the median strip, between the northbound and southbound lanes. Sorry, Mr. King, but to the best of my knowledge there are no rest stops so situated on either I75 or any other interstate highway in Florida. They're all either on the right side of the highway or off the highway all together, and they're all accessed by turning right, not left. The service plazas on The Florida Turnpike are situated in large median areas, but that's not where the guy was driving.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 14 Feb 11 - 12:13 AM

Regarding Superman's vision: To each his own taste, I suppose, but I think any counterfactual assumptions in a science-fiction or fantasy story (such as Superman's special powers) should be defined early in the story, and then the rest of the story should be consistent with those assumptions.

I'm not saying X-ray vision couldn't be a metaphor for some more complicated power, but if it is, we need to have the storyteller give us some sort of explanation of how it works. We shouldn't have to invent explanations ad hoc.

(By the way, I never thought Superman's eyes emitted X-rays. I only thought he could see them when they were emitted by some other source, such as the sun.)

The audience will feel cheated if, at the climax of the plot, Superman uses some power we didn't know he had.

Actually, I did feel cheated when Superman reversed time by flying rapidly around the earth. Who knew he could do that? And how the hell would it work? I was so disgusted I never watched another Superman movie.

See Deus ex machina at Wikipedia.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 14 Feb 11 - 04:13 AM

"But who's to say that Superman's "X-ray vision" literally works via the mechanism of X-ray generation? Maybe "X-ray" is simply an analog or metaphor used to explain, in human terms, something so far removed from our ubderstanding that we have no words for it."

No, the writers were too stupid and lazy to do any proper research!


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Dave MacKenzie
Date: 14 Feb 11 - 04:19 AM

And here's me thinking that 'Superman' was a fictitious comic strip for children!


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 14 Feb 11 - 05:26 AM

There's no reason why children's fiction shouldn't be properly researched. In fact feeding children poorly thought through, shoddy nonsense might even be construed as a form of child abuse.

As a consumer of fiction I prefer it if the authors I read know more than me about the subject/subjects that they are writing about. And if it's fantasy that I'm consuming I need to be able to suspend my disbelief. Therefore the particular fantasy world needs to be consistent and properly thought through. I hate the type of fantasy in which the author has contempt for the medium (and his/her audience?) and thinks that he/she can make it up as he/she goes along without any regard for credibility or consistency. I suspect that most intelligent children would agree with me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Dave MacKenzie
Date: 14 Feb 11 - 05:37 AM

Which is why I used to love 'Dan Dare'. I've never been a great lover of Superman, though I was quite happy to take it for what it is. It was much more creditably thought through than a lot of the opposition, and I don't think anybody seriously thought that X-Ray Vision had anything to do with Roentgen - just a shorthand for 'he can see through things'.


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Subject: RE: BS: Do small errors in books, film &c matter
From: Will Fly
Date: 14 Feb 11 - 07:30 AM

The most maltreated artefact in film and TV is the poor old computer!

How often do we see (a) whole files wiped out with the press of one switch (b) hacking into a complex system performed in a few seconds or minutes (c) screen graphics that bear no resemblance to any known program living or dead.

The most hilarious bit is in Die Hard 2 where terrorists take over an old church and, in the space of around an hour, set up a whole complex, computerised alternative airport command and air traffic control system. Once again - As if!


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