mfioretti: hollywood*

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  1. Reason Hollywood is "helping" China monitor set top boxes & smart tv's for copyright infringement is nothing more than Hollywood fill another one of their wet dreams which is aimed straight at restricting what you can view on those smart tv's and your set top boxes.

    Think about how Hollywood has waged war on torrent files and streaming sites, URL blocking and it's latest was on Kodi and other boxes.

    Hollywood is using China as a proof of concept to block users from seeing content that Hollywood doesn't want you to have access to (without kicking them some money first) or by the way of a license to enable you or the box provider to view or allow it to be distributed via a program or add on to the box, this concept would also be applied to smart tv's no doubt.

    Hollywood would never get away with doing a trial like this to block or censor set top boxes or smart tv's in the U.S. or UK, but China one could see allowing Hollywood do it with a large contribution of cash from Hollywood to get the goverment to okay it.

    China also benefits because they to can use this to have another way to filter what their citizens see and where they are getting it from and then blocking access to views that it doesn't like from reaching the public.

    You can bet if this proves effective that Hollywood will push this revelation of battling copyright infringement to other countries by saying the stats prove this is most effective and will save thousands of jobs and the infusion of cash that Hollywood needs to survive from all that piracy that threatens to push Hollywood to the brink of collapse... or so they say.
    Tags: , , , by M. Fioretti (2017-05-22)
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  2. La visione di Star Wars con lui però ha sortito l’effetto di leggere la Bibbia in compagnia del Presidente dell’Unione Atei Agnostici e Razionalisti. Riepilogo di seguito le considerazioni, con cui ha ammazzato i miei sogni di bambino:
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  3. Some time in the middle of Avengers: Age of Ultron, I came to terms with the fact that there will never be any more decent Marvel movies. In fact, there can’t be.

    Some of what I have to say is going to read as genre snobbery. So let me get this out of the way: I fucking love stupid popcorn movies. They can be about superheroes, dinosaurs, aliens, a bus that can’t slow down; I’m not picky. Movies are unparalleled in their ability to portray scale. If you have a giant screen, huge speakers capable of blasting everyone with earth-shattering noise, and hundreds of people gathered together in the dark, you can — and should — occasionally use those tools to provide pure, overwhelming spectacle.

    What I really dislike about Marvel is what they’re doing to stupid popcorn movies. This is a genre I care about, and they’re fucking it up.

    Marvel’s most profound failing is that it just plain doesn’t care about people. Age of Ultron is the clearest demonstration yet of the problem. And you should care about this problem. Because it’s getting worse, and because you can’t get away.

    I know Joss Whedon can make a good popcorn movie. In fact, I know he can make a good popcorn movie about the Avengers: That first movie is a stone-cold classic. Therefore, I’m disinclined to blame the badness of Age of Ultron on Joss Whedon. If you’ve watched someone throw a ball fifty times, and then, the fifty-first time, he just drops the ball at his feet and stands there motionless, you don’t assume that he can’t throw. You assume something is wrong.

    When you look at the formal requirements imposed on Whedon’s script by Marvel, it’s clear that AoU actually couldn’t have been good—that Marvel, not knowing or caring how good movies work, mandated that Whedon make a bad one. To name just a few of those requirements:

    •Too many characters. This is standard Marvel strategy — they go by the premise that all it takes to gratify their base is dropping a name that’s familiar from the comics, and so far, it’s paid off — but the never-ending quest to “improve” each movie by adding a sidekick, and another sidekick, and three villains this time, plus that other superhero you might know about if you read every Avengers comic from 1971 through 1973, has resulted in a movie with,

    by my count, fourteen central characters. The movie is only 141 minutes long; that might seem lengthy, but if you were to somehow divide it up so as to give each character an equal amount of uninterrupted focus, you’d only have around 10 minutes for each character. In practice, you get less than 10, because…

    •No matter what, Marvel’s structure mandates at least one fight scene every 20 minutes, and most of the time, those characters aren’t having in-depth discussions while they fight.


    So, once Marvel’s formula has deprived the movie of (a) time for the characters, (b) the potential for the story to unfold in a surprising way, and (c) meaningful consequences, we then get each character’s maximum 10 minutes of focus (which is now more like five or six) cut down even further, with ads for other Marvel products.

    Don’t let anyone tell you that silly popcorn movies don’t matter, or that they can’t be smart or beautiful or profound. A silly popcorn movie can change your life. All it has to do is create characters with identifiable, human problems, and let them work out those problems over the course of the story. Stories are about change, and about people, because ultimately, they are about you, the person sitting in a dark theater, working out your baggage by projecting it onto CGI cartoons of overly handsome actors.

    Here’s another way to put it: The extent to which a movie invests in character-based, character-driven storytelling is the extent to which it recognizes, appreciates, and honors the humanity of its audience.

    So when Age of Ultron doesn’t invest—when it goes by the assumption that the formula, and the formula alone, is enough to appease the popcorn-eaters—it says something pretty bad.
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  4. Along with the official U.S. and Oscar screener release dates, I include the leak dates for each major way that films typically find their way online:

    Cam. The old standby, a handheld camera in a theater. The worst quality, and increasingly uncommon.
    Telesync. Typically, a cam with better audio, often from headphone jacks in theater seats intended as hearing aids.
    Telecine, R5, PPV, Webrip, and HDRips. The terminology and sourcing’s changed through the years, but these are all high-quality rips with solid audio and video.
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  5. The dancers and photographer who inspired one of the biggest pop culture touchstones of a generation have gone most of their lives unable to publicly talk about the credit they think they deserve. Until now.
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  6. The Autobots (good guys) are allied secretly with the human race (ie USA only) to hunt down the Deceptions (bad guys). Things go awry of course when the hunter becomes the hunted when Sam (the main teenage hero) is in possession of some shard of the AllSpark, apparently something terribly important to the Deceptions. So everything goes afuss and big explosions happen.

    Snoring yet?

    there are matters you simply cannot overlook.

    First is Orion’s Belt. When our heroes are in the Egyptian deserts, they seek Orion’s Belt to find the location of the artifact. As I recall, Orion’s Belt is somewhat horizontal, yet in the movie they refer to other three stars. I took the liberty to put an infrared filter to make the major stars more pronounced; the three stars encircled in white comprise the Belt, the three stars in green are what the movie tells you is the belt (click for bigger view):


    it looks like a man with a penis

    The next part is what drove me insane, which is that, according to the movie, the stars point to Petra. It’s as if by magic that they point to Petra, though it could be really any city within that line of sight. I will also overlook the fact that they were probably facing east or west (I don’t recall if it was dusk or dawn), so technically speaking Petra isn’t even an option.

    The maddening part is that Petra is in Egypt.

    There is no indication that the heroes went to Jordan. In fact, it is told in the story that the artifact is buried here in the deserts of Egypt (which looked a lot like Wadi Rum) and that the stars shall point at the location. Suddenly Petra is in Egypt. The next thing you know, a battle ensues around the Pyramids, and the heroes travel from Petra to Egypt within minutes of course to join in the battle.

    Transformers 2

    Another odd aspect is that during the course of the battle, the Americans ask the Jordanians for help (the battle is in Egypt). Jordan sends in two choppers which instantly get blown up. The Americans then show power by sending their entire well-equipped fighter jets. There is also no sign of any Egyptian forces.

    Speaking of which, why is Egypt depicted in the “traditional Middle Eastern stereotype”? What’s shown of Egypt, other than the ever-present athan, is some run-down ghettos. Sure, it’s the desert part of Giza, but seriously? Now I also have never been to Egypt, but I do know Egyptians do not look like Mexicans (nothing wrong with Mexicans) and that they do speak Arabic, not some jibberish which was actually subtitled to Arabic! And then when an actor says “we are from New York!” the security chief of the borders say “Ah! New York!” and lets them in.
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  7. Putting DRM into HTML is monumentally stupid, and he's right that it will create massive security and legal liabilities for almost everyone. But the history of DRM has shown, over and over again, that it gets broken to bits in minutes once released, and even if there is legal liability involved in such things, it always happens. It will happen again here, and there will be "patches" made pretty quickly. It will be a tremendous waste of resources on pretty much everyone's part, but I'm not convinced that it will be effective in making things that much more unsafe.

    That said, the larger point that Cory raises reminds me of the key point that I'm still at a loss to understand here. Why the W3C and others who support this proposal seem to be so willing to kowtow to Hollywood on this. Yes, as Cory explains, it's really Netflix driving the bus here, but it's the Hollywood studios that are out there telling Netflix they need DRM:

    And it’s basically all being driven by Netflix. Everyone in the browser world is convinced that not supporting Netflix will lead to total marginalization, and Netflix demands that computers be designed to keep secrets from, and disobey, their owners (so that you can’t save streams to disk in the clear).

    But here's the thing: the internet wasn't built to be the next broadcast medium for big Hollywood blockbusters. It was built as a computing and communications platform. That's what made it special and it's why so many people have flocked to it. It's why it's "the internet." Hollywood came late to the party and has been trying to redesign the web in its own image ever since -- and that means locking it down so it's more about a broadcasting model, in which the "professionals" in Hollywood get to determine what you, the peons, get to do.

    But there's a reason Hollywood so desperately wants to control the internet: because all the people are here. And that's an important point. Hollywood (and, by extension, Netflix) need the internet much more than the internet needs Hollywood. Sure, the Hollywood folks like to claim that the reason the internet is so popular is because of professional content, but there's little to no evidence to support that. Yes, people like to have access to that content, but it's never been the driving force for why people want to be online.
    Tags: , , , , , by M. Fioretti (2014-01-15)
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  8. But it indeed felt that day like the seemingly arbitrary nature of Sony’s “let’s go back to high school!” Spider-Man reboot was going to be the start of something very unfortunate. And indeed, nearly four years after that announcement, said fears have come to pass. Studios, terrified of spending the time and money to develop original properties, have been relentless in looting the basement. As I feared four years, ago, it does seem like every remotely memorable property from the last thirty years is getting rebooted. Even outside the horror genre, where looting has been occurring full time for the last ten years since Platinum Dunes’ Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake, studios have been basically revamping, rebooting, and remaking every remotely recognizable genre property from the 1970′s, 1980′s, and 1990′s.
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  9. Studios are increasingly putting out just two types of film: mega-budget ones that can move the needle for the conglomerates that own them, and tiddlers for under $25m that can do nicely when they work. “Hollywood is like America,” says Kevin Misher, a producer. “The middle class has been squeezed.”

    Mr Goldman described how, by 1983, the studios had all but given up developing their own ideas. Instead freelance writers, producers and other outsiders toured Hollywood touting ready-cooked packages, often with the stars already signed on and the script written. Now the studios, having cut their remaining development spending to boost their marketing budgets, are even more reliant on outsiders to design their product; imagine if Apple or Toyota did this. The studios are also looking outside for the money to finance films. A new species of intermediaries, such as Village Roadshow Entertainment Group and Skydance, have sprung up to bankroll projects.

    As Mr Goldman described it, studio executives were like baseball managers: “They wake up every morning…with the knowledge that sooner or later they’re going to get fired.”
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  10. The northern summer of 2013 was a bad one for Hollywood. After Earth, The Lone Ranger, White House Down, World War Z and Pacific Rim were among the million-dollar turkeys. And you may have noticed the DVD shelves feature more TV series than ever before.

    So what’s going on?

    Cinema has been in crisis for 70 years. In the 1950s, it responded to the challenge of television with bigger, brighter and brasher spectacles. But the problem with big-budget spectacle is obvious: when you bet the bank, it’s easy to lose your shirt.
    Tags: , , , , by M. Fioretti (2013-11-08)
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