25 February 2008

End of Line

Had a pretty good weekend, spending a good amount of time catching up with friends. After a pretty amazing dinner cooked for us by our friend Ross (our first house-guest of 2008), we watched TRON on the big screen.

It's been many years since I saw this, but its amazing to see how fresh it all looks considering it originally was released in 1982. The Moebius-designed costumes and sets and vehicle designs by Syd Mead (who was responsible for much of the look and feel of Blade Runner) still look amazing, though Wendy Carlos' (Switched-On Bach, Clockwork Orange) synthesizer score has fared less well. 2Bit suggested that I try to put together a live score for it, like DJ Food did for the Monkees' "Head". Given the fact that we have less than a week to go in the RPM Challenge and I have yet to complete a single track, the chances of this happening are slim to none.

What caught my eye this time round (possibly because I was watching the rereleased anniversary edition and it wasn't in the original) was about four seconds of footage where Pac-Man can be clearly seen on a control panel. Its a telling commentary how a room full of 30-somethings were a) watching a film they first saw aged 9 or younger, and b) were overexcited by a four-second glimpse of a videogame released almost 30 years ago.

I'm reading "Consumed" by Benjamin Barber at the moment, and a major aspect of his thesis is that modern capitalism infantilizes adults by prolonging the acceptable age for playing with toys (including gadgets, cars and other unnecessary consumables), encouraging them to buy all the things they couldn't when they were kids, ultimately leading to a generation of immature leaders unable to make serious decisions.

Seeing a group of grown adults actively consider devoting many hours of time they do not have to developing a live soundtrack to a kids film that no-one will actually see or hear, I recognize a kernel of truth in Barber's arguments.

I for one welcome our new indecisive infantile leaders.

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