Tag Archives: Mary Elizabeth Winstead The Thing

The Once and Future Thing

BAKER STREET | REVIEW

by Eric J Baker

If you awoke with a different face, would you still be you? You’re operating from the same workstation inside your head, but a different mug is staring back from the mirror. Maybe you’re like Yoda (the cool one from Empire Strikes Back, not that nonsense-spewing goblin from the prequels), and you believe our true selves are defined by our relationships, memories, and moral actions rather than by our flesh. The spirit matters, not its temporary container.

But what if it’s your face with your memories and relationships, but you come to realize that you are no longer human? Your new ambition is to replace humanity with exact copies, starting with your family and friends. Then how would you feel?*

If there had been shots of Mary Elizabeth Winstead like this in “The Thing” remake, it would have been a better movie.

Such is the existentialist crisis facing the pod people of Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956), one of cinema’s most nihilistic films. In it, people are humans when they fall asleep and aliens when they awake, thanks to the intervention of a strange space plant resembling a seed pod. The only noticeable change in them is the absence of emotion.

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Let Them Eat Stake

BAKER STREET | REVIEW

 by Eric J Baker

Cripes, internet people! Think of any subject that can possibly be discussed and at least 50% of you are in a raging fury about it. Michele Obama wants kids to eat more healthfully? That evil witch is tearing up the Constitution right before our eyes! The Bachelorette chose Hank over Luigi? Firebomb your congressional rep’s car in revenge! Raisins in cinnamon toast? Mass suicide is the answer!

So, wait. Lisa Bonet has a kid named Zoë with a Jew named Lenny Kravitz, then pops out two more with "Conan" star Jason Momoa 22 years later? We thought it was wit that bagged the young hunnies. Can't be. It's the seaweed.

The big topic that has folks frothing this week is remakes, now that the new versions of Conan the Barbarian and Fright Night have hit theaters. The argument goes, “How dare Hollywood screw with these classics? It’s heresy I tell you!” Yes, because that shot of Arnold Schwarzenegger punching out a camel in Conan rivals the baptism scene at the end of The Godfather for cinematic brilliance. Because Kurosawa saw the original Fright Night, said, “Fuck it. I can’t top that,” and quit making movies.

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