Showing all posts tagged: video

Extra-terrestrials may not want Earth as part of their galactic empire

19 April 2024

A conquering interstellar civilisation could bring the entire galaxy under its yoke in about a million years, assuming said civilisation could traverse the Milky Way at about ten percent the speed of light. I expect it’d be a multi-generational undertaking.

It’d also be up to those who conceived of the original vision to conquer the galaxy, to find a way to keep their descendants motivated. A million years is a long time.

This might be one reason why we’ve not encountered any extra-terrestrial lifeforms so far. No one has the energy to invade the whole galaxy, so they’ve stayed in their corner, undetected. But there is another possibility. The all-powerful invaders are being picky.

They’re only acquiring sections of the Milky Way, and the planets in those regions, that are of some sort of value to them. Perhaps Earth is not in that category.

This is the upshot of the latest Kurzgesagt video presentation. An interesting theory. We are not alone, but we are not wanted.

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Pub Choir gather nineteen thousand people to sing Africa by Toto

18 April 2024

From time to time, a few years ago now, I found myself walking passed a bar called The Dock (Facebook page), on Monday evenings. The bar, located in the inner Sydney suburb of Redfern, was host to something I’d not witnessed at a watering hole before: everyone singing.

And, as far as I could tell, without musical accompaniment. I later learned these sessions were called the Sea Shantys. They were clearly a drawcard for the bar, as every time I went passed at least, there seemed to be standing room only inside.

To the best of my knowledge, given I’ve not been over that way recently, these singalongs still continue, recent pandemic lockdowns notwithstanding.

Short wonder then Australian community organisation Pub Choir, was able to gather close to nineteen thousand people, from all across Australia, to perform a rendition of Africa, the 1982 hit by American band Toto, in August last year. See what you think. It ain’t half bad, if you ask me.

Yep: it’s gonna to take a lot to drag me away from you…

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Trailer for Heartbreak High second series, airing 11 April 2024

1 April 2024

The first episode of season two of Sydney set, Australian high school drama, Heartbreak High, goes to air on Thursday 11 April 2024. This is a day fans of the rebooted show (which aired in 2022), and indeed the original 1990’s series, will have marked on their calendars.

Check out the trailer. It looks like Sydney based activist Danny Lim has a cameo at some point in the second series. Anyone who’s in Sydney on any sort of regular basis has been seen Lim, pacing the streets, with one of his sometimes controversial sandwich board signs.

In other news, it occurs to me that Heartbreak High makes my high school days, which had their moments (well, one or two…), seem positively sedate in comparison. Maybe that was something to do with the high school I went to though.

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Prolonged volcanic activity killed the dinosaurs not an asteroid

29 March 2024

Well, this is interesting. All these years I’ve thought the demise of the dinosaurs was occasioned by the impact of an asteroid that struck Earth sixty-six million years ago. That may be still the case, but some scientists believe relentless volcanic activity, spanning more than a million years before and after the strike, may have been the real culprit.

At first, the Deccan Traps, an enormous shield volcano located in what is present day India, began releasing small quantities of carbon dioxide and sulphur into Earth’s atmosphere. As time went on these emissions increased, until, about three hundred thousand years before the asteroid strike, furious volcanic eruptions commenced. After several hundred thousand years of the atmosphere being filled with toxic gases, Earth must have been all but uninhabitable anyway.

In short, the asteroid is blamed for the mass extinctions that marked the end of the Cretaceous era, simply because it arrived at the time it did. All of this is the subject matter of the latest Kurzgesagt video, and even if that’s not happened, there’s much to marvel over. One being the reign of the dinosaurs lasted one hundred and fifty million years.

Humanity, or at least Homo sapiens, have been present, perhaps a mere three hundred thousand years so far. And then there’s Earth itself. Towards the end of the Cretaceous era, the planet was far warmer, and humid, than presently. Forests flourished in polar regions, and despite the long polar nights, life went on in what have seemed like a short sleeve like environment. Fascinating.

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The Acolyte, a new addition to the ever expanding Star Wars universe

28 March 2024

The great thing about the Star Wars universe is the way it can move up down left right forwards and backwards. Like any good fiction franchise, the potential to create new stories, new universes within a universe even, are virtually limitless. This even though I’m way behind on anything Star Wars beyond most of the movies (mainly the Skywalker Saga films) released to date.

But since Disney bought the Star Wars franchise from creator George Lucas, it has been in overdrive expanding exponentially. The Acolyte is the latest offering from this exponentially expanding universe, and is set about one hundred years before events of The Phantom Menace, in what is referred to as the High Republic era.

The trailer looks impressive, and the new show begins streaming on Tuesday 4 June 2024.

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To go where no one has gone before, the limit of the universe

22 March 2024

German animation and design studio Kurzgesagt have been producing excellent informative and educational videos for what seems like half the lifespan of the universe. Let’s hope Peak-Kurzgesagt is a situation that never comes to pass.

Their latest video, the Paradox of an Infinite Universe, covers some heady ground; the concept of a physical edge, or boundary, to the universe. If we could somehow reach such a region, could we press our hand against it, as we can a garden wall? Hmm…

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The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar, a film by Wes Anderson

9 October 2023

Are we at peak Wes Anderson yet? With Asteroid City still showing in some cinemas, maybe some film-goers would welcome a break from the American filmmaker. If that’s not you though, then check out The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar, trailer, a short film made by Anderson, based on the 1977 book of the same name, written by Roald Dahl.

The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar tells of a man, Henry Sugar, portrayed by Benedict Cumberbatch, who learns meditation techniques that let him see through things. Things such as playing cards for instance, something that could be advantageous at say a casino. The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar had a limited theatrical run in September, but can be streamed on Netflix.

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The Super Models, Cindy, Linda, Christy, and Naomi, reunited

22 September 2023

Nineties supermodels Naomi Campbell, Christy Turlington, Linda Evangelista, and Christy Turlington, were household names thirty years ago. At least in my household, that is, because when you had an aspiring fashion photographer in your midst, little that the four did would go unmentioned. But thirty years on, Cindy, Linda, Christy, and Naomi, remain household names, on account of their now legendary trailblazing exploits.

The Super Models, trailer, a four part documentary produced by Apple TV+, which began streaming on Wednesday 20 September 2023, sees Cindy, Linda, Christy, and Naomi reunited thirty years later, and traces their epic story, from the 1980’s onwards:

“The Super Models” travels back to the 1980s, when four women from different corners of the world united in New York. Already forces in their own right, the gravitas they achieved by coming together transcended the industry itself. Their prestige was so extraordinary that it enabled the four to supersede the brands they showcased, making the names Naomi, Cindy, Linda and Christy as prominent as the designers who styled them. Today, the four supermodels remain on the frontlines of culture through activism, philanthropy and business prowess. As the fashion industry continues to redefine itself — and women’s roles within it — this is the ultimate story of power and how four women came together to claim it, paving the way for those to follow.

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A trailer for The Boy and the Heron, a new film by Hayao Miyazaki

7 September 2023

The Boy and the Heron, trailer, is the latest animated feature by Japanese filmmaker and manga artist, Hayao Miyazaki. Released in Japan under the name Kimitachi wa Do Ikiruka, Miyazaki’s latest film is said to be partly autobiographical:

Through encounters with his friends and uncle, The Boy and the Heron follows a teenage boy’s psychological development. He enters a magical world with a talking grey heron after finding an abandoned tower in his new town.

Miyazaki’s previous titles include Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle, and The Wind Rises. There’s no word yet of an Australian cinematic run, but The Boy and the Heron is scheduled for release in the United States this December, so perhaps it will come our way then.

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Shayda by Noora Niasari, Australia’s 2024 Oscar Best International Feature hopeful

6 September 2023

Shayda, trailer, the debut feature of Iranian born, Melbourne based, Australian writer and filmmaker Noora Niasari, has been selected by Screen Australia as Australia’s entry in the Best International Feature category of the 2024 Oscars.

Based in part on Niasari’s own experiences, Shayda recounts the story of an Iranian woman who is forced to seek refuge in a women’s shelter with her young daughter, for two weeks during Nowruz, the Iranian New Year.

Shayda has already won a number of awards, the World Cinema Audience Award among them, after its world premiere at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. While the feature had its Australian premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival in August, Shayda commences a theatrical season in Australian cinemas on Thursday 5 October 2023.

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