The Martian

I went off to work and talked with one of the girls about the Maze Runner movie. When I got home, I watched the Partridge Family episode “The Sound of Money.” It’s hard to believe that Farrah Fawcett has died after seeing her so young here. This is still one of my favorite episodes from the first season. I went over to the theatre to see “The Martian.” I fell asleep for a few minutes in my seat before the movie started. That helped me out because I felt the movie was somewhat too long. I enjoyed it, though. I certainly liked it more than “Elysium” and most other science fiction films of recent years. I saw “The Martian” as a mixture of such other movies as “Cast Away,” “Silent Running,” “Apollo 13” and “Gravity.” Somehow, I could not believe that Matt Damon had any scientific knowledge in his brain. I couldn’t believe that his character could survive that initial accident. I counted three punctures of a spacesuit or helmet, and it was hard to believe that Damon could survive any of them. I don’t know why he didn’t have access to more music. You’d think the communication wouldn’t be so fragile. NASA should have sent out a whole load of extra supplies for emergencies. Did Jessica Chastain and Matt Damon simply shift over to this movie from “Interstellar”? One thing I kept thinking about was how NASA sent out into space tons of stuff like rovers and exercise machines. I liked seeing Jeff Daniels, although it was rather hard to accept him as a NASA official, especially after the Dumb and Dumber movies. It was strange to see Kristen Wiig in a serious part. I could accept Chiwetel Ejiofor in his role, but I don’t know about that guy working out the wacky rescue plan with the acceleration and trying to catch Damon while still moving. That seemed like it was way too difficult. It was the solitude that reminded me of “Silent Running,” although these days solitude means that you don’t have a connection to the Internet or a smartphone. Most people would not have the discipline or the determination to survive alone for any length of time. I questioned why the story had to include China. The movies of today frequently veer off into China in their plots because they attempt to appeal to the moviegoers there. I didn’t quite see that Jessica Chastain could be the captain of a ship. I didn’t see her as being cool under fire. In the media this week, we heard the news about water on Mars. I had to wonder about the timing here of this story just before the release of this movie. Could it really be coincidence? OK, with drone technology and all, you can control Damon’s capsule, but what seemed impossible was the bit with the glove, which was reminiscent of Sandra Bullock and the fire extinguisher in “Gravity.” Damon posed like The Fonz at one moment, although I thought that people weren’t still watching Happy Days all these years later. Ridley Scott was the director of “Alien” years ago, and I thought I detected traces of that movie in this one. Despite some flaws and distractions, it’s hard not to root for this guy to come through. As you’re watching this movie, you don’t think that Damon’s character is going to die because it would have been horrible to invest so much time in this movie to end with a downer. I was skeptical that Damon could do all the things he did with taking things apart and modifying machines and space. He was expended a lot of energy with each task. I didn’t believe Matt Damon as a botanist, as a survivor, or as the man he was at the end. I wonder what physicists think of this movie. It felt kind of like a big Star Trek episode to me. I liked it, although I had no urge to see it again. It was funny that I saw this movie the day after I saw “The Last Days of Disco,” because it ended up that both films used many of the same songs on the soundtrack, right down to “Love Train.” “I Will Survive” is played over the end credits, making me recall that the lyrics do make a mention of outer space. David Bowie’s “Starman” was also used, although I could never take the song seriously after “Walk Hard.” I saw the movie in 3D. I didn’t notice the effect much until the part where screws and floating around Damon’s head. The movie was a reminded that in real life we’re not even close to accomplishing the things that were shown in the story. The proposed Mars mission is a one-way trip. I was glad to watch this movie at the end of my work week. It attracted a decent crowd for an afternoon showing. Two people recognized me as I limped out to the lobby with my sore ankle. I listened to part of the A’s game in Seattle, and I went out to buy a California burrito, which was pretty good, but with French fries and cheese in it, it wasn’t good for me. I was encouraged, though, because I got paid this week. I fell asleep watching game shows. I should have watched another NUMB3RS episode, but I was sleepy. I heard that Danny Valencia hit a home run for the A’s in helping them win, 4-2. The Rangers, Astros, and Angels are still battling. I heard the news that David Cassidy was in trouble again for a hit-and-run incident. I don’t know how he thought he could get away with it. His life looks like it might be a downward spiral. I awoke and watched a bit of the Steven Colbert show, but I was unexcited with it. The Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival has started, but I have a football game to go to today. I’ll have to catch the last day and hope that there is someone decent to see there. I was interested in seeing Paul Weller. I’ve already seen Boz Scaggs. He didn’t do any material from “Silk Degrees.” I keep hearing that sales of music on vinyl have been increasing during the last year. I am glad to have the Beatles albums on vinyl. The shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon leaves me wondering if some student would shoot me for some warped reason. Back in 2002, Warren Zevon said that he wanted to live to see the next James Bond movie. I know that I want to see “SPECTRE.” The class where the shooting started was a creative writing class. Some of the people who died on October 3 include Carl Nielsen (1931), Woody Guthrie (1967), Roddy McDowall (1998), Benjamin Orr (2000), and William Steig (2003). Today is a birthday for Lindsey Buckingham (66) and Chubby Checker (74). According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for October 3, “The Maltese Falcon” opened in New York City in 1941. In 1954, “Father Knows Best” made its debut on CBS. In 1955, “Captain Kangaroo” premiered on CBS, while “The Mickey Mouse Club” premiered on ABC. In 1957, “The Woody Woodpecker Show” made its debut on ABC. In 1967, Woody Guthrie died of Huntington’s disease at age 55.

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