If Movies Were Macs

Long story short: Macs good, Windows bad. That is the usual gist of this column though I usually provide some substantial evidence for my claims. Since writing the same thing over and over can get a bit tedious (I feel for the folks who actually read this stuff, particularly for the guy who owns this site. Trevor must live in complete terror of late Thursday evenings). So this week I thought I would do something a bit different: no mindless raving about Apple versus Microsoft, no ranting that Apple is superior in every single way to Wintel (though Apple is superior, try making the same movie on Wintel and an Apple). This week I thought I would just chat a bit about the current crop of summer movies.

What could possibly more summer movieish than Jurassic Park III. Honestly, they should just skip the serial enumeration and just start identifying the Jurassic movies by the year released; future generations will thank them. I haven't seen the movie but from what I glean (plot spoiler coming) a few characters from the previous Jurassic incarnations and a few new folks go through some contrived scenario (plot spoiler imminent) and end up back on the island. Once on the island plenty of dinosaur mayhem ensues. If Jurassic III was a computer it would be the fastest Dell available, lot's of special effects (processor speed) but little in the way of new substance. The purchaser of a ticket for Jurassic III or a Dell will undoubtedly realize that there is nothing new to be had but hopes that the experience might still be fun. On the other end of the spectrum we have Sexy Beast, a movie I have actually seen. In this excellent flick (which no one will see) we have Ben Kingsley playing a vile anti Ghandi (complete with cool visual Ghandi reference). We are also treated to Ian McShane playing a terrific super heavy. This movie was outstanding, a little uneven in spots but easily forgiven it's minor shortcomings. The plot was a bit thin and lacked the usual expected plot twist but the movie was just so damn entertaining and original no one would ask for his or her money back. Everyone who sees Sexy Beast should realize that they just saw something most people never will and consider themselves lucky. It's the cinematic equivalent to the iBook, excellent from top to bottom, completely originally done while still based on tried and true principles, and worth more than the price of admission. Still, like the iBook, this movie will be widely overlooked.

So far we have one guaranteed blockbuster and one minor player. Back to the blockbuster mode. The other sure lock moneymaker of the summer has got to be Tim Burton's retelling of Planet of the Apes. I haven't seen this either, but it doesn't matter because I am such a sucker for self fulfilling prophecy when it comes to movies that once I make up mind the movie will appear to be exactly as good or as bad as I decide. On the surface this movie has it all: talking monkeys, possible moral lesson, special effects galore and cool simian makeup. If cool simian makeup isn't a lock for success then I don't know what is (well maybe gratuitous nudity). So when you are thinking Planet of the Apes you are thinking that this movie has all the ingredients for the perfect summer movie. It looks cool, has a cool concept, and has a cool director. Unfortunately from the snippets I've seen it looks too good to be true. We have monkeys acting just like humans on one hand and suddenly jumping around like feral animals when they get excited. There are some logical issues with this. These apes are smart enough to smelt iron and hammer complex tools but are still feral enough to jump impossible distances and apparently lose the ability to think rationally for several moments. Many of you might not find this behavior at all incongruous and might ask me to observe myself on Saturdays during the football season. To those folks I say: I find your arguments logical, please get your own column and voice your opinions there. If Planet of the Apes were a computer it would be a TiPowerbook. Great to look at, plenty powerful but still flawed. The movie asks you to think that apes can jump around like some sort of super steroid enhanced spider monkey just because it looks so good. Meanwhile the TiBook asks you to believe your legs aren't blistering from the heat when you had it on your lap for a bit just because it looks so cool.

The final movie/computer I want to mention is Apocalypse Now Redux. This is not a remake of the classic Apocalypse Now nor is it a mere re release. This is a new edition. It has a few things added, extended scenes, some previously unheard dialogue and a generally more robust character. I have heard that while it is very good it is not the groundbreaking movie the original "Apocalypse Now" was. The remastered version adds things that Coppola didn't feel the public was ready for upon the original release. It is in this spirit that I pronounce the latest iMac revision the equivalent of Apocalypse Now Redux. There's nothing all that new, the first incarnation is still superior, but both have been fleshed out a bit.

Well, loyal reader (you know who you are), there you have it. An entire column in which I did not bash peecees and I didn't say every single Mac was perfect. The easy thing to think is that I have become a modicum of restraint, the truth is there is no movie bad enough to convey my general impressions of windows (Pauly Shore where are you?). I will say this much: If the average peecee were a TV show it would either be "Walker, Texas Ranger" or "Fear Factor". If Macs were a TV show they'd be "Twin Peaks" (for the older readers) or "Jiminy Glick" for the younger folks.