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About Ran

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  • Birthday 05/06/1978

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  1. The Americans solved this problem by actually having Russians playing Russians, for the most part.
  2. Yeah, Mann was pushing it with the the dynamic range and low light capabilities of digital cameras at the time. Was always impressed by his willingness to dive in. Just finished watching the first episode of The Nevers, from HBO. The reviews remarking just how many characters this thing has is true enough -- it was rather dizzying, the number of introductions -- but Linda and I quite enjoyed it. Great production values, of course, and some very winning performances to start things off. ETA: Also, great score in this episode from Mark Isham, whose name hasn't appeared on IMDB yet but was in the credits.
  3. Near as I can tell it's all due to Harry and Meghan, no? A problem which I think will be less problematic in the long run now that they have moved off to California. What exactly is your position? Are you hoping for an end to the monarchy, or are you okay with it existing but believe it won't survive Charles as king? The big thing, again, are the massive undecideds. This will change and so long as he doesn't sprout horns or some such, they should break in his favor.
  4. All it takes is his being just fine for that opinion to start changing, though. I suspect a lot is just inertia. (Also, 33% is not a majority. The undecideds are really sky high here.)
  5. Per YouGov polling, Charles is at 46% popular, 28% undecided, 27% unpopular. It seems to me that on succession, the undecideds will probably break towards him out of sympathy and whatnot, putting him over 50% popular. If he keeps himself out of trouble, continues measures like reducing who gets funding in the royal family, I really don't see his being king as an existential crisis for the monarchy.
  6. Ah, yeah, that's right. He later tried to recreate it and ended up inventing adamantium instead. What a loser.
  7. I think all we're told Howard Stark got the metal from "deepest Africa", but it's never been explicit that it came from Wakanda -- in the comics, Wakanda has by far the biggest amount of it, but the meteorite that deposited it broke up and smaller pieces ended up elsewhere, like the Savage Land. So it's possible his source isn't Wakanda, but some small find elsewhere. Or it was vibranium from Wakanda that travelled out of there for some reason. The second shield was definitely made in Wakanda. In the comics, I don't believe the source of the vibranium Dr. Mclain used to make the shield was either explained, but it was clear that they only had a little bit. The first discovery by Europeans/Americans of vibranium was in Antractica, so perhaps that's the source in the Marvel comics universe.
  8. No, Paramount is part of ViacomCBS, a competitor to Disney. I don't think Disney would be allowed to purchase them by regulators in the U.S.
  9. I've a distinct recollection of having seen the banner and haircut before. It may be from one of our NI visits, as we looked at a scrapbook from the family that runs The Cuan in Strangford, where a lot of the actors stayed. They had been allowed on set on several days during the pilot and had a bunch of photos showing the entry scene.
  10. Yeah. Fun film. I can say I enjoyed 300 as well, but mostly the fact that he was able to convey the aesthetic of Miller's and Varley's artwork in the comics and translate it to the screen so well. Snyder and Miller really work well together. Surprised he hasn't joined up with Robert Rodriguez to do another Sin City, or maybe go ahead and tackle Martha Washington Goes to War or something. There are parts of Watchmen which are terrific -- the opening, the Watchmaker sequence -- and some of the casting is fantastic, but ... he just doesn't understand the point of them. It's all surface. For sure. I was looking at IMDB and saw he had a short film I'd never seen before. Check this out:
  11. I'm sure it has been shown before at academies and war colleges and so on, but the 2004 screening was noted because of the particularly relevant context at the time.
  12. Some civility and decorum, folks.
  13. RIP, Prince Philip. A relic of a bygone era, who had his good and bad parts, as all people do. I recently saw an interview from the 80s which moved the man past the caricature he was often depicted as in media:
  14. Yeah, Drew McWeeny made this point and had a bunch of angry Snyder fanatics jump all over him. But Terrio's position there is just absurd. You can read between the lines when he talks of JL and you can see that he knows a lot of the faults with it are because it's what Snyder wanted, and he went along to go along. He talks of the Goyer draft as being something done just out in the vacuum, but of course it was being written with Snyder to direct and with Snyder's input, so all that extra grimdark stuff he hated was stuff Snyder liked until Terrio convinced him otherwise. Snyder should never have been picked by DC to be the guy. Such a corporate snafu on WB's part. Re: Superman, I kind of love how we went from Superman-the-fascist-authoritarian to Superman-the-isolationist-narcissist because he doesn't impose his will on everything. The reason superheroes don't change the world radically is because the world needs to be recognizable for the stories to have relevance. As soon as Reed Richards solves global poverty and eradicates all disease, or Superman brainwashes away all evil, there's no more story to be had in what is supposed to be a mirror of our own world. Which is why it's an "Imaginary Story" or "Elseworlds" thing to do, finite and self-contained. To sustain a comics universe, the heroes have to sustain the status quo in which humanity struggles forward while the long arc of history bends towards justice, which means their impacts are either negligible (Superman pulls cat out of tree!) to so enormous (Superman saves the multiverse!) that they are beyond the scope of human understanding and they go on with their daily struggles as if nothing happened. In a much nicer and much more coherent vein, @Jeordhi, Kurt Busiek's Samaritan in Astro City #1 is a great take on a Superman character being driven to spend almost the entirety of his waking hours saving people constantly. His secret identity as a fact checker exists solely so he can have access to their computer networks to further his heroism and he laments that he has no kind of love life because he can't justify to himself taking the time to build a relationship with someone knowing that people will die whom he might otherwise have saved. (A later issue finally has him going out on a date, with IIRC a bunch of heroes promising they were all going to be on duty to take care of things for a few hours so he wouldn't feel badly about it.) Astro City is aces.
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