Halloween film fest ideas

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Stars treking to Starbase Indy

It is less than a month before the annual Thanksgiving weekend Starbase Indy and this year’s lineup of guests is quite impressive.

The guests scheduled to appear include actors Dominic Keating dominic-keatingof Star Trek Enterprise, Garrett Wang of Star Trek Voyager, Chase Masterson of Star Trek Deep Space, Klingon language inventor Marc Okrand, author Larry Nemecek, intergalactic host Moxie Anne Magnus and the bands Five Year Mission and the Yavin 4.

The con is Nov. 25-27 at Wyndham Indianapolis West, 2544 Executive Drive, Indianapolis.

For more information, go to www.starbaseindy.com

Westworld offers graphic android adventure

The new Westworld series on HBO is an artfully done, but graphic look at a resort where the fun is about robotic shoot ‘em ups and intimate pleasures and then what happens when things start to go wrong.

This 10-part first season follows Michael Crichton’s 1973 “Westworld” and 1976 “Futureworld” movies and the short-lived 1980 “Beyond Futureworld” series.

This new incarnation is just for adults, much more graphically violent and erotic than the previous movies and TV show.

The 10-part, first season series has two big name starts in Ed Harris, who is the mysterious “Man in Black,” and Anthony Hopkins as Dr. Robert Ford, who created the fantasy resort decades ago.westworld-photo-2

The other lead roles, however, are Evan Rachel Wood as android Dolores Abernathy, Thandie Newton as an android Old West “dance hall girl,” Jeffrey Wright as a programmer, and Sidse Babett Knudsen as an executive who has a secret relationship with the programmer.

As usual, HBO’s producers and directors have done a masterful job in putting this series together. There is what we have come to expect in westerns, too, with a rowdy saloon, a dusty main drag, wanted posters and gorgeous scenery outside the town.

The show quickly introduces us to wealthy fun seekers who are either seeking the “thrill” of killing androids and intimate pleasures without facing any consequences, just a big bill. The androids include a farmer, the pure farmer’s daughter, sheriffs, gun slingers, gamblers, and bartenders. The human counterparts are the resort’s executives, programmers and android builder/repair people, and the tourists who have a variety of aspirations while on vacation including being a hero, a murderous villain, having intimate encounters and just enjoying the beautiful wild west vistas.

The twist is, however, that not everything is the way it is supposed to be. Westworld’s co-founder died years earlier, according to Ford. And the androids are behaving oddly in some cases, not the way they were programmed.westworld-photo-3

Of course, the essential truth is no imperfect creature, i.e. any human, can create a perfect being.

The series is a brilliantly done science fiction tale, but if you are turned off by lots of flood and erotic scenes this show isn’t for you. It will be interesting, however, to say what the next six episodes bring.

The fifth episode on HBO will premiere at 9 p.m. Sunday with lots of opportunities to watch it over the next few months on the various HBO channels and elsewhere.westworld-photo-1

 

Poetry for the Doctor

If you think there’s a shortage of poetry about Doctor Who, author James Wylder may have created just what you want.

If you think there’s a shortage of poetry about Doctor Who, author James Wylder may have created just what you want.

Wylder is the author of “An Eloquence of Space and Time.” The book provides a poem for each episode of Doctor Who from 1963 through 2013, the 50th anniversary of the series, about the man who travels in time and space with companions in a blue box.

Wylder recently had a poetry reading and autograph session at the Who North America store in Camby, just north of the Morgan County line.

A Hanover College graduate who teaches high school English part-time in Elkhart when he isn’t writing, the 26-year-old author decided he wanted to do something special for the 50th anniversary of the BBC series, which first aired the weekend after President Kennedy was assassinated.

The poems cover the episodes of all the Doctors, from William Hartnell in 1963 to Matt Smith in 2013. Peter Capaldi became the Doctor after Smith. Although some of the episodes of the early Doctor have been lost after the BBC erased them, Wylder even has poems for the missing episodes.

“All are available on audio,” Wylder said.

It took a full-year for Wylder to complete the book. It also includes poems related to the Sarah Jane Chronicles, K-9 and Torchwood spinoffs, a short story by Wylder and essays by several authors.

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Wylder began watching Doctor Who episodes when he was 3-years-old. Paul McGann, who was only featured in a single movie, became a particular favorite. He has met McGann, Matt Smith, Colin Baker and several of the Doctor’s companions.

Wylder hasn’t traveled to Great Britain to promote his book, but has traveled to Canada.

“Mostly, people are joyful that the book exists,” the author said. “When I go to more metropolitan areas, they are less surprised.”

What has drawn the most joy has been the poem about the “Vincent (van Gogh) and the Doctor.’ In that episode, the Doctor convinces the artist of the value of his work, even though he wouldn’t profit it from it in his lifetime.

“It (the episode) means a lot to me and other people,” Wylder said. “I know it kept a lot of people from killing themselves.”

In addition to the Doctor Who poetry book, Wylder has written other poetry books, a play, a novella and a science fiction novel.

Wylder’s appearance at the store was one of several activities the Who North America shop, 8901 S. Ind. 67, has scheduled for this month. A “Doctober Fest” fall festival is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Oct. 29. It will include a Doctor Who look-a-like contest, a jack-o-lantern contest, face painting, carnival games and other activities.