WEIRDLAND: Snowden, Ascendant, Equals, Dystopian Love

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Snowden, Ascendant, Equals, Dystopian Love

In talking to the press about Snowden, Shailene Woodley addressed the latest headlines about Lionsgate’s Divergent Series: Ascendant potentially skipping a theatrical release and being made into a TV movie, particularly after the last film Divergent Series: Allegiant stumbled at the box office, making $66M stateside. “Honestly, I was on a plane when all that happened and I landed, and I’m like Whoa, what’s going on?! I need to talk and find out what the details are,” said Woodley about Lionsgate’s plans for the conclusion of the feature adaptation of the Veronica Roth series. Source:

SNOWDEN (2016), starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Shailene Woodley, is written and directed by Academy Award®-Winning Director Oliver Stone. The script is based on the books The Snowden Files: The Inside Story of the World's Most Wanted Man by Luke Harding and Time of the Octopus by Anatoly Kucherena. Release Date: In Theaters September 16.

This documentary covers NSA analyst-turned whistleblower Edward Snowden and his escape from American authorities to Hong Kong and later to Russia, after leaking classified information about global surveillance programs used by the American government to spy on people around the world and other nations activities. The movie also presents the journalists who had an exclusive access to Snowden and the members of WikiLeaks, who helped him in moments of his escape.

"Malicious" doesn't quite cover it, when it comes to Peter Hayes. I can't say he's pure evil. A truly evil person wouldn't have any debt to repay, or any guilt to feel. On top of that, he asked Four for the memory serum. Begged him for it. "I want the serum because I'm sick of being this way, I'm sick of doing bad things and liking it and then wondering what's wrong with me. I want it to be over. I want to start again." That's what Peter said, word for word. An evil person wouldn't want to start over. Normally, Peter Hayes' voice would be enough to make my hair stand on end. But he's reached a point in his "detox" (as he calls it) where he's completely harmless now. The only bite he has left are a few stinging insults here and there. He sarcastically clutches his chest. "You're hurting my newly awakened, beating heart."I don't hate him. And I'm definitely not scared of him, not anymore. 

As much as I think I have him figured out, he's become endlessly complicated to me, now that he's adopted this "nice-guy" philosophy. And then we were kissing. I live just down the hall from Christina, so we went to his room. We hadn't thought any of this out, obviously, but the second we closed that door behind us, it kind of just started. The furious, guilty, impassioned kissing. He pushed me up against the wall, and I wrapped my legs around his waist. I ran my hands through his hair. No amount of therapy in the world would change Peter's innately aggressive traits. He didn't gracefully tug at my shirt fabric, like Four would; it came off in one sloppy, uncoordinated swoop, because he was too busy simultaneously crushing his lips against mine. 

If Peter Hayes wasn't already in love with me, then he was damn well on his way there. We paused, and I took a minute to look at his eyes, his face, his body. Of course I'd noticed that he was attractive before. His personality had always been enough reason for me to look away. But on this night and this room, Peter Hayes didn't have that personality; in fact, he didn't have any personality. He was a distraction. -Divergent Fan Fiction Source:

"I can't take this anymore," Miles says when we are half way to the premiere: "The awkwardness. I don't care if you saw me naked. I just want to keep talking to you. You're the most important thing in my entire life." I smile. "You're the most important thing in my life too Miles," I say. He smiles and we hug. "You know since you saw me naked I think I should see you naked," Miles says when we pull away from the hug. "I... I love you," he says his eyes tearing up. I smile at him. I want to tell him that I love him too.

"I used to like Shai," Miles says. I have known this for a while. They used to flirt a lot in interviews before I even met them. For some reason it hurts to hear this from Miles himself. I nod and blink away the tears. I turn around to leave but I'm close enough to the bed that Miles grabs my wrist. I turn around and look into his eyes and melt just like always. "Why, why should I stay?" I ask. He looks deep into my eyes. "Because Shai means nothing to me now. You are all I want. I used to think I was in love with her, but now I realise that I love you, and only you." We make out until we are out of breath. Miles kisses my forehead and my jaw. A month ago I was too scared to have sex with him. Now I suddenly want him, I want all of him. I begin to pull his shirt up. I take it off, exposing his beautiful abs. He looks up at me. "Are you sure?" He asks. His voice is husky and it sends shivers down my spine. I just nod and he continues kissing me. Source:

Love is a sickness in dystopian ‘Equals’: Nicholas Hoult plays Silas, a member of the Collective, an Orwellian society in which they all wear white and do their part to move humanity forward. Emotion has been eradicated in the future, except for those suffering from a disease known as SOS, or Switched On Syndrome. Sufferers of SOS often commit suicide, and after Silas witnesses one of those, something snaps in him, and he begins to exhibit signs himself. He also notices that Nia (Kristen Stewart), a co-worker, appears to be experiencing emotion, though she remains undiagnosed.

This is sci-fi on a budget, which means that Doremus has to rely on his actors, rather than high-end special effects. It has its share of tension, but “Equals” shouldn’t be considered a thriller. Rather, it’s a story of emotion in a world that considers emotion to be a defect. Our world, of course, is anything but emotionless. Things run high and shrill, every minute of every hour of every day. And yet, so often, it all is as internally empty as the citizens of Doremus’ Collective. It’s a strange dichotomy, but one that feels surprisingly timely. Source:

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