Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Library Videos for June 2013--Invaders from Outer Space

 Attack the Block, starring John Boyega, Jodie Whittaker, Alex Esmail and Leeon Jones. Written & directed by Joe Cornish. 2011. Call Number:
 PN 1995.9.A48A88 2011. 
          A British import by the producers of Shaun of the Dead follows serious delinquents who find themselves the first line of defense for their housing project against big-toothed aliens.  It’s a genre-busting, low tech flick that won’t make the Hall of Fame, has no blue screen, or CGI, but still gets high marks for its wit and ingenuity.

Battle: Los Angeles, starring Aaron Eckhart, Michelle Rodriguez, Bridget Moynihan and Ne-Yo. Directed by D.J. Caruso.  Call Number: PN1995.9.A48B38 2011.
         Aaron Eckhart is the staff sergeant on the edge or retirement when aliens invade Los Angeles and other coastal towns around the world.  In the panic to evacuate, the Staff Sergeant’s squad is sent to pull civilians out of a surrounded police station only hours before the Air Force bombs the entire neighborhood.  Nice camerawork, interesting and unique aliens and smart soldiers make this a sleeper in the realm of sci-fi war movies.
 The Day the Earth Stood Still
, starring Michael Rennie and Patricia Neal. Directed by Robert Wise. Call Number: PN1995.9.A48D39 2002.
          One of the classic apocalyptic “visitors from outer space” movies of the 50’s, feeding on the repercussions of the nuclear arms race. A mysterious visitor to Earth lands in America with a message he won’t share with the President—he wants to talk to all the world’s leaders at once. This makes everyone in the Cold War era nervous and when shots are fired, the Army suddenly sees how outclassed it is with the appearance of the visitor’s guardian a giant robot named Gort.

District 9, starring Sharlto Copley and Jason Cope. Directed by Neill Blomkamp.  Call Number: PN1995.9.A48D57 2009.
          A splendid South African film, about a stranded spaceship above Johhannesburg, unable to leave the planet.  Thousands of lobster-like aliens are taken off the ship and exiled to a fenced relocation camp, guarded by a private security company that’s becoming rich in the process.  When one of the company’s managers is accidentally infected by a virus that slowly begins to turn him into an alien, he finds himself to be the only human who can unlock the fierce some alien weapons technology. It’s an ability that leaves him isolated in his own land and may cost his life.

Browsing Area Books for June 3013--New Sci-Fi

Dragon’s Time by Anne & Todd McCafferey.  Call Number: PS3563.A255D755 2011.
Another chapter in the iconic Dragonriders series.  In this book the planet Pern is in desperate straits.  The deadly Thread is falling, a life-form that feeds on anything organic and falls through space from an erratic planetoid above.  Able to breathe fire, Dragons can burn Thread before it touches ground, but a plague has killed many of the dragons and their riders are desperately attempting anything they can think of to save their planet.  One possibility is to use the dragons’ abilities to teleport back in time, but mixing the past and future can lead to…consequences.

Fourth Wall by Walter Jon Williams. Call Number: PS3573.I456213F68 2012.
Mixing the near future with bits of surreal humor and suspense, Williams tells the story of Sean Makin, a washed-up child actor desperate for work, who gets a call from the famous Dagmar Shaw.  Dagmar’s made millions in alternative reality video games and now she wants to make a movie, with Sean as the star.  The only hitch is people seem to die around her.  And the movie may be a little something more than Sean knows.

  Blue Remembered Earth by Alastair Reyonlds. Call Number:PR6068.E95B58 2012.
            One hundred and fifty years from now, the Akinya business empire is worried.  The matriarch, Grandmother Eunice Akinya, has died while exploring the solar system and she’s left something awkward behind on the moon.  Her grandson doesn’t want to leave his biological research of elephants, but the family needs him to keep a lid on whatever Eunice left, so he’s sent to contain the damage.  Unfortunately the effects are a lot more extensive than the family guessed and the results could tear civilization apart.

Caliban’s War by James S.A. Corey.  Call Number: PS3603.O73428C35 2012.
            Second book in the Expanse Trilogy, sees war break out between Mars and Earth, as a Martian outpost on Ganymede is slaughtered by one invincible super soldier.  James Holden, the idealistic Captain of the space ship Rocinante, finds his crew out of a job until a scientist from Ganymede asks them to return to the war-torn moon and help him find his child.  Holden has no way of knowing that the bioengineered soldier responsible for starting the war was only the first glimpse of an alien invasion beyond any expectations, even those of the evil corporations seeking to control it.  A powerhouse novel.