Stars Wars VII – The Force Awakens – Watch The Trailer

On the 24th of November 2014, JJ Abrams posted a photo of a sheet of paper with the announcement of the trailer, on the Bad Robot Twitter page. There was, however, confusion as to how the teasers for the latest instalment of Star Wars, was be released. Lucasfilms Ltd. announced the release of the apparently 88 second long trailer for the 28th of November 2014 on iTunes. This move was an interesting development given the earlier announcement of a 30 theatre release of the trailer in the US. What caused this added release format is still unknown, but some suggest, it was in response to fans lamenting over the restricted showing. The teaser was shown over December 2014, worldwide. On the same day Abrams tweeted, a one minute, fifty second video was uploaded to youtube which thought to be the actual trailer to the new film. Turns out it was fan-made, but I got a chance to watch the video below and I was like a little child. It was really well done. Good job you fooled me.

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My experience with Star Wars began in 2014. I heard news that JJ was filming in the south west of Ireland. I was interested enough at that moment to find out more about Star Wars. Yes, at 25 I watched the entire Star Wars films chronologically from the prequels to the sequels (or original trilogy) in the Summer of 2014. I often wondered why I’d not watched them earlier. The answer to that question is: I had a rather interesting childhood. After watching the films, I wanted to find out more about how the story was developed.

Most of the themes in the Star Wars franchise can be found the “Hero Of A Thousand Faces” (1949) by Joseph Campbell, a mythology scholar. He passed away in 1987, some years previous to being invited by George Lucas to the Skywalker Ranch to discuss his work, including myriad aspects of mythology and legends in a diversity of cultures throughout the world. I bought and read the book, which laid out how very similar myths are in form, yet all originate from distant parts of the world. It demonstrates the power of story to teach morality. It is an amazing book and I thoroughly recommend the book to anyone.

TheHeroWithAThousandFaces

Being Irish, I was more than excited to realise that Ireland or more specifically, the Skellig Micheal, 11 kilometres off the west coast of Co. Kerry. It is an uninhabited island that has UNESCO status and is maintained by the Office Of Public Works (OPW), the group in charge of all archaeological tourist sites in the republic of Ireland. The site is famous for the monastic settlement that was established there, 1400 years ago by Saint Fionán (stress the last ‘a’) and was inhabited until about 700 years ago. The island remained the property of the Order of Saint Augustine, until A.D. 1578. These monks subsisted on what they could grow in the thin soil of the rocky slopes. They would have spent a great deal of their lives in contemplation. Honing their skills in the Force, if you will. Only in this case the Force is Christ.

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Once on the island, you can climb the steps to the 200 metre high monastic settlement, comprising eight stone buildings, two oratories and six beehive cells. The way the buildings were built, harks back to the prehistory of Neolithic Ireland, specifically the incremental slab-on-slab form of roofing for passage tombs. Once there you can, on a good day, have your breath taken away with the panoramic view. And it is this view that will make its inclusion in the new Star Wars movie ‘other-worldly’. In fact, as you probably seen, it is included in the teaser above and it just looks spectacular.

The Errors of Jurassic World (2015)

As A.D. 2014 draws to a close, the busy little apes at Legendary Pictures are getting down and dirty with post processing of their latest adventure on Isla Nublar – a representation of the legacy of humanities greed. Steven Spielberg has consistently produced and directed the best films Hollywood has ever known for the passed three decades. Though when he plays with Science……well…….he does quite alright actually. Though there are some things that annoy me. Spielberg is now the executive producer of Jurassic World (2015) and the film is directed by Colin Trevorrow. On the 25th of November 2014, the above trailer was published on Youtube. Let us have a look at the dinosaurs that feature in it.

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Steven Spielberg……………….like you didn’t know.

We do not get a glimpse of the dinosaurs until 45 seconds in. A herd of Gallimius run alongside a safari truck. Then six, two person canoes paddling along a river, with three sauropods and two stegosaurids quenching their thirst along its bank. Some more sauropods and then a hold-your-breath moment arrives with the leaping of a Mosasaurid out of the water to snatch a dangling Great White Shark to a captivated audience. And you cannot have a Jurassic World without egg laboratory scenes. Things get dark when a bipedal dinosaur chases the main character. We get no view of the creature that will drive the chaos in the park, but we do get 4 dromaeosaurids acting like trained loyal dogs as the main character motorcycles through the park at night.

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Mosasaurus hoffmannii – Natural History Museum of Maastricht, The Netherlands.

I will be looking forward to watching this movie next year. However, it appears to me that the main antagonist of the film will be a Tyrannosaurus rex only there will be something different about this rebooted dinosaur. The popularity of the Tyrannosaurus rex was what inspired this article and so I present to you the 3 things that Colin Trevorrow and crew will get all wrong in the latest edition of the ‘Park from Hell’.

1. Tyrannical Kings Get All The Publicity

Much debate continues regarding the Tyrannosaurids. The famous species of this genus was no more than 12 metres long by 4 metres high, 7 tons and its skin was partially covered in primitive feathers. It would have acted as a scavenger most of the time, but when the opportunity presented itself, it would hunt too. It was capable of running 11 miles per hour. Is that all? Pathetic!

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In light of the previous episodes of the Jurassic franchise, it is likely that the above science will be ignored in the new film. The premise of the new film hinges on a genetic reboot of the Tyrannosaurus. Coupled with the pigmentation metamorphosis character of a cuttlefish, this new terror would also have neurological capabilities beyond what we think it evolved over the mere two million years it existed, from 67 to 66 million years ago. It is frustrating that filmakers, continue to fixate on creatures that sells, neglecting the diversity of life that existed on our dear planet for around 150 million years. Ultimately, the story should not suffer as a result of the science, but you should make an effort with every new film to introduce a truly kickass creature. Leave the Tyrant King Lizard alone, it has suffered enough.

2. Velociraptorids

Velociraptorids were probably creatures you could not mess with. Chickens on steroids, they measured about 2 metres in length, 50 centimetres high and weighed about 15 kilograms. Its jaw contained around 27 serrated and spaced teeth and its body was covered in primitive feathers. This ancient chicken’s most famous feature was of course the 6 and a half centimetre second digit on its foot. This was probably used as a means of griping onto prey it leaped upon and some evidence suggests it could have been used to aid in the cutting open of prey.

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Utahraptor ostrommaysorum Reconstruction – Now this is what I call a cool chicken!

In the closing sequence of the trailer, we see our hero motorcycle into Jurassic Park with four bipedal creatures that bare a striking resemblance to the Velociraptors of the previous episodes of the Jurassic franchise. If they are indeed labelled Velociraptor, it will be very unfortunate. I’m hoping that Trevorrow will introduce us all to another species of dromaeosaurid called Utahraptor ostrommaysorum that lived 126 million years ago. It was about 7 metres long, about 2 metres high, weighed about half a ton and had a 22 centimetre second digit on its foot. Now seeing that in action would be quite cool. It’s like haveing an ultra chicken as your sidekick.

The film is not even released and already, there are issues regarding prehistoric accuracy. DON’T LET US DOWN TREVORROW!

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