Blog Post 1 – Film Festival Thoughts

Hello All!

Since I wasn’t able to attend the film festival with everyone, I decided to do a solo one. I know we are supposed to do a more complete film review soon and I know this isn’t supposed to be very long so I will just do a few that really struck me.

The Cyborg 

I think I might just be nitpicking but I honestly was very distracted by the artistic choices. I want to say that I have never been sexually assaulted but her reaction to receiving human emotions is how I would picture someone to react to being raped. And in a way, I think that is how she felt. Violated.

Retrofit

A very literal take on pulling the plug to someone’s life support. When his father talked about how this form wasn’t really him, just a shadow of his former self. Even if we do manage to create AI that can think and feel it will still be just that, a pale impression of life.

 

A New Hope

The images show a clash of religion and technology. The last scene seem to depict a robot worshiping what might be a brand. We have seen technology work miracles, do the impossible, we sometimes view it as something higher and better than ourselves. Isn’t that the same context in which we would recognize a God? Does that make technology our new God, our new religion?

The Uninvited Guest

“The things you own end up owning you.” – Fight Club, 1999

This was the video that prompted me to add the SNL Alexa video to twitter. Kids wanting to take care of their father through the convenience of technology but not actually being present themselves. And when we aren’t present for people, we can be easily fooled. We wouldn’t leave our children to be cared for solely by technology with nothing but updates on our phones to keep us informed, we shouldn’t do this with our elders either.

I saw this and immediately went to hug my parents.

The Last Job on Earth

I know that we have discovered that machines and robots are going to take all our jobs. But the question remains, will we trust them too? Will we blindly believe that they can do what we do?

I think about my own position teaching preschool. Robots are being made to be nurturing, to be loving and supportive. But I can’t imagine any parent just leaving their child alone with a robot and trusting that they are safe.

Kill Your Co-Workers

It reminded me of the video games that I used to play when I was a child. And like video games that started out so simple and innocent, it escalated to violence at an almost comical level. I appreciated that the music remained consistent, almost to say “don’t take this personally or seriously, it’s not real.”

To me, the video was a commentary on how quickly things can change, how quickly our artifacts can be used against us.

Stop Dave, I’m Afraid

A machine pleading for its life. But machines don’t live, they don’t have lives. I think the only reason that Hal was begging for its life is that it was part of a fail-safe measure to prevent humans from shutting it down. But as I mentioned on Twitter, I’m confused as to why I feel bad about this judgment. Why do I feel guilty?

Tears in Rain

Bladerunner had to be in here somewhere. (:

I always felt hat he saved him from falling simply to prove how powerful he was, how much stronger.

Sorry for the long post!

2 thoughts on “Blog Post 1 – Film Festival Thoughts”

  1. Great to see your lifestream under way Monica! I can see your Twitter feed working, which is good. It will be useful to explore some of the other features of WordPress, such as categories and tags, which will allow you to manage your lifestream as it grows, and navigate it a little more easily – let me know if you need any pointers!

    Excellent to see your interpretations of the films here. Remember that you also need to write an end-of-week summary post (about 250 words), which sums up how you have approached your lifestream each week. This is the main post I will try to comment on each week. See the course guide for all the details on this.

    ‘When his father talked about how this form wasn’t really him’

    Would ‘he’ have been happier in a ‘better’ robot body?

    ‘The last scene seem to depict a robot worshiping what might be a brand. ‘

    Yes, I think this was the logo from the conference that the film was made for, ‘Pause’. However, that is a great interpretation, and gets us thinking about how technologies always seem to be tied to some kind of corporate activity. Private sector enterprise seems to be gaining a foothold in public education through various technologies.

    ‘We have seen technology work miracles, do the impossible, we sometimes view it as something higher and better than ourselves. Isn’t that the same context in which we would recognize a God?’

    Good questions. So, in education, should we ‘have faith’ that technologies work and do so in our best interests? Or should we develop critical, questioning perspectives?

    ‘And when we aren’t present for people, we can be easily fooled.’

    Does this say something about learning analytics and similar technologies? Will students work out how to ‘game the system’? Will teachers be present enough to notice?

    Great interpretations here Monica!

    1. Just to say thank you for your film festival thoughts, Monica! ‘Kill Your Co-Workers’ particularly struck me too – the slightly comical undertones seemed to mock the utopian/dystopian narratives we’ve seen in a lot of the films.

      If it’s of interest, I found this interview with the video’s creator – his answer to the question ‘Is the singularity near, and should we be worried?’ is quite amusing!
      https://www.theatlantic.com/culture/archive/2011/08/kill-your-coworkers–flying-lotus/469914/

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