Star Wars & Sc-Fi Talk


FairAndUnbiased

Junior Member
Registered Member
"Crazy Rich Asians" was pretty big in the global cinemas, except in China where it received lukewarm reception. "Shang-Chi" was even worse in that the original story is antithesis to mainland Chinese knowledge of history, including me who grew up in mainland. All MSM comments on Chang-Chi vis-a-vis China that I have read so far is just another instance of western wishful thinking toward China or Chinese. They just don't get it. They believe in what they think they know.
Makes movie with reference to Fu Manchu and Shang Chi abandoning his own dad to get a white guy as father (what we call 认贼作父)

Surprise, it tanks in China!

Lmao they seriously thought a literal 认贼作父 movie would be popular in China??
 

TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
So this happened.

It’s the opener tease for JP Jurassic World Dominion. So we have what is supposed to be the world of the Dinosaurs as they were on their own time. It’s also supposed to set up the new big teeth of the new film. Basically Spino 2.0… but notice it?


No? They still look like Lizards! Especially Giganotosaurus When Jurassic Park was made they didn’t have the last 2 decades of discovery. When Jurassic World was made they had to solve that and did so with a line by Dr. Wu explaining that the JP and JW Dino’s were chimera. Hybrids of creatures to get viable specimens. Even back in JP it was hinted at with frog DNA. But if you have a flash like this then we should be seeing pure dinosaurs. Meaning they should have brought in the experts and asked. Had they of course the Giganoto wouldn’t have gotten the green light to take on Rexy.
 

solarz

Brigadier
So this happened.

It’s the opener tease for JP Jurassic World Dominion. So we have what is supposed to be the world of the Dinosaurs as they were on their own time. It’s also supposed to set up the new big teeth of the new film. Basically Spino 2.0… but notice it?


No? They still look like Lizards! Especially Giganotosaurus When Jurassic Park was made they didn’t have the last 2 decades of discovery. When Jurassic World was made they had to solve that and did so with a line by Dr. Wu explaining that the JP and JW Dino’s were chimera. Hybrids of creatures to get viable specimens. Even back in JP it was hinted at with frog DNA. But if you have a flash like this then we should be seeing pure dinosaurs. Meaning they should have brought in the experts and asked. Had they of course the Giganoto wouldn’t have gotten the green light to take on Rexy.

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solarz

Brigadier
Please do. I would like to know why Star Trek and Star Wars flopped in China.

Both Star Wars and Star Trek are born of American anxiety during the Cold War. In Star Wars, the theme is a band of freedom fighters battling an evil tyrannical empire. In Star Trek, the utopian Federation is threatened on all sides by warmongering aliens.

These are both themes that resonate with Americans, but not so much with Chinese.

On a broader level, Science Fiction reflects the hopes and anxiety of a people toward technology. It is no coincidence that the two major producers of Science Fiction in the world is the US and Japan. These were the two most technologically advanced countries in the late 20th century.

When you are a leader, you have to tread where no one else has tread before. Both Americans and Japanese society had to grapple with the question of where technological advancement was taking them. What's interesting is that on a general level, American science fiction tend to be optimistic, whereas Japanese science fiction tend to be pessimistic. I think this dichotomy reflects the general attitude toward progress and technology in their respective societies.

Until recently, China has been a follower in terms of technological advancement. It was following in the steps of the US and Japan, therefore it knew where technological progress would lead, and had no anxiety to brood on. In the coming decades, however, I think we will see greater interest in Science Fiction from Chinese people.

That said, Chinese Scifi is not going to deal with the same themes as American Scifi. Just like Japanese Scifi deals with uniquely Japanese concerns, Chinese Scifi will deal with Chinese concerns. Liu Cixin is an interesting example. I've only read the Three Body Problem and watched Wandering Earth, but it seems to me the common theme from Liu is one of humanity struggling against inevitable entropy.

In the Wandering Earth, the Sun is going nova, and humanity has built giant thrusters to move the Earth through space. Half of the world's 7 billion population died from the catastrophe. The rest of humanity live underground eating worms. The Earth "wanders" for tens of thousands of years before finally reaching its destination.

In the Three Body Problem, humanity discovers an alien plot to conquer the Earth. Though they know about the plot, there is nothing they can do about it, and all they can do is wait for the inevitable arrival of the alien fleet.

In the sequels to Three Body Problem, humanity overcomes the alien invaders only to discover even greater threats and Earth is eventually destroyed.

I think Liu is heavily influenced by China's experiences during the Japanese invasion and the Cultural Revolution, both extremely dark times when all hope seemed lost (especially apparent in TBP). This is something the average American would likely be unable to understand, but which the vast majority of Chinese will instinctively grasp.
 

FairAndUnbiased

Junior Member
Registered Member
Both Star Wars and Star Trek are born of American anxiety during the Cold War. In Star Wars, the theme is a band of freedom fighters battling an evil tyrannical empire. In Star Trek, the utopian Federation is threatened on all sides by warmongering aliens.

These are both themes that resonate with Americans, but not so much with Chinese.

On a broader level, Science Fiction reflects the hopes and anxiety of a people toward technology. It is no coincidence that the two major producers of Science Fiction in the world is the US and Japan. These were the two most technologically advanced countries in the late 20th century.

When you are a leader, you have to tread where no one else has tread before. Both Americans and Japanese society had to grapple with the question of where technological advancement was taking them. What's interesting is that on a general level, American science fiction tend to be optimistic, whereas Japanese science fiction tend to be pessimistic. I think this dichotomy reflects the general attitude toward progress and technology in their respective societies.

Until recently, China has been a follower in terms of technological advancement. It was following in the steps of the US and Japan, therefore it knew where technological progress would lead, and had no anxiety to brood on. In the coming decades, however, I think we will see greater interest in Science Fiction from Chinese people.

That said, Chinese Scifi is not going to deal with the same themes as American Scifi. Just like Japanese Scifi deals with uniquely Japanese concerns, Chinese Scifi will deal with Chinese concerns. Liu Cixin is an interesting example. I've only read the Three Body Problem and watched Wandering Earth, but it seems to me the common theme from Liu is one of humanity struggling against inevitable entropy.

In the Wandering Earth, the Sun is going nova, and humanity has built giant thrusters to move the Earth through space. Half of the world's 7 billion population died from the catastrophe. The rest of humanity live underground eating worms. The Earth "wanders" for tens of thousands of years before finally reaching its destination.

In the Three Body Problem, humanity discovers an alien plot to conquer the Earth. Though they know about the plot, there is nothing they can do about it, and all they can do is wait for the inevitable arrival of the alien fleet.

In the sequels to Three Body Problem, humanity overcomes the alien invaders only to discover even greater threats and Earth is eventually destroyed.

I think Liu is heavily influenced by China's experiences during the Japanese invasion and the Cultural Revolution, both extremely dark times when all hope seemed lost (especially apparent in TBP). This is something the average American would likely be unable to understand, but which the vast majority of Chinese will instinctively grasp.
TBP is also about resolve. Some people might give up, or get angry, when defeated even slightly. They need a clean absolute win, and can't settle for merely winning a little or a draw. Both are seen as essentially defeats. But sometimes just surviving, even a hair better than the other side, might as well be a total victory.

When a single Trisolaran probe decimates the united Earth space forces in Dark Forest, Luo Ji doesn't get mad or lose hope. He just activates Earth's deterrence: a nuclear encoded message broadcasting the Trisolaran homeworld location to the rest of the galaxy and setting them up for a Dark Forest style purge.

In Death's End, when Trisolaran suddenly invade and start rounding humans up to Australia, the crew of Gravity defies orders and sends out the MAD signal. At the end when both Earth and Trisolaris are ruins, the Trisolaran sophon survivor and Yun Tianming aren't mad and fight to the death, they just resignedly accept that their species are near extinct.
 

solarz

Brigadier
TBP is also about resolve. Some people might give up, or get angry, when defeated even slightly. They need a clean absolute win, and can't settle for merely winning a little or a draw. Both are seen as essentially defeats. But sometimes just surviving, even a hair better than the other side, might as well be a total victory.

When a single Trisolaran probe decimates the united Earth space forces in Dark Forest, Luo Ji doesn't get mad or lose hope. He just activates Earth's deterrence: a nuclear encoded message broadcasting the Trisolaran homeworld location to the rest of the galaxy and setting them up for a Dark Forest style purge.

In Death's End, when Trisolaran suddenly invade and start rounding humans up to Australia, the crew of Gravity defies orders and sends out the MAD signal. At the end when both Earth and Trisolaris are ruins, the Trisolaran sophon survivor and Yun Tianming aren't mad and fight to the death, they just resignedly accept that their species are near extinct.

I think the Trisolarans are a metaphor for the US, and the Earthlings are China. There are a lot of parallels. The Trisolarans have the technological edge, but are worried that by the time the invasion fleet gets to Earth, the Earthlings would crush them (aka the rise of China), so they create a supercomputer particle that blocks off technological advancement for Earth, which is eerily similar to what the US is doing right now.

From what you describe, it sounds like the ending is another metaphor for nuclear war.
 

FairAndUnbiased

Junior Member
Registered Member
I think the Trisolarans are a metaphor for the US, and the Earthlings are China. There are a lot of parallels. The Trisolarans have the technological edge, but are worried that by the time the invasion fleet gets to Earth, the Earthlings would crush them (aka the rise of China), so they create a supercomputer particle that blocks off technological advancement for Earth, which is eerily similar to what the US is doing right now.

From what you describe, it sounds like the ending is another metaphor for nuclear war.
It's pretty literal: Trisolaris gets hit by a weapon that destroys their entire system via induced supernova because Earth sent out their location via the MAD signal broadcaster and they got wiped by a Dark Forest attack. Of course since Earth was the signal origin, Earth also got hit, but by a dimensional weapon so that they wouldn't be able to defend against it by watching the fate of Trisolaris.

Meanwhile contrast to western adult sci-fi (Star Trek DS9, Battlestar Galactica, Expanse) and action sci-fi (Star Wars). US adult sci-fi has good minor plot twists and dialogue but overall is a bit simplistic and optimistic. BSG and Expanse gets as nasty as Dark Forest at times, but it's all offscreen and subtle. One thing though: Expanse accepts ambiguous victory. I'd say these 3 are the best examples of well thought out western sci-fi, both with heavily religious elements (DS9 = Islam from spread to judgement day, BSG = Book of Exodus / The Odyssey, Expanse = Buddhism). The religious and spiritual element is missing from Chinese sci-fi, which is expected due to the cultural background.

US action sci-fi like Star Wars on the other hand is just... childish. The dialogue is borderline cartoon like, characters essentially 1D and plot mostly serves to sell toys rather than act as a work of art. Sadly after the 2004 BSG, it would be 10+ years of mediocre childish shows before Expanse came and reset the bar.
 

solarz

Brigadier
It's pretty literal: Trisolaris gets hit by a weapon that destroys their entire system via induced supernova because Earth sent out their location via the MAD signal broadcaster and they got wiped by a Dark Forest attack. Of course since Earth was the signal origin, Earth also got hit, but by a dimensional weapon so that they wouldn't be able to defend against it by watching the fate of Trisolaris.

Meanwhile contrast to western adult sci-fi (Star Trek DS9, Battlestar Galactica, Expanse) and action sci-fi (Star Wars). US adult sci-fi has good minor plot twists and dialogue but overall is a bit simplistic and optimistic. BSG and Expanse gets as nasty as Dark Forest at times, but it's all offscreen and subtle. One thing though: Expanse accepts ambiguous victory. I'd say these 3 are the best examples of well thought out western sci-fi, both with heavily religious elements (DS9 = Islam from spread to judgement day, BSG = Book of Exodus / The Odyssey, Expanse = Buddhism). The religious and spiritual element is missing from Chinese sci-fi, which is expected due to the cultural background.

US action sci-fi like Star Wars on the other hand is just... childish. The dialogue is borderline cartoon like, characters essentially 1D and plot mostly serves to sell toys rather than act as a work of art. Sadly after the 2004 BSG, it would be 10+ years of mediocre childish shows before Expanse came and reset the bar.

I actually decided not to read the other two books after I read their plot summary. I'm not really a fan of nihilistic stories.
 

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