bad parenting

After the Christmas feast and the weekly Playing Of The Boggle, after a slice of pie slathered with a daringly large dollop of real whipped cream, we began to stir in the general direction of the living room and talk about watching a movie, a nicely inert activity especially suited to days when our bellies are stuffed with hundreds of pounds of juicy pork product. Nobody was really sure what to watch, though; would it be Elf, or would it be It’s A Wonderful Life? Or would anybody like to discuss a third possibility? While they dithered, I slipped away, slipped The Wizard Of Oz into the DVD player, and stretched out on the sofa. Soon, the others joined me and settled in, too. Well, one of the others settled in. The third stood by, nervously trying to decide how to sneak out the front door without upsetting the decorum.

“I never really appreciated this movie,” Tim said diplomatically as he watched the sepia-toned introduction out of respect, I suppose, for my choice. He stayed all the way through Ding! Dong! The Witch Is Dead, his favorite song from the movie, but when it was over and the representatives of the Lullabye League emerged from the crowd en pointe, he fetched his jacket from the closet and took his leave, returning to the munchkin-free peace and quiet of his bachelor pad.

Odd. I honestly never realized he didn’t like The Wizard Of Oz. I thought everybody liked The Wizard Of Oz, literally everybody. I mean, do you know anybody who doesn’t? I’ll bet you don’t. And I almost feel as though I’m to blame; as if, for instance, I should have done more to expose him to the movie more regularly. That’s how I got hooked.

I grew up watching The Wizard Of Oz every year on television. We never missed it. We weren’t allowed to. It was on TV the same time every year — not sure if it was Easter or Thanksgiving, but I’m pretty sure it was a holiday. I don’t think it was Christmas. That’s when It’s A Wonderful Life was on, if memory serves, which it doesn’t, not really, because I also seem to remember that there was always a parade being shown before the movie. It could’ve been the Rose Bowl parade, or Macy’s Thanksgiving parade, I’m not sure now. They seemed to be televising a lot of parades back then.

I must have seen it at least a dozen times that way and maybe half a dozen times more as a video rental. Last year, My Darling B got me a DVD as a stocking stuffer along with several of my other Christmas favorites: The aforementioned It’s A Wonderful Life, A Charlie Brown Christmas, How The Grinch Stole Christmas, and at least one more that I’m forgetting right now. I told you my memory was for shit.

Tim was out the door before Dorothy was following the yellow brick road to the Emerald City, so he missed just about the whole movie. Well, at least now I know what I’m getting him for Christmas next year.

The Apartment

Somehow, I had never seen Billy Wilder’s movie The Apartment until yesterday afternoon. I can’t believe that’s even possible. Way back in prehistoric times, when there were just three television networks and maybe one UHF station that you might be able to tune into if the weather wasn’t too bad, they showed sitcoms and dramas from seven until ten, then there was a half-hour of news, and after ten-thirty almost anything could happen but usually it was Johnny and Dave and a few other chat shows.

At a certain magical hour, though, you could watch old movies on The Late Show or Midnight Matinee. Why would you stay up until midnight to watch old movies? Because this was before you could rent them from Netflix, or from a store, or at all. When I was just a pup, the only way you could watch old movies was to be lucky enough to live near a movie theater that showed them, and back then I lived in a cow town so remote that I had only heard rumors and stories about movie theaters like that. When I discovered that I could watch old movies on late-night television, I used to stay up whenever I could get away with it to watch shows like The Front Page (and His Girl Friday), The Great Race, and The Odd Couple.

So I was pretty sure that, a few minutes into the first scene, I’d recognize the movie, the plot would slowly rise to the surface of my memory and I’d settle into the sofa wrapped up in a familiar wave of nostalgia that was like having a friend come to visit. Only I didn’t recognize the first scene at all, or the next scene, or the next. My Darling B, who is hard-pressed to recall the details of almost every movie she’s ever sat through, sometimes as soon as fifteen minutes after the credits roll, remembered what The Apartment was about, but by the end of the first act I had to admit to myself I’d never seen this one before. It was like unwrapping a Christmas present.

Unfortunately, the movie opened with Lemmon doing an introductory voice-over. I hate voice-overs. The only movie I’ve ever watched that benefited from a voice-over was Steven Soderbergh’s The Informant! If it weren’t for that and certain cheesy B-grade murder mysteries, I would fervently campaign for a constitutional amendment banning the use of voice-overs in any movie that wasn’t a documentary, and only then if it were Morgan Freeman, Peter Coyote or James Earl Jones doing the narration.

The voice-over didn’t last more than a couple of minutes, though, thank dog. After that, Lemmon’s face did all the heavy lifting. That man can say more with his face than Shakespeare could with all the words in the English language, including the ones he made up on the fly. There was a scene where Shirley MacLaine broke his heart, only she didn’t know it, and he didn’t say boo about it, but his face went from happy to puzzled, then to shocked and amazed, and I think I saw disappointment and anguish but I’m sure I missed at least a half-dozen other emotions before he finished with heartbroken, put on his hat and coat and left the office to get drunk.

There are very few actors who can play drunk as convincingly as Jack Lemmon, by the way. I’m not sure how he does it, but when his character gets good and smashed, the way he did in this movie, it was so convincing that I felt drunk.

Shirley MacLaine looked like a kid in this movie. I thought at first it must have been her debut, but it wasn’t even close. I should’ve known better. It was obvious from her performance that this wasn’t her first time on the stage. She and Lemmon had some great chemistry going between them, and they lobbed volleys of Billy Wilder banter back and forth with perfect timing. Now I’ll have to find out if they were in any other movies together and, if they were, watch every single one of them.

Then there’s Fred MacMurray. How’d Fred MacMurray get to be a movie star? He’s a handsome devil and he’s got a smooth delivery, but he’s about as emotive as a Ken doll. That worked for him in Double Indemnity (but then, so did his voice-over), but when he’s on screen with a guy like Lemmon he might as well be a block of wood. I got the impression he was in this movie because he was supposed to be handsome enough that Shirley MacLaine might fall for him. Also, he was the bad guy, a role that’s easy to play if you don’t show a lot of emotion.

I have to add that we watched The Apartment by renting it from, streaming it over the internet and playing it on a laptop. Watching old movies has come a long way from the days of The Late Late Show.

The Road

We watched The Road last night. I’m still not sure why we did that. We’d all read the book and knew that it was going to be bleak and depressing and yet, when given a choice between that and Star Trek, we all opted for The Road. I guess we just wanted to emotionally beat ourselves up for two hours.

There’s nothing to tell, really. Like the book, it’s about a man and his son walking through an apocalyptic world in which everything is dead, there is no food and almost everyone they meet is either a cannibal or dying. There is no apparent ending in sight that anyone would consider uplifting or happy or good. It’s the kind of movie you can enjoy best if you’re drunk out of your mind or contemplating suicide and need a little push to get you there.

I’m not trying to put you off the movie. It was well-made and pretty faithful to the book, if that’s important to you. The part of the boy was really exceptionally well-played by someone I’ve never heard of, but he’s a sixteen year old Australian so it’s not really so odd that I’ve never seen him. I’m saying only that it’s not a movie you should watch to escape the cares and woes of the world. I’m saying that this movie condenses all the cares and woes that have ever occurred or will occur and injects them into your brain in just two hours. So buckle up.

Once Upon A Time In America

“I think we’ve stuck with this long enough,” My Darling B said after we had watched about forty-five minutes of Once Upon A Time In America. “Any time you want to put an end to this is okay with me.”

This is supposed to be Sergio Leone’s best movie ever. For my money, Leone’s best movie would have to be For A Few Dollars More. The scene where Lee Van Cleef and Clint Eastwood shoot the hell out of each other’s hats to prove who’s the baddest honcho was way better than anything I saw in forty-five minutes of watching Once Upon A Time In America.

In case you decide to watch this movie, don’t get too worried about the apparent lack of dialog. If you just stick with it for at least twenty minutes, the characters will start talking instead of just blowing each other’s brains out. Oops, spoilers.


My Darling B and I have watched more television in the past two weeks than we have all summer. Here’s just a sample of what’s been flashing across our retinas:


Well, this is fun. Sherlock Holmes, Dr. Watson, Mrs. Hudson and Inspector Lestrade in modern-day London. Benedict Cumberbatch plays Holmes with a hyperkinetic glee that makes Robert Downey Jr’s Holmes look as staid and old-fashioned as Basil Rathbone’s.

We started by watching the first episode of the second season, because that’s what was available at the video store, but in this case that wasn’t a bad thing. We liked it so much that B put the first season on reserve at the library and the first two disks came in this week. Turn out to be as good, if not better, than the second season.

From The Earth To The Moon

We were trolling the aisles of the only video store left in Madison for rainy-day movies when My Darling B appeared from around a corner with the boxed set of the HBO series From The Earth To The Moon and said, “Look what I found! It’s got ‘Moon’ in the title, which sounds like it’s about the space race, so I thought you might be interested…”

I might be interested. What a wonderful, perfect girl she is for me.

Run Silent, Run Deep

A doubleyou-doubleyou-two movie starring Clark Gable as the submarine captain haunted by his past, and Burt Lancaster as the second in command who’s miffed at Gable for swooping in to take command when it should’ve been mine, dammit, mine! Not enough? You need more? Okay, we’ve also god Jack Warden as Clark Gable’s trusty sidekick, and Don Rickles as the plucky comic relief. Still not enough? How about this: Ken Lynch as the Star Trek connection, playing “Frank (uncredited)” who appears in one or two scenes, usually with a cig dangling from the corner of his mouth. He didn’t smoke in Star Trek, but a lot of the miners who worked for him turned into smoking puddles of oil when The Devil In The Dark got hold of them.

Alien QandA

How much did Ash know about the alien, and when did he know it? That, boys and girls, is the topic of this morning’s drivel.

I just watched the movie Alien a couple nights ago, any maybe you haven’t, so to quickly summarize: The crew of a ship in deep space is directed to investigate the source of a distress signal. They find an alien ship run aground on a ringed planet. A long-dead crew member has a hole in his chest that looks like it exploded out, and the only living thing they find leaps up from its hiding place and grabs someone’s face. How often have you heard that story, eh? It’s got to be as old as the human race, but Alien told it oh so well.

And yet, I have some questions.

The ship sent to investigate the signal is a tugboat that pulls a huge refinery full of ore across the vast distances of space between planets. The crew seem to be there only to fly the ship. They aren’t explorers. One of them points out they aren’t even a search and rescue crew. The only reason they look into the source of the radio signal is because a clause in their contract ensures they won’t get paid if they don’t.

Most of the crew seem to know each other pretty well, but one of the people on the ship, Ash, is new to to the crew. As it turns out, Ash knows a lot about the distress signal and the aliens before anybody else does. Ash is the science officer on the ship, and he’s been given a special order which only he knows about: “Investigate life form. Gather specimen … Ensure return of organism for analysis. Crew expendable.”

The last part of the special order doesn’t really make sense. If the crew is truly expendable, then why are they on the ship? Can the ship fly itself? Doesn’t seem likely. But let’s assume it can, and let’s assume Ash collects his specimen and the whole crew is killed. Why didn’t they send Ash alone? He could have gone straight to the site of the wreck, gathered his specimen, and brought it back a lot faster than a crew that went somewhere else first, then was diverted to the site of the wreck and wasn’t aware of the objective of the mission.

Maybe the crew and its cargo were a smokescreen to get hold of the alien specimen. If so: Pretty expensive smokescreen. The space ship could only have been enormously expensive. It’s essentially no more than an engine powerful enough to drag a refinery loaded with umpty-billion tons of ore at high speed across interplanetary space. And that load of ore becomes mind-bogglingly expensive just by virtue of the fact that they’re hauling it across the galaxy. Putting all that at risk to obtain a specimen seems unusually risky.

Maybe the ship and its crew were the only possible ship the company could have sent to the planet to collect the specimen, and maybe the mucky-mucks at the company truly believed that the crew was expendable and the loss of the ship was worth obtaining a specimen. Okay, let’s go with that:

The crew lands their ship on the planet, and then three of them – Dallas, the captain; Lambert, the navigator; and Kane, who wasn’t wearing a red shirt but should have been – suit up and go on a hike in the direction of the signal’s origin. Why the hell doesn’t Ash, the science officer, go along on the hike? Why doesn’t Ripley, who seems to have more than a little knowledge about communications? Why do two of the most important people on the ship, the guy who flies it and the gal who steers it, walk to the source of a distress signal, where nothing good could possibly be happening, or have happened? Talk about expendable.

When the plucky little trio returns to the ship, Kane has a life form attached to his face. (I hate to say “I told you so,” but…) By pure luck, the team has satisfied the the first two parts of the special order: They have investigated the life form and gathered a specimen. To satisfy the third part of the special order, all Ash has to do at this point is ensure the safe return of the organism for analysis. Wow, does he ever screw that up.

First, he opens the air lock to let Dallas and Lambert carry Kane to the infirmary. If he knew anything at all about the alien, he shouldn’t have done this. He should have played along with Ripley’s decision to quarantine the away team in the air lock for 24 hours. Why wouldn’t he? It would have satisfied all the requirements of the special order. Instead, he opens the air lock and puts every one of the crew in danger, instead of limiting exposure to just three members of the crew. They were expendable, but unnecessarily endangering them doesn’t make any sense.

Even if Ash didn’t know much about the aliens to begin with, at this point he knows that the alien is parasitic. An alien life form that can successfully parasitize humans is dangerous in ways that are unimaginable but, setting that aside for the moment, bringing it aboard the ship immediately jeopardizes the third part of Ash’s special order, “ensure return of organism for analysis.” If he hadn’t exposed the entire crew to a parasitic organism, the crew may not have tried to kill it. Letting it in almost certainly guarantees that they will.

Quarantining Dallas, Lambert and Kane for 24 hours would probably have worked in Ash’s favor. They were locked up in a room where no one else could see them. Ash had 24 hours to figure out how to control access to any contact with them. His decision to open the air lock and let the away team into the ship couldn’t really be explained by an eagerness to examine the alien, either. He’s a robot. He couldn’t be eager if he tried. If his robotic reasoning interpreted the order “investigate life form” as a need for a hands-on examination of the alien, what difference would a delay of 24 hours make? Zero. Zip. Nada. He’s got at least ten months, the time it will take to get back to Earth, to study this thing.

But he lets it in. The crew is endangered. They decide to kill it with cattle prods and flame throwers. Nice work, Ash. Way to ensure the safe return of the organism. So what does he do to fix his mistake? Well, he doesn’t try to kill off the crew, which would have made sense. He does a little something here and there to throw off the efforts of the crew to kill the alien, but his efforts are really rather feeble. He could have killed off the crew in so many ways: shut off the air, or laced the air with carbon monoxide, or he could have simply snuck up on them one by one with a hammer and bludgeoned them to death, then blamed it on the alien. Wow, would that have made for an interesting movie. And it would have fit the requirements of his special order perfectly.

But no, the only person he tries to kill is Ripley, and after throwing her around the room he hits on the idea of stuffing a rolled-up girlie magazine down her throat as the only way to kill her that makes sense. Brilliant. Ash has got to be one of the dumbest androids ever conceived of for a movie.

Well, I don’t know what else to say and I’ve already spent way too much time on this. If you’ve got any ideas on this, I’d be pleased to hear them.

*Tip O’ The Hat to T-Dawg for enthusiastically hashing out a lot of these questions.


img of Laurence Fishburne in Apocalypse NowThe oldies station was playing Satisfaction while we ate our lunch today. I can’t hear that song without recalling the scene in Apocalypse Now when Clean dances across the deck of the boat while Satisfaction is playing on Armed Forces Radio.

Actually, whenever I hear Fishburne’s name I picture him in that scene. It’s really weird to me that a whole generation remembers him as Morpheus and might not have even seen him do the dance in Apocalypse Now.


I hope we’ll all take a moment today to remember the brave men who banded together at a time of crisis to repel the invasion of aliens from another planet and make this our Independence Day!

It’s really weird having a day off from work in the middle of the week.


I saw the movie Prometheus with My Darling B and Tim last night. We were so confused when we came out that we talked about it all the way home, trying to sort out the plot holes, but they were so many that we stood around in the living room of Our Humble O’Bode for about an hour afterward hashing them out some more. We never did answer our questions. I was still thinking about them when I woke up this morning.

So here there are, or at least the ones I can remember. If you figured any of these out, I’d really appreciate it if you’d pass the information along to us, because we’re still pretty bewildered here, I can tell you. The critics raved about this movie, but as one commenter to Richard Roper’s glowing review put it, “There must be two movies. One they show to the big hitter critics and the crappy one they show to the real audience.”

Beware, me lads! There be plot spoilers ahead!

The movie opens on a gorgeously-shot scene of a volcanic waste land laced with rushing cataracts and wreathed in steam. The best feature of this movie is that almost every scene in this movies is gorgeously shot. I have to say “almost every scene” because it would be just about impossible for me to describe a scene of murderous aliens slaughtering a ship load of humans as “gorgeously shot.” Maybe a movie director or a photographer could, but it doesn’t work for me.

Into this scene of a forming world steps a diapered and cloaked human-looking bald guy. He looks up at a flying saucer that parts the clouds as it soars upwards, presumably leaving him behind. Then he looks downward at a little bowl full of black goo. He drinks the goo, dissolves into inky black goo himself, and falls into a cataract, to be swept away by the rushing water. A montage very prettily describes DNA being broken down and recombined. Cells form, divide and grow. The scene suggests that the bald guy gave his life to seed the volcanic planet with his own DNA. Very messianic.

The next scene takes place several million years later in a cave on the Isle of Skye, where a couple of archaeologists are getting very excited about a cave painting they’ve found. It depicts a tribe of people dancing around a much taller person who is gesturing upward toward a cluster of five or six black spots. The painting is thirty-five thousand years old, one of the archaeologists, Elizabeth Shaw, tells Charlie Holloway, the other archaeologist, and the spots are “in the same configuration as before. I think they want us to find them.”

We come to learn from Holloway that the configuration she’s referring to are the black spots, which coincidentally appear in carvings, paintings and pictograms made by Mayans, Egyptians, Sumerians and all the other civilizations that arose all over the planet. They all drew the same picture of a little crowd of people dancing around one big person pointing at spots in the heavens. The configuration of the spots is so unlike any other spots in any other cave painting that the archaeologists can search all the heavens and find five or six stars out there that are in exactly the same configuration.

Yeah. That seems likely.

We also learn from Holloway that the stars are so far away that no one on earth could have seen them back then. Only a spacefaring race, he says, would have known about those five or six stars.

Okay, so let me see if I’ve got this so far: The big, bald guy is just one of a race of big, bald guys from a place very, very far away. And the bald guys came to earth to seed the planet with their own DNA. And then they hung around for a while, or so the cave paintings would seem to indicate, because there’s a big, bald guy in every cave painting, and he’s pointing at the stars in the heavens that only he could have known the location and configuration of, and presumably told his monkey children about in detail so exacting that they could leave behind cave paintings that Shaw and Holloway would use thirty-five thousand years later find those same spots in deep, deep space.

I’m sorry, I have to call bullshit on that.

But let’s say they might possibly have been able to do that. Let’s say they had the technology and the time and the money and the staffing to scour all the billions of trillions of stars in the galaxy and found just one cluster of stars that looked like the spots in the cave paintings that the monkeys dabbed on the walls with charcoal using roots or whatever. Off they go to the planet where the big, bald guys come from! Why are they doing this? Because they’re searching for the meaning of life, says Shaw. They want to find out why the big, bald guy went to the trouble of starting life on earth.

Wait a minute. How do they know about the big, bald guy? Okay, they don’t. They’ve got the paintings and the carvings and so on that show all the little monkeys dancing around a big guy, and from that they inferred there’s a race of big guys out there, and from that, I guess, they figured out that the big, bald guy drank the gooey stuff and started life. Oookay.

I should point out that, of all the people on the ship crossing the galaxy on this quest, only Shaw and Holloway believe this plot line, and even Holloway’s convictions are a little iffy. When it turns out that things on the planet they find are not what they had hoped for, he does what any scientist would do: He gets drunk, and then he gets drunker, and he broods a lot and gets drunker. “Sore loser” does not begin to describe his dejection at finding out that he’s in the wrong place after crossing the galaxy.

And the other so-called scientists are even bigger losers than he is. “I came here because I’m a geologist. I love rocks,” the geologists tells Shaw, yet earlier in the film when another member of the expedition tried to strike up a friendly conversation with him, he said, “I’m here to make money. Lots of money. I’m not here to be your friend.”

And the biologist does not know a thing about animal behavior. I’ll leave it at that.

Shaw, however, is a true believer, right to the very end. She’s sure the big, bald guys made us, and she’s going to keep trying to find the definitive proof. But here’s a very unsatisfying element of the movie: The movie doesn’t go there with her. It supposes the idea. It supposes that she believes the idea. It supposes that she’s motivated to believe it because she wears a crucifix around her neck, and because her mummy died and her daddy told her mummy went to heaven. And when she finds out that the big, bald guys are just another bunch of boys with chemistry sets trying to build a better weapon, the movie supposes that she loses her faith, which the movie symbolizes by having the soulless robot (there’s always a robot) take her crucifix away from her. Wow. There’s subtlety for you.

Speaking of the soulless robot, he seems to be the movie’s biggest plot hole. (Tip o’ the hat to T-Dawg for pointing out this one.) Everybody else in this movie is superfluous. There’s a word that doesn’t get used often enough, and it’s perfect for describing this situation. He’s the only character that’s necessary to the plot of the movie. He seems to know everything. He’s utterly ruthless in carrying out the mission’s objectives – sound like another robot to you, hmmm? For good measure they even named him David. It’s impossible to listen to his silky robot voice and not hear the line, “I’m afraid I can’t do that, Dave.” Finally, he’s ageless and indestructible, roaming the ship for years and years as it blasts through hyperspace or whatever space ships are using to cross the galaxy these days.

He’s also, unfortunately for the rest of the cast, the only character with any depth at all, showing them up in nearly every scene. As the intrigue begins to unfold, his smiling politesse is by turns comforting, banal, helpful, and menacing. And although his owner declares that David has no soul, in between performing regular maintenance on the ship and learning to speak Big Bald Guy language, he watches vintage Technicolor movies that he very obviously enjoys. He is not your typical evil killer robot. This is a character that could have been used to much better effect in a much more satisfying movie.

And now, for the ultimate spoiler: The so-called scientific expedition has crossed the galaxy at the whim of a gruff old trillionaire, Peter Weyland. But wait: describing him as “gruff” has the implication of being old but resilient, being crotchety but, in the end, intelligent, even wise. Weyland is none of that. He has one motive, as old as time: to live forever. Or wait, two motives: to learn the meaning of life, and to live forever. And to meet the big, bald guys. Okay, his three motives are … never mind. His ramblings are just that: wandering, loose ideas that never congeal into a focused desire. He is the movie cliche of the too-rich corporate boss using his money to style himself as an adventurer. He’s that boring.

And he’s utterly dispensable to the plot. (Another tip o’ the hat to Tim.) This movie would have functioned at least as well as it did without him. Shaw is already asking questions like, Who are the big, bald guys? Why did they seed earth with their DNA? And, What’s the meaning of life, then? So what’s this boring old coot doing here? Not much.

Those questions really got old after two hours of hearing them over and over without the slightest hint of an answer dawning on the horizon. The closest we ever came to hearing an answer was in a conversation between Holloway and David, when the robot asked him, “Why did you create me?” “Because we could,” Holloway answers glibly, and David’s reposte, delivered without irony and yet somehow freighted with it, was, “Can you imagine your disappointment if your creator were to say that to you?”

And that was it. The only instance of an answer to the questions they kept asking was an ironical question from the robot, who seemed to know all the answers but wouldn’t divulge them. And what the hell was with all the questions, anyway? Is this a horror movie, or is it a movie that was made to ponder the meaning of our existence? Because I have to say, if it was meant to ponder, then the pondering was really rather shallow, and that’s all it really could be, given that it’s hard to do a lot of deep thinking while also trying to revisit the horrific elements that started the franchise in the first place. There was rarely any of the tension that made the first movie such a thriller. It kept getting interrupted and dissipated by the pondering.

The final turn of the plot, which I suppose is the twist that critics are referring to, was as unsatisfying as the cliche of aliens visiting prehistoric earth: After the big, bald guys went to the trouble crossing the galaxy to seed a planet with their own DNA, they went back home rather abruptly, leaving the monkeys on their own. And then they apparently decided to wipe out all life on earth by genetically engineering biological weapons like the face-hugging alien in the first movie of the franchise. Why?

Not, Why did they want to kill us off? The answers to that question are legion. Maybe we didn’t turn out to be what they expected. Maybe they thought we were becoming too dangerous. Maybe they just got tired of us. Whatever the reason, why would they go to the time and expense of crossing the galaxy, engineering biological weapons, then building a fleet of ships to bring the weapons all the way back? While they were here, why wouldn’t they just hit earth with a big rock? When you’ve got the horsepower to move a ship across the galaxy at high velocity, I would think it would be fairly easy to alter the speed of an asteroid a few feet per second so its orbit intersects earth’s, and that’s the end of the monkeys. Crossing galactic space to engineer a malevolent life form that’s only reason for existence is murder and chaos makes you look like you’ve got way too much time on your hands.

Too much time. This movie took too much time to ask one question after another without delivering any of the answers it seemed to promise.