Ted Talks: David Christian Big History

I strongly recommend this video. David Christian gives a great explanation for what science knows about the origin and history of the universe so far. I hope my believing readers take a look. Science doesn’t have all the answers, but it gives the best possible understanding, and it searches for missing information all the time.

It’s talks like this in which many believers say, “That takes as much faith as faith.”

To which I say, “Then how come science “faith” comes stocked with so much tangible, visible and mathematical proof?

Bon appétit.

http://www.ted.com Backed by stunning illustrations, David Christian narrates a complete history of the universe, from the Big Bang to the Internet, in a riveting 18 minutes. This is “Big History”: an enlightening, wide-angle look at complexity, life and humanity, set against our slim share of the cosmic timeline.

The Social Network

The Social Network
Image via Wikipedia

On our return trip this weekend, we watched David Fincher‘s The Social Network.

I watched it with some trepidation, as I was so disappointed with Zodiac that I couldn’t bare to be disappointed anymore by Fincher. I’m a big fan of Fight Club as a movie and a book. And I enjoyed Panic Room. But when you kick in me in the pants with a stinker, and I’m a fan, I tend to back off.

Make and break points of movie watching tend to start and stop with the director for me. I’m a snob like that. I couldn’t bring myself to watch the Benjamin Button movie because of Fincher disgust.

The Social Network revitalized my view of Fincher, and thank goodness. You should rent it, if you haven’t already.

Before watching it, I thought, “For what reason do I need to watch a goddamn movie about facebook?”

And now that I can answer myself, I would say, “Because the script, acting, soundtrack, editing, direction and photography were phenomenal.”

The photography and editing throughout is amazing. But to give some perspective, there’s a rowing scene midway through the movie that blew me away. It was shot with tilt-shift lenses, but directed and edited so well that I almost wet myself. The movie is worth watching for that scene alone.

The soundtrack is partly by Trent Reznor, and there are some brilliant moments there as well.

Regardless of how true the movie is to real life, there is a relative sort of inspiration to the movie. It makes you want to become brilliant and discover the next great money-making phenomenon. Or it will make you feel like if you don’t, you’re an idiot.

It makes business out to be even more cut throat than I already thought. And it makes the up-and-coming business notion of young people becoming million and billionaires seem almost normal.

There’s a scene in a bar between the Mark Zuckerberg and Sean Parker characters that was possibly purposefully annoying. The music was so loud that you could barely hear the dialogue. And it was annoying.  I felt it was annoying because it was badly directed. It seemed that the two actors forgot that they needed to act like they were yelling over the music. At points, they are talking in their regular conversational pitch and other times yelling. It takes a lot of energy to keep up that kind of acting style, and I’m sure it was a long day of shooting. When I noticed the issue, I thought more about the acting variations rather than listening to the discussion.

Otherwise, I liked almost everything about the movie. I can see myself watching it again soon to listen and see what I missed the first time.