The Most Astounding Fact (Neil DeGrasse Tyson)

This. This brief clip speaks to me in ways that no other film, book, piece of music or any other piece of art ever has before. What he says about our past, and more importantly, what he implies about our collective future is indeed, astounding. And I agree with him, when I look up at the stars, I do not feel small in comparison. I do feel like I’m a part of something that is huge, eternal and in a constant state of flux.

“What intelligent being, what being capable of responding emotionally to a beautiful sight, can look at the jagged, silvery lunar crescent trembling in the azure sky, even through the weakest of telescopes, and not be struck by it in an intensely pleasurable way, not feel cut off from everyday life here on earth and transported toward that first stop on the celestial journeys? What thoughtful soul could look at brilliant Jupiter with its four attendant satellites, or splendid Saturn encircled by its mysterious ring, or a double star glowing scarlet and sapphire in the infinity of night, and not be filled with a sense of wonder? Yes, indeed, if humankind — from humble farmers in the fields and toiling workers in the cities to teachers, people of independent means, those who have reached the pinnacle of fame or fortune, even the most frivolous of society women — if they knew what profound inner pleasure await those who gaze at the heavens, then France, nay, the whole of Europe, would be covered with telescopes instead of bayonets, thereby promoting universal happiness and peace.” — Camille Flammarion, 1880


X-Men: Days of Future Past Review

While I’ve always considered myself a DC fanatic (mostly Batman), the past two installments of the X-Men franchise, including Days of Future Past, have left me eagerly awaiting the next film. When X-2 came out, I declared it my favorite thus far. Then came First Class, my new favorite. And now, Days of Future Past has taken it’s place at the top of the list, and I’m interested to see how the next movie will attempt to top it. This recent one is HUGE in every sense of the word. I haven’t read any of the comics (yet – I’m working on it), so I can’t say for sure how close the narrative sticks to the source material. But, I will say that the movie kept me fully entertained the ENTIRE TIME. It’s not often that a movie keeps me riveted every single minute. But, this film was just awesome.xmen-days-of-future-past

You get familiar faces mixed in with some fresh faces, badass sentinels (compliments of Tyrion Lannister), Magneto in all his glory, Hugh Jackman in the role he was born to play – all wrapped up in a pretty cool plot driven by actions in the past, present and future. I will say no more for fear of spoiling anything. For those of you who have not really followed the comics (myself included), or even the previous movies – do not worry. Although there are some pretty awesome tidbits that you may pick up on from the previous movies, they’re not entirely necessary to enjoy this stand-alone story. So…go. Enjoy. And maybe, like me, you’ll find yourself soon after scouring the Half Priced Books comics section determined to find some of the classic stories that have not yet found their way into theaters.