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Solipsism on Parade

Last night saw the newly-restored Metropolis. The first time I saw the film, I was fairly young, and the last time I saw it before now was still sometime back - enough that I just vaguely remembered the plot and some of the visuals. I had forgotten how very spaz all the characters are, enough so that I had a running MST3k-style commentary in my head for the entire film. Still, being part of early film shot during a time and place where the future of this little civilisation project we humans have was not all that stable, that's entirely forgivable.

On that note: good candidates for the moral of the film:

  • When making your amazing super-robots, unless everyone around you is a complete idiot, leave the squirrel characteristics out
  • It's easy to convince people to do something they already want to do - the self-restraint of others is dangerously easy to diminish, especially if they're in a mob
  • Dehumanisation can be easily shattered by odd events, pride less so
  • People who have just very badly fucked up are easily driven to blame their folly on somebody else, or at least seek a prescription dose of catharsis
  • Having three systems of time commonly used in the same city can lead to confusion or at least an excessively large clock budget
  • Building a very large city in a way that requires large numbers of workers to correctly move clock hands and futz with knobs for 10 hours straight to regulate things, with failures to do so leading to their explosive death and/or partial destruction of the city is very poor urban design.
Although the other pieces of insight are certainly worthwhile, if I had to pick one insight that would decide the characteristics of where I live, the last one is pretty good. We can afford to figure the rest out on our own.

More seriously, the musical allusions to the not-then-so-distant french revolution paired nicely with the social allusions to the Terror - experiments with liberty for the french as experiments with mechanisation for Weimar.

Speaking of morals or lessons, this morning's was the always unfortunate "if the cats can knock it over while you are asleep, they will". When I get home I get to see if another USB HD is toast due to tea soakage. Yay.