Starship troopers

Pulp scifi in the look of the trigger years

The movie about the web and pc game

In 1998 hardly started, because hollywood sends a new programmed auditor (which has shown any signs of a flop) to the front in the war for attention. "Starship troopers" by director paul verhoeven is the youngest (but certainly not last) anti-climax in a series of newer, streamlined scifi thriller "independence day" and "men in black". The new scifi wave raises a number of questions about the topics technology and society.

Starship Troopers

Poster to starshiptroopers

The title (but not the story) is a bond to one of the most famous, but now almost forgotten novels of classic science fiction, "star war", by robert heinlein, published the end of the firty years. Although the film has nothing in common with the novel about the title, worth a quick look at the story of the written sf is worthwhile. Heinlein comes from a generation of sf writers in the "golden phase" the science fiction coarse. This started in the spades of trusses and became of magazines like amazing sf and astounding carried. The coarse part of the stories was fast and without coarse literary finesse.

"The lower sf is content satisfied in the wonders of technology and purple things that besides the beyond besides…", wrote brian w.Aldiss in "the billion years dream" about the pulp sf of this time. These reflected the core of the american progress myth again, after which science and technology are synonymous with social progress and the us is glossy of democratic freedom and free entrepreneurship throughout the universe.

The authors who often had to make several novels per month as in writing doards to be able to survive, understood their stories as "hardboiled"-sf, insofar as they tried to set up the latest technical innovations and extrapolate them into the future. Relativity and quantum theory, the first successful nuclear cleavage and later, during the second world war, the first unmanned rocket launches formed the "scientific" background to this form of sf. Bald authors of this time and from the average just described (which should be said to be said) was beside heinlein z.B. Isaac asimov, inventors of the three robot laws, but also a ron. L. Hubbard, who probably used the sf write school to grind his style for the basic scientology sect (and writing of the necessary dianetics buchers).

The social background was the upheaved threat of nazi germany, as well as the threat of the stalinistical astunion. Since america could easily present himself as a glosser of democratic freedom and social fingertips fired was little in demand in these technocratic repayments. Much rather, they formed a direct continuation of the "railroad novels", so also cheaper staple novels, which formed the basic principles of wild western novels. Instead of hostile indians, however, were either rather stalinist or fascist aliens shot down to confuse the spread of one only to confused with the usa "federation" in space, paving the train. The price for the victory of democracy and progress was, however, that the heinleinžschen sternenkrieger only imperceptibly less fascist, or. Militarist than their opponents were: motivated, sporty and military drafts without psychological complications, ambitious and deeply convinced of the moral accuracy of their warrior mission.

Today, such a story is no longer liable without a certain internal refraction or alienation. "Starship troopers" uses the framework of the form of an extensive television commercial, the recruits for the space army of "federation" instruct. "Join the army", because the fate of humanity is on the game. A species hostile insect system, approx. 3 meters of gross cafe from the family of cockroaches or short "bug" threaten the earth and even own the impudence (a far american-acting) buenos aires – home city of the main characters of the film – outlock.

The protagonists are college graduates that occur to obtain the acquisition of citizenship sake, in the ebdsseur room army shortly before the outbreak of the star war. The synthetic characters of "starship troopers" stand the early sf point sterilitat in nothing after. They are clean and glossy like cooking sofa in the commercial, manner like women look like walking ken and barbie dolls and the heroism that will attend them, they are already written in the face from the beginning.

The rest is actually only bang and special effects, which once again searched in size and intensity once again all so far be ubewalen, for example if a huge spaceship breaks apart and the stirring on all decks can be recognized in detail. The many combat actions are only broken by something good-barred barrel pumping, unnecessary brutality in the training camp and a wheel-legged paid and in their course completely foreseeable love story.

All the goods are hardly worth the acquisition and in its dull militancy highly a little doubtful, when the film has not been able to serve some elements which break through the identification of the viewer and thus, almost within the meaning of the crushing v-effect, that kind of creating distance, which in favor of reflection invites. Thus, the global super state that promotes recruits, in its rhetoric and symbols abundant fascist, a kind of technocratic, post-democratic empire, which, with the words of a teacher in the film, the democracy in favor of a better because more stable "efficient regime" gave up. The same teacher proves to be later, in the battle, as a truble trailer as a pronounced brutal concrete head. This figure, the "harden" upper solds, as it is known from many fighting films, is here that so no sympathy wants to pay. And even the barbiepuppe heroes are so unreal perfect that even such a naive audience would hardly want to identify with them.

Pabt that director verhoeven, which was previously known with robocop and total recall, has a pronounced talent to make cold and soulless films. The machinery of the filmmaking in the hollywood special effects factory is in the foreground, and as far as the degree of remaining humanity is concerned, i was able to present myself to the bugs, because apart from that they are more likely, it is not possible to recognize human civilization to give you moral or relating to other human qualities. (strange only that the rental company, buena vista, is the same, the even turner "end of violence" has released.) intentionally or not, the cold that the film radiates, in all its scenes and settings and the grid formality of its interpersonal relationships, reads like another warning in front of the technocratic superstate.

Understanding that this is readily intended by the producers, the film could be read as a warning of technocratic, alleged more efficient regimes. But unfortunately, this breakage of the action and the identification pattern is too inconsistently executed as that we could really cheer this as an intellectual art grip of the director. The man’s champpf playing is a wide range of space (whereby the persistence serves part of the time to show that women may be just as brutal as manner’s bugs) and the visitor could end up walking with the feeling of then, somehow, yes, somehow already entertained be.

Thus, those already mentioned in the beginning remain the questions that are not enrolled directly in the film, but can be interpreted into it. If we do not see science fiction just blob as a trivial look of pop culture, then historically, interesting connections between technological and social development and the current state of science fiction as a kind of implicit reflection of these developments show. The task of the sf was always to familiarize people with the effects of new technologies.

Roughly speaking, the following parallel developments of sf and real technical and social history can be pursued here: after the highlight of the initially mentioned classical or hardboiled sf, which was consistently technocratic and optimistic, the sf changed dramatically after 1945, after hiroshima. In the climate of the cold war continued to be extraterrestrial "commiss" equated and banged arbitrarily, but at the same time the number of anti-utopian novels increased. With the atomic bombshock, there was suddenly a whole series of novels that warned against the dangers of the mutation.

In the forties and fifty years, it was the spectacular coarse technologies such as nuclear bombs and spaceship carriers (parallel to the beginning of the apollo program), which fed to the interest of readership and cinema public, the media and the new communication technologies (life-style magazines, transistor radios, cassette recorder, color tv, intercontinental flow etc.) to the pacemakers of technological progress and social development (where development does not necessarily improve). In the same mab, as humanity began to conquer the real space with the first steps on the moon, the "outer space" as a medium of literature uninteresting and the sf turned to the "inner space", to human beings. The "new wave" science fiction, with people like roger zelazny, delanay, michael moorcock and philip k.Dick (which is not in the narrower sense of the new wave, but probably at the same time spirit syndrome) experimented with publicity and realitating levels and their mixing (such as z.B. In dicks furiosem "ubik"to). Even a hardliner like heinlein wrote with "stranger in a strange land" a venture mandrome over a figure, which was located somewhere between jesus christ and charles manson (and then my knowledge never more significant).

And then, in order not to become too chronological, cut and almost forward in the spades of nineties. What now refers to a movie like "starship troopers", as for the connection between technology, society and popular mass sf? Is the message that we should hide in front of the alienating media, not all too "starship troopers" to become giving your blood in unnecessary star rates for cynical commander-in-chief? If that was the intention, then verhoeven has gained this message in total recall wide eloquent and more clearly. Or is the embassy, still widely indirect, in that starship troopers is a bloby indicator as one of many troubled industrial flip ribbon films, that just a new technology is about to raise the field of social communication? As ever, the sf serves to prepare the mass audience to the arrival of this technology. And what technology could be that as – they have guessed – the web maybe, or. The world of digital, interactive and networked media? Thus, in the television commercial sequences in starship troopers upper and below the moving picture, a navigation beam, which can be reminiscent of today’s web navigation and asks, "you liked know more?".

This "topic" of the more knowledge-want, then continues on the web site and probably also forms a level in the simultaneous pc_game. The web site is consistently programmed in flash / shockwave. Whoever has a vrml plug-in can get the bugs even in 3d and animated on the screen. So the site is not blobed an assessment with pictures and texts to the film, but the fans can already be almost cd-rom-kind "starship troopers" play on the web. The full interactive gaming experience (bugs killing) but certainly only the cd-rom game. Anyway, the well-known strategy seems to be launched here, first to launch a movie and then with the game still a little money to convince almost excited. Web site and game can actually come without the movie and even if the film flops in the cinemas, the whole company will have somehow re-paid in the end.

But what if we invitation, "learn more" want to follow? Then we land directly at the recruitment of the star war. That, as a small note, that "more to know" not synonymous is with "to be better informed". Starship troopers, a movie for concrete heads, infojunkies, barbiepuppenmen and everyone else who likes to laugh a little, where there is hardly any more laugh.

The movie starts at the 29. January in german cinemas.