Ray Bradbury

Religion plays a large part in the lives of most people. What role, if any, does religion play in science fiction?

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Ray Bradbury

Postby Bill Ectric » Sat Aug 19, 2006 12:31 pm

It's not a question of whether you believe or don't believe in religion, or a god, or whatever. I think Science Fiction has room for all facets of human nature.

It's like, there was a big discussion on another site about whether or not <i>Starship Troopers</i> was a "fascist" movie. People couldn't be citizens unless they joined the military. The thing is, it's a movie! It is someone's vision of the future. It doesn't necessarily reflect the beliefs of the people who made the movie. I think that aspect of the plot makes it more interesting.

Ray Bradbury came to mind as soon as I read the topic of this forum.
He and Rod Serling were both Unitarians, incidentally. Here's some discussion about Martian religion:
http://www.michaelmoser.org/books/martian.htm
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Fascist

Postby admin » Sun Aug 20, 2006 7:44 am

Fascist is just name calling. Starship Troopers is a delightful book and a pretty good movie. Heinlein was exploring ideas about different ways in which human society can be structured. It is interesting that the initial reviews of the film were very positive. USA Today gave it four stars out of four. But then someone played the "fascist" card, and suddenly the movie either became socially unacceptable, or else satire. Funny how Starship Troopers gets labeled as "advocating" fascism, while "Basic Instinct" doesn't get labeled as "advocating" murder as an acceptable way for a girl to have fun.
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Starship Troopers is a great movie!

Postby Bill Ectric » Sun Aug 20, 2006 8:19 pm

I don't see how anyone who loves sci-fi could not like Starship Troopers. But that's just me. For what it's worth, Forrest J Ackerman praised it highly.
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likes and dislikes

Postby admin » Mon Aug 21, 2006 8:21 am

Some people cannot enjoy literature that does not agree with their worldview. Not me. I like both Doonesbury and Little Orphan Annie.
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Re: Starship Troopers is a great movie!

Postby jdalton » Fri Sep 29, 2006 9:36 pm

Bill Ectric wrote:I don't see how anyone who loves sci-fi could not like Starship Troopers. But that's just me.

I didn't like it. I don't think the fascism was properly explored- the subtext of the movie seemed entirely muddled. And then all you're left with is a bunch of humans and aliens killing each other, which just isn't my thing (unless there's a subtext). But I haven't read the book, so I'll reserve judgement. I would not be surprised if the book was completely different.
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Postby k1w1taxi » Sat Sep 30, 2006 3:50 am

Save yourself the bother. Have endured both and not that impressed with either. Found the characters to be one dimensional and the politics to be very simplistic. As for the military aspects they were so laughable it was not even funny.

Cheers
Lee
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Starship Troopers

Postby admin » Sat Sep 30, 2006 7:23 am

I found Starship Troopers one of the most delightful books I've ever read. The movie was pretty good, but left out some of the best parts of the book. As for whether the picture of military life (in the book) is accurate, remember that Heinlein served in the military. What you see as unlike "the military" may just be the difference between the pre-WWII military and the military today.
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Postby Tenbasup » Sun Dec 10, 2006 9:48 am

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Postby dometone » Mon Dec 11, 2006 3:30 pm

I thought Starship Troopers, in novel form, was pretty good and serves as more-or-less definitive Heinlein. It broaches a few ideas, but doesn't delve into them too deeply, and isn't too cerebral overall. It is, after all, a military-action story. Heinlein's ideas about violence and its role in human culture are interesting, even if they may seem objectionable to some.

I loved the film when it first came out... but then again, I was fourteen years old. As far as sci-fi shoot-em-ups go, it's great. It is not a serious film, and not a very good adaptation of the novel. I remember having the companion guidebook to the film, which had a lot of conceptual artwork and making-of articles. It went pretty deeply into the differences between the novel and the film, and the reasoning behind them. I'm sure you could pick that book up for loose change on Amazon if you're interested.

As far as fascism goes, I thought the juxtaposition of hive-mind military species (the bugs) and the measures taken by a species forced into martial law in its fight for survivial (the humans) was interesting. I'm sure I read way too much into it, but subtext is subtext, whether or not it's intentional.
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Starship Troopers

Postby hegemon » Tue Dec 12, 2006 9:04 am

I loved the book Starship Troopers. It is one of my favorite Heinlein novels. It came out during the war in Vietnam, and was taken by a lot of people as a pro-military, pro-Vietnam book, but that was during the peacenik days when people were actually talking about abolishing the US military. I don't think that kind of peaceniks exist, today.
This is the race that will rule the sevagram!
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Postby dometone » Tue Dec 12, 2006 5:16 pm

Those kind of peaceniks do still exist on our physical plane. However, they are obviously detached from it.
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Postby John Thiel » Fri Jun 15, 2007 6:35 pm

When Bradbury thought about religion, he was apt to become religious, and stay that way until he thought of something else.
I Test Well--Hearken!
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EC

Postby admin » Sat Jun 16, 2007 8:48 am

Russ Cochran is reprinting the old EC comics in beautiful, full color hardbound editions. The second volume of Shock SuspenStories is now out, with a Ray Bradbury story that has an unforgetable last line.
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Re: Ray Bradbury

Postby spacecat » Mon Jul 28, 2008 4:05 pm

Which story? The Children's Hour is my guess ...
(=^._.^=)

I'm trading SF&F books at
Paperbackswap.com

Tell'em spacecat sent you!
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Re: Ray Bradbury

Postby admin » Tue Jul 29, 2008 7:58 am

The Bradbury story is "The October Game".
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