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Cross The Streams With Unidentified, Fantastic Voyage, Mimic, And Godzilla

Yesterday was the biggest day of the year for Star Wars fans, and yet still none of George Lucas‘ most classic films (nor his less classic) have made their way to streaming services. At least so far. So you’ll have to settle for one of the many other options hitting the Internet this week. There’s a damned good chance you’ll have seen some of these before, since this week’s streaming picks are a well-known melting pot of comedy, horror, and whatever Mimic is. But just like getting second-hand underwear for Christmas, it doesn’t have to be new to be useful.

Here’s what’s new in streaming science fiction!

unidentifiedUnidentified (Netflix Instant)
What better way to start your week than with a haphazard low-budget thriller? Okay, so there are plenty of better ways to spend your time, but not all of them will involve four friends whose quasi-innocent trip to Las Vegas ends up turning into an otherworldly chase after the guys get in trouble for not being able to pay a loan shark back. It’s the kind of movie where you hope the monstrous presence and the dickhead loan shark win.

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Michael Bay Seemingly Apologizes For Armageddon, Then Clarifies His Comments

ArmageddonLove it or hate it, Michael Bay’s Armageddon changed the way action films were shot and edited after its 1998 release. The film received harsh criticisms for its super-quick editing style and sweeping camera movements, but after its release, many action films tried to copy Bay’s technique. Yesterday, in an interview with the Miami Herald while doing promotion for Pain & Gain, Michael Bay seemingly apologized for the asteroid disaster film. He said that he wished he had more time to make Armageddon a better film.

Here’s Bay:

People have always given me a hard time on my editing. But if you could do a graph on my movies, you would see how my editing has slowed down over the years. Bad Boys was my first movie, and we cut that quite fast. Back then it was very new for action. Now you see a lot of that imitated. Call it what you will. Yes, critics have given me shit about it. But when you watch the Bourne Identity movies, they are cut way faster.

I will apologize for Armageddon, because we had to do the whole movie in 16 weeks. It was a massive undertaking. That was not fair to the movie. I would redo the entire third act if I could. But the studio literally took the movie away from us. It was terrible. My visual effects supervisor had a nervous breakdown, so I had to be in charge of that. I called James Cameron and asked ‘What do you do when you’re doing all the effects yourself?’ But the movie did fine.

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Armageddon Was Wrong, No Bomb Could Have Destroyed That Asteroid

At one point or another while watching Michael Bay’s asteroid drama Armageddon, everyone asks themselves, “Would that really work?” Viewers aren’t the only ones who want to know if blowing up an oncoming asteroid is a viable course of action or not, and the movie’s characters also pose that question. (And yes, we do realize that we’re talking about a movie, but for the moment let us pretend that we’re discussing real life.)

As it turns out, Armageddon got it wrong. Students of the University of Leicester in the UK have set out to answer this question. While it has been determined that it might be possible to redirect an asteroid by using strategically placed nuclear strikes, the students figured out that there is no way they could have blown the flying space rock in half.

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The Armageddon Strategy Could Actually Save Earth From Asteroids

It’s a familiar disaster film scenario that was put on-screen twice in 1998’s Deep Impact and Armageddon: an asteroid (or comet) is on a collision course with Earth.  All options have been exhausted, so a plucky team of astronauts and engineers must fly out and destroy it via nuclear warheads.  It makes for a dramatic film (and plenty of technobabble), but could it actually work?  Signs point to “probably”.

According to computer simulations done at a US Department of Energy lab in Los Alamos, New Mexico, a 1-megaton nuclear weapon could successfully “disrupt” the rocks in 1,650-foot-long asteroid and “fully mitigate” the danger it poses to the planet. One would hope the blast of such a warhead would do the job, seeing as it would be about 50 times more powerful than the 1945 US attack on Nagasaki, Japan. In Armageddon, Bruce Willis and Ben Affleck’s team of oil riggers-turned-astronauts had to deposit the warhead in a deep crevice to successfully break up the dangerous space rock, but these new simulations suggest that isn’t so. The simulations were successful with a blast at the asteroids surface, which would make the added danger and complication of actually placing a nuclear device deep within an asteroid unnecessary.

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