August 1st, 2008


Alternative Endings

How Often Does This Happen?

Directors and actors try, but honestly, do you ever find yourself screaming at the TV or movie screen "Will you turn you head back and watch the bloody road?!" during driving scenes where the driver and the passenger of a car are deep in some conversation? That lo-ong sidewise glance by the driver, going through intersections in traffic, drives me nuts. Sure the car is being towed (or on the back of another vehicle) and the street may be closed and the traffic scripted -- but do we need to be thrown out of the story?

Dr. Phil's Alternate Ending To Air Force One

TNT was showing the Harrison Ford feel-good movie Air Force One this morning and I had it nattering on in the background while working. So at the end, after he's fought the terrorists, kicked the ass of the traitorous Secret Service agent, clipped onto the rescue line before the stanchion miraculously broke free of the 747, just before it cartwheeled into the sea, and is dragged aboard the C-130 rescue plane... that scene. Everyone else is standing up the rear ramp of the Hercules, in the plane. Harrison Ford, the President of the United States is standing, unsteadily, right near the end of the ramp, when the military guys all straighten up and salute. Harrison, still dazed and catching his breath after his harrowing ordeal and rescue, sketches off a ragged salute.

So why didn't the rescue team drag his ass up the ramp And Close The Doors... FIRST? What if he unsteadily saluted and lean back too far and got sucked out the back without a parachute?

ORIGINAL PAYOFF LINE: "Liberty Two-Four is changing call signs -- we are now Air Force One."

DR. PHIL'S ALTERNATIVE ENDING: "Liberty Two-Four to Blue Star... Congratulations Madame Vice-President! Under the Succession Rules of the United States Constitution, YOU are now the President of the United States!"


Some of my alternative movie versions are a LOT shorter than the ones in the movie theatre, precisely because the protags buy it for doing the stupid things I've been worrying about. Stupid directors. They think we'd never notice this? Bah!

Dr. Phil
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Flash Alert For Authors

A Second Use For Spam

I've previously written about a practical use for Spam e-mails, namely using the names of the "senders" to populate the crew of a whole Fleet warship for a story. Now I've found a second.

Weird Tales has announced a contest for submitting 500 word flash fiction based on the fake headlines of SPAM. The deadline is short: 9am Monday 4 August 2008. Presumably this is Eastern Daylight Time. You can submit up to three entries. They even have links to sites with Spam headlines, in case you've deleted all yours. (grin)

This is too good to be true -- we must flood them with entries! Use the Force of Spam for Good! It's the only way!



Thanks to jeffsoesbe, in whose LJ I found out about the Weird Tales contest.

Dr. Phil

UPDATE 4 August 2008: Alas, though I had an idea for a submission, I was visiting a college buddy yesterday and got back home around 3am -- and got up just about at the expiration time. So no entry from Dr. Phil. (grin)
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