Update on *Atlas Shrugged* the movie

Here are the details.  It will be a trilogy.  Many millions will be invested.  Philosopher David Kelley is serving as consultant.  Angelina Jolie remains very interested in the Dagny Taggart role.  It will probably drive me further into the hands of Veronica Mars.


God help us.

I can't imagine a trilogy. Can't mentally break in down in my head.

Now, I could imagine a four-movie series in which #3 is just John Galt's very, very long monologue.

But not a trilogy.

"Now, I could imagine a four-movie series in which #3 is just John Galt's very, very long monologue."

Isn't it like 25 pages? lol

But, lets look at the actual book, and plot of the book and ignore teh pheelosso'fy of Ayn Rand. Will it be interesting?

The characters are very good for movies, as they easily identifiable, the rich playboy, the business man, the driven business woman thwarted at every step, the kindly professors, one who remains true and the other who gives up the dream. And John Galt himself, misunderstood genius. So one huge plus for the movies.

Second, the plot is acuually not bad. A decent mystery, some completely interesting side plots. Plus enough glamour, enough put downs of elites, DTs offensive brother. There is far to many words in between actual action, but overall, it should translate pretty well. Plus for movies.

However, there are two very large problems.

One of the main symbols in the book is the cigarette. It comes up over and over as a direct symbol for capitalism. I have a difficult time thinking of the book without thinking about all of the smoking scenes, ya know, fire tamed at the fingertip of man and all that. We now know cigs are very bad for you and cause a large number of health problems. So does capitalism cause these bad things too? Um...When I brought this up to some randians, they said the choice of symbol was 'unfortunate'. hehehe.

Second, John Gs invention is something that mines energy directly from space. Also known as 'Zero Point Energy', or ZPE, today, these 'inventions' have resulted in a field full of cranks, charlatans and outright theives. I happen to believe that one day we will be able to do this. Tesla claimed to be able to do this. But the fact remains for right now it would be difficult to find a single 'invention' that is more disreputable. It overlaps directly with some of the more comical UFO people. If you thought that DaVinci code was less than truth based, you should see this field. It is literally conspiracy theory central.

trashy romance novel for economists?

Mickslam: what makes you think that "we will be able to" mine energy from ZPE? Because scientists bother to use the analogy? You can do meaningful physics by assuming that no energy can be extracted from a ZPE (ground state) system.

If it's one day possible, then we'll have to find a manipulable theory that bypasses QM, and I wouldn't hold my breath for that.

I wouldn't mind having more movies with heart, though, right/wrong/whatever. Try to sell me something, don't just read it to me out of a comic book.

It's been a while since I read the book, and I'm not sure I understand what you mean by ZPE, but didn't the machine draw power from static electricity already present and not generate any new power?

I really hope they don't try to be too 'current' a la Vendetta's adaptation, and lose the universal themes of the novel.


Yes, but that's because all the smartest people *you* know probably don't agree on all important matters of ethics, politics, tastes in art and music and literature, etc. (Though to be fair, they're all watching a dying culture, so maybe it's not so much that Richard Halley's music is better than all the other good composers out there in everyone's opinion, as that Richard Halley is the only composer out there whose music doesn't sound like an industrial accident. It's a heck of a lot easier to get lots of people to agree about what they hate than about what they love, at least in this context.)

One of the really valuable ideas from AS, though it was certainly around before in trading cultures, is the idea that an appropriate way of avenging yourself for being treated badly is just to stop doing business with them. ("Let them trade with themselves," in Vinge's formulation of this for the Qeng Ho.)

I read many years ago about a nano-motor that worked on static electricity.

I just want to see the fast ride on the green raise scene, and the love scene/wrestling match that comes afterward. (Didn't Ellis Wyatt get a little annoyed with all the *noise* his guests were making? No wonder the guy seldom had guests.)

Here's the IMDB website. I would have typed up the http
hyperlink, but I swear, by my life and my love of it, that
I'm not going to live for anybody else, nor ask anyone else to live for me. Don't tell my wife.


Oh, hey, they're talking to Brad Pitt for the role
of John Galt. Gag me.

They could improve upon AS in the movie by having Dagny say somewhere in the middle that she wants children, but not in the kind of corrupt society she found herself in. Then when Galt shows her the way out, the end of the movie could show her pregnant with his child, and that would symbolize the renewal of vitality in the new society the strikers plan to build.

That would map real human behavior better than Rand's inexplicably sterile ending. (Where do the "youths" come from who can look forward to the future without uncertainty or fear?) I draw the analogy with the baby boom after in the U.S. after nearly two decades of depression and war, when men and women of childbearing age felt they could increase their reproductive success because they expected better economic conditions.

I think Jolie could pull off Dagny. She has the look, she just needs to play a very different role in most (or all) of her other less though provoking movies such as Tomb Raider, Gone in 60 secs, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, etc. But I think she has the look.

As for AS, it is probably the best book I've ever read, granted I've probably only read 100-150 non-children's books in my life. I don't know where the one dimensional character comment comes from. The characters are obviously carried to an extreme, but they are not unbelievable and it really adds to story.

If they do make a trilogy it will probably run along the lines of Dagny's three lovers, which mark her philosophical development. I'd go see it.

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