Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Reviews: Pacific Rim movie and Portal games

I could talk about serious things but I'm not in the mood. There has been lots of noise around here -- some happy, some not -- and it is hard to focus on deep cogitations.

Last night, Kevin and I watched most of a recent movie called Pacific Rim.  It's apocalyptic, about humans waging battle against giant beasts that are emerging from a transdimensional portal under the ocean. The humans use giant robots to battle the monsters.  It is very Japanese -- rather like Godzilla.

So far we like the movie quite well.  I like that all the main characters are noble.

I don't recognize ANY of the actors.  I don't watch a great many movies, but I have a retentive memory for actors' faces (weird, because I don't remember people I've met in person very well) and none of these people ring any kind of bell.

But there is ONE familiar actress, and she is a voice actor.  She is the voice of a computer in Pacific Rim, and...she is the voice of THE computer GLADOS in the video games Portal and Portal 2.

The Portal games are some of my favorite in the world. They are puzzle games, where your character has to progress through the game by shooting portals in strategic places.  That probably won't make sense unless you've seen it. The important part here is that both games "star" an insane computer named GLADOS.  At the beginning of the first Portal game, she sounds quite sensible.  As the game progresses, she gets weirder and weirder, and crazier and crazier.  She is SO much fun.  The kids and I enjoy quoting Portal quotes to one another.  One of our favorites is hard to understand out of context, but I'll throw it out anyway:

"Put your weapon on the floor and lie down in the party submission position.  A party associate will come by to escort you to your party, and there will be cake!"  (There is no cake and no party.  The crazy computer wants to kill your character.)

In Pacific Rim, she is still a computer but a sensible one. It is funny hearing "that voice" saying normal, logical things :-).

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