A State of Entropy
There are just these wondrously strange things and people
- Mary Roach


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Fantastic Voyage
D: Richard Fleischer (1966) 100m


It's hard to lose when Raquel Welch shows off dangerous curves in a tight-fitting wetsuit. Medicos get microscopically miniaturised and injected into a scientist's bloodstream. Problem is, the miniaturisation only lasts one hour. Oscar-winning sets and special effects complement tense dramatic scripting and tight direction as the team learns all about arterial traffic jams.





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WarGames
D: John Badham (1983) 114m


In this Cold War tale, systems engineers at North American Aerospace Defense Command get the bright idea that nuclear missile launch control centers must be automated, operating without human intervention. A young man (Matthew Broderick) hacks his way into a back door to the military central computer... and reality gets a bit mixed up with game-playing, possibly starting World War III.





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Jurassic Park
D: Steven Spielberg (1993) 127m


Adapted from a Michael Crichton novel about a theme park where the main attraction is genetically-cloned dinosaurs. A small group is allowed an advance preview, whereupon industrial sabotage leads to a catastrophic shutdown of the park's power facilities and security precautions. Typical Spielberg affair with Jeff Goldblum continuing on his profitable science fictional career path.





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The Truman Show
D: Peter Weir (1998) 104m


Australian New Wave director Peter Weir was tipping us off to the heartlessness of reality TV long before it came to dominate the prime-time airwaves. Jim Carrey is outstanding as the man who unknowingly allows the rest of the world to share the mundane details of his life. When he figures things out, he tries to escape. Unfortunately, what was sci-fi in 1998 is becoming all too real.





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The Martian
D: Ridley Scott (2015) 144m


While the crew of a space mission is exploring Mars, astronaut Mark Watney (Matt Damon) is presumed dead following a freak fierce storm. Abandoned by his crew, Watney is left to survive alone on the hostile planet and he must draw upon his ingenuity, smarts, and irascible spirit to find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive. Damon turns in an outstanding performance in the title role.





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Marjorie Prime
D: Michael Almereyda (2017) 99m


In a future around 2050, 85-year old Marjorie is experiencing the first symptoms of Alzheimerís disease. To bring her comfort, her daughter and son-in-law hire a service called Prime that provides holographic recreations of deceased loved ones. This allows Marjorie to come face-to-face with the younger version of her late husband. An unusual film that examines several aspects of growing old.





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Thor: Ragnarok
D: Taika Waititi (2017) 130m


Imprisoned on the planet Sakaar by the fire demon Surtur, Thor must race against time to return to Asgard and stop Ragnarök, the destruction of his world, at the hands of the powerful and ruthless villain Hela. It's up to Thor, who is now missing his hammer, to defeat both Surtur and the ruthless Hela, to save Asgard and prevent Ragnarök. Most critics agree the film is the best in the trilogy.





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War for the Planet of the Apes
D: Matt Reeves (2017) 140m


Caesar and his apes are forced into a deadly conflict with an army of humans led by a ruthless Colonel. After the apes suffer unimaginable losses, Caesar wrestles with his darker instincts and sets out to avenge his kind. The second film in the Planet of the Apes reboot series is an action-packed stunner from beginning to end and far superior to its predecessor.





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Little Fish
D: Chad Hartigan (2021)


As a memory loss virus spreads, a couple fights to hold their love together. The Rotten Tomatoes critics consensus reads: "Tough but stirring, Little Fish uses one couple's pandemic love story to illustrate the strength of human connection in trying times." Ironically, it was the coronavirus pandemic that delayed the film's original release date in 2020 to early 2021.


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