Edge of Tomorrow (2014)

IMDB plot:

A military officer is brought into an alien war against an extraterrestrial enemy who can reset the day and know the future. When this officer is enabled with the same power, he teams up with a Special Forces warrior to try and end the war.

Trans-temporal spoilers in this.

Edge of Tomorrow — or “Live, Die, Repeat”, depending on where you saw it — plot is this: Future Earth is under attack by some alien race. They start to win everything till, one day, for some unknown reason, a propaganda boy is sent to the front lines. He manages to kill one single alien in his untrained form, but dies and, somehow, return to the start of the battle. And then he has to fight again, and he dies again, and he returns to the start of the battle. Now gaining more insight about the battle on each restart, he can win the war. Or can he?

The premise is pretty damn fun: You know those movies with martial arts with an elder trainer/teacher/sensei is training some young pupil and you only see the pupil messing up and the trainer/teacher/sensei saying “Repeat!” over and over again? Imagine a whole movie about it! Ok, not a whole movie about it, but it sounds fun that you keep doing slow pieces of the story over and over again to see how Tom Cruise character, Cage, learning how to kill every enemy that appears in front of him, learning to do really awesome movements each time, and each time the combat gets awesomer in each run. It’s like seeing the pupil going from student to master!

Except, it doesn’t.

At some point, you think you’re doing something for the first time and then… boom, it’s the fifth-or-so time, when you never saw all the previous tries. That kills all the fun of the movie. There is another problem with this scene: All the time you were seeing the movie from Cage (Cruise) perspective; this point suddenly switch to Rita (Emily Blunt), giving the viewer the same suspense of the first of her. With no sign that the focus changed.

At this point, things go downhill, till it goes below 0 in the X axis at the end: because it’s a Tom Cruise movie and there is some sexual tension between Cage and Rita and nothing happens the whole movie, there must be something special at the end, right? RIGHT? Again, at the very end, the movie kills all the good, positive points it gathered till the middle of the movie, even with the few it loses by switching focus, in a single, very stupid solution for the Cruise problem.

Tom Cruise is Tom Cruise. He’s been doing sci-fis for some time already, so you know what to expect. Blunt is likable and weirdly enough both work find together. Everyone else got into the “seriously an extra”. Oh yeah, they have names, but heck if you can remember the name of two or more in the end credits (without reading said credits, that is).

Edge of Tomorrow is still a fun movie to watch, if you let the little and medium things slip by. I give it 9 out of 3 lives, reseting, in the end.

Mitter and the Future Part Deux: Community

Still in the line “What will happen to Mitter now that there are more options around” let me say that one of the things that are driving me back from Twitter development (or, better saying, developing Twitter applications.) is the community of developers.

When I started Mitter development, as usual I decided to lurk around the Twitter Development Talk, a list created by the Twitter developer themselves to talk about the directions of the API and the service. Long before Twitter became the synonym of “it doesn’t scale”, the discussion was always productive, with very small traffic. But it went really downhill after that.

You could find people saying that Twitter decided to close their garden only to read, a few messages later, that they were really abusing the system; a lot of “Twitter is not sending data properly, you broke my product!” complains, when they should be ready for anything and should be way faster if they solve thing on their side. It goes way down, to the point of people almost demanding when Twitter will fix their side. And always almost demanding Twitter to fix their problems.

I’m not trying to defend the brokeness of Twitter. It’s annoying and recently was enough to made me do a quick release ’cause Mitter was crashing hard (due some really broken JSON result) but… demand a fix from a free service? Complain about a service “destroying their business plan” when they were actually abusing the system? Sheesh. People, it is a free service and they have the right to simply close the API ’cause people don’t behave properly. They have no responsibility for your client or your business model.

And the worst part is that Twitter would usually bend over to make those guys happy. It saddens me to see a product with potential being directed away from its original vision to something to make everyone happy. Honestly, what’s the point of developing something for a product that may not be what they pronounced it would be?

Don’t get me wrong about those two posts. I loved Mitter and I still think it’s the best Twitter client around. I surely still want to make it become better and better but, each passing day, I feel more and more disconnected with Twitter.