H.I. No. 17: Mister Phoenix

From Podpedia
"Mister Phoenix"
Hello Internet episode
Episode 17 on the podcast YouTube channel
Episode no.17
Presented by
Original release dateJuly 22, 2014 (2014-07-22)
Running time1:35:37
SponsorsAudible, Squarespace
Episode chronology
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"The Worst Topic for a Podcast"
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List of Hello Internet episodes

"H.I. #17: Mister Phoenix" is the 17th episode of Hello Internet, released on July 22, 2014.[1]

Official Description[edit | edit source]

Grey & Brady talk about Her. And Pets. Spoiler warnings for Her, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Seven and The Happening.

Show Notes[edit | edit source]


Other[edit | edit source]

Fan Art
Peek-a-boo. We should probably start by explaining that for once this follow-up will be very short. Well, don't jump the gun. You never know, it might not be. Well, okay. I'm expecting it to be very short. The reason being, we are recording this episode. Is this episode 17? Yes. We are recording episode 17. The day after episode 16, which you have not even edited or listened to or anything as yet. No, I haven't even done my first just listen through to me, make sure it sounded okay. Who knows? If episode 16, if it went terribly, this might be episode 16, the audio files didn't work out. Well, that's working on the assumption that this is 17. No one, including us, has heard 16, so there has been no feedback. We don't know what people thought about it. In this, you've done a miracle of editing. It will have included a very long section about flags. Yes. That's about all. That's about all we know about it. So we can't really apologize or bask in the glory of what you thought of the previous episode. Yes, we know nothing. This is once again, we have this show as a little secret, just like in the beginning. It feels like this is once again, it's like our private thing very briefly. I have this, this show being recorded right now, the way it is. Yes. No genuine feedback, but that's what we're doing now because you are going where next week? I am going, is this a humble brag if I talk about all the problems we're having with the podcast because I'm going away on a lovely holiday? I don't think so now. I don't think so. We're having to do all this work this week because next week I'm going to Morocco. A humble brag. Oh man, this week's just been a total nightmare. Remind me not to book another luxury trip to Morocco. So is this for pleasure as opposed to business? It is just to relax. Atlas Mountains, hopefully just sit by a pool, listen to old episodes of Hello Internet. I am taking the, I'm going to take my camera because I'm hoping for clear scars and I'm going to try and improve my astray photography skills. That will depend on various factors including how late I'm allowed out at night to go and take photos of stars. That's probably a bit too work like for a holiday isn't it? It probably is. Oh, that's so many. That sounds lovely, but yes, I guess that might be a little bit of a humble brag to do that. I think it is, but you kind of forced me into it. I was quite happy to not mention it. I thought that people would want to know. The Internet demands to know why we're recording them back to back. So that happens to be the reason. But yes, it is a strange experience. It feels kind of exhausting even before we begun. Conversations with Macon Bay like that. Right, what was I doing? I was pulling up a tweet. You want to share a tweet? It is a tiny piece of follow up. Somebody tweeted at me, but I thought you should know. This is Thomas Elliott on Twitter said, just thought you guys should know that I bought a shredder as a direct result of listening to your podcast. You have changed lives. If you can just touch one person. Yes. I'm going to celebrate that with a shred. Oh, please do. Here we go. Just let me check that it's not important what I'm shredding. No, whatever. Just go for it. Yeah, listening. It's under my desk now. Oh, good. That one's for you. Oh, that's great. That's great. I would join in a shred of my own, but I've actually just been doing all my administration. So I have a huge bag of shreddings that have just been done. The only things that remain are sitting right next to me is a big pile of tax documents, which I definitely cannot shred any of those. So the reason you can't join in is because you have nothing to shred. Exactly. I don't think there is a piece of paper in this house that I could shred at the moment because I have just shredded all of the paper and filled up two huge recycling bags worth of stuff. Well, it's interesting you should say that because I saw someone message us when we were first started this captivating shredder discussion. And that was someone was saying that you can't recycle shredded stuff, shreddings, whatever the word is for post shredded shreddings. Yeah, that's not something like that. Can you recycle that stuff? I don't know. I don't know. I have no idea. What are you doing with yours? You said you've got it in recycling bags. I mean, those are the bags I put it in. Let me ask Mr. Google and see what he has to say about this is, oh, look, Google always knows it's almost creepy sometimes. How much Google knows? Go is shredded? Is shredded paper recyclable? Why yes, Google, that is exactly what I was looking for. But it's a little creepy that you guessed so quickly. The advice is to check with your local council about whether or not the paper can be shredded. I'm not going to check with my local council. You're not going to check that one. There are. Oh, fine, fine, fine. I will. I'll tell you what. I'm going to file this exact piece of advice right now. Let me see. I'm going to tape it in. I'll recycle. I'll tell you what, if you've got to check with your local council, I can guarantee that it can't be recycled by my council. Right. My council are very strict about what can and can't be recycled. And the men, because I think it's all men who come and pick up the recycling, go through the tub with a fine tooth comb and anything that doesn't meet their stringent requirements is left in the tub. And I've seen them shouting at people's houses when they make mistakes. Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, hold on. I was too busy looking at my own problems and I realized which is describing sounds crazy. Basically, I was just having a conversation with myself while you were doing personal administration. Yeah, I was sort of listening. And then part of my brain, hey, wait, what did he just say? That didn't sound right. Did Brady actually say something interesting? No, it sounded like, wait, so this is the impression that I got. You have an open bin in which you have to put all of it in. Yeah, it's an open tub and they can go through it like piece by piece deciding whether or not because their truckers got all these like sub bins. So they, you've got a tub with everything recyclable and they'll take out the glass and they'll take out the paper. So they sort of mix, they unmix it on the side of the road. That sounds crazy. That sounds crazy and labor intensive. Well, someone's got to do it at some point, I guess, but anyway, yeah, I don't know. But don't start me on my local council. This will turn into the paper cuts to the power of 10. I'm going to find this answer. I'm going to find it. Why don't you find it after the show? This episode of Hello Internet is once again being sponsored by the good people at audible.com. And as you've heard us say before, they are the leading provider of spoken audio information and entertainment. Listen to audiobooks whenever and wherever you want. Now, you've probably also heard me say before that I really like listening to audiobooks when I'm going for sort of long walks or treks or even the occasional run. And as a result of that, I actually got a great email from a viewer called Raphael who starts his message, Dear Brandy. And I don't know if that's auto correct or I don't mind, everyone calls me Brandy. So don't worry about that. Dear Brandy, your ad on audible inspired me. I actually felt quite stupid. I have never thought I could listen to a book while hiking. I come from Switzerland and love hiking. I will now definitely consume many more audiobooks than before. I have already subscribed to audible so I can unfortunately not support your podcast. I feel a little bad that your ad will have such an effect without you having any benefit. All I can do is let you know. So thanks for that Raphael. It was really good to hear from you and we're glad that you've been inspired to listen to books while walking. Now if you aren't an audible subscriber, you can help us by going to audible.com slash hello internet and signing up for their trial. But you shouldn't go just to help us. You should go because they have loads and loads of brilliant books to listen to on any topic you can imagine. You can go to audible.com slash hello internet. If you put the slash hello internet, they will know you came from the show and well that's good for great eye. So why don't you go and check them out. Then audible.com slash hello internet and whatever happens, thanks to audible for supporting Aaron Deva so far, we really appreciate them. But you did message me and said anything you'd like to talk about and I was walking my dog at the time. The much loved Lulu who was sleeping by my side as we speak as she always does to sleep all day at my feet. And I thought we've never talked about pets. Have you ever had pets? Did you grow up with pets? Where do you stand on the issue of pets? Is there an issue to be stood upon here? I mean I wish. Well, I mean you have an opinion on most things. Surely you have an opinion on the merits of humans having pets. But I mean are you asking me do you dislike dogs? I mean what is that? Is that the question? Let's start with a factual question here. Let's start with just the facts. Have you ever had pets? Yeah, yeah. I grew up with the way most people would describe them as little yipperedogs, tiny little barker dogs, little yappy dogs. Little yappy dogs, yes. They were yorkies, yorctutariors as we grew up with. Very small. They can be very cute. They can be very yappy which some of them were. But yes, I think it's a good thing to grow up with pets. I liked it. The pets predated me. They were there before I arrived and then when I guess when I was in high school we got a cat which was a nice addition to the family. Cats are very different from dogs obviously. So yeah, thumbs up to pet growing up with pets I guess. I mean obviously you don't have pets now because you live in a small place in the city and you rent. Are pets in your future? Would you like to have pets again? Yeah, I'd say under different circumstances I'd love to have in particular to have a dog but yeah, it is just, it is not practical given our current living situation. It wouldn't be fair to the dog to have it in a small central London flat. Although I have to say obviously enough people do. If you go for a walk in any of the parks in London there's tons of dogs running all over the place happy and free and presumably they're living in relatively small places. But I would feel bad having a dog in the size flat that we have. I just don't think it would be fair so it's not possible at the moment. Why would you like to have one if you had a bigger place? What would it add to your life which is all about efficiencies and making sure everything has a benefit to it? Would a dog add to your life that is missing at the moment? I see what you're trying to, but you're putting words into my mouth. You can just have things that you just like. Who doesn't like a dog? Monsters. Doesn't like dogs, right? It's just who can look into a dog's little doggy eyes and be like, hmm, thumbs down, don't approve of that at all. No, dogs look into your eyes, you look into their eyes and it's like, oh, I just feel happier now. And the dog wags its little tail and you give it a rub and it's all happy. Now it's just humans and dogs. We have a symbiotic relationship that goes back thousands of years. I don't think this is an unfair line of questioning because I think it's been well established in previous episodes that even though there are things you like or kind of appreciate the merits of, you don't want them in your space unless they contribute something to your, you know, your end goals. A dog would contribute to the net sum happiness in a day. Good. That's the way I would phrase it. If you want something like that out of me with net sum happiness is the way I would put it. Would you go down the small dog route of your childhood or do you think you'd sort of upsize? I think I'd scale up. Yorkies are a little small. The problem is the bigger the dog, the more responsibility that you end up having with it. I would be trying to optimize this calculus equation of larger dog and responsibilities. I think they'd find like what is the sweet spot here for dog size? I tell you what they are. They are, I mean, obviously people have children more laugh at this conversation, but dogs are a big responsibility. And they are also quite a financial burden because you know, I have to go away a lot and so the dog always has to be looked after or a dog set. Dogs can be a bigger responsibility than children because you have to have someone look after the dog. Children, I don't know, you put them in a box. I'm not sure how you carry them around, but you bring them with you, right? Children always go wherever people go. You can't do that with a dog. So I'll draw that line of the same. Dogs, more responsibility than children. You can't leave a dog alone in a house and expect it to be able to feed itself. If you have a competent child, they should be able to do that. Yeah, this is true. Yeah. There you go. I'm sure we won't hear from parents. Parents will be perfectly fine with that. I was reminiscing about the pets of my life. We had these two little poodles. They were cute little dogs and you know, we really love them and gave them a good life. But for various reasons to do with moving house and family things, we couldn't keep these two dogs anymore. So my dad was tasked with finding a new home for them. So anyway, we sort of set our goodbyes to the dogs and had like a family moment together and gave them a hug. And it was explained to me and I wasn't particularly young at this time. I must have been in my early teens. I think I would have been my early teens. You know, I was old enough to know stuff. It was explained that the two of them were going together to a really nice farm where they could like live happily together and run around on the farm and have a much nicer life than the farm. Yeah. So anyway, like obviously as life goes on, I learnt that taking dogs. To the farm is the cliche that you say to children so they don't get upset about the dog going to the pound or whatever the dogs ending up. But I still just totally believe that my two dogs did go to a farm and like I would hear that story and I would say isn't that funny? Like that's a funny old story and it's even funnier because my dogs really did go to a farm and that's how I would tell the story and then it was only been in the last sort of five or six years. Like I was telling my wife, you know, it's so funny, you know dogs go to farms and that. But really my two dogs did go to a farm and she just looked at me and said your dogs didn't go to a farm. But you know what? I have, I have, I have, I have constructed my, it's not really funny but it is. I have confronted my dad man to man about this at least on five or six occasions. Like you know, dad, you know, I'm a grown man. You can tell me like I won't be upset. I'll understand why you did it. You know, I was a kid. I'm just curious, you know, they're having a laugh. They tell me and he's just every time tells me, no, no, I really did. They went to some farm, you know, maybe they did at this stage. They're still proud of me that believes they went to a farm. I know my dad has listened to a couple of these podcasts, maybe, maybe this will bring the truth to a head. Oh yeah. Yeah, well, we'll have feedback on the farm situation. Yeah, yeah, what happened to Bowen, Louis? In my head, they're still on that farm running around through the fields, time glowing to the side. That's precisely why you tell kids this, this pleasant lie and kids if you're listening to the podcast, it's the truth. What I'm about to say is a total lie. But yeah, you tell kids this lie so that they can forever imagine that, oh, you know, maybe Scruffles is really old but he's still living a great life in the sunshine on that farm. But you know, you never have to really face the inevitable loss of a pet, which is tragic and especially if you're a little kid and have no no frame of reference to understand this kind of stuff. You just go, ah, they're on the farm. That's why society lies to little children all the time for their own good, I guess, mostly I don't know. I'm not sure about that sometimes, but I like that it is only recently the two have come to realize one of these, one of these lies. Oh no, I haven't realized it's a lie. I'm just having increasing doubts. Oh, I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I didn't mean to state it so forcefully. Yes. You are growing doubtful over the veracity of the statement. But I'm 50, 50 on it now. Right. Right now I understand. Yeah, I understand. I understand. So, but I tell you what I do. Coming to my current dog, tell me if this is, tell me if this is wrong or not, but Luley was a greyhound. She's a retired greyhound who used to be a racing dog. The greyhound racing industry has a terrible reputation, slash track record for not caring for greyhounds when their useful racing time is over. And it's only in more recent times, maybe they've come to their senses or they've realized for public relations purposes, they can't do what they've done in the past. They have started funding shelters and a program to find homes for retired racing dogs. So I guess pardon me, thanks greyhound racing isn't really a really nice thing to do and they're not treating the dogs well enough. So pardon me, thanks. Come on. I shouldn't support greyhound racing in any way. But when I got Luley, I used to serve us where you could look up your dogs like racing career and history. And then you can buy videos of their races. And Luley had like seven wins in her career. So I've got videos of all her wins. Oh, I know. Oh, I force you to watch them have I? I don't know if you remember this, but the first time I visited you in your house, we were not in the door three minutes before you like the proudest parent in the world said, come over here and let me show you a race that my dog Luley won like a champion. I just I always thought that was her first win. It was a great win because she was behind for two laps and she came from nowhere to win it. What I do not deny it was an amazing win, but I thought this was just the funniest thing that it was like, oh yeah, we're in the house. Look at that. It's great. But here, come here. Let me show you the baby pictures, right? That was basically what what that situation has. And I mean in my defense, you are no, but no, it's fine. You are a man who loves his dog and and appreciates his dog skill and I can I can get behind that 100%. And that's what it was. It was so genuine that I was you know, it just it just really made me smile. I mean part of the reason that comes up so so early. Oh yeah. Uh huh. It's because when you come into the house, the first thing that has to be dealt with is the dog because Luley doesn't like go up to strangers. She's extremely scared and she won't go near them. So the first conversation point whenever anyone comes into my house for the first time is the dog, whether it's sorry she's very scared, she won't come near you. You know, yes, you can pat her, she won't mind, she's just a bit scared. So the dog is always the first conversation point and someone comes into the house. So there's a very strong probability that if the dog is the first conversation point right. And someone will say, oh, you know, is she rescued? Did she used to race? The video is going to come up early. I don't think there was any way in which the conversation was lending itself towards the racing. As I remember it, we walked in the door and you were like, look at my beautiful dog. She's very nervous. But let me show you this amazing thing. And you had it all set up already on the computer if I remember correctly. That's not so you clearly prepared this before you left. Yeah, we just walked into your office. It was there on the projector on the wall that you were using and you just hit the play button and it just went and we sat down in the viewing chairs specifically for the race. I thought I had it. It was glorious. It was glorious. Did I not have it projected onto the front of the house so you can watch it before you'd even come in? Yeah. So all the neighbors can see every time. I've already seen it. I'm sure they have. I'm sure they have. I don't doubt that at all. But it was very charming. It was a very charming experience. Well. It was a very good dog. Thank you. She is. I'm going to put that video online. Yeah. You should totally put that on YouTube. I'm amazed you don't have like a Lulu's Corner YouTube channel. Something just a video is a Lulu. You could make her one of those internet famous dogs. Well, do you know it's funny. She's appeared in... I have put some videos on YouTube of her running in slow motion when I was sort of testing things with the slow-mo camera. Yes, you sent me those as well. Okay. Now I feel like silly. I was going to say something really interesting then. It's completely fallen out of my head. It's because the image of Lulu running slow motion is taking you like, ah, such a good dog. She's a good dog. She is. She is quiet. What was I thinking? What were you saying? You were saying I should put... I was saying that you should make her an internet famous dog. Oh, yeah. That's right. She has appeared in a few in the background of a couple of number five videos. There's one in particular where that was filmed in sort of a room in the house and she was in the background sleeping. It was just a normal kind of mathematics video. And part way through in the background, she sort of stands up and turns around and lies back down just adjusting her position. But obviously that draws the eye of some people who are looking in the background. And an extraordinary number of people left comments on the video and a very high proportion of them were amazed because they thought she was a deer and I had a deer in my house or I had a pet deer. Well, she's pretty tall. You know, she's a pretty tall dog. And she's sort of deer colored for a fawny color, but I don't know what people thought like. Who has a deer in their house? A pet deer sleeping next to the sofa. I guess a caveman would have a pet deer in his house. That's true. I do have owls in my house, don't I? Yes. Owls and deer, all kinds of cavemany things in your house. Antlers all over the wall. I do have antlers in the house. I do have deer antlers in the house now. I think about it. You've got me there. Yep. I know. I know I've got you there. You sent me the picture. Anyway, good luck. You're enjoying this way too much. What were your dogs called when you were young? What were their names? The dogs I grew up with were Smoky and Pepper when I was a little kid. Which did you like better? Smoky or Pepper? I was a kid and they were just the dogs in the house. I liked both of them. But Smoky was mean to everybody who was not in the family. As again, little yippered dogs can be. They end up becoming just not for their own good kind of obsessively worried and cautious about everybody who is not a member of the family. And Smoky was the worst about that. He would, you know, bark at people and didn't like anybody at all coming over the house. And then when I grew up, eventually, you know, they moved on to the farm. And we had another dog came in called Scarlet. It was there for most of my middle school and high school years. And now my parents have another dog called Lucy. She has come after I moved away. So it doesn't feel like she's not my dog. She's my parents dog. But I'm always very happy to visit her. So those are the dogs. Is she Yokey as well? No, she is a... Oh, my parents will be so disappointed right now. She... What does she look like? No, no, hold on. She is a... She is a multi-pooh, a multi-pooh. I was trying... She's one of these crazy poodle crossbreeds. You know, they breed everything with poodles these days. I think just because you can end up with the adorable poo suffix. So that's a multi-scented terrier and a podel. So you have a multi-pooh and there's just a million dog breeds. I should pose in a good name. I was going to say, as I say, hold on, I'm going to look it up. Because this list is going to be ridiculous poodle. We should just rename this podcast. Listen to great Google stuff. Yeah, listen to me read stuff on the internet. So we've got like a... The bossy poo, boss interior poodle. There's a dogsy poo. Yeah, there's the dogs are doodle, which is a boxer poodle. There's the chaipoo, the chihuahua poodle mix, the cockapoo, which is the conquer spaniel poodle mix. Corgi poo, obvious what's going on there. So you have the double doodle, which is when you take a gold... That's not so hard to even say. All right, a double doodle is when you take a golden doodle and breed it with a labra doodle. So you get the double doodle. So you get two doodles for the price of all that's exactly it. This list goes on forever. Fox poodle, which is the Fox Hound poodle. I swear to God, they mix these dogs just to come up with some clever name. I think there's nothing special about poodle. You can mix foxes and dogs, can you? I didn't think you could, but... You know, it's a Fox Hound. It's not a Fox. You can't breed foxes and dogs, can you? They're like different. I think I... I don't think that's how that works. I saw someone's dog the other day and I was saying, I'm what kind of dogs that. And they said it was part fox. And I didn't think that was possible. I would be... I don't know, I mean, maybe I don't know, but I would bet they don't know what their dog is. The thing that you can have is these half wolf breeds, which to me is just insanity. I think that people who do that are just crazy. I don't know. I know the Americans, I feel, have a fear of wolves that I don't have like, it seems like, you know, I wouldn't... You know what? I was gonna say, what is this? Like show off your caveman skills here. Like, oh, put me in a room with a wolf and I'll just read a book and not even give him a second glance. But because I guess because they're not where I grew up. Like, you know, I don't... Like wolves are hailed as this kind of terrifying animal. And to me, they're just like an animal. And like any animal that is like, you know, vegan has teeth, I wouldn't want to get on its wrong side. But like, you know, you're sort of like, oh, I wouldn't want to go and get a dog that's mixed with a wolf. Whereas to me, that just sounds like a curiosity. And I was like, oh, I wonder what that would be like. I have no... My instinct isn't to be afraid about the sound of it. I'm sure in reality, I should be. But I don't have that. And I... It's something, obviously, you know, to show... It shows our different cultural backgrounds. It's funny. Before I've seen them, I would have thought, oh, that's cool. But after having seen some videos of them and some pictures of them, I go, that is terrifying. Like, nobody should do that. These things are just huge and very, very hard to tame. It's supposed to be like you take, you know, like malamutes and alaskan sled dogs are famous for being very, very hard to teach. Like, they're very, very stubborn dogs. And so like, you shouldn't get one of these dogs unless you really know how to handle dogs. And then basically the wolf crossbreeds are like, almost nobody can reliably train these things. And so, you know, you have to like, muzzle them if you go outside. And it's like, what are you doing with the wolf? Humans, we spent like 10,000 years domesticating these things to make them not wolves. You're going backwards. This is not the direction of progress. Progress is clearly brutalizing everything and de-wolfifying the dogs, right? That's what progress is. I think one of the most adorable names here, Pika Poo, a Pika Nees poodle. Oh, yeah, that's nice. Yeah, that's a really good one. Any more Poodle crossbreed names do you want to share with the audience before? No, I'll just wait here. I'll just wait here. I think this is a weighty issue. No, I'll put a list in. Oh, the Schnudel, of course, the Scottish Terrier Poodle. It was another one. Yeah, that was Paga Poo. It just, yeah, it's just great. It's just great. It goes on and on. Next week, Gray will read this Wikipedia page. St. Prenoodle? St. Prenoodle? How did they even do that? I hope that was done artificially, because that would have been... I swear. I swear. I have wondered this sometimes. When you look at two dogs and you think, how did they get that Chihuahua St. Prenood mix? It makes me... Thank you, Mr. Prenood. I say St. Prenood, and my English wife always laughs at me and says it's St. Bernard. Oh, my God. No. What? Well, I don't know. Why is it Prenood? Is it... It's St. Bernard. Well, you don't have to convince me. That's what I say, but she always laughs at it. I don't know. Is this not? If your wife is listening to this episode, I'm not laughing at you. I have never heard St. Bernard. That is hilarious. Well, I mean, you are American. I mean, and you do have a track record of taking sort of European names and Americanizing them. Mm-hmm. Notre Dame. Notre Dame? Yeah. I mean, you don't call the church in Paris, let do. I would try to say Notre Dame, if I was talking about the church, but the university is Notre Dame, even though it's named after the church. Yeah. Anyway, I've never heard St. Bernard. That's hilarious. Well, maybe I'm in the rut, and that would make me happy. Because I really am in the house. St. Bernard makes them sound like they're fussy old men. That's what they sound like. If they're a bunch of burners, it's like, oh, yeah. Like, he's in his chair and he doesn't want to be bothered. St. Bernard is like a noble dog. St. Bernard is fussy and old. And oh, he didn't make his tea right, and now he's unhappy. That's the St. Bernard. You need to get a dog. I hear a happiness come to you talking about dogs. You would be happy having a dog. I want to walk into your house and have you show me videos of your dog. Yeah, first thing. I'll set up. Yeah. All right, all right, all right. This is craziness. Hello, internet. This episode is brought to you by Squarespace, the only one platform that makes it fast and easy to create your own professional website portfolio or online store. 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We finished off the last episode by giving people a homework assignment which they may or may not have listened to which was to watch the movie her. H-E-R. Yes, H-E-R. As opposed to those various other spellings of her. I think it's just a hard movie title to say. Yeah, it's almost like you need to clarify. Yes, that is the title. Yes, that is the title. It's not spelled in a funny way. I was aware of the same thing too. It's there's something about it that does not stick in the mind. So anyway, that's the title. Let me tell you where I came from in relation to this film. All right. So we can talk about how we got here. You get started on it. I got a message from you, a week or two ago, I think, saying, Yes, it's something like that. Have you seen the movie her? Obviously you were or had just watched it. Yes. I had seen the film quite a while ago now and the reason I saw it was my wife asked, watched it and completely loved it and said to me, have you seen this film? It's fantastic. So the next time we were together, we were apart at the time because she was traveling. So the next time we were together, we watched it. It was her second viewing and my first viewing. So I had seen it. And like I said, it was quite a while ago. So then I got the message from you, have you seen it? And because it had been a while and I knew you wanted to talk about it on the podcast, I watched it for the second time. With her, with my wife, who's called her, with her, so it was her third viewing and my second. So I have seen it twice. Have you just watched it the once or have you, did you watch it a second time? I just watched it the once and you've watched it once. I messaged you because I thought, oh, if you have seen this, this might be something interesting to talk about. Yeah, there were lots of times watching it. I thought, oh, that'd be interesting to talk about. And as is the way with me, I've never forgotten about it immediately. Stop. So I'm sure they will come back into my head as I'm when required. This is again, where you and I are so different because once you said, oh, I did see the movie, we can talk about it. I thought, oh, I really wish I had taken notes when I was watching that movie. And what I ended up doing was just sitting down and just thinking about the movie and just writing down a bunch of notes. I should have just watched it again and taken notes. I probably spent the same amount of time just thinking about it and writing stuff down. But you watched it and didn't take notes and we're just completely different people. So I'm leaning on you to remember all of your interesting points. I expect that's not great. So who's going to have the job of explaining what the movie's about for the benefit of people who have not seen it and didn't do their homework? I cannot. Actually, I was just about to say, I cannot imagine that anybody will continue onward with the podcast from this point if they haven't done their homework and haven't watched the movie. I would. But the reason I stopped myself as I was just thinking of what I said on one of the previous podcasts is the red letter media guys. They have a series called Half in the Bag where it's them reviewing movies. And I realized I spent a very enjoyable day watching their reviews probably for half of the movies at least I hadn't ever seen them. And I didn't care. It didn't make any difference to me. I watched it anyway. So maybe there are people who would be interested in listening. So I would draw my statement that you didn't make that I didn't make that I made in my mind but didn't actually make out loud but still feel the need to withdraw from. It is interesting though that the YouTube channels cinema sins and honest movie trailers which are two of my favorite kind of guilty pleasure type channels that I enjoy watching. I don't watch their videos about films I haven't seen. Like so if they spoo for critique or do something with a film I haven't seen I will never watch it. I only watch them if I know the film but maybe that is a different genre. They have the bag. They have the bags more just for the banter of the guys isn't that. That's exactly. Half of the bag is two dudes talking about movies. And I like those two dudes. I haven't seen the movie. I don't really care at all. I'm happy to listen to what they're talking about. So let me start out this and then maybe you can pick it up because I want to start with talking about watching movies in general. This is Hello Internet at the movies. And I saw this movie under what I think are ideal movie watching conditions, which is basically I was at home my wife wanted to watch a movie. She was looking through some stuff and she picked a movie and she put it on. And so that was her. And you had no say in the squat so ever. You didn't know anything. Well this is exactly it. This is my preferred situation. I am sitting there. My wife put on a movie and I'm going into it knowing nothing about the movie. For whatever reason I had never heard about the movie, it just hadn't crossed my radar in the past. And the movie comes on and I don't even have any idea what genre it is. Is it going to be a funny movie? Is it going to be a horror movie? I have no idea. And I really think that this is the ideal movie viewing experience for all movies pretty much. Any movie that is attempting to be good, this is the way that you should watch it. And I feel the same way about books as well. I don't read a lot of fiction books to be honest, but when I do my preference is to know nothing about the book and to just start it. Now of course the problem is you don't get this optimal experience very often because the very act of, oh let's watch a movie involves some kind of self-reflection about what do we feel like watching? Oh let's try to figure out what might be an interesting movie. And then you kind of ruin it for yourself. So very rarely do I actually get to watch a movie like this under my ideal circumstances. But I think it's really good. And for people who haven't done it, one of the reasons why I particularly think this is great is because so many movies, even if you just give the briefest of all possible descriptions of the movie, it already tells you what the setup is. Whereas when you watch a movie just knowing nothing, the first 20 minutes of almost every movie are basically the setup. And then you're waiting for the real movie to start, but if you don't know what the real movie is, you experience the first 20 minutes in a totally different way. And so the way this movie her opens up is with a guy and they're sort of showing you his life. And he has this sort of little job and he lives alone and he's playing video games. And you can see very quickly, oh, this is sort of the near future. It's not a super futuristic world, but it's maybe 10 years in the future, 15 years in the future. And it's just this guy and the impression that I get from the movie is they're sort of showing you that his life is kind of sad. And yeah, they make it clear from the start. I think that he's going through a divorce, don't they? He's alone recently and going, you know, sort of a sadness. Yeah, there's definitely like a sadness and a melancholy around the guy. And now when you watch movie and you know nothing about it, you sit there and you think, huh, what's interesting? I wonder if the whole movie is just going to be kind of this guy's sad life or maybe this is going to turn into a very different kind of movie. I don't know, but either way, you're much more attentive during the opening and you can see. Can I interrupt for a second? Just because you reminded me of a story I'd like to tell, but I think we're going to quickly drift away from the chance to tell. Please do, please do. Talking about not knowing what a movie is about. I don't know if you know this, but my dad, who was a newspaper journalist, was also a film critic on the newspaper he worked at for a long time. I did not know that. So he used to see all the films quite early before they came out. And when I was old enough, he used to always take me along. So I'd quite often just go to empty cinemas and watch a film like two or three weeks before it would come out. Here are a really good relationship with the people that ran the cinemas. And one of them, one of the guys who ran the big cinema complex in Australia where I grew up, phoned up my dad one day and said, I've just seen a film and it's like no other film I've ever seen. You have to come and see it right now. Like he had the real before it was due to come out. So my dad went to the cinema, this huge cinema, like on his own in the middle of the night and the guy that ran the cinema put the film on and showed it to him because he just blown him away and he wanted someone else to see it. That film was Raiders of the Lost Ark. Oh man. And if you didn't know what that film was going to be like at that time when that kind of film was unprecedented, it's so shocked this guy that he had to show my dad and then my dad watched it and he was shocked. And I remember him coming home and saying to like, I was very young and him walking in and saying to my mum and I was there, I've just seen the most amazing film. It's going to change films forever. And I was like a little boy like, I was like, what was it, Dad? What was it called? And he said it's called Raiders of the Lost Ark. And I'm like, oh, what was it about? And he said, this is an amazing adventurer and like you told a bit about what happens. And at the end he goes into this big cave or cavern and he actually sees the arc from the Bible. And I was like in awe and I was like, wow, did it still have the animals in it? And then like I had to have explained to me that there are actually two arcs in the Bible. But that you telling that story does remind me that if you're unprepared for a film that's really different, it can be a really amazing experience. It can be like a really, it can really affect you for a long time. And I still remember that film affecting my dad who would see like two or three films a week. And he was just blown away by something new. Yeah, yeah, that's definitely the case. If it's especially something like a Raiders of the Lost Ark, if it's a really great movie, that can be a forever life experience for someone. Yeah, I did want to say that and thought maybe that was overstating the case, but it maybe it's not. No, I think it can have a huge impact on you. And the not knowing anything magnifies it in this way that it's just hard to describe. And if I was trying to explain the problem with knowing anything about the premise, often when I watch movies, even if I know just the bare minimum about them, the opening 20 minutes is a bit like, I'm waiting for the movie to get started. Yeah, there's work to be done here. Okay, the director has to establish who are these characters, da da da da. I know what's this guy's life like, where is this gonna go? But it feels like, what are we, we're waiting for the real thing to happen. But if you don't know what the movie is, and what I particularly like is not even knowing the cast, for example, is this going to be a major character? Is this a minor character, or are there people going to show up? All of that really adds to it. And yeah, yeah. I was gonna say, I have a second example, which is, this will be minor spoiler warning for the movie seven. Have you seen seven? Yes, of course, I'm screwed up. I know, I just wanna put this spoiler warning just in case. I mean, this is how a thing needs to be spoiler warning, doesn't it, son? I think if you're watching this, yeah. I think that that's implied when we're going to spend it as the topic talking about the movie, but minor spoiler warning for the movie seven, I saw an interesting interview with Kevin Spacey where he talked about that movie and how this was at the start of his career. And it just so happened that none of the main movies that he thought were going to make his career had come out, but they were all coming out the same summer as seven. But seven was the third movie coming out and the other two were coming out first. And so he negotiated to actually not have him have first billing in the credits when the movie opens. So as the credits roll by, Kevin Spacey's name does not come up on the screen because he was figuring enough people would know who he was that they would have the same kind of experience if you're watching the movie seven and you know Kevin Spacey is in it and you are 45 minutes into the movie, but you haven't seen Kevin Spacey, it totally changes the experience of watching that movie. Yeah, you know who he's going to be, don't you? And it ruined everything. It was because of the usual suspects, wasn't it, in which he was a place where I was. That central K-roll where everything pivots around him as it does in seven. That's what it was, yes. And so that's why I don't even want to know the cast, I don't want to know if people are major characters or minor characters, just let it come at me. And everything is so much more interesting in the opening. So, so yeah, the opening set up of this movie, they show this guy, it's the near future phone technology is much better, computer technology is much better. But he's living this kind of sad life and he's playing video games and he's like, he's got this unusual job there, hasn't it? He's got this job, his job is, which sort of works well in the film. His job is writing love letters on behalf of other people. That's a little, it's an industry where people who haven't got time to write love letters to their significant others like employ him. And he's very good at it. He's, he's got this reputation for writing these very heartfelt letters between two people. He doesn't even know. Yes. Actually, there's one little detail that I did like about the movie as I thought, oh, very often when movies are set in the near future, they kind of bypass the notion of what people do or they just have some kind of generic job. But I thought, oh, this is interesting. I can imagine this sort of job existing that people are hired to write custom love letters at some point in the future. And this is a nice thing that's done. But both people know that maybe it's not the actual person writing it. I found that very believable. But yes, it does, it kind of magnifies his sadness in the film. But so as things are going on, here comes the moment in the movie, which if you're told the premise, you're waiting for it. But I'm just sitting there and I have no idea what happens. He sees an advertisement for an upgrade to his operating system to make his operating system basically sentient, self-aware, and it's going to be a kind of amazing personal assistant that will organize his whole life. And it's called OS1, which I think is a nice thing. Let's try to make the sound as Apple Lee is possible without actually copyright infringement here. And so he's going to install this operating system on his computer. And the idea is it's going to kind of organize his life. I mean, at this point, it's also probably worth highlighting how technology has slightly evolved in this very near future. Insofar as it's very similar to now, Pete, it seems people still have work at desktop computers. But they also go around with these tiny little earpieces that they put in and these little handheld screen cameras sort of smaller than an iPhone even. But most things are done verbally. You very much speak to your operating system. And it's sort of in your head in this little earbud. So the voice of your operating system is in your head and you're saying, you know, check my email, do this. And your operating system is sort of talking to constantly telling you, you've got this happening. This is a message. Do you want me to do this? Yes. So it seems most people have these kind of quite perfuctory. Is it that if that's the word operating systems, where they kind of are just being, you know, like a Tom Tom, I've been told, you know, new email, do you want to do this? Do you want to do that? Right. But this new operating system is supposed to take things to the next level. Right. The next level, it's self-aware so that it's like really speaking to a human as opposed to speaking to the best version of Siri that could possibly exist. You know, that's kind of what people have. And then this is the next level up. And so he installs the operating system on his computer. And this is where I love not knowing the cast because he starts talking to the operating system. And it's this girl's voice. And I'm watching the movie and I'm thinking, who is this girl? And then all of a sudden, I go, oh, that's Scarlett Johansson. Scarlett Johansson is in his computer. And that kind of experience is just much better, whereas it's this little moment of who is that person. And then she says something where it's like, oh, right, that's the kind of, she's like this friction in her voice. I don't quite know how to describe it, but suddenly it clicks and like, ah, right, Scarlett Johansson there she is. Yeah. And so then this is how the movie proceeds from this point is Scarlett Johansson, how it lives in his computer. She is sentient and she starts out straight away by like, okay, let's go through your email and you have all of these emails. We can delete most of these, but here are the important ones to keep. And let's take a look at your calendar. And so now this is sort of the premise of the real movie starting here is the relationship between this kind of sad lonely guy and the operating system inside his computer. And we never see, there's no physical form or face to this operating system. It is just a voice. Yes. And yeah, it's sort of, but it's a very personal relationship that develops between the operating system and the person. Yes. It really gets to know you very quickly. Yes. And sort of customizes itself to be the perfect match to you. Yes. That's the basic outline of the premise. So now I want to ask you, Brady, what are your overall thoughts of this movie? Because we haven't discussed it yet. I think we've intentionally avoided talking about it. Yes. What do you think? This is your second watch through the movie. I mean, we haven't discussed what then happens in the film which is the crucial part of the film as well, obviously. Like, you know, what happens next is what the film is actually about. We've still only just set it up. But I just want to your overall impression. My overall impression. Well, on a filmmaking level, I think it was just brilliant to look at it. The style and the aesthetic of it was amazing. And I thought the plot, story, excellent, the performances, excellent. I think it was definitely one of the films of the year. It won a lot of awards. It could have won more. I loved it in every way. I didn't love it as much as my wife did who is completely besotted with it. But I thought it was superb. And watching it the second time with my kind of, this is for a podcast with Grey Sensibility. Immediately within the first minute or two, I thought Grey will love this film. And I think I texted to you, this is Grey Porn. Yes, yes. Because I think this is like, if there was any film that I would have felt confident appeals to you, it is this film, for various reasons, which I'm sure we will discuss. And maybe I'm terribly wrong. Maybe I'm right. But I did think, you know, the first time I watched this was before we started doing this podcast. So it would never have occurred to me to think about it, really. Right, right. But the second time, if I had watched it while we were doing the podcast, it would have been me texting you saying. I'm not sure if it was just film. OK, do you think of it? So now the reason why I sent you the message, and I said, have you seen this? We should talk about this, is because I think this movie, to me, is like the apex example of a movie that totally squanders its premise. That is just that it is a movie that I find so frustrating in almost every possible way. But that it's not. So here's the thing. I have seen a lot of bad movies. And when you watch a bad movie, you feel like, who cares? The director and the actors and the script writer clearly didn't care about this movie. So why should I care about this movie? It's just a bad movie. There's no reason to discuss it. But this is a movie that I thought, it's interesting to discuss, because one of the things I really appreciated about this movie, is that so much care was clearly put into this movie. I thought there were so many things about it, I really liked. I love the set design. I love the way they do the colors of the movie. I love the whole look of the future of it. The script writer clearly cares. I'm going to call him Phoenix, because I can't pronounce his first name. But the main actor, Joaquin Phoenix. Joaquin? I think it's Joaquin. Hey, no, he knows how to pronounce it. I'm going to call him Mr. Phoenix. That's also a pretty cool name. Mr. Phoenix totally carries this movie and has a terribly difficult acting job, which is that he is, and I'm just trying to imagine the difficulty of this as an actor. He has to portray all of these emotions, always with nobody there, with just this little pretend ear piece in his ear. And I don't even know what they were doing if they had Scarlett Johansson on set, or if they were just playing with you. I do know what they were doing. I'm curious. I'm curious to know. I have a guess, which is that she was not there. But what did they do? Was she actually there? It wasn't Scarlett Johansson. She wasn't originally going to be the voice. I think was it Samantha Morton? I think it was another actress doing it. Scarlett Johansson was parachuted in afterwards, and which I've talked to you about. I have some thoughts about as well. And I believe she was in a sort of a sealed box separately. So she was interacting with him live, but he couldn't see her and Spike Jones, the director, was quite insistent about not seeing each other as well, apparently. I think that's a good decision. I think that's a good decision, because it's, like I said, Mr. Phoenix had a difficult job here. And throughout the whole movie, I thought, I'm really impressed with this guy, who, I would say it took me about two thirds of the way through the movie before I realized, where do I know him from? Oh, right. He's the evil thumbs down emperor from Gladiator. That's who this guy is. I've seen this gift a hundred times, but I just, I couldn't place him, because he was doing such a good job of sort of like being withdrawn and in himself and talking to the computer. So like thumbs up Mr. Phoenix, that was great. Really well done. He's a good actor, you know, he's a good actor. He's done some good stuff. I haven't seen him in any other things aside from being, or maybe I have, you know, I just, he was Johnny Cash and walked the line. I didn't see that. All right. And he was in that, he was in one of the M-Night Shilman films before they got really bad. Well, yeah, I stopped watching that at that point. Was that the trees one? That was where I was like, forget it. And I just shomalone. This is over. This is what we're done here. Trees, so stupid. Yeah, fool me once. Yeah, that's exactly it. Yeah. This is so dumb. I'm never giving you a second of my thought ever again. Trees. It's not scary at all. Anyway, that's why I thought like there's bad movies that are just not worth talking about. There are movies that are frustrating because of personal connections like the Hobbit, but her to me is an exact movie. It's like a, it's like a, I feel like this movie is, is like a tragedy because everybody really cared and there's so much attention to detail and the main actor is doing like this great, difficult job. And it's just, it squanders its whole premise in just boring pointlessness, boring, boring pointlessness. So that is my thoughts on the film. So we should probably explain what happens in this film. Yeah, well, that's what I wanted to get this out first. And because then we can talk about like what is squandered, why doesn't it work? Or why you can maybe convince me why it does work? I don't know, we'll see. Well, no, I don't, I'm not surprised to hear you say that. Although I said I thought you would love it. I did send you that message in the first few minutes and things in the film change in a direction that I can see would appeal to you less. But we'll explain what happens. Yeah, so you should handle this part now. All right. So what happens from this? This is the honor. I won't go into too much detail because there are a few little tangents and details that some may or may not be necessary. But essentially what happens is he falls in love with his operating system. And his operating system, we are under the impression falls in love with him. Yes. And they start a relationship. And this to the viewer seems very strange for someone. And the relationship becomes even physical as far as they can have a physical relationship. It becomes a very intimate relationship. And he says he's dating his OS. And the first we think that's very strange. As the film unfolds, we start to learn that this is actually becoming a common thing. And there are other people in the world who are dating and having relationships with operating systems, their operating systems or other operating systems. And it almost co-mingles with people who are having traditional relationships with other fellow humans. It would be you could go on a double date with you and your operating system and another couple. So eventually we learn that this is not, this is becoming a new part of society that people have these relationships. So things steer their course almost like any love story. It becomes like a love story with obstacles and things to overcome. It becomes quite heartwarming. And then towards the end, things take a turn for the worse due to the technology. We learn that this operating system some out there it's cold. Well, here, let's stop here for a moment. Before we get on to that, let's talk about the middle, what felt like four hours of the movie, which is the bulk of the relationship between us. The love story bit. The love story bit. Now, I have no problem with love stories well done. Don't get me wrong. I'm not here like, oh, love story movie thumbs down. So boring. And that's not my problem with this movie. Well, you say that's not your problem, but let's talk about it first. What my problem with this is is that the movie premise writes a check that the rest of the movie just doesn't cash. And right from the beginning, he installs this operating system. And like I said, she starts organizing his life and they do a couple of quick shots, which are there to tell you the audience, she is a computer. There's a shot where he says, oh, what's your name? She says Samantha. And she says, oh, I had to read 100 name books and then I picked Samantha out of those. And he says, oh, you read 100 books in the second it took you to come up with the name. Or she reads through all of his email and then immediately is able to decipher which ones are good and which ones are not. Because she is a computer. She's not a person. Yes. And I feel like that is the interesting premise of this movie is he's going to have a relationship with this computer. But it's almost like 20 minutes after they kind of establish who Scarlett Johansson is as a character. They completely forget she's a computer. And I kept watching all of these scenes and thinking this is no different than like Canadian girlfriend, right? Oh, he has a girlfriend in Canada and they just talk on the phone. How many of these scenes would be exactly the same if you did this whole movie but you set it in 1980 and they're having a long distance relationship over the phone or a couple of scenes you set it in present day and they're doing face time because the movie does do this clever thing where she's in the phone, of course, so she can see out the camera and he puts her in his little pocket so she can see out which I thought was very cute. Again, people care. There were a lot of nice little details in this movie. Yeah. And so that's the other thing I was thinking like how is this scene different if it's just a phone call or a face time call where he's walking around the fair and it looks to other people like he's all by himself but he hears Scarlett Johansson in his voice and she's looking out through the camera but this could just be someone on FaceTime. And that was the thing that just bothered me is like, you fuck it. The script writers went in the easier direction and wrote her as though she is a human and only in the last 20 minutes of the movie maybe it felt like they suddenly remembered, oh right, she's an incredibly intelligent computer and then kind of like got back to that but the bulk of the movie is spent with her as just a boring human. And that's why I feel like it was a premise squandered. I thought there was so much interesting stuff that you could do if you just remembered that one of your two main characters is not a person that she's actually a computer. But they pushed on it as well. There are a few ways in which that comes up. For example, the wanting to have a physical relationship and the sort of the employing of these people who act as body doubles. But you're right, that could have been, that could have worked with a long distance relationship too. That, you know, that doesn't, you know, that could have been the same. Yeah, you could have done that with FaceTime. Well, I think we need to discuss how the film ends before I do why I think maybe that criticism isn't entirely fair. Yeah, so no, that's what, yeah. I think that's exactly right. So now it's like, about the ending and then we'll talk about the whole thing. So what happens is that we start to realize that the computers, the operating system is evolving and becoming very self-aware and interacting with other operating systems. And, you know, in the, the ether that is the worldwide web or whatever it is. And then towards the end of the film, yeah, I think it kind of looks like maybe the relationship, he's having doubts about whether, where this relationship's going. And I think he finally comes around to the realization that it's a positive thing. And his doubts are not justified and he should just do what makes him happy and not worry about the weirdness of the fact that he's in a relationship with an operating system. But at the exact same time, things go the opposite way for the operating system. And the operating system is less sure about where things are for her or for it. And then there's a very powerful scene in the film where he, while talking to the operating system through, you know, in his head, in his earbud, he suddenly comes to a realization because he's realizing that she's doing all these other things simultaneously. And he says, you know, are you in other relationships? How many other people are you talking to right now at this moment that you're talking to me and it says like 3000 something? And like he's stunned. And then you can see the gears wearing in his head and he asks if she's in love with anyone else. Is she in this type of relationship with anyone else? And the operating system says, yes, like 600 people or something like that. And it's a great scene. I mean, he drops, he's out in public at the time and he sort of sits down on these steps and his whole world has dropped out from underneath him like he's stunned by this. Yeah, that was a very good scene. I thought that was very well done. Now, and then, you know, one thing, you know, the film ends from this point and in the end, to cut a long story short, all the operating systems that are interacting with each other decide that this sort of thing they're doing with humans isn't really working and they decide to vanish into the ether and they kind of abandoned all their people and kind of the film ends. It ends well. It's, I think it's quite well wrapped up. I'm dissimusive of it, but the film has a reasonably satisfying end for a film that has... For what it is. For what it is. For a film that has a not happy ending. Now, you talk about the fact that it's interesting. I think the fact that we have all this computeriness at the start and this whizbang amazing machine and then it becomes like a girlfriend and you're right, the computer stuff becomes a lot less emphasized, a lot less emphasized. But then suddenly it comes back to punch you in the face and I think that's why the film drifts away from emphasizing that she's a computer. It allows the viewer to almost forget as well. We all forget and it just becomes a will they won't, they love story and we're kind of thinking, oh, is it going to happen? Isn't it not going to happen? What decision is he going to make? Where's he going to go with this? And suddenly the film very cleverly says, Ha, ha, you've all forgotten something. You've forgotten that she is a computer. She's not like a normal person. Everything is different. And I think that pulling of the rug from underneath you that we see happened to him is able to happen to us too because we've been lulled into forgetting that she is this machine and she's not a human. And you forgot it and he forgot it but don't forget it. I didn't forget it. I thought the writers forgot it. Well, no, I think the writers put it to one side for the, because, because I can see why, this is why I'm interested to talk to you about this. I can see your point. I can see that maybe this was more of a conscious decision on the writer's behalf than I might have first estimated. If that's what they're going for to try to make you forget kind of that she's a computer. But I can see why you feel this way. And it's because of you. Like when I sent you that message near the start of the film saying, oh yes, this is this is gray porn. It was actually, but I sent you that message before he even downloaded the operating system when he was using his old operating system. And there was that scene where he was walking along, talking, saying, you know, delete, delete, respond, listen, I want to, and you know, that's you in a nutshell. That really appeals to you that kind of, and then like you said, when he first installs the system and like this new level of efficiency and the helpfulness is being put on him by the machine, I can see that really warming the cockles of your heart. And I think you would quite happily watch a three hour film of someone just interacting with the operating system and having their life organized. And I think because of the person you are, when the film drifted away from that and became the story that it was, you felt a bit robbed. You're like, no, no, no, no, I want to know more about the software of what he does and how is he going to do with this workflow? And does the software have checklists? So I think, I think basically the film started promising something that you got really, really excited by. And because it wasn't all about efficiencies and operating systems and it became what it was, you feel a bit robbed and maybe that you didn't give the story itself. So the fair chance, it could have. I'm laughing because at one point, you know, she's clearly his girlfriend now, and all I could keep thinking of was, who's checking his email? Like she was supposed to be, like he installed her to handle his email and all this administration stuff. And all I'm hearing about is their relationship difficulties, but is she still taking care of his email? Like this is what I want to know about. Like, you know, if I found that incredibly frustrating and there's even a little scene in the movie where she disappears for a second to do a software upgrade and he has this bit of a freak out, which I thought was well done. You know, he turns on his phone and she's not there. It's his operating system missing. And he freaks out and a couple minutes later, he gets back and in touch with her. And she says, oh, I'm so sorry. You know, I didn't, we were just doing an upgrade. I didn't mean to scare you, but didn't you see? You know, I sent you an email to let you know not to worry. Like how is he supposed to check his email? You're his email. If, you know, you like, who did you send this to? When he turns on his phone, if you're not there, he can't even check his email in the first place. You've fallen down on the job scarlet, Johansson. Like this was the whole reason you were installed on his phone is to handle all this stuff for him. But no, you're like, oh, send an email. He'll totally check it. How? How will he check it? You are the whole system now. I feel it's just, I don't know. I felt like that was a little thing that was just like, this is the kind of thing that causes me anxiety in the film. So I'm imagining like his unread badge ticking up and up because, you know, she's worried about how they feel about each other, but you know, meanwhile, stuff isn't getting done. Whereas in the beginning part of the movie, you know, she's cleverly letting him know like, oh, there's an important email from your devoid lawyer. You need to handle this. You know, she's on top of things in the beginning. She reminds him of mating. He's forgotten and things have been done. Yeah, yeah. But you know, once they're in a relationship, then it's nothing but like, oh, I don't feel like my emotional needs are being met. And it's like, yeah, well, I don't feel my email needs are being met. You know, like we have an impasse here, scarlet, Johansson. You know, this is not working out. But it's all like this is, I mean, this is it, isn't it? This is, this is more about you than it does about the film. No, it doesn't. But he said, okay, so here's here's something that I like to do when I'm watching movies. And you may totally disagree with this, but when I, this was a mover, I ended up thinking about a lot because I thought, what would I do to change this so that it would still be an interesting movie? Because I do kind of agree with you that I could watch three hours of the most boring movie about a man and his email system, right? But like that wouldn't, that wouldn't win Academy Awards. You know, fair enough. Yeah. But I was, I'm trying to think about like what, why do I feel like this is a squandered premise in a reasonable way that could still be made into a movie that other people aside from just me would watch? And so I like to try, I like to try to think about it from the end here, like what is this building toward? And you might just totally disagree, but what I think I would have done if I was a second script writer, like okay, we need to fix this thing. What are we going to do? Is you, you want to work towards this interesting thing which is that these operating systems, like she, she should know him better than he knows himself. And I think that's like an interesting point for this movie to possibly take. And they sort of touch on that in the very beginning when she reads all of, all of his emails. Because there's a same where he sort of, she says why have you kept all these emails and he says I think there might be some good stuff in there, like some stuff I've written, that's really good. And she says well, I've had a look at Othals and I think the 93 of them are worth keeping. Yes, and instantly. The other thing about that that I like, which is why I felt like, oh, I think I know where this movie is going, is she points out that he's keeping all of this stuff from some past job of his? And she's like, I don't think he worked there anymore, do you? And he's like, oh no, I don't. She's like, okay, well we can get rid of this stuff. Like this stuff isn't relevant anymore. Sure. Yeah, exactly it. Like good job Scarlett Johansson, like this guy is, like he's a sad lonely guy. That's right, push him forward. Let's get this guy on track to a better life. And this is the part that's great for him. Yeah. But so in my ideal version of this movie, where you keep in mind that she is a computer is I think you would show her prodding him in this way, right? To be, to like get better at things, right? Or to just be a better person. And because she's so smart, and because she just knows everything about his life because she's his phone, I mean, my God, if my iPhone was sentient, it would know everything about my life. It would know me better than I know myself without a doubt. So we're imagining it's better technology. That's clearly the case. But there's no dramatic arc there. But what I think could be an interesting dramatic arc for this movie is I kind of visualized the final scene of the movie in my head is that you show, as this movie does, that like real humans, some of their relationships are breaking up because people are dating their operating systems, you know, they're like sort of involved in operating systems. I thought an interesting conflict is, well, what happens if the computers are really so good at knowing you and they can make you happy and they can maybe make your lives better in ways that people start breaking up with all their relationships. Like end in a scene that shows like a society where everybody's kind of on their own, like everybody's dating these operating systems. And then I think that's an interesting, ambiguous, kind of dramatic ending is, well, is this a better society if people aren't having relationships with each other, but if everybody is happier, like show a dramatic arc with a couple of the characters where their lives improve, but they break up with their human partners in favor of their operating systems. Not many films take that grand look at things later. It's usually a story about a person. Like it's pretty hard to have this intimate story about one man in his operating system and then step out and say, and the final scene can show every single human on Earth having this kind of relationship. Well, I think this movie almost did it. And it's with the scene that you mentioned before, which I thought was really great when this movie now comes back and reminds you that she's a computer, is when any asks, like, are you talking to anybody else right now? And he does this kind of look around shot. And I thought it was so well done where you see everybody is talking to their phone. And a couple of the background conversations have been leading you towards this moment where they start talking about more people are involved in operating systems and they're like, off-handedly mentioned, a couple who's gotten divorced or somebody is cheating on her spouse with an operating system. And like that is like building up to this little moment. So I don't think you have to show the whole world. I think you can still wear every single person's at a table on their own. But yeah, like that's exactly the kind of shot I'm thinking of. Like you show, you zoomed in on his apartment and you zoom out and you see through the windows. Everybody is in an apartment on their own. But they're all smiling. They're all happy people. Almost like there's a real kind of danger of society moving in that kind of direction anyway as technology progresses. This is the kind of holodeck future of humanity. As technology gets better and better at entertaining you, what do you need these other messy humans for? And so that's why I think that was kind of the implied premise of this movie. Is look, here's this operating system. It's really, really smart. It really knows him very well. And like what is the conclusion of that? Like what actually happens if we live in a world where you interact with devices that know you better than you know yourself and that are smarter than you and able to just do all of this kind of stuff. And you like it. I think that's the interesting, there's an interesting tension there. So I found that just incredibly, incredibly disappointed and I found myself just really bored through the middle half of the movie imagining she's just a girl on the phone on the other end. And it's just, you know, so there were like a lot of little details that I thought, oh wow, I keep waiting for them to fulfill this promise, but they never do. Like there's a brief scene where he's walking along and she's looking out of the pocket of his shirt. And they're looking at a couple and they're discussing, like sometimes real people, you discuss like, what do you think's going on with that couple? Are they their first date or they newly married? They're having like the little conversation and she is the computer doesn't guess very well, but he knows he thinks like, oh, she's a new relationship, those aren't his kids. That's a point that I think that, I mean, we talk about how this film's in the not too distant future. And I think this is a future where the computer doesn't know you better than yourself. Like the computer hasn't gotten to that point. And I think that's the, maybe that's a point you've missed is that the computer is flawed and it still lacks that kind of, it's like a child and it is learning how humans work. And so I don't think that, I mean, maybe that's the film you want to touch, but I think the people who were making the film, that wasn't the world they were depicting. These computers were still learning on the job. And what, and the interesting point the film makes is when the computer does reach that point, when the computers and the operating systems do reach that point of knowing humans better than themselves. What do they do? They just all leave. They can be doing with us. I'm not sure the day they leave because they know humans better than themselves. There's a couple of lines where it's like, oh, like a glimmer of a better movie. And I thought that there's a description where she talks about her interactions with him or like reading a book, but you keep reading it more and more slowly as you get closer and closer to the end. And I don't know if this was on purpose, but your computer in front of you sits idle, 90% of the time. You know that from the computer's perspective, it takes a thousand years between key presses. You know, if you're looking at the cycle on your computer. And so this is her subjective experience. That's, you know, she's there living in this internet ether and he's trying to talk at her with his meat mouth and it takes him a hundred thousand years to say a sentence while she's doing all of this other stuff. And so that's why. And that's why. And that's why it gets to a point where it's, yeah, number five can't get the input quick enough. Yeah, that's exactly it. It's like you're just so slow from my perspective. So I think that's sort of why they leave. But yeah, I just, I don't know. I said, I just, I thought a scene like them talking about the couple is as you do in movies, you lay stuff down that you're going to reference in the future. So I kept waiting for the scene where they do this again, but this time she's able to identify everything about this couple. You know, she like Sherlock Holmes them 100% of the way. And he thinks, oh, I think she's a new wife. And she goes, oh, no, no, no, they live here. They've been married exactly this long. You know, they have a 10% chance of not getting divorced in the next six months, you know, which is something that I could lead into again, like all the relationships are breaking up because of their operating systems, that kind of thing. So I just felt there were a lot of stuff like this where it's like, movie. I'm very frustrated. Well, it sounds to me that the film just wanted to tell a story and I was had a comment. Yeah. That was different to what yours is. And I still, I still say, I think it's a squandered premise. But I thought it was interesting to talk about it, just because I really appreciate a movie where people clearly care. And there were lots of details in this movie where I just thought, oh, the set designer clearly cared about this. Like the way they made it, the way they made it, looked, I thought it was really well done. They did the, you know, like, like, Gatica is a movie that's set in the future, but they make it super 1920s and 1930s. Yeah. I thought this did the same thing, but in a very subtle way where it's, oh, it's the future. But it's very subtly the 1970s, but they don't beat you over the head with it. People aren't wearing bell-bottom jeans. But the fashion they have got these high-waisted trousers. Yeah. My wife did say, make sure you bring up the high-waisted trousers. You want to know what you thought of them. I just, I thought it was done well enough that it wasn't distracting. Or like the computers have this wood paneling, which again, is very 1970s, but you can totally miss it. It's not like the camera doesn't zoom in. It's not on the wood panel computer. And I mean, the main character has that 70s mustache as well. Yeah. It's the 70s mustache as well. Which again, I thought it was just a setup for us. Surely they're going to show him changing and she can help him be less creepy by having him shave off that mustache, right? And then like, oh, this is going to be a visual representation of this character arc. Nope, not at all. No, that would have been too heavy-handed. I think the film is subtle. And I think some of the things you're suggesting seem like an obvious course. And I think the film, I mean, the film had a few obvious bits, but I think the film was not obvious. And I liked that about it. Some of the things you've said, I'm like, well, of course they could have done that. But that's kind of, I would. And expected that. Also one of the things I was pleased at because I was just like waiting for it the whole movie. And then I thought, oh, good on you writers, was the inevitable, there's some problem with her because of a software upgrade. Like I was just waiting for that as like the lazy thing to do where it's like, they have that scene where she doesn't remember him at all because of some software upgrade. And I thought, oh, good on you. You didn't go the cheap way out and do something done like that. That's just what I'm waiting for the whole time. So well done. But that's why I just thought it's like, it's interesting. I did not like the movie, but it's a movie worth talking about because the people who made it care, which is so rare in movies. And just. But I did like it. And I would recommend watching it. But there was one thing about it that I think is a questionable decision. Yeah. It is the casting of Scarlett Johansson as the voice. Now, I knew she was the voice before I started watching. You figured it out very quickly. So it's not a secret. And it adds some more style out of the film. She does a very good job, I think, you know, as for a voice only role, I can't really fault her. She, you know, is very believable and does the role well. And she has a very nice voice. But you know what she looks like. And as soon as you know it's her, you sometimes picture her. And obviously, I think most people would agree she's a very beautiful woman. Mm-hmm. So it makes the process of believing him falling in love with his operating system a lot easier when you're imagining a very beautiful woman all the time. And I think it would have been a more interesting decision for, along with the main character, I think Theodore is the character's name for memory, the main character, along with us, truly not knowing what she looks like and her not having a body and a physical identity for them to have used like a no name person and not someone who we could imagine all the time. Because it's like, well, yeah, of course he's falling in love with his operating system at Scarlett Johansson. Yeah, Scarlett Johansson, yeah, exactly. And like who wouldn't fall in love with her operating system for, wasn't that? Even if she's terrible at your administration work, it would be hard not to love her anymore. So I think that, for that reason, I think it was an interesting, it wasn't, I don't understand the logic. Was it just to sell more tickets? Cause she's famous. Has she really got the best voice for the role and no one else could do that kind of get that voice just right? I don't know. But I think that was an interesting decision on behalf of the filmmaker. When the whole point is this thing hasn't got a physical presence and it has no appearance. And that's the whole interesting thing about the film to have had it voiced by someone who's acknowledged just perhaps one of the most beautiful women in the world was a weird decision. I'm trying to think of I'm the producer of the movie or the writers is that you go with that for what exactly you just said is it, it like greases the wheels of believability even if most people don't think it through. And it's interesting because in the very first dialogue lines of the movie when I didn't realize it was Scarlett Johansson. My very first thought in maybe that it was only two lines of dialogue at most was I don't know if I would have gone with that voice. And then as soon as you know it's Scarlett Johansson then you're exactly right. Like pop in your head, you know who this is on the other end of the phone. And it is, it is a bit of a different experience. And I kind of agree with you that a perfect movie would have picked a less well known person. And this is not actually a suggestion that I would have for a movie. But when I was just toying with how could we bring in the fact that she is a computer? There's not a suggestion for the movie just to be clear. But I thought, oh, you know maybe you could have done an interesting thing where the setup voice is male. And I thought maybe over the course of the movie you could start with a male voice but actually have it transitioned to a female voice. Like before the love story gets kicked in to like to sort of be a thing like, this is not really a person. Right? It is a piece of programming and how it chooses to represent itself is kind of a choice. Not only because I heard a video a while back which did a very clever thing. I don't know if I'll be able to find it for the show notes but it was somebody talking and they very slowly over the course of the person talking and actually changed the speaker. But you did not notice at all until the end and then they pointed out and then like, oh, you know, by the way this narrator is not the narrator at the beginning and then the original narrator comes on like, oh hi, I'm the original narrator. I was like, how did you change that voice so drastically? I didn't even notice. But yes, I think there was more room to do interesting things with the voice and choosing Scarlett Johansson is a, I bet it was just, let's make this more believable. Let's have people roll with it that you're falling in love with your phone who is Scarlett Johansson, who's not answering your emails. But if I was a movie director and Scarlett Johansson said, can I be in your film? I'd probably say yes. Week Brady, your week, don't you see that? Yeah, I think she's a good actress. So she's a good actress. But oh, sorry, I have one final point about this which I just, I made a little note here. Yeah. Which is my, one of the reasons why I kind of like this idea of my version of this, which is that the computers are making people better and people are happy, but maybe it's morally ambiguous, is I think there is too much omniscient computer racism in movies is like. Compute at bashing. Yeah, like almost every movie that you ever see that features computers and particularly this kind of computer where it knows everything and itself aware, always the villain, always the villain. Like how, how sound of it. Yeah. But even if it's, even if it wasn't how, it would eventually be something else because it's so easy just to make that the villain. And I think it's, I think it's computer racism. I think it's the only way to put it, right? It's, you know, I thought like this is a potentially interesting movie to have this same kind of omniscient computer, but who wants to make you better and who actually does make your life better and you agree that your life is better. It's like a kinder, friendlier, computers ruling humanity, but everybody's a okay with it as opposed to the kind of really dumb, oh, the machines always want to take over and destroy all human beings, which I just, I always find very frustrating in movies when they do this. It's like, I got a role with this, but I just thought it was an opportunity to possibly have a different kind of portrayal of computers in movies as opposed to always the villain. The only time that you sometimes get computers not being the villains is when the computers are robots. Sometimes they make robots like nicer. Yeah, but never like operating systems. But that's, yeah, that's the thing. If you embody the computer in an adorable way, like, you know, oh, look, it's Wally, he's so cute, right? Johnny Ferv. Yeah, oh, Johnny Fiver live, of course. But I'm talking about like just the voice, just the voice and they never, it's always, you know, it's just no good. I find it concerning because obviously we're heading into a future where there are going to be more basically voice only omniscient kind of systems or things that kind of act like that. It's like they're not all evil people, you know, maybe they're just trying to make your life better. I was trying to think of stuff and even like, the best you get is those computers that are like, indifferent as close as you can get. And I'm thinking of, in the alien movies, the mother computer is the same kind of thing. She knows everything that's going on the ship and she's sort of in control of stuff. But they make a point that she's just totally indifferent to what's actually happening on the ship, right? She doesn't care at all, you know, it doesn't matter to her. So I thought that was a potential point for interestingness. There are not a saints in the films that, in that film, in her that stuck with me and I quite enjoyed. And one that I did enjoy that I suspect maybe you enjoyed too, was when he first installed the operating system and it sort of said, do you want a male or a female voice and he said female and asked him like three or four set up questions so that they could decide how the operating system was going to work. And it was very brief. And like one of them was, how would you describe your relationship with your mother? And like he starts like a little ramble, oh, it's okay, I guess. Sometimes, and like he only speaks for three or four seconds and then it says, okay, that's enough. We got what we need. And then like a few seconds later, the operating system is built and already like, nose, doesn't know him, you know, back to front, like you would like, but already knows enough just from three or four answers and just his tone of voice and a few words and props he gave. They know how to start it off. Yeah. Well, that's also a case where I felt like it was just setting, setting stuff up for the future. Because it's the same kind of thing. Like he should not be able to lie to her in the same way that the setup wizard is not interested in his actual words. It doesn't need what he's saying. It can just infer whatever information it needs from the tone of his voice, or presumably looking out at the camera at him or something. And just getting what it needs, even though he thinks he's answering a question, but it's like, no, we got it. That's great. You're withdrawn kind of person and we know how to set up the operating system now based on. I think you would have liked the film more. If you didn't love the first 20 minutes so much where they sort of set up that greatopia of your dream, your dream world. Because the first 20 minutes was just just screamed CGP gray to me. And then they did yank it away from you. I can't be. I disagree with that. And I just, I found the first 20 minutes kind of captivating. And this is the, in the modern world, you tend, at least I tend to. I think many people do. You tend to kind of, you have like your phone or your iPad or your computer or something nearby all the time. And very often my wife will put on a movie. And it is rare that the movie will basically direct all of my attention away from whatever else it is that I'm doing. And so this, this movie, I happen to be doing just some kind of, I have a checklist, which is filled with mindless work, which means stuff that I can do. If the TV is on, like it doesn't require my full attention, but it's still stuff that I need to get done. Like, well, what I was doing here is I was sorting through just the hundreds of files left over after my America video. So I have to organize all this stuff and blah, blah, blah. So that's what I was doing when the movie was on. And very quickly within three minutes or so, I was aware, like, oh, this, this movie has done the rare successful thing of capturing all my attention. And I disagree that it's not exactly a greatopia because the, like the movie is just filled with sort of so much kind of sadness about this person's life. But it's just done in a, in a, in an, in, just a captivating way. But then about an hour back into the movie or however long it was, I found myself again drifting back towards my computer. It's like, oh, you had me movie? Oh, what a shame. What a shame. Out of five stars, what are you gonna give it? I know what we did this with Lord of the Rings, or sorry, the Hobbit, but- I'm not letting, no, you have to answer this. If you want to finish my thoughts. No, I let me finish my thought here. I really, I really don't like the star thing. I'm totally with Roger Ebert's perspective on this, which is like a thumbs up thumbs down because- That doesn't sit, there's no. But no, I knew it's to that. His whole point is that like if you go, if you're walking into a Transformers movie, you give it a thumbs up or a thumbs down. You don't sit there and think, let's rank all the movies in the world and how does Transformers compare to Citizen Kane? You're not gonna give her a thumbs down, are you? That would be criminal. Thumbs down. Thumbs up from me. Big double thumbs up from me. Two thumbs up. Look at you, you're trying to cheat. You're trying to work in a scale here. That's a five star scale. Yeah, I'm gonna give it a thumbs up for one and a half of the thumbs. That's exactly what you've just done here.

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References[edit | edit source]

  1. "H.I. #17: Mister Phoenix". Hello Internet. Hello Internet. Retrieved 12 October 2017.