måndag, maj 31, 2010


In this humorous science-fiction film the main characters are Ben Crandall (Ethan Hawke), Wolfgang Müller (River Phoenix) and the third 'musketeer' (or 'gremlin') Darren Woods (Jason Presson).

The first two are obsessed with outer space, 'aliens' and the recurrent question: Could there be life 'out there'?
Wolfgang is the technical genius - the nerd - who, in his very particular home has a 'laboratory' of his own, in which he invents all kinds of more or less useful gadgets.
Ben is also very brilliant in his own way but the more adventurous of the three - the explorer - aiming high above the stars in his quest for the 'ultimate truth' about the Universe.
Darren becomes their friend after having saved Ben at school when being bullied by other schoolmates.
This bad behaviour from other schoolmates is due to the fact that both the latter and Wolfgang are regarded as 'earthly aliens' in their school
Wolfgang and Ben succeeds in creating an interplanetary space ship that takes them - and the first hesitating Darren - far away from their suburb, finally meeting extra terrestrials with whom they become friends.

It's a harmless, charming story about adventures, the quest for an eventual 'truth', the will to discover new worlds and other life forms, creatures not resembling us.
The film tries to tackle the question of how to approach others who you initially are afraid of, due both to the fact that they look and act differently and that our knowledge about others is limited and often built on prejudices or imaginative ideas of 'the others'.
Of course it's three children almost being able to achieve this goal and the extra-terrestrials they meet, are revealed being children too, whereby the communication is based on a mutual interest and curiosity - until father E.T. arrives!
Is it the naivety and open-mindedness of children - as long as this still exists with children - that is needed in order to overbridge the communicational boundaries, both on earth and in the Universe?
Stephen Hawking recently said that if we were to be approached by 'aliens'/extraterrestrial life forms, we should be very careful not being to friendly, as there is a greater risk that they are hostile rather than friendly.
On the other hand, Stephen Hawking is not a child!

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