Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Contact’s opening scene

Contact’s opening scene
Now, this is how you open a movie.  It also gives you a preview of the focus of radio signals in the story.  I love hearing the different radio signals, especially the jumbled sounds at the beginning of the pan away from Earth.  I’m guessing we didn’t know that we were pretty much broadcasting ourselves into outer space until the beginning of space travel. 
It is also stunning seeing the scene pull away from Earth to the outer reaches of the cosmos.  It reveals how little we are in the galactic scheme of things. 
There is a great post about how far human radio broadcasts have reached in outer space. It even shows the position. Basically, our first broadcasts have reached somewhere around 100 light years now. Our race will probably be gone by the time some other alien race picks up the signals, but it is interesting to think someone or something will hear them. What will they think when they start getting more and more transmissions?
Now, there is hope that something is detecting them because they have pass through other systems. From, ((This means that at 110 light-years away from earth — the edge of a radio ‘sphere’ which contains many star systems — our very first radio broadcasts are beginning to arrive. At 74 light-years away, television signals are being introduced. Star systems at a distance of 50 light-years are now entering the ‘Twilight Zone’. ))

I know that Contact has it the other way around, but this opening scene is just great.  
-Spice Girls “Wanna be my lover”:  Did you hear that one?
-“Obviously, a major malfunction.”:  Listen carefully.  That line is from the Challenger Space Shuttle Disaster.  It happened right after the explosion.  I was in grade school when that happened.  I am showing my age. 
-“These broken wings will never fly again”
-Dallas theme song
-Sometimes you feel like a nut
-There is a nice touch with signal being chopped up when it runs through the asteroid field. 
-Nixon is not a crook…
-The other nice touch is the degraded signal as it pulls further and further away until nothing.  Listen for the Morse code signal just as the sound drops out. 

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