Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Genre-ally speaking

So, what's new in SF?

First off, what's old is new again. By most rankings of such things, 2001: A Space Odyssey is among the greatest SF films ever. Its trailer? Not so much -- but that's being fixed. Over at Entertainment Weekly, check out "See the new trailer for '2001: A Space Odyssey,' 46 years after its release."

What rankings, you ask? Here's one. Forbes (of all unlikely venues), in response to the recent big-screen release of Interstellar, offers, "Top 10 Best Space Travel Films Of All Time."

I've yet to see Interstellar and -- especially after the scientific travesty that was Gravity (see my April post "A mission of (anti-)gravity" -- I'm conflicted about trying another Hollywood SF blockbuster. Certainly I'll wait till Interstellar is available through Netflix or Amazon Instant Video. And if I hadn't already had my doubts, this, from io9 would have decided the matter: "Stop Putting New Age Pseudoscience in Our Science Fiction." As in, duh, love is not a force of nature like, well, gravity.

Next, let's follow up on, from my October 21st post, "Two worthy SFnal causes." The Museum of Science Fiction -- still in start-up mode -- announced "Howard and Jane Frank generously pledged a $50,000 major gift to get the Museum's Capital Campaign rolling." Generous, indeed! For details, and to see how you can take part, check out that news release.

The Kickstarter for an English-language anthology of Israeli SF did not fare as well. Not even close. With 57 backers, "Zion's Fiction" raised not quite $3.5K -- toward a goal of $65K. The project team is calling it a learning experience, as they explain at length at "Zion's Fiction Huzzah!" Look for them to return -- with a much more modest fund-raising goal-- with sights set on just one stage of a much larger long-term project.

Are you a fan of old-style pulp SF? Or maybe you were as a kid. Either way, you'll be delighted to read that "New Project to Digitize 10,000 Sci-Fi Zines."

"You can follow the digitization of the fanzines at the Hevelin Collection Tumblr, where they’ll be posting progress updates."

My favorite
Christmas ads, if not yet the holidays, are already upon us. Could you use a few SFnal gift ideas? Then check out the choices -- and savings -- at Space.com: "Hey Space Fans! Big Discounts on Stellar Gifts."

Finally -- and this isn't SF; it just feels that way -- don't miss Space.com's terrific image gallery from ESA's Rosetta mission, including last week's landing of the Philae probe on Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko. See "Photos: Europe's Rosetta Comet Mission in Pictures."

(At left is the first image of the Rosetta set -- compare it to the above cover from Phanstasy Press.)

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