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FutureStarrStar Wars Retro Futurism
One of the most fascinating ideas in Futurism is about looking backward to see the skyscrapers of the future. The Retro Futurists are the stars of this phenomenon. This group of pioneers looks back in order to. . . be old fashioned. They imagine a cornucopia of the automatons and Jules Verne characters that would have been the stars of a 1930s science-fiction movie.
Star Wars has always played fast and loose with technology. This is both a cinematic weakness, and paradoxically, an advantage. More technologically savvy, genuinely futuristic canons like Star Trek invariably look dated. (The iPhone, for instance, made the Star Trek communicator feel like a phone you’d fob off on a prepubescent child.) Consciously dated from the start — the X-Wing is a World War II plane beneath its shields and S-foils, the podracer an illogical extension of American Graffiti’s drag racers. Moore’s Law holds no sway here — and thank goodness for that.
But the insanity of Star Wars’ technology is part of what makes the movies work. That technologic flippancy lets it ignore real-world science rules with glee, letting the rantings of Neil deGrasse Tyson-types from the gutters of Twitter bounce off like so many deflected ion blasts. You can’t hear sound in space — so trench runs shouldn’t be pierced by the scream of twin ion engines — and thanks to aerodynamics, the iconic design of the Millennium Falcon would mean disintegration in Earthy atmospheres. But to worry about such niggles is to argue with Star Wars technology — a fool’s errand at best. (Source: www.inverse.com)
We expect certain storytelling forms to pay special attention to setting. Historical fiction spends a great deal of energy in recreating the past. Fan fiction does something similar for its source material. Science fiction and fantasy fans expect world-building. Rogue One, a combination of all of these forms, does this very well on multiple levels. It is, after all, science fiction, and the Star Wars universe has long had a strong fantasy vibe.
Speaking of cyberpunk, in Rogue One there is no sign of the communications world after the internet. There aren’t any networks. Nobody hacks anything or checks anything online. Coding doesn’t appear to be a thing. There seem to be few networked sensors, as when attack after attack surprises enemies who only detect them visually (i.e., no radar, no distributed sensor arrays). Documents are unique, it seems, and hardly copied. This is true even of military documents—ironic, given that one of the key motivators for creating ARPANET was preserving those very things. Weirdly, communication satellites don’t seem to exist, or at least matter. (Source: www.theatlantic.com)