Terry Gilliam's paranoid time-travel labyrinth is less an SF film than a story of the fear of madness, but no less powerful for it
Science fiction and fantasy are like any other fictional mode: they're only as good as the presumptions brought to them.
I don't particularly care if my SF is hard, soft, or mushy; I care whether or not I give a darn about who's in it and what happens.
On the presence of inarticulate, inexpressive prose -- "Engfish" -- in SF&F.
On cheating in a work of fantasy or SF.
Most fantasy stories never confront the idea that magic would have the social impact of the atomic bomb.
"When everyone in the community reads the same books, you can an inward-looking, intellectually impoverished community that can only contemplate its own navel."
On using Zen Buddhist notions of time in writing SF&F.
The job of a storyteller should not be to make things complex, but to find common threads in complex things. Doubly so in SF&F.
An actual SF movie, not just a tarted-up shoot-'em-up, both because of the breadth of its ideas and how they are lovingly personalized.
On the balance between a story with too many rules and not enough.
If there is a "throughline" for our moment in time, it's not something that condenses itself down to the kind of overarching planning found in fiction.
The mere fact that David Lynch's Dune was made at all, and in the Hollywood of the early 1980s to boot, is something of a miracle. Would that it was a better adaptation of the source material, or just a better movie, period.
In a field that's trend-driven, all the most interesting and truly groundbreaking work can only come from the fringes.
Darren Aronofsky's ingenious micro-budget debut, twenty-plus years later, holds up better than some of his bigger-budgeted efforts
The books that made me -- specifically, the SF and fantasy books.
Near-future SF has always struck me as the most precarious kind of SF, because of its sell-by date.
A kooky example of science fiction from Hong Kong, a cinematic world that has relatively little SF to begin with.
Twenty years later, the Wachowskis' digital fable still stands tall, outliving the slickness of the moment and attempts to misappropriate it
How not all fiction has to be "realistic" to be affective, and how new aesthetic standards can follow from that.
Why not propose something truly new, instead of just taking the old and rejugging it?
I didn't leave Star Wars. Star Wars left me. And not in the way you might think.
On how new influences keep every kind of art healthy, including and especially popular arts.
At the end of the day, it's just a fancy excuse to shoot a bunch of scenes in reverse.
How science fiction and fantasy stories live and die by their technical details, for both better and worse.