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  • December bulletin Posted on 05 December 2016

    [This latest update is taken wholesale from the December newsletter. If you'd like to get these emailed to you once a month, sign up here]


    "Science fiction is a field of writing where, month after month, every printed word implies to hundreds of thousands of people: There is change. Look, today's fantastic story is tomorrow's fact"
    -A. E. van Vogt



    No film event this month, but we've got news about January's screening, the podcasts keep coming, and I've had time to give the bookshop a spring (?) clean, so there's a fresh Showcase and new stock and everything.

    Science Fiction Theatre // January
    The film club takes a break in December, but we're back in the new year and we’re getting political (sort of). To 'celebrate' Donald Trump's inauguration on Friday 20th January we're screening The Day After (1983) at Deptford Cinema.

    A graphic and disturbing film about the effects of a devastating nuclear holocaust on small-town residents of eastern Kansas, it was watched by more than 100 million people during its initial broadcast on ABC and is (still) the highest-rated television film in history:

    In the mid-1980s, the U.S. is poised on the brink of nuclear war. This shadow looms over the residents of a small town in Kansas as they continue their daily lives. Dr. Russell Oakes (Jason Robards) maintains his busy schedule at the hospital, Denise Dahlberg (Lori Lethin) prepares for her upcoming wedding, and Stephen Klein (Steve Guttenberg) is deep in his graduate studies. When the unthinkable happens and the bombs come down, the town's residents are thrust into the horrors of nuclear winter…

    Tickets are available to buy from the shop, here, and I'll follow up with more details and a look at the poster in the January newsletter.

    Programme supported by Film Hub London, managed by Film London. Proud to be a partner of the BFI Film Audience Network, funded by the National Lottery: www.filmlondon.org.uk/filmhub

    Science Fiction Theatre // Survey
    If you’ve attended any SFT event this year we’d really appreciate your feedback – what you liked, what you didn’t like, how you heard about us, etc. To that end we’ve set up a very brief online survey for you to fill out. Answers are anonymous, and your input will help us improve our future screenings.

    Science Fiction Theatre Podcast
    Two new podcasts since last I emailed.

    Episode #28 is dedicated to all things The Mist. We discuss its production, its legacy, our favourite moments, and why it was chosen to be screened it at the film club.

    Episode #29 is a general catch-up. Dan and I went to the cinema (together!) to watch Arrival, then went home (separately!) to compare and contrast it with 1997's Contact. We also chat at length about the latest series of Black Mirror.

    You can stream all of our podcasts via the website and/or mixcloud, or you can subscribe, for free, via itunes. If you like what we're doing, please review/share, and get involved - tweet at me (@scifitheatre) or Dan (@HYPHYHUNTLEY) with your views on any of the films discussed.

    Social media round-up
    Bits and pieces of note from the past month:

    • Abandoned in space in 1967, a US satellite has started transmitting again.
    • Stanislaw Lem - 'the man with the future inside him' (worth creating a free account with New Scientist to read this).
    • The Arrival - exploring a "gloriously odd" 90s sci-fi film.
    • Why Ghost in the Shell is still "disturbingly relevant".
    • A look at cinema's earliest extraterrestrials.
    • An interview with Black Mirror production designer Joel Collins.
    • Paul Verhoeven speaks out about the Starship Troopers remake.


    Where to find us:
    The Space Merchants // shop | facebook | twitter | instagram | tumblr | pinterest
    Science Fiction Theatre // events | facebook | twitter | instagram | tumblr

    December Showcase
    This month we're focusing on the life and work of A. E. van Vogt - one of the most popular and complex sf writers of the mid-twentieth century, and master of the intricate, metaphysical Space Opera. A small selection of novels and short story collections in stock:

    Destination: Universe! Away and Beyond The Best of A. E. van Vogt: Volume 1 The Far Out Worlds of A. E. van Vogt The Pawns of Null-A


    We're also taking a closer look at Galaxy - the hugely popular magazine that led to the experimental New Wave, the defining sf literary movement of the 60s. Just the tip of the iceberg (lots more in the shop):

    August 1962 September 1971 April 1967 June 1970 April 1964


    That's it from me for 2016. I hope you all have a pleasant December/festive period.

    Talk to you in the new year


    Next month...
    "It was high in the air, directly above downtown. Like the sun... exploding."
    -The Day After

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