Friday, April 08, 2016

Hacker Movies

Hacker movies.
There really haven't been a ton that were focused on the hacking. Sneakers, WarGames, Swordfish, The Net. We don't count The Matrix as a hacker movie, right?
And of course, Hackers.
It's kind of odd that few of these movies try to understand the details of the core premise--that is, using a computer. It's like making Bull Durham without understanding the rules of baseball.
Which brings me to the point of this post: Mr. Robot is the best computing-centric entertainment there's ever been. And yet it's on some rando cable network that I haven't watched since USA Cartoon Express went off the air. Why is this?
Hacking is a niche topic. I mean, yes, here in 2016, everyone uses computers and VirtualBoys and Zunes every day but the idea of watching people in movies create drama with ssh commands is... well, pretty niche. So hacker movies don't end up caring about that stuff because, let's face it, no one casts Hugh Jackman and Halle Berry to see if they use curl commands correctly. The production budget of that movie was $102 million dollars. It won't make its money back if the plot isn't entertaining to a wide audience, and technical topics like trying to crack WEP don't matter.
This brings me to the point of the post: we're really living in a new golden age because niche themes like this have an outlet. They can have solid entertainment made for them. It's cheaper and more viable than ever for a show like Mr. Robot to be made and distributed effectively. Quality horror is another genre. Mainstream is all Paranormal Activity 5 ... the indie stuff you find on Netflix is quality like The Babadook.
Anyway, I'll leave you with this clip, which includes a nice little dig at Mr. Robot itself. This show, and so many other shows on "tv" these days, are rocking it.