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The second movie I watched dealing with gaming culture and Hollywood’s representation of gamers was Wargames (WG) directed by John Badham. This movie was one of my favorites when I was younger, but I don’t think I ever really understood it’s sub-context about the Russians until this time around. WG deals a lot with simulations and it reminded me of other examples of “video games” used in for military training and in the government. When I was a junior in high school the armed forces began their recruiting sessions for students that were going to be graduating the following year (2004). I particularly remember a visit from the air force in which they had a large tractor trailer with a flight simulator in the back of it. They said that they often used these to train pilots and test them before allowing them to go up into the air. How does this all fit into the film?...you may be asking yourself. Well, the government uses video simulations and other forms of video game technology in many different practical capacities.

Could this film be a cautionary tale of what happens when you let machines run your life and then a nuclear holocaust breaks out...maybe. One scene I found very interesting was when Joshua kept calling David on the phone in his room and trying to connect after he has been rejected. This could be interpreted as David’s sudden rejection of the technology that he formally worshiped. Though the next scene in which he is hugging the phone dispels this theory. He holds the phone close to his chest almost in an embrace. Any time we expect him to start rocking back and forth holding it. It’s hard to say what the director meant by this sequence. To say the least its still pretty ironic and humorous.

This movie was pretty different because it dealt with computer games rather than traditional system based video games. I enjoyed the use of programmer and techy language like backdoor and firewall. Very amusing. When you think about a computer that learns how to learn, eventually wouldn’t it become smarter than any human being? It would have infinite knowledge.

More Thoughts on Wargames

Comments (1)

Good observation of the way the actor used the telephone in that scene! I hadn't really noticed that.

Mabye in the future I'll propose a course on technology and free will, or something like that. You've found quite a lot in this movie, Leslie.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on January 2, 2006 10:54 AM.

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