READY PLAYER ONE
Teenage coming-of-age story the Twenty-First Century way…
Indulging in the magic that Spielberg’s works provide.
Like Scorsese’s Hugo Cabret, Ready Player One proposes some tribute to cinema
And the cultural work it provides.
An invitation NOT to play alone.
For the viewer who was a teenager in the 80’s, the enhanced visual pleasure of recognition: familiar references de-territorialized and re-contextualized in a virtual world—the only world when they can be found anyway, as they now belong to the world of memory only.
The legacy of enduring screen figures that have become new heroes and icons, King Kong leading the way for contemporary Aliens and Machines.
The thrill of the guessing game of a roman a clef :
How many references can you track down/identify/retrieve/appropriate?
Literalizing the trope of Back to the Future
The urban landscape as the SF version of Blade Runner?
The wonder of ET and AI combined with a topical and political agenda.
How do you live in a disenchanted world?
Withdrawing into an “oasis”
Conjuring an Illusion of power and agency into perfect shape and guise
Deploying your potential in which your ‘real’ life is now reduced to heaps of garbage or life in a cubicle (with a panopticon effect, a nod to Foucault maybe)
Fidelity centers and their new forms of enslavement.
The immature behavior of the CEO speaks to the current lack of world leadership, and an increasing regressive will for power : “Who has the biggest bomb?…”
Some kinship with the recent release Ghost in the Shell:
A fighting spirit and a rebellion
Resistance to the encroachment of big corporations
Reintroducing the collective dimension beyond the pervasive self-centeredness
Following the way set by the Atari Game Adventure where winning is not what matters, but playing is.
Attention to detail(s): the quarter that was going to be discarded is the access to a Second Life.
Look again: the curator is actually someone else
Review your hypothesis and assumptions
Revising eventually leads to the truth (and success in the contest)
The moral component of the fairy tale: “only the real world is real”
Shutting down the game two days a week: a plea to reinvest the places of humanity and explore its space anew—with or without the avatar(s)?
Reality: Augmented, repurposed.