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Glom
2003-Nov-17, 03:12 PM
For every bit of BA in a movie or TV programme, there is a mark from 1 to 5. 1 being a minor nit that's almost forgiveable and 5 being a horrendous insult to our intelligence. You sum up the marks and divide by the number of minutes in the item to get the BA per minute value.

I've done Armageddon (this may take a while)

The opening sequence
[1] The moon is facing backwards.
[2] Heston says the impactor released the energy equivalent of 10000 nuclear weapons when in fact that is a gross underestimate.

The asteroid
[4] There are no Texas-sized asteroids in the asteroid belt.
[4] No rogue comet could affect an asteroid of that such such that it could more than halve its perihelion.
[4] It has icycles.
[3] It is not anywhere near close to spherical.
[2] The gas trail points along its motion rather than being swept outwards by solar pressure.
[2] In the rogue comet dramatisation, the asteroid belt is shown as being thick and dense.
[3] If the asteroid hit, Truman said half the planet would be incinerated by the initial energy release while the rest would freeze from nuclear winter, when in fact the entire planet would be screwed instantly.

The destruction of Atlantis
[3] Pete Hoss is doing an EVA alone. EVAs these days are always done in pairs.
[4]He has moved more than 200m away from the orbiter when in fact astronauts remain within the confines of the payload bay.
[3] The payload bay doors are closed, which prevents passive thermal control and traps the astronaut outside as the airlock is inside the payload bay.
[1] The orbiter is oriented incorrectly. It spends most of its time oriented with it dorsal towards Earth.
[3] There is a video feed of Hoss displayed in MCC-H despite lack of film equipment other than Michael Bay's.
[2] There is a delay between the meteroid storm hitting Hoss and it hitting Atlantis.
[4] The debris sphere is far too concentrated given that it is shown that it comes from the other side of the system (the asteroid is seen to approach Earth from behind its orbital motion implying its orbital speed at this point is faster than Earth's in turn implying perihelion. Therefore the aphelion is on the other side of system.)
[1] The meteroids have thermal trails when still outside the atmosphere (dramatic license. They want us to be able to see them.)
[3] Atlantis erupts into a fireball symptomatic of a hydrocarbon explosion when it is unlikely such materials are onboard.
[2] An advisor to Kimsey says that the meteor shower could be reentering debris from Atlantis. If that's the quality of your military advisors, good luck America!

The New York sequence
[4] There is a substantial delay between the destruction of Atlantis and the meteroid storm hitting New York.
[1] NORAD tracks the storm with a radio interferometer.
[5] A newspaper in New York reports of the Atlantis incident as its headline prior to the TV news bulletin. (Is Bay thick or what?)
[3] The meteors explode on impact.

The search for the asteroid
[5] The asteroid is unseen at 18 days away. Plain stupidity.
[3] Carl says he can see Atlantis burning. Whatever!
[3] Carl reports his find to MCC-H. Obviously that's all there is the space community.
[4] They decide to view the asteroid with HST.
[3] The FD gives the order to mobilise HST. What's he got to do with this?
[2] The FD does not give the order to the correct institution.
[4] HST is moved instantly despite it lacking any kind of propulsion system.
[2] It has three solar arrays. Can't these people get anything right?
[2] There are flashes when it takes exposure. There it is, people. Michael Bay's team have turned the great Hubble Space Telescope into a Kodak Instamatic.
[3] The pictures are prepared instantly.
[3] They determine for certain it will impact after only a couple of hours of observation.
[2] Later on, a display at MCC-H shows a very similar image to that of obtained from HST, except that its video.
[2] It looks suspiciously like a Doppler image of a hurricane.

The plan
[4] MCC-H handles the asteroid prevention procedures despite the fact that at this point, a manned mission has not yet been tabled. Obviously MCC-H is all there is to the space community.
[1] Upon arrival at JSC, the caption says "NASA- Houston, Texas". I suppose elaborating on which one of the dozen NASA facilities we're dealing with would tax their target audience too much.
[5] Dropping a nuclear bomb into an 800ft hole in an asteroid that size is little better than dropping it on the surface.
[5] Even if the nuke could split the asteroid on the fault line, it would not be able to provide the halves with the acceleration to miss Earth at only 3 hours prior to impact.
[5] Even if the pieces could miss, the tides indiced would flatten all coastal cities, which screws us anyway.
[4] They believe that oil drillers, who drill into sedimentary rock have experience to offer when drilling into silicate rocks of the asteroid.
[4] They decide that it is more practical to have the roughnecks onboard the spacecraft than as ground experts in the way that has been done throughout NASA history.
[4] Gruber, the muntions specialist, doesn't know which wire to cut. Whatever.

The X-71s
[4] They produce in excess of 10Gs of acceleration from chemical thrusters.
[4] They need to use the shuttle launch vehicle.
[2] Their exhaust plumes are columnated in a vacuum.
[5] Their engines are firing during the entire duration of free flight.
[2] LOX is described as the fuel. It's actually the oxidiser.

The training
[4] They train in weightlessness in the WET-F. For what?
[3] They train in Chamber A. Chamber A is a testing facility.
[3] Watts says in the Chamber A scene, "the oxygen will be suck out of this vacuum". Dumb blonde!
[4] They are supposed to pressurise their PGAs in Chamber A in 30s.
[4] The roughnecks make modifications to the non-drilling components of the armadillo.
[4] They immediately spot things to be removed from the armadillo. Bay has a very high opinion of NASA.

The launch
[1] The graphic prior to ingress shows the asteroid approaching from an angle inconsistant with what we see later. The moon would be moving away from it, not towards it.
[5] The two orbiters launch on pads that are directly adjacent. Oops. Forgot there are already two shuttle launch pads.
[3] The system guys are omitted from the go-no-go.
[5] They launch within seconds of each other.
[4] They are rolling before the roll program is announced to have begun.
[3] They roll for more than one revolution.
[5] The displays at MCC-H all show real shuttle stock footage.
[5] Occasionally, the shots of the X-71s at liftoff shown stock footage. Good things too. The Space Shuttle is far more attractive than that monstrosity.
[4] At burnout, the X-71s are pointed up.
[5] At MECO, the ME did not CO.
[1] At a launch time of 0630 EST, judging from the spring to summer season attire in New York city, it would be after sunrise.

The Russian Space Station (now it gets really big!)
[3] The CDR of Independance reports a retro burn when the graphic shows a posigrade burn.
[4] They use their main engines to rendezvous with the space station.
[5] Despite the main engines firing, the crew are shown to be weightless.
[5] The space station is spinning before the spin is initiated.
[3] A lone cosmonaut is manning the station.
[5] MCC-H handles station operations. Obviously the Russians need NASA to handle their programs as well.
[4] A lowly mission controller talks to Lev. I guess cosmonauts aren't worthy of a CapCom.
[1] He says hello wrong.
[3] They think that putting the station into a spin will make operations proceed more smoothly. Put it another way, Michael Bay wants to faff around with blowing up a Russian spacecraft to show how incompetent the Russians are but can't be bothered to invest in doing it properly.
[5] The station is put into a spin before docking.
[5] Putting the station into that kind of spin would rip it apart.
[3] Lev should have been sick as soon a he hit the floor.
[2] Sharpe severely underestimates how sick they'll feel.
[3] They only plan to refuel with the oxidiser.
[5] The X-71 burn within the vicinity of the station.
[3] The two spacecraft dock at the same time.
[4] There is no CBM holding the X-71s to the station.
[5] The displays at MCC-H show a Shuttle-Mir docking.
[5] The gravity is wrong.
[4] There is a nice floor on the station.
[5] There is a ladder on the station.
[3] It is inconceivable that something as delicate as a fuel line would be allowed to become so delapitated. Does Bay lie in bed at night thinking of ways to make the Russians look like idiots?
[3] Oxygen does not burn.
[2] A fuel tank overpressure would cause the highest of alarms.
[2] Lev never considers heading for the Soyuz.
[4] There would not be a pressurised conduit linking modules in the outer wall.
[5] The fire is able to propogate in the closed environment of the station.
[4] Not one crew members cough once while the fire burns.
[5] The fire bursts through the station hull and yet there is no decompression.
[5] The station explodes. Semtex is an integral part of statoin design don't you know.
[4] When the fuel pods detaches, it moves off at a demented angle.
[4] It forgets it has angular momentum.
[5] When the fuel pod smashes through the docking pylon, their is no decompression.
[4] As the station explodes, there is no conservation of momentum.

The slingshot
[3] Truman is the one to give orders to the crew. Mission director versus flight director. Get it?
[2] The burn is a misnomer since the X-71s were burning their engines all the time.
[1] Lunar roll?
[1] Burn around the moon? Musn't tax our twelve year old target audience.
[3] They accelerate to five times lunar escape velocity.
[3] The roughnecks are able to speak and even shout during the burn. Can Bay comprehend any intense situation without shouting?
[4] The CDRs and PLTs do not wear PGSs. I don't care that they died? They were stupid!
[2] The PGAs are EVPGAs.
[3] The rest of the crew do not wear their helmets.
[3] The helmets are not worn and neither are they stowed.
[4] The dark side is not dark.
[5] They burn within a couple of hundred meters of each other.
[5] The speedometer freezes at 22500mph while the accelerometer shows a true value for the acceleration.

The landing
[2] They expect the tail debris to be cleared by the moon's gravity. What part of Galileo's principle did they miss.
[4] There is no concern for the alignment of the fault once the asteroid's spin is changed.
[5] They accelerate into the debris field.
[5] The X-71s bank around curves.
[4] Independance gets hit and then begins accelerating faster than Freedom. Whatever!
[5] AJ's helmet float in weightlessness while the engines are firing.
[4] The CDR and PLT of Independance are blown of their seat belts. It's not enough that the Russians are stupid, they have to make the Americans as well. Is this what they're trying to save?
[5] Restraints holding poles in the payload bay break and the poles fall to the floor.
[3] Freedom lands without orienting retrograde.

EVA procedures
[4] They repress the payload bay before offloading most of the EVA equipment.
[4] They switch from cabin atmosphere to suit atmosphere instantly.
[3] The CDR does an EVA.
[4] Sharpe expects to be able to depress the payload bay, offload the nuke, close the doors and leave in less than two minutes. Idiot! What the hell is a payload bay doing pressurised anyway?
[5] Harry pulls AJs out hose without causing him injury.
[3] The EV crew have not set their comms on VOX.

On the surface
[5] A fire is able to burn inside the evacuated remains of Independance. Did the production crew even read the script?
[2] People walk normally inside the X-71s.
[3] They drill at a 45 angle.
[3] Lev seems unaware of the specifics of the crew. Way to keep him informed!
[2] The poles are tossed around normally.
[4] During the canyon corssing, the armadillo strikes a rock formation, rolls, but does not pitch.
[4] Fixed attitude thrusters are capable of getting the armadillo back down to the ground.
[4] During the rock storm, the objects are able to fall to the ground after being blasted outwards.
[3] At MCC-H, the mission director commandeers the control from the FD.
[4] The power of the satellite does not stop it from losing commuinication at loss of line of site.

Leaving the asteroid
[3] The main engine failiure was made to look like a car with a flat battery.
[2] If the main engines refused to start, they could consider using the RCS jets to move the X-71 off the asteroid.
[4] The shockwave is shown to curve away from its plane because?
[4] The X-71 thrusts addings to its downwards components.
[5] There is no concern for the hardly insignificant amount of debris from the explosion that hit the atmopshere.
[2] When the crew disembark, a number of techs approach for quarantine and yet Grace is allowed to run up to AJ.

Total score 522
Running time 144
BA = 3.6 points per minute

OMA

kucharek
2003-Nov-17, 03:22 PM
Just ... how ... often ... did ... you ... watch ... that ... movie?

Ripper 2.0
2003-Nov-17, 03:26 PM
How long did it take you to write all of this Glom?

Glom
2003-Nov-17, 03:28 PM
I'm in computing class at the moment supposed to be working on Mathcad. Because it took me an hour because I was doing both.

Humphrey
2003-Nov-17, 06:34 PM
Wow Glom. I'm really impressed. :-)

And you did a great job with this too.

The Bad Astronomer
2003-Nov-17, 09:46 PM
WOW! Glom, that's amazing.

I have toyed with the idea of a ratings system for movies and such. I never came up with anything I liked. Too arbitrary. But then, my reviews usually are. :D

Ripper 2.0
2003-Nov-17, 09:51 PM
WOW! Glom, that's amazing.

I have toyed with the idea of a ratings system for movies and such. I never came up with anything I liked. Too arbitrary. But then, my reviews usually are. :D

I do not think the word is arbitrary. Subjective is a more accurate word, and any movie reviewing system is going to be subjective.

SpaceTrekkie
2003-Nov-17, 10:43 PM
Glom, i am impressed....how many times did you have to watch the movie to get it all down!?! Very impressive!!!!!
=D> =D> =D> =D> =D> =D>

Glom
2003-Nov-18, 01:42 PM
So does anyone else have any marks for other movies?

Glom
2003-Nov-18, 01:50 PM
I used to watch the film a lot years ago, when I was about thirteen. At the time I thought it was the best film ever. I thought the same thing about Indepedance Day. But since then, I've grown up and dumbed down trash has limited appeal. The point is that I came away from that phase with a boxcar full on BA.

Mellow
2003-Nov-18, 03:18 PM
Glom,

I'm impressed, but mate, sit down, have a cup of tea and a jam sandwich.

Chill out.... :)

calliarcale
2003-Nov-18, 04:11 PM
[5] At MECO, the ME did not CO.

Aha!!!! My pet peeve, and most brilliantly worded! I love it! :D

Or, as my husband puts it in most of the movies we watch together, "constant thrust does not equal constant velocity." It's sad how few filmmakers have figured out one of the most basic principles of physics -- that an object in motion will remain in motion unless acted upon by an outside force.

Glom
2003-Nov-18, 05:14 PM
News travels slowly. Galileo's principles have yet to reach them. They're still Aristotlian.

NASA Fan
2003-Dec-05, 06:18 PM
I was directed here by your "rant" in another thread.

First of all--good job

I have some to add, though I am not sure if it is BA or not.

They did not use the real admin building at JSC,
In MCC when there was a problem they had some sort of panel that was quickly lowered--that does not exist.

Training in chamber A of SESL; just FYI in the 60's they had a crew living inside a lunar lander inside the chamber, so it has been used for crew training; of course it has not been used for anything like they suggested in the movie.

This is adittion to what you said about the launch.

I found it amusing that they went up on the same launch tower, the technition said crew a go left, crew b go right; implying that the two vehicles were on the same launch pad, yet when they launch the vehicles are on 2 seperate pads.

MIR, and the ladder--I agree a mistake, but at least it was a consistency mistake--since they gave them the ability to create gravity inside the space station, they had to provide ladders for them.

You commented about Lev heading for the orbiters rather than the Souys, in the same situation, given the hard core landing of the Souyz or the softer landing of the orbiters, wouldn't you?

You left of some Bad Aviation

X-71

Within aviation, the "X" stands for "experimental" once a vehicle is put into useage, it is given a real name.

Hale_Bopp
2003-Dec-05, 07:42 PM
Well, I thought I knew that movie and its BA well, but I will admit there are a few new ones to me in there! Wow.

Another one for you. When the Russian and AJ are trapped in the center of the space station, they have to crawl through some sort of duct with pipes. The Russian says, " Very cold. Hold breath or lungs freeze". Well, they are both climbing through grabbing these allegedly freezing pipes with NO GLOVES! What about your hands?

My students are currently doing the project where they analyze the physics of a movie. Thank God no one chose Armagaddon!

Rob

OscartheGrouch
2003-Dec-05, 10:49 PM
I did about the same thing with Bad History and Bad Aviation in Pearl Harbor only I saw it once and wrote up about six single-spaced pages of mistakes and posted them on the History Channel board. I divided them into things they got right, things they got wrong, and things they got SO wrong as to be insulting. Short samples:

Correct:

-Submarine officer Bill Low was the one who came up with the Doolittle Raid idea.
-When Josh and Kate taxi up to the hangar after the sunset flight, the engine sound effect actually DOES resemble an Allison V-1710.

Wrong:

-Ben Affleck valiantly fights in the Battle of Britain, about a year after it really happened.
-When he gets hit in his Spitfire (wrong mark of course) and his canopy gets stuck, he tries to "pre-perf" it with his revolver and bust out. Perhaps his ground crew neglected to point out that Spitfires came factory-equipped with a great big red-painted canopy-breaking tool that's clipped to the cockpit wall at the pilot's left elbow for just that reason.
-In the love-amid-the-parachutes sequence, never mind that the chutes should be in the rigging loft not the hangar, you can see a radial engine hanging from a hoist. P-40s have V-12 engines; the radial should be in the P-36 squadron's hangar.
-In the ground test of a P-40's machine guns against a stationary target at point-blank range, their patterns look like those from sawed-off shotguns. Sure, if the target was 300 yards away, but from only across the hangar, there should be six small, ragged holes, one for each gun. If machine guns were as inaccurate as Ben and Josh's, they couldn't have hit anything.
-Zeroes take hits from non-exploding machine gun bullets in the middle of the fuselage where there is nothing in that part of a Zero that can possibly cause a secondary explosion, but the fuselage explodes anyway.
-Somebody asks "what's happening" and the response is "I think World War Two just started." Remarkably prescient, since they hadn't yet started calling the Great War "World War One." But just a second--I thought of something--that's not such BH after all, since most official US books at the time called it "The World War"--Brits said "Great War"--so I guess the term "WW2" might have sprung to mind.
-In the big memorial ceremony with all the caskets in a hangar, which I'm not sure actually happened, the chaplain says, "our enemies believe a Divine Wind protects them." Now THAT's good, because the phrase didn't get publicized until the debut of the Kamikaze Special Attack Corps in October 1944.

Downright insulting:

-They recruit P-40 pilots to fly bombers. According to Hollywood, only fighter pilots can REALLY fly and all other pilots are incompetent. This would be news to the real bomber crews who flew the Doolittle raid. The combat experience thing doesn't wash either, because that one raid was the only combat sortie that Doolittle himself ever made. Granted, he lost every plane he started with, but it wasn't too much HIS fault, and he received the Medal of Honor and a promotion.
-The Navy guy tells them to rip all the "unnecessary" equipment out of their B-25s because "she's a fat lady." NO repeat NO combat aircraft is a fat lady. Designers know full well that airplanes are allergic to weight and design them like Mozart, without "too many notes." I didn't recognize ANY of the pieces they threw out as ANYthing that would have been on a B-25 in the first place. They DID remove the Norden bombsights but only because they were useless at low altitude.

Not as analytical as yours Glom, but I think we are kindred spirits in this way.

Glom
2003-Dec-06, 12:00 AM
Well done, OscartheGrouch!

Oops
2003-Dec-06, 04:03 AM
[5] At MECO, the ME did not CO.

Aha!!!! My pet peeve, and most brilliantly worded! I love it! :D

Or, as my husband puts it in most of the movies we watch together, "constant thrust does not equal constant velocity." It's sad how few filmmakers have figured out one of the most basic principles of physics -- that an object in motion will remain in motion unless acted upon by an outside force. Unfortunately, I don't know what the MECO thing meant. Then again, I've never watched this particular movie.

In Space Cowboys, the astronauts used rockets in the things on their backs in short bursts. I'd like to see a review of that movie.

Rather than Bad Astronomy ratings, we ought to go all out and use Bad Science ratings.

HAVOC451
2003-Dec-06, 12:17 PM
That was great Glom.
=D>

Glom
2003-Dec-06, 01:32 PM
Unfortunately, I don't know what the MECO thing meant. Then again, I've never watched this particular movie.

MECO = Main Engine Cut Off


In Space Cowboys, the astronauts used rockets in the things on their backs in short bursts. I'd like to see a review of that movie.

BA's review (http://www.badastronomy.com/bad/movies/spacecowboys.html)

beck0311
2003-Dec-07, 05:20 AM
Wow, this seems like a lot of work. I had one thing to add. I saw the movie in the theater when it came out and not since, but during the destruction of Atlantis scene early in the EVA you can hear what sounds like a socket wrench. This probably only scores a 1, but to add a sound like that is completely unnecessary.




You left of some Bad Aviation

X-71

Within aviation, the "X" stands for "experimental" once a vehicle is put into useage, it is given a real name.

In aviation we designate aircraft with an X if they are research aircraft. Many aircraft that start as X-planes, will never be anything but an X-plane (i.e. X-1, X-29, X-31...). Of course X-71 seems a little high, seems that most of the X-50 series and all of the X-60 series vehicles were skipped. An aircraft may also be designated with an X or a Y if it is part of a competition (i.e. X-35, YF-22). During flight testing it will usually be referred to by its normal designation (YF-22 became F/A-22, and the X-35 will become the F-35 or F/A-35, I can't remember which).

Oops
2003-Dec-07, 07:33 PM
In Space Cowboys, the astronauts used rockets in the things on their backs in short bursts. I'd like to see a review of that movie.

BA's review (http://www.badastronomy.com/bad/movies/spacecowboys.html) What is a first-run movie?

Edit: Fixed quote tag.

OscartheGrouch
2003-Dec-08, 09:17 PM
About the X and Y designations of US airplanes--

The X prefix is still on the books AFAIK and when added to a designation means "experimental". However, they almost never do this anymore, going straight to the Y "prototype" or "service test" prefix. For example, the Lockheed Lightning was first the XP-38, then YP-38, then P-38, but I can't think of an example since the 1960s of an X prefix. For example, there was never an XF-14 Tomcat, just a YF-14 and then no prefix. Same with the YF-22 and YF-23.

Mostly, the X stands alone as the "basic mission" designation and means a "research" aircraft that won't lead to a production model, for example, X-15, X-29, X-35. These planes are one-off or one of a very few of each type, intended only to generate test data.

Talk about BX (Bad X-planes) in Space Cowboys, they had a two-seat X-2 when any real rocket plane needed every cubic inch of fuel it could carry, not a second pilot, and the seats are conventional ejection seats. Maybe they did not hear how Mel Apt got killed--somehow, in the process of detaching the nose cone and unstrapping, he either got knocked unconscious or just plain ran out of time before impact. And, even James Garner, Clint Eastwood, Tommy Lee Jones, and Donald Sutherland put together would not have enough juice with NACA/NASA/USAF Systems Command to take up a rocket plane for a joyride.

beck0311
2003-Dec-09, 03:14 AM
About the X and Y designations of US airplanes--

The X prefix is still on the books AFAIK and when added to a designation means "experimental". However, they almost never do this anymore, going straight to the Y "prototype" or "service test" prefix. For example, the Lockheed Lightning was first the XP-38, then YP-38, then P-38, but I can't think of an example since the 1960s of an X prefix. For example, there was never an XF-14 Tomcat, just a YF-14 and then no prefix. Same with the YF-22 and YF-23.

Mostly, the X stands alone as the "basic mission" designation and means a "research" aircraft that won't lead to a production model, for example, X-15, X-29, X-35. These planes are one-off or one of a very few of each type, intended only to generate test data.



In your examples of X-planes you mentioned an airplane that the manufacturer intended to go into production with that was certainly post-1960. The X-35 was Lockheeds entry into the Joint Strike Fighter competition,it will eventually become either an F-35 or an F/A-35.

Currently NASA has three X-plane programs. The X-37, the X-43 and the X-45. Two of these, the X-37 and the X-45 have the potential to go into production. In the case of the X-37 it would be a limited production, since its a spacecraft

OscartheGrouch
2003-Dec-09, 07:36 PM
Well, there they go changing on me again.

Lockheed-Martin's official site calls it the F-35 now but everybody else seems to call it the X-35, and they seem to be the same aircraft. So yes, it is the prototype for the production model, not just a research aircraft.

I should have said X-31 then! There ain't gonna be no more of those.

Glom
2004-Jan-09, 03:26 PM
To get back to the point I made about the roughnecks shouting during the burn around the moon despite the fact they're experiencing 10G+, I would like to reiterate that this is certainly BA. I've recently done some steep turns in my flight training, use a bank angle of 45 which generates just under 1G. That's a pretty piddly bit of loading and no motor skills were affected, but it still felt quite significant. Most people can tolerate loading of 4G before passing out. Fast jet pilots can tolerate 8G before passing out. These roughnecks would be lucky to stay alive, let alone stay conscious.

bobjohnston
2004-Jan-14, 04:02 PM
That's an impressive list, Glom! There's a few other things that bugged me in the movie, like:

* The asteroid is made out of something too hard to drill into.
* They have a nuke small enough to carry but large enough to destroy an asteroid the size of Texas (physically impossible, it turns out).
* The shallow hole they drill is deep enough to allow the nuke to destroy an asteroid the size of Texas.