Thursday, 9 June 2011


Later I watched an engaging Armageddon type film, Knowing, obviously finance by some religious force in the USA. The film stars the excellent Nicolas Cage as scientist and University teacher who holds a class on the issue of determinism and randomness. His father is a Christian Minister but Nicholas has become estranged since his wife died in a fire and having believed in determinism now holds the view that nothing can be predicted and all is random and chaos.

Fifty years ago a time capsule was placed in the grounds of the school when it was first built and to be opened at a ceremony at which the son of Cage is participating and expects his father to attend. The idea of the time capsule is of one child who we observe hears voices and who instead of making a picture as requested by the teacher writing a series of number son both sides of her paper and is prevented from completing the numbers by the teacher as time runs outs. The girl is then found scratching the remaining numbers with her bare hands in the basement. At the ceremony Cage’s son is handed the envelope with the numbers and instead of handing it back to the school takes homes and tries to work out what they mean.

Later his father studied the numbers and realises that first set is 9.11.2011 and then that all the other numbers refers to accidents and disasters since then except for the last three, with the first of these to happen in a days time. There are other numbers associated with the dates which he does not understand and which add to the disbelief of a colleague who he consults. The following day he is caught in a traffic jam and witnesses the crashing of a civilian aircraft where the death toll is that forecast and he realises that the unknown numbers are map references.

He interviews the teacher at the ceremony from 50 years ago and learns that the girl was strange and a loner and that she had died but he then discovers that her grand daughter attends the same school and is a friend of his son. He attempts to get to know the girl’s mother to ask about her mother but the woman is afraid and refuses to have anything to do with him. He then follows up the next prediction which is for a location in New York and because the media talk of a terrorist attack in the region he assume this is the impeding disaster when in fact the deaths are causes by a subway train derailment.

Meanwhile his son appears to be tracked by a strange man who Cage also sees and where the boy also has a vision of a terrible catastrophe in which his home area appears consumed by fire. When Cage returns home he finds the mother and daughter at his home willing to try and assist him solving the mystery of the remaining event. They go to a place used by the family and there Cage is able to work out that the last event covers the whole world and then that a sun spot explosion forecast for that day will have such intensity that it will destroy the earth world. The first reaction of Cage is to take the three to a deep cave in the hope that they will be able to survive the radiation impact of the sunspot. He tries to warn his father who takes he view that if it is Gods will it is Gods will and he and his wife and their daughter are a peace with themselves and therefore ready.

Nicholas belatedly then works out that they should not go to this cave but to a location revealed by the girl of 50 years beforehand. However the mother disagrees and takes the two children with her towards the cave stopping at a gas station from where the two children are taken off by the mysterious men and attempting to follow them the mother is involved in an accident and when Nicholas find her she had died and cannot be resuscitated. He follows the map reference and finds the children about to be whisked off in a wondrous alien craft by the men who could be said to represent angels. Understandably the boy does not want to leave his father but father understands that only the two children have been invited (Close Encounters theme) and that the boy must decide to go of his own accord.

In the final scenes the earth is engulfed by fire before it explodes as Nicholas rejoins his family expressing that this is not the end of everything but a new beginning. We then see that the space craft taking away the two children is only one of several and that these two arrive in a plentiful new land with a large tree in the middle of a field (that the tree of knowledge) and they are of course playing the roles of Adam and Eve

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