At what point does an original idea cross the line and start to look more like the ideas that inspired it than it should?

When is an idea original and when is it plagiarized?

Hi Rob, moderators, and Post Geek Singularity,

This is some what of a slippery slope type of thinking, since I’m not sure how to approach it.
In movies, there are many lawsuits with accusations of plagiarism due to movies having similar concepts or stories to older material.

Harlan Ellison brought this up, when talking about James Cameron and the Terminator, saying the story of Terminator is very similar to a short story he wrote called Soldier, which was adapted in the original Outer Limits tv series.

Here is a link of a video with Ellison talking about it

I’m a bit mixed on this. On one hand, many creators can tell stories which are similar to older material, but they would still be considered original and nobody bats an eye. On the other, a story considered original is so familiar it can be considered an uncredited adaptation.

I’m mixed on it, but I would love to hear your thoughts, and the thoughts of the Post Geek Singularity.

Thanks, live long and prosper.

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THE LITTLE THINGS was of little interest.


Denzel Washington in THE LITTLE THINGS on HBO.

I watched THE LITTLE THINGS overnight on HBO Max. I’m afraid it’s strike two for HBO and their direct to consumer release strategy after WONDER WOMAN 1984.

Denzel Washington conveyed his normal confidence, charisma and personal style but was let down by the material. Rami Malek was totally miscast as a hot shit police detective. I appreciate him as an actor but he has an odd way of speaking and his mannerisms tend to be off putting to me. Jared Leto was absolutely creepy as a suspected serial killer but again the material was not up to par.

The script lacked verisimilitude and got increasingly more ludicrous as the story went on. I’m beginning to think HBO Max is just a dumping ground for movies that didn’t quite turn out.

Anyways Rob, I’ll stop there as to not spoil anything for other viewers but I’m curious to see what everyone else thought.

Until next time Rob…be seeing you.
-Zachary K.

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Is it possible THE BEAST OF WAR may be the best war movie you’ve never seen?

My name’s Nick and a while back I stumbled across a movie I had never heard of, it completely blew me away and so ever since I’ve been desperately trying to convince everyone across movie fandom to give it a shot and hopefully drag it out of complete obscurity.


The movies called THE BEAST OF WAR aka ‘The Beast’ from 1988, Directed by Kevin Reynolds staring George Dzundza, Jason Patric and Steven Bauer. It was only released in two screens across the whole of the U.S. By Columbia Pictures, and – I kid you not when I say this – it is the best Hollywood film you’ve never heard of.

Quentin Tarantino’s old writing partner, Roger Avery, has it down as the best movie of 1988 on letterboxd, and he also has it down as one of his 20 desert island films with APOCALYPSE NOW being the only other war film.

The film has a rating of 7.3 on IMDb, 3.5 on Letterboxd, but not a single critics review on Rotten Tomatoes, but it does have an audience score of 85%.

I’m starting to get more and more podcasts to check it out and review it while letterboxd reviews seem to be on the increase now. I think it would be great if companies like Criterion or Shout Factory, etc. could get their hands on it and give it the exposure it clearly needs.

Please seek this film out, it’s available on dvd and streaming, so it won’t be difficult to track down and if you do see it let me know if you agree with me that this might be one of the 10 best american movies of the 1980s, one way or another we need to find a way to raise this movies profile and prevent it from continual obscurity once and for all.

All the best,
-Nick P.

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Why this Imagination Connoisseur keeps coming back to The Burnettwork.

Hiya Rob !

I am writing you, because William’s letter made me think about why do I keep coming back to watch the shows on The Burnettwork. I thought I would share this with you and the PGS Nation.

I started watching your channel because I am a huge fan of FREE ENTERPRISE, it is one of my favorite indie films and when I saw you had a YouTube channel, I thought I would check it out and started watching Robservations. At first, I was afraid … sorry, I mean at first, I was a bit daunted in writing in because people were articulate and know about their films, aspect ratio and what not. And then I started to really think about it and thought I would just be myself and that is what has worked with me.

Some Imagination Connoisseurs like WINE-ning ABOUT MOVIES because it feels like your watching with friends. Which you are.

I then found WINE-ing about Movies and it felt like an online book club only with Wine and movies. I enjoy the concept of WINE-ing where we all watch the film and then discuss it. It makes me feel like I am part of something much bigger and I love it .

Since I’ve watched this channel I have also become a fan of Let’s Get Physical Media and Fully Articulated. Such fun shows and also big-time wallet-breakers. Thanks Rob !

Now, I come to the most important part of this letter, my favorite thing about this channel is that I have made some friends on here thru the chat and I love that now some of them are friends with me on the Facebook thingy. I love that there are a lot of like minded people on here when it comes to movies and pop culture , sure we all may not agree on a lot of things and that is fine because if we all did , this would be a boring channel and we would all be boring.

I don´t watch just your channel I watch a ton of different channels. I watch Justin Scarred and Adam the Woo who not only go to the theme park ( yes …. there is a whole culture that goes to Disney….A LOT) but they also travel around the country. Justin Scarred has a great series on his channel where he travel all of Route 66 and that is the most amazing trip you will ever see. Adam the Woo likes to travel to those little off beat places in parts of America that you may not have heard of.

I also watch The Tim Tracker and it is him and his wife Jenn and now their little boy and because of the pandemic they go to the parks but dont ride indoor rides cause they are not comfortable yet , they also so home vlogs and also they travel around florida which by the way about maybe 15/20 minutes from Hollywood Studios in Florida there is an Air B&B you can stay at that is Star Wars-themed and it is really cool.

So, I like a variety of topics, I watch vlogs about camping and people cooking giant foods as well.

If we are talking Prime video I haven’t watched The Boys but I am a huge fan of The Grand Tour. So funny and lots of cars .

Well Rob, to wrap up this letter, I just want to add that since finding this channel I feel I have become part of a much larger world and I look forward to watching the show on here. Like I said, we all have our own opinions on what we like and don’t like and to me, that is what makes us Imagination Connoisseurs – because we can discuss things and have fun while doing it.

Thank you O Captain, Our Captain,
-Tom Jr. J.

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A follow-up on the letter questioning whether people should financially support The Burnettwork.

Hello Rob,

Thank you for reading my leter . Just to be clear I was not debating your credentials or value you to the community. What I was trying to tell people is rather than send money on a star trek question perhaps help someone whos starving. Because most people not all are focused on their selves and self fullfillment .

I am guilty of this too.

I was a snobby, good looking, fast talking guy who opened stores around the country. Sure I was good at what I did but my life was obsesssed with work and I didn’t give a crap about people. Then one night, I suffered a massive stroke apparently I had been having them for years I couldn’t move or talk. I laid there for a week just thinking I was going to die and what had I done other than make money?

Well I got lucky and this group taught me to walk and talk again. I lost all of my previous skills though as a chef and orator. As a person, I was in despair and called the suicide hotline and someone listened and gave me suggestions. So, I set about my goals for helping others.

Despite my handicaps, I worked on developing affordable houses in less fortunate countries and I was rewarded with a hot wife and cool family. So when I say think about that super chat and what it could do for others, I don’t mean “don’t support Rob,” but when I see someone tossing away 200 dollars everyday on John Campea’s or anyone elses channel, it makes me stop and think about importance to individuals and society.

I could have laid there on life support if it wasn’t for some volunteers, I could have taken my own life if it wasn’t for some volunteers.

Do support what you love – and don’t take my remarks as “altruistic” because I too am trying to make money by marketing a computer game me and my brother made.

And Rob is a good guy. I would never attack him.

I volunteered many hours helping run watch parties for you all because I like this community and beliave in RMB. He’s making his own film festival how cool is that?Anways thank you Rob and don’t take my stuff asa slam against you
-William E.

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A movie review request for THE ELECTRIC HORSEMAN.

Howdy Rob and Ace ,

I thought I would write to you both about a little movie that I have never heard of and have never seen and I am sure just like me Ace is probably wondering how man copies of it do you have ?

I do not know if this counts as a western but I will fancy my chances with it. It is a little film from 1979 , I was 4 years old and it was the year my little brother was born. It is a film starring Jane Fonda and Robert Redford called THE ELECTRIC HORSEMAN. It was release thru Universal Studios and Columbia Pictures and was directed by the late great Sydney Pollack.

Redford plays a former champion rodeo rider who after some years has been reduced to use his riding skills to hawk a breakfast cereal in a gawdy Las Vegas show. Jane Fonda plays a reporter who shows up in Las Vegas and decides to interview Redford’s character and asks him how he feels about having to hawk a breakfast cereal after being a five-time, all-around, world champion rodeo rider.


So, while rehearsing for a show he finds out that the 12 million dollar horse that they want him to use is stoned so he will remain docile and doesn’t go crazy. On the night of the show, he decides to flee into the desert as an act of defiance with the horse and that’s when all hell breaks loose.

Now, co-starring in this films are some pretty big names: Willie Nelson and Valerie “Miss Tessmacher” Perrine and John Saxon all round out the cast and a small appearance by Wilfred Brimley.

As I have said, I have never heard or seen this film. It is a pretty original concept: Rodeo rider steals horse, reporter chases after rodeo rider cause she thinks there is a story there. The big corporation that owns the horse has got all kinds of law enforcement looking for Redford, Fonda and the horse.

Sydney Pollack directs a great film of finding one’s self respect, doing the right thing and just good old-fashioned chase film. The wide shots of the desert in this film are breathtaking. The dynamic interaction between Fonda and Redford is great and this film just makes you want to go out in to the desert with a horse and explore it for the view.

This film was released on December 21, 1979, 3 days before my 4th birthday. That is probably why I have never heard of it. Roger Ebert once said that they don´t make films like this anymore and that at one point it could have starred Tracey and Hepburn. That is true, it has all the making of an oddball romance/Western chase film.

Robert Redford not only did his own horse riding in the film but after filming he bought the horse which lived for the next 18 years until it passed. THE ELECTRIC HORSEMAN was also the on-screen debut of Willie Nelson’s acting career and he sang 5 songs for the film. The film was nominated to for an Oscar for Best Sound-Editing but lost to APOCALYPSE NOW.

The film is based on an actual event wheN The Sonny & Cher Show invited the owner of Triple Crown winner Secretariat and the horse on the show. But since the owner knew the horse wasn’t going to know what was going on, she declined to go on.

One last bit of trivia about this film (because I get passionate about facts and trivia and do my homework or Columbo-like research so I know I get things right), this is not the first time that Redford and Fonda had acted together on screen. They first starred together in a film called THE CHASE back in 1966, and then the following year starred in a big screen version of one of my favorite Neil Simon plays BAREFOOT IN THE PARK.

Well Ace and Rob, it has been great telling you about this film and maybe one of these days you will check it out.

So until the next time, I hitch my horse at the post…..

Happy Trails to you….until my next email…..
-Tom Jr. J.

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