Stanford inventor Ge Wang goes to the movies: a review of “Cats” in 11 tweets. “It’s awful and awesome!”


It’s not exactly haiku, but Twitter is kind of a cyberspace equivalent. Stanford inventor Ge Wang (we’ve written about him here and here), has gone to see the new film of Andrew Lloyd Weber‘s Cats (based on T.S. Eliot‘s poems) so we won’t have to. His review in 11 tweets is more nuanced than you might expect, however. He says the experience is … well, rather like a cat.

For those who don’t know Ge Wang already (and please, it’s pronounced with a hard “g” – G’wang – not hard), the Stanford professor has created the Stanford Laptop Orchestra as well as the Stanford Mobile Phone Orchestra. He is the designer of the Ocarina and Magic Piano iPhone apps. He is the author of Artful Design: Technology in Search of the Sublime (A MusiComic Manifesto), a book on design and technology, art and life, created entirely in the format of a photo comic book and published by Stanford University Press.

Now, for the review… As Shakespeare wrote, “The eye of man hath not heard, the ear of man hath not seen, man’s hand is not able to taste, his tongue to conceive, nor his heart to report what my dream was.”

A postscript from Ge Wang: “I never expected so many reactions — this movie is really bringing it out in people. For me I still don’t know if I am desperately trying to save people from it or lobbying people to see it. The answer, I think, is not somewhere in between, but both.”

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2 Responses to “Stanford inventor Ge Wang goes to the movies: a review of “Cats” in 11 tweets. “It’s awful and awesome!””

  1. Jeff S. Says:

    I haven’t seen “Cats” and probably won’t, but many of the reviewers’ complains struck me as odd, like the confusion about a lack of plot, as if they’ve never heard of a musical revue, or dismay at the overall concept, which seems like cultural amnesia, since the musical was on Broadway, on tour, and in worldwide revivals until practically yesterday. If singing humanoid cats are the weirdest thing these melodramatic reviewers have seen in a movie, then I imagine they haven’t seen many movies. The critical pile-on is easy to join, but it’s only going to make movie studios take even fewer creative chances.

  2. Cynthia Haven Says:

    As you see, Ge Wang had a mixed, tripped-out psychedelic reaction, and ended up recommending. But I agree with you about pile-ons. Merry Christmas, Jeff!