January 29, 2008

Untraceable: don't let it fool you (some spoilage)

I saw that movie Untraceable last week.

It was pretty good, it was entertaining and everything, and it' s a pretty awesome idea for a movie. I'd go as far to say that it's one of the most inventive original movies to come out in a while. But I've just got to say that anyone who thinks that anything in that movie could actually happen really needs to come to terms with reality.

There's this quick, totally incidental scene about a politician who supports net neutrality. The first victim in the movie gets placed in this politician's car as a sick joke from the webmaster/murderer. The main character explains the irony to her co-worker who, despite being an FBI agent, has to ask, "Net neutrality, what's that?" And, within about three seconds, the main character spits out this over-simplified, sarcastic, and false remark about net neutrality....unfortunately I can't remember what the remark was, it was so much in passing that I couldn't retain the actual quote, just the meaning.

Long story short:the movie's probably intended to scare people into opposing net neutrality.

The whole reason why there's such great hype around the movie is because "It could really happen!" But there's no way in Hell that it could. See if I'm right, here's what happens:

The FBI hits a major roadblock right off the bat: "The NSA won't let us use their technology to track the website, DANG!" For some strange reason I don't think the National Security Agency would just simply tell the FBI, "Sorry, we can't help you track this guy who's killing people with his website, we're not aloud to violate privacy, blame the craaaaazy liberal Democrats in Congress."

(This has to happen in the movie, obviously, otherwise it'd be a hell of a lot shorter and less interesting and wouldn't make piles of money for people that already have many piles of money.)

The reason why the site is so hard to track is because somehow it uses several different IP addresses from all over the world, eventually settling on Russian IP addresses that are totally out of their jurisdiction. Not once do they contact Russia and ask if they can help. "He's using Russian IP's, it's out of our jurisdiction, let's wait for the next victims to show up and look for clues in the live stream as they die! MAN this is hard!"

Now that I've spoiled much of the basic plot line for you, I think you can see why the events in Untraceable are unrealistic at best. I could go on, but I gotta ask, who reads this blog?


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