May 23, 2006
The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008) (part 6 of 11)
Meanwhile, Kathy Bates is apologizing to Klaatu because they “got off to a bad start.” She tells him they’re transferring him to a different facility, but he says, “I am leaving.” Why is it aliens can’t use contractions? Are they really such a hard concept? Or do aliens just think they’re declassé?
Kathy Bates, of course, says, “Fat chance”, or words to that effect. Klaatu observes he did nothing wrong, but Kathy Bates argues he invaded “our airspace” (America’s? Earth’s?) and his “automaton attacked our troops.” Klaatu says it acted only in defense—”it activates in the presence of violence.” Or, possibly, German Shepherds.
(Note from the future: It’s very weird watching this scene, knowing that Kathy Bates’s character, who is being painted with the darkest brushstrokes of unreasonable tyranny from the movie industry’s standard-issue don’t-trust-the-government Technicolor paintbox, is actually totally on target here. As it turns out, Klaatu is the one concealing an unpleasant agenda for his own purposes. And yet, we’re still supposed to cheer Helen in this scene, who is acting with what can only be described as naïveté, and later to smile warmly when Kathy Bates grows a heart. This movie wants to have its cake and annihilate it with cool licorice nanobot bugs, too.)