Story recap (spoilers incoming. Skip to part 5 if you want to miss them):
I’m going to do this blitz style with extra sarcasm and want to run a counter on all the sub plots that surface like a whale breaching but then never appear again like this (0). Cooper (Matthew McConaughey) is a farmer and ex NASA test pilot who is haunted by a crash for like the first 15 minutes of the film but then fortunately forgets it in time to progress the plot (1) (everyone knows the greatest test pilot is Hal Jordan. Ferris Aircraft image courtesy of the Green Lantern t shirt category). His son is smart but in spite of Coops desire has been rejected by college and is basically forced to become a farmer (2). They live in the near future where a crop blight (or something) has caused most of the population to die off and everyone is a farmer (3)(note-in spite of this being in the future they all pretty much run around in early 21st century cars and technology except when the prop guy decides he wants to create a super advanced Lego robots). His daughter Murph gets into trouble at school for bringing in evidence that man landed on the moon when the new “edited” history says it was all faked (4). Apparently NASA is illegal or something because everyone hates science and anything that doesn’t just grow more food (5). There is a ghost in Murphs bedroom that keeps knocking books down and one day writes some map coordinates in the dust. These lead Coop and Murph to the nearby NASA headquarters where they are spending hundreds of billions of dollars while the world starves without anyone noticing (5).
So Coop gets captured by the Lego robots and finds out that NASA is trying to fly though a wormhole (if you have ever read A Wrinkle in Time this will feel awfully familiar) to find a new planet for humans to live on and have already sent through 12 ships (build on which budget exactly?). They are going to send through one more ship and Coop is THE ONLY HUMAN WHO CAN FLY THE SHIP EVER! He leaves his kids who come to hate him (6) and goes into suspended animation along with Anne Hathaway and a couple of red shirts.
They arrive in a system with three planets orbiting a black hole (???) and apparently have no way of evaluating the planets from space or even talking to any of the humans who have already landed there. The closest one has the one hour to seven years time dilation (???) so they try to do it quickly but instead lose like 20 years when they discover the planet is covered with knee deep water and tidal waves (kind of what you might be able to see from space normally). They then only have enough fuel to hit one more planet and have to chose between one or the other. Turns out that Anne Hathaway was in love with the guy on the further planet (7) and believes that love is as powerful a force as gravity but is outvoted so they can go to the closer one.
Meanwhile, back on Earth Coops son has been driving the same pickup truck for 20 years and has a wife, a sick kid, and a burning hatred for Coop (8). Murph (Jessica Chastain) was adopted by the scientist in charge of the whole project and now is a super scientist herself. She is trying to figure out how to get the super ship off the ground using gravity while the head scientist and father of Anne’s character (Michael Caine) has been lying to everyone about the theory. She hates Coop too (9) but wants to figure out the problem.
Meanwhile back in space the crew land on the closer planet to find the Dr. Mann (Matt Damon) still alive and waiting for them to come down and set up a new colony. He claims that while the frozen clouds that they are all on (???) have lots of chlorine down on the surface it is habitable but is lying for some reason (also wouldn’t any amount of chlorine be bad? Ever heard of mustard gas?). He wanted to be rescued so sucked them all in. He attacks Coop but then blows himself up trying to get aboard the main ship after killing off the other red shirt. Coop and Brand (Anne) get aboard the ship and are pretty much out of fuel.
They figure out a way to get to the last planet by using the thrusters on the two remaining shuttles and by having them drop off (I don’t want to go back on science but the simply having something fall off your space ship will not make it go faster). Meanwhile Brand thinks if they can get data from inside the black hole they might be able to solve the gravity problem Murph is working on. They fly off and first send one of the Lego robots into the black hole and they Coop himself for some reason. Good thing the tidal gravity alone wouldn’t be enough to tear him apart, or the heat in the accretion disk or for that matter tiny bits of matter traveling at massive speeds.
I hope you are all wearing eye protection because you are going to have a lot of loose plot threads flying together all at once. Coop successfully enters the black hole but instead of being rendered down to his base elements find himself inside an Escher cave that allows him to see any time he wants to as long as it is inside Murphs bedroom. Here is the massive twist: it turns out he was the ghost inside Murphs room the whole time and can push books off the shelf but can’t otherwise communicate with her. He figures out how to tell her about NASA and eventually gives her the clues she needs to solve the gravity problem after Murph burns down her brothers crop (10).
He eventually falls out of the black hole (that can happen, right?) and is picked up just outside of Saturn in the future. Humanity now lives in giant space stations (wait a minute! If they could create self contained environments in space for humans why didn’t they just dig a hole and do the same thing on Earth?) and Murph is an old lady. He steals a ship to go looking for Brand, who ends the film by herself raising a colony of test tube babies on a desolate world while feeding them rocks and boogers.
Day 2 continued: Steampunk, Games, Jewelry, and The One.
Next up was one of the more Steampunk themed booths, appropriately titled Steamy Tech, it was wood-carved original gear themed, interlocking, moving art and jewelry. A married couple, Greg and Lora Price had created the company a few years ago and recently added a professional jeweler to add some real pizzazz to the smaller projects. His name is Jay Shoemaker and maybe because he reminded me of my grandfather (another Jay, who was a gregarious and charming blue-eyed woodworker who passed a bit over a year ago), I ended up spending much of the convention just hanging out with him. This booth more than the others made me realize two things about the atmosphere of Convolution: 1) Bring money, because the quality of the goods being sold is worth every shiny penny and if you didn’t come prepared, you’ll leave brokenhearted, and 2) You get out of it what you put into it. If you come in with a good attitude, they will like you and accept you, if you come into it expecting something more like a typical “ComiCon” experience, you’ll be disappointed and ignored by much of the staff, unless you say “Shut up and take my money,” which they will happily accept before forgetting you (in my opinion, rightfully so).
Featherweight Finery was the next booth, a splendid display of artisan vibrant handcrafted jewelry by Sue Toorans, who was also there in the booth and very kind to chat with. She makes aluminum ring chain mail creations that are all unique and fabulous, look sort of fantastical and badass, but classy enough to match with evening wear or light enough to wear all day. (I couldn’t find any good jewelry on Dave’s site but figured this power ring image from the Green Lantern t shirts was close enough).
I wondered around a fair bit, saying hi, explaining about the blog and about what I do, trying to see what the vendors thought of the Con so far (they liked it, many were repeat vendors). Games of Berkeley were there in all their dice and bag ’n’ board glory. Having recently visited their store in person, I didn’t loiter there too long.
Then everything changed: I found her: “The One” who was made just for me. At one of the island booths, near the center of the room, on a table marked “Lucrezia’s Delight” were a stack of fine under-bust boned corsets. On top of the stack, middle of the table surrounded by tiny Gothic-Lolita hats and some other do-dads was a dark green and blue paneled hand-dyed leather corset with punk spikes riveted right into it on the outside, in 4 rows each, front and back. On the tag it said “Hugging Corset, $400”. I was dismayed, as I don’t make a lot of money and I have a lot of responsibilities so there’s just no way I could ever outright buy this beautiful thing that was my perfect size and color and cut and oh my goddess, I’m getting sweaty just thinking about it. I was literally a day late, a dollar short (okay, like 350 dollars short) and underdressed for the occasion. “I should have worn my pirate outfit,” I said out loud for the 8th time that day. The young man working the booth asked me if I liked it and I said something about how it’s the single most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen, so he told me that the woman who made it would be back in a few minutes. He pointed to his name badge (which was from the Steamy Tech booth) that lit up and said only “Loyal Minion”. I told him I wanted to try it on and talk to the person responsible. (Although, I had no idea what I’d say. Like, “Hey, I don’t make any money, but I need this in my life. Can I just take it home with me and write nice things about you forever and ever amen?”
He agreed so off I wondered to the next several tables and booths.
(continued next post)