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American Blackout Movie

Discussion in 'The Main Board' started by Atlas, Jun 7, 2019.

  1. Atlas

    Atlas Administrator Staff Member

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    I was a little bored yesterday and decided to go through some movies I have archived. American Blackout ended up being the movie I watched, and surprisingly enough it was actually pretty good. Has everyone seen this?

     
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  2. Punty

    Punty Member

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    Seen it a couple of times. Surprisingly good for, National Geographic was it? Whomever wrote and consulted on it did a good job.
     
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  3. Atlas

    Atlas Administrator Staff Member

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    That was my thoughts too. It was actually fairly open minded on the subject, not painting any one group of people as more or less crazy. Fact is, we will probably ALL go crazy to some degree if something like this were to happen.
     
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  4. twp

    twp Administrator Staff Member

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    I'll watch this later and give my review/opinion.
     
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  5. Atlas

    Atlas Administrator Staff Member

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    If you don't want to watch it on YouTube you can use the youtube-dl program to download it. I believe Google cant track you that way.
     
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  6. twp

    twp Administrator Staff Member

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    I have a downloader for Linux (4K Video Downloader). I'll bite the bullet and use it with Youtube:confused:... I still have to allow google access (Google owns Youtube now). "@!#$%^&*()@#@:mad:"
     
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  7. Atlas

    Atlas Administrator Staff Member

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    I'll be interested to read what you think about the movie.
     
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  8. twp

    twp Administrator Staff Member

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    Ok, I saw this some time ago, a few months back?

    It is somewhat realistic, IMO, and the story line is NOT a typical doom and gloom dysropian tale. I found myself wanting to smack the boyfriend... Yeah, it's too late at that point, but I'm probably not the only one who felt that way. :mad: I ask myself: "How many people like the boyfriend will I have to deal with in a real event?" That is a scary thought.

    There is an element of theater to the script, but I think it points out some problems which would/will be faced by most people. For Preppers, it is a good lesson in how NOT to respond when a confrontation occurs.... and there will be confrontations.

    One point, which is not shown, is the need to have more than one cache of supplies. If a BOL is overrun, as in this video, all your supplies should NOT be at risk nor easily found. Make multiple caches and don't share their location with every idiot in the group.

    There is also thee element of OPSEC, where the non-prepper, snowflake boyfriend is allowed to learn about what supplies are in store. In the script, he tries to be the do-gooder and secretly share some of the supplies with people outside of the group, with all the expected consequences...

    There was also a lack of training for the more negative aspects of a confrontation. Nobody, except perhaps the father, was ready to use lethal force to protect either the other members of the group or the supplies. Sadly, that is probably what will happen to many groups.

    The script writers chose to let the crisis be resolved fairly soon, power is restored. This is NOT realistic, given the damage inflicted on the power grid and wide spread nature of the power loss. Even a few weeks is nowhere near enough time to do the repairs needed. It will be measured in many months or years, IMO. This is what happens in a video which is edited to fit in a time slot.

    I noted a lack of plans to keep a watch at the BOL. There were certainly enough people to set up a rotating watch schedule, but that was not in place (if I recall correctly).

    Still, the video does show some of the problems to be expected in a large scale power loss. We, as Preppers, need to fill in the blanks and expect additional consequences, spread over a much longer time period.
     
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  9. Atlas

    Atlas Administrator Staff Member

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    Yes, I believe this is several years old now.

    The dad did let the young kid stand a night watch, but he was unarmed and had no way to signal the others when the looters came. Big problem! On top of that he had to wake everyone up AFTER the looters had left. Another big problem!

    I hope that you all have better plans for security after an event. It is a serious matter.
     
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  10. Atlas

    Atlas Administrator Staff Member

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    Excellent idea. Loose lips sink ships.
     
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  11. twp

    twp Administrator Staff Member

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    Plans: shoot, shovel and shut up?
     
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  12. Jerry D Young

    Jerry D Young Active Member

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    I watched it when it first came out. (I still had cable at the time.) There was quite a bit of hype about it. One of the EMP reports had come out not too long before, so there was lots of interest.

    There were a few positive prepper lessons in the video, but far more lessons to be learned from the negative events. There was some subtle, but still there, male bashing, but that is the norm, now. And the prepper, though even having one portrayed at all as anything but a raving lunatic, was surprising. Though, of course, he was a lousy prepper, not at all skilled or informed. Pretty much every aspect of prepping that was portrayed poorly thought out, with many weak points and mistakes made in execution.

    Earlier posts pointed out some, but one of the most glaring to me was the long run in the open, fully exposed, to get to the shelter. Another was the disappointing lack of any kind of early warning, and the lack of any types of secure observation.

    The prepper was, it looked to me, at least fairly well off, based on the things that had been done and items accumulated. Yet those basic necessities were not incorporated. When the outsiders first showed up and the boyfriend spoke up, even though the people did leave, the place should have gone on lockdown, with non-combatants in the shelter already, and those that could use weapons in protected fighting positions, with weapons and ammunition at hand. It would be fine if they slept, as there would be silent notification of anyone entering the property. So, a rotating always awake watch is not always necessary.

    Still, the lessons are there. It is obvious, or at least I think so, that letting anyone know you have 'stuff' is going to end very badly. Even if it is second-hand knowledge, such as the boyfriend finding out and then telling others. And the others wanted it, felt they deserved it since there were children involved, and were determined to get it.

    Unless I am thinking about a different movie (It has been some time since I watched American Blackout.), some of the other storylines are pretty much of the same caliber. The couple in the apartment building where the guy was a real you-know-what and not only turned into a pretty evil guy, but was so stupid and incompetent that he stole food, was not going to share it with his girlfriend, and wound up cutting himself so badly that it probably would have killed him even if something else he would do did not kill him first.

    And the woman by herself... That was sad. Right up until the end I thought she was going to make it. Of course, the very ending, though not shown, just audio, pretty much indicated she came to a very bad end. Hopefully, women took that to heart and those that saw the video will use that negative lesson to be sure and not wind up in the same situation.

    I cannot remember if it was in the movie, or simply made the rounds after the movie to show what the idiot should have done in opening the can, that is, rubbing it on concrete until almost through and then taking the lid off carefully. Either way, I guess, that lesson did get out there.

    That is all I can remember, and I am not sure if I got it right.

    So, naturally, it is all: Just my opinion.
     
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  13. Atlas

    Atlas Administrator Staff Member

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    You nailed it Jerry.

    I actually looked to make sure I still had my mini can opener in my EDC kit after watching this. For the love of all things prepping, if you don't have one of these in every kit and a few just laying around please stop what you are doing and buy a handful of them.

    https://www.armysurplusworld.com/p38-can-opener
     
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  14. Jerry D Young

    Jerry D Young Active Member

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    Exactly. Though I have a really hard time with the P-38. I think I could scrape a #10 can on concrete and open it faster than I can with a P-38. I have actually opened #10 cans with a P-38 and even when I was younger it was murder on my fingers. I still keep some P-38s but all my working units are P-51 type. They are so much easier for me to use. I carry one on one of my prepper keyrings that are EDC.

    For general use, however, here at home and in the field when camping and normal exercises, I use a decent side cut can opener. They work easier for me, very little risk of contamination as the cutters do not get into the food, and the lid will sit back on the can. This allows me to make various cooking pots with useable lids, and since there are no sharp edges some cans are useable as drinking vessels, and the large #10 can lids make decent plates. I bought a package of wooden drawer pulls with screws to make the lids. Metal coathanger wire or just about any other wire will make bails when needed. And the coathanger wire can be shaped into other useful kitchen tools and some fire tools.

    Though not as important for making stoves, the side cut lids are a help putting out the flame in tuna can and Dinty Moore Stew can stoves using rolled cardboard and scrap wax or oil.

    Just my opinion.
     
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  15. twp

    twp Administrator Staff Member

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    As I get older, I find myself being less tolerant of younger people (Get Off My Lawn, Punk!). Given some time to get to know a person, young or old, I will try to start them on the Prepper path, but it is not a quick set of lessons. This when a good Prepper library is really helpful.

    Immediately after an event has happened or is still ongoing, I don't think there will be time to educate the uninformed and unprepared, so if they won't take an action that I see as proper and necessary for survival, I'll be more likely to write them off as a waste of time, particularly in a crisis. Harsh? I think yes, but also part of survival... Given that a survival situation is within a group of people, I might try to hand them off to someone who is willing and able to take the time to teach them. Much depends on their attitude and willingness to learn while in the middle of crisis.

    After an event has passed and society is trying to return to a more stable situation, I am willing to assume the teaching role again but it will still depend on a willingness on the part of the student(s). I don't mind being known as the curmudgeon.

    With respect to the movie, as Jerry noted, the writers did indeed leave out much. I can understand this when everything has to fit in the time frame of the movie. I also suspect that the writers were not Preppers themselves and were going by what they could glean from books and other movie scripts. They may have had some consultants, but I think we have all seen the wide range of opinions within the Prepper community on what constitutes proper actions in a given crisis.
     
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  16. Jerry D Young

    Jerry D Young Active Member

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    I am much the same, twp. Unless I have at least a glimmering that a person is willing to actually try to learn and use that education to help themselves (and family or group as the case may be), I will not waste my time. That is especially true when I believe someone wants the information to use to take undue advantage of others. I will not teach tactics to someone I believe only wants the knowledge to take from others, rather than defend themselves.

    And I sure will not lend any help at all to someone that I feel is planning to use me as their private source of goods and supplies. Not going to happen. It has already been tried and it did not work out well for the person.

    I will help anyone willing to help themselves to get through just about anything as long as I believe they will walk the walk as well as talk the talk, and will be right there in the aftermath helping with rebuilding civilization and society.

    While that was not really addressed in American Blackout, since the power came back on fairly quickly, there were some hints that people were not sure what they would do, or even what could be done, if the event lasted long-term and they had to totally start over without our current infrastructure and would need to work with others to accomplish the rebuild.

    Just my opinion.
     
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  17. twp

    twp Administrator Staff Member

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    Jerry, agreed, the movie did not provide a clear enough picture of what other people may do in a crisis. That is not a severe criticism but just a limitation imposed by the short (1+ hours) window into the storyline.

    There is a danger in too much reliance on move/video stories as learning opportunities for Preppers. IMO, the great majority are written and directed to either make money or to sway their viewers to whichever viewpoint is held by those writers/directors. "If it bleeds, it leads" as the old print newspaper mantra goes...

    Still, there is a need, IMO, for this form of media because it does make non-Preppers aware of the case for Prepping. It is not proselytizing in the sense of trying to gain converts to the "cause", but these movies may give someone a bump to look at their own situation and maybe start doing something for their own protection. A wake up call as-it-were.
     
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  18. hypnos

    hypnos Talkative Member

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    I saw that one a while back, but I'm glad you posted it @Atlas . A excellent reminder of the problems we could face someday.

    I immediately see something like this and start taking inventory of what i have at my disposal. My first thought is having enough fuel to make it to a BOL. You can forget the gas station, that's for certain.

    I do think that many people would behave just like the video. Jump on the social media and "OMG". As if people weren't aware before pewdiepie that something was wrong with the power.

    Overall for T.V. they did a decent job, i enjoyed that video. I think if people actually understood how fragile our existence is they would prep.

    Looting is an ever present issue. But fortunately the masses are likely to smash and grab jewelry, flat screen TVs and X-boxes before anything actually useful. That's good news for the rest of us.
     
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  19. hypnos

    hypnos Talkative Member

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    Nat geo cited an estimated 3 million preppers out of 328-329 million people in the US. now thats a tiny demographic we're in.
     
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  20. Punty

    Punty Member

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    I think NatGeo did a pretty good job of showing various types of "normals" and how they would behave in such a situation.

    I do think, though, that maybe they underestimate the mobs of looters. If recent natural disasters and civil demonstrations are any indication, opportunity presented will produce instant looting mobs.
     
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