Cleolinda Jones (cleolinda) wrote,
Cleolinda Jones

Wednesday night, after a fairly productive day

I'd like to clarify something about asking y'all to boycott The Seeker : I have no problem with changing things from books to movies in general. Y'all know how I championed Stardust this summer; I actually thought that the changes, of which there were many, worked really well in the context of a film, and that everything that needed to be there was still there. I've actually gone to the mat defending various Harry Potter omissions and alterations (you may remember how much I loved Prisoner of Azkaban); I actually liked the Arwen additions in Lord of the Rings; and I'm more than willing to give the His Dark Materials adaptations the benefit of the doubt until we see how they handle the religious themes. I'd even be okay with them soft-pedaling or even omitting that element if they did it in a way that (somehow. I know, I know, I don't know how either) made sense. I know saying that will probably cause bedlam in the comments, but you certainly get my point: filmmakers who seem to respect the books as books, which are not movies, but try to adapt them as gently as possible to film anyway are okay with me. I know that the anti-religion element is so key to His Dark Materials, but I also can't imagine an American movie aimed at kids where characters set out to "kill God." I mean, I'm sorry: I don't see that happening. So the the level of respect and fidelity with which the HDM filmmakers try to get around that sociopolitical impossibility, that's what I care about.

And then... there's The Dark Is Rising. There's just a level of contempt for the entire undertaking that floors me. To wit:

From snale: NPR : Author Uncertain About 'Dark' Leap to Big Screen. "Screenwriter John Hodge first looked at The Dark Is Rising many years ago. At that time, it just didn't seem like the right project for the man who wrote the screenplay for Trainspotting, a gritty film about heroin addiction. Hodge didn't like fantasy anyway." Then why--WHY--AUGHHH. "Cooper is waiting for the movie, but with a certain sadness. She says she sent a letter requesting changes to the film's script, but she's not sure any alterations were made."

More horror: "Ian McShane, who plays Merriman Lyon says: 'I don't think they've been very faithful to the book. I don't know how many of you've read the book. I know they sold a few copies, but I couldn't read it very well. It's really dense. It's from the 70s, you know? [...] No, I never heard of them [before signing on]. I did try to read the book, but they were a little...I think...I don't know how...There's four of them apparently. Or five. Oh, god. That means I might have to do a sequel." This in addition to his "It's written in Old English" comment. Out! OUT!

Furthermore (from the same blogger as above), "the comments on MTV's Movies Blog are universally unhappy, as are many of the threads and comments over on Walden Media's forums, where we are treated to what appears to be a wonderful display of astroturfing (that is, faking grassroots approval)." Yes, they are actually going to try to pretend that people are happy about this. BOYYYYYYCOTTTTTTT.

(Hey guys? I know some of y'all have expressed an inability to resist the siren song of Christopher Eccleston. Could you just wait a week, maybe? They put so much emphasis on opening weekends these days that waiting just seven days would make a difference. And while I do not condone illegal downloads, may I remind you that you will be able to Netflix the movie in a few short months. Seriously, the theater-to-dvd window is down to about three months now, except in the case of giant blockbusters that they try to hold until the holiday shopping season. And if you all wait that week, or those three months, it could mean the difference between your favorite series getting a reasonably faithful adaptation and another abomination like The Seeker. Come on, I can't make armchair activism it any easier than this.)

From quenbolyn: "Well, if any of the other reviews sound like this one, I don't think it's going to do very well at all." HUZZAH!

And finally, the entire Dark Is Rising sequence at Amazon USA and Amazon UK. Note: The set does not have movie tie-in covers. There may be swanker boxed sets out there, but this is a nice affordable paperback set, good for bookish kids on your Christmas list.

(I can't help it--a little bit more: The Seeker: The Dark Is Rising : The Interviews. "The powers that my character [Will] has is that he can light stuff on fire which is really cool. He summons great strength. He can move objects with his mind. He can travel through time, but the main thing that I wish he could, but it would ruin the whole story, is that he can't fly. He wants to fly in the movie too which I think is perfect because I would love to be able to fly. It would totally change the whole story though." And more from McShane: "It's very rare that you get the kids in nearly every shot of the movie. It really is." Has he seen any of the Harry Potter movies? Any of them? Narnia? Lemony Snicket? Even Bridge to Terabitihia ? Anything at all?)

The rest of the linkspam!

L.A. professor triggers Myanmar Web shutdown.

The finest slice of WTF you will see this month. Possibly this year. The century? Who knows?

Lingerie 4 Men?

Paddington Bear sells his soul for Marmite.

Stephen Fry blogs about fame: "Dan Whatsit and his preposterously awful Leonardo book are actually relevant to our theme.... Of course those for whom money is important will tell me that Dan Doodah is ‘laughing all the way to the bank’ and that his sales are all the approbation he needs. Well those who think money is any more reliable than fame as an index of worth are already beyond help. Eat shit, a trillion flies can’t be wrong." He also gives us this piece of advice: "So, student journalists, tyro profilers and rooky reporters out there, seriously, quite seriously never ask a ‘what’s it like’ question, it instantly reveals your crapness."

Polley Celebrates Directors Guild of Canada Award Wins.

Cate Blanchett rocks some kind of sky-blue caftoga at the Golden Age premiere just because she can.

"Heartbreak Kid Movie to have Sweeney Todd Trailer!"

Narnia Set Visit: The Costumes.

New 'I Am Legend' and 'Mummy 3' photos

Hardwicke to Direct Meyer's 'Twilight.'

New Watchmen Writers?

Caine Calls Ledger’s Acting In ‘Dark Knight’ ‘One Of The Scariest Performances I’ve Ever Seen.’

Bardem/Bale in Killing Pablo.

Universal and Berg Making Getty Kidnap Film.

Spyglass Remaking Cronenberg's Brood.

Indy Extra Blabs, Gets Cut.

Poet John Keats A ‘Bright Star’ For Abbie Cornish.

Del Toro Helming At the Mountains of Madness ?

Why you should be watching BBC's 'Jekyll.'

Kevin Dillon starring in ''300' spoof. Doesn't that movie pretty much spoof itself, though? And yes, I say that as someone who did write a spoof.

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Tags: 300, asshaberdashery, batman, books, epic fail, lovecraft, movies, narnia, sweeney todd, the golden age, twilight, watchmen, wtf
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