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Gavin Greig [userpic]

The Dark Is Rising

October 22nd, 2007 (07:13 am)
current location: KY16 8SX

Better it had sunk. Read the books instead.

October 21, 2007 by
photo Gavin T.D. Greig
The Dark Is Rising (a.k.a. The Seeker)


Better it had sunk. Read the books instead.

Oh, alright, maybe I had better say a little more than that. Here is how not to make a successful movie adaptation: take a series of children's books that rejoice in mixing British legend with modern life, replace the central family with an American one, reduce the mysterious Merriman Lyon to a quipping cipher (though Ian McShane in this role really looks the part for ), and ignore four out of the five books altogether, reducing the best known one to a hammed-up chase through time collecting the magic twinkies. Do not bother providing explanations for any of the weirdness that is going on, rely on modifying the book's trivial betrayal to replace the much more interesting and poignant one, and certainly do not touch on any of the legends that made the books worth reading in the first place.

There's more - for example, the Dark Ages warrior whose entire vocabulary appears to consist of "grunph" is a classic of poetically sparse characterisation (cough) - but you don't really need to know. Just avoid this movie if you ever cared for the books. Even if you don't know the books, you will probably find the movie intellectually unsatisfying if your age has advanced into double figures.

Please may they never get their hands on Alan Garner.


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Posted by: Nik Whitehead (sharikkamur)
Posted at: October 22nd, 2007 07:58 am (UTC)

Good to see you back - I was beginning to get a bit worried.

I shall remember to avoid the film. :)

Posted by: Tomm (hobbitomm)
Posted at: October 22nd, 2007 08:12 am (UTC)

I had read the reviews about it, and had decided to avoid, at all costs.

Rather annoyingly, I also appear to have missed 'Day Watch'. Hrm. Well, wait for DVD, I guess.

Posted by: silverwhistle (silverwhistle)
Posted at: October 22nd, 2007 08:24 am (UTC)

I was determined to avoid this as soon as I heard about the Americanisation…

Posted by: Gavin Greig (ggreig)
Posted at: October 22nd, 2007 08:36 am (UTC)
Vacant Podling

Although disappointed, I was prepared to forgive that. After all, Will Stanton is supposed to be a fish out of water anyway, so there's no real harm in him being an American fish out of water - although of course it's not necessary either.

I was significantly more annoyed by his father changing into a Physics scholar who had a breakdown while writing a learned paper about the conflict between Light and Dark. And his brother who died in infancy (book) being rescued (movie).

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