Monday, August 16, 2010

Weekend recap

I did not see Girl with the Dragon Tattoo this weekend -- decided to wait until after I've read the book -- but did watch two other films and finished a book:

The Eclipse -- at the end of this film, Steve growled "that's it?" He was expecting a mystery of some sort, and felt let down. I, on the other hand, was pretty satisfied. The film features gorgeous cinematography (I really want to watch again so I can study it), with a good balance of creepiness and pathos. (Plus a little romance for our dear Ciaran Hinds.) I hope I'm not spoiling or oversimplifying things by saying the story seems to be more about being haunted by the living than by the dead. There are some horror moments that may feel incongruous to viewers, but I was able to reconcile them with my interpretation of the film. Would love to discuss this one with others. (Lo, it is available from Netflix!)

Inception -- Another film that, at it's core, is about being haunted, about facing loss and moving on (or, as the case may be, not really). I thought the concept was absolutely brilliant, but couldn't quite emotionally invest in Leonardo DiCaprio as the protagonist. I left the movie thinking that if he could have brought to this what Guy Pearce brought to Memento, the film might actually have blown me away. As it stands, I really enjoyed it and want to see it again. I wouldn't be surprised if it wasn't even more satisfying after a second viewing. (BTW, the character I really connected with? Joseph Gordon-Leavitt's Arthur. LOVED him. More movies starring him, please! Also thought Tom Hardy, Ken Watanabe, and Cillian Murphy all did fine jobs. And Pete Postlethwaite's final scene? *sob*) I know everyone else saw this ages ago, but if you get a chance, please direct me to your commentary!

The Magician's Book: A Skeptic's Adventures in Narnia -- I'm going to be lazy and just quote my Goodreads review: "This book celebrates so much of what I loved about the Chronicles, but at the same time provides context for many of the things that troubled me about the books and Lewis himself. Not a book to be read quickly -- best for those who enjoy a cozy and somewhat meandering combination of memoir and lit crit." I will add here that if you're a Lewis fan who values the Chronicles mainly for their Christian message, this book may not appeal to you. But gosh, it sure taught me a lot about how we evolve as readers, about the various literary (& personal) influences that shaped the books, about Lewis' friendship with Tolkien and their drastically different attitudes toward fantasy and world-building, and much more. Fascinating stuff!

[Cross-posted from Livejournal]

2 comments:

  1. Hey Sonia! I had similar feelings about Inception. I loved it, but wasn't positive I loved DiCaprio, probably because I think he's been brilliant in other movies. Blood Diamond comes to mind.

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  2. Jessica! My first visitor. Yeah, I thought DiCaprio was amazing in The Departed, so I know he's still got it. Just didn't work for me in this film. I probably should see Blood Diamond, but it looks so . . . painful.

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