Tuesday, December 21, 2004

What to read?

I have nothing to read. Now, if you saw my library, you'd probably give me a hard rap on my head. Let me rephrase that. I have far too many books to read. I can't decide what to read! Argh!

I need something to capture my imagination again. Something fantastic and fun ... right now I've run out of ideas what to read.

As I stand, blur, at my library scanning for books to read I came upon a few possible choices:

1. Queen's Gambit by Deborah Chester
2. The Nanny Diaries
3. Number 10 by Sue Townsend
4. Star Trek Voyager: Spirit Walk (pt 1)

(Scatches head.) I don't feel particularly inspired by this list. hmm.

Monday, December 20, 2004

Review: Return of the King extended edition



Faramir giving his future wife an adoring look. Yeah, you got that right. It's me he's looking at.

So, I'll spit it out - I'm dissapointed. Now, before eyeris gets a heart attack, let me explain myself.

I shouldn't have read the book before seeing the movie. Then the dissapointment wouldn't have been so acute. It doesn't help that my favourite chapter in Return of the King is The House of Healing and The Pyre of Denethor. Pete Jackson mangled that pretty good.

In the extended edition, The Houses of Healing is a blink-and-you-will-miss-it sequence. Instead of Aragorn healing Faramir, Eowyn to prove to the Gondorians that he is indeed the King returned, we get a "set up" for Faramir and Eowyn to exchange cow eyes at each other. (grumble)

Hey, I love Faramir and Eowyn being together and all that. Faramir is one of my fav characters. However, in the movie, Eowyn seemed so ... frivolous to have gotten over Aragorn so fast. And I agree with eyeris when he said that the Extended Edition made Aragon more ... wussy.

The Houses of Healing, if it had been done right, would've lent additional strength to Aragorn. Same with the ghosties at the Dimolt (sp?). What I don't get is why must Pete extend the battle scenes even more? Honestly, one could scrape a few minutes from those scenes to do justice to the Houses of Healing or other crucial scenes.

Also, now I get why Daphne is so irritated with movie-Gimli. In the EE, he seems even more like a clown. Yeesh.

I didn't get to see Faramir and Eowyn wed! (bawl) The scene was shot, y'see.

Also, as I was watching the documentaries in the EE, apparently they also shot scenes about the fate of the rest of the team. There's a scene of Gimli looking at jewels and one of a very delicious-looking Legolas (with longer, more pristine hair if it's possible) walking in what could only be the forests of Ithilien. After the War, he helped rebuild Ithilien with Faramir.

Ah, what could be! Pete, if only you could've just scraped 5 minutes of extended battle to allow us to see these scenes. But boys will be boys ...

PS: I will never ever read a book before the movie again. I mean, look what happened to Legend of Earthsea!

Legend of Earthsea ... baaaad.

Well, oy. So I managed to see the SciFi miniseries through (cough) unofficial means. Let's just say that the first ten minutes of the show I'm already saying: "Man. This sucks."

The acting is so bad you can't believe, the script stinks and I didn't even wait long enough to watch the other sections. I know my friend Chris would go ballistic with the mangling of one of her favourite books.

Just hop over to IMDB comments for Legend and you'll see rows upon rows of incensed reviewers complaining how baaad this show is.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Ursula is not pleased

The Sci Fi channel just screened the miniseries Legend of Earthsea (on Dec 13 & 14, I believe), based on Ursula K. LeGuin's book and the news has not been pleasant. First, at One Ring, a commentary on the series had this paragraph:

But now the finished film has screened, and I've been getting emails from people whose opinions I respect saying things like 'I watched it and I was sick to my stomach after seven minutes.' I can't stand by and let it look as though TORN will recommend and promote any rubbish just because it's a well-known fantasy series.
Ouch! However, the sternest rebuke came from LeGuin herself, who was more than a little annoyed when the director of the flick claimed that he was true to the book and that he knew what Ursula's vision of the whole Earthsea universe was. LeGuin wrote a "reply" here.

Daphne and her husband, who have both read the Earthsea series (yes, you can guess I have not read it) said that the one thing they're annoyed with is that the cast was mostly white. As LeGuin says:
Most of the characters in my fantasy and far-future sf books are not white. They're mixed, they're rainbow ... This color scheme was conscious and deliberate from the start. I didn't see why everybody in sf had to be a honky named Bob or Joe or Bill. I didn't see why everybody in heroic fantasy had to be white (and all the leading women had "violet eyes"). I didn't even believe it ... Ged with a white face is a lie, a betrayal -- a betrayal of the book, and of the potential reader. A brown face might hurt sales in the short run, but my books are long-distance runners, and for the long haul, only the truth will serve.
Ah. The race issue.

I believe that many non-readers will still dig the Earthsea miniseries because of the fallout from Lord of the Rings. People are still hungry for fantasy after all. The powers that be chose to cash in on the craze, purity to the book be damned.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Tom Hanks will be The Da Vinci Code's hero



He's a good actor and all, but does anyone out there echo my sentiments that Tom Hanks doesn't feel like a Robert Langdon (spelling? Too lazy to check)? I don't know. I've always thought Robert would be ... cuter. More like Indiana Jones or something. And here's from someone who has not read the book.

Why have I not read the book? Well, I'm a person that avoids a book if it's hyped up! Maybe it's the snob in me who wants to say, in a plummy Brit accent: "No, I shan't read the book."

Truth is, I just haven't gotten around to doing it. I tend to be slow when it comes to book trends. I tend to read the "kewl" books months after the publicity has died down. Always waiting for a discount or a second hand book to come out.

If I'm to start on Dan Brown's books, I most probably would not start with Da Vinci but with Angels & Demons. I kinda like the title.