Funny Things


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Concerning Hobbits: An Unexpected Review


First things first: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is, essentially, fanfiction. You adapt a book to a film, some things are going to change - it's par for the course with moving between a medium where everything has to be described in turn to one where things can just exist side-by-side and be seen, between a medium where there's a narrative voice and one where that's usually kind of weird and intrusive. That's going to happen. It's still possible, though, to produce a pretty faithful adaptation of source material (just look at Watchmen).

Peter Jackson, Guillermo del Toro, Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens have not done that. Their Hobbit has, well, made a few changes. It's developed a few characters and incidents, and added a few more; it's reshuffled quite a few plot elements; it's explicitly setting out as a prequel to The Lord of the Rings rather than 'that children's book that Rings was the sequel to'; it's recognisably the same story, but everything that Tolkien set off the page has moved onto the screen, executing a generic shift toward the epic. It's a film made by four people that love the book but want to seize control of it and do things with it, who love it for its potential rather than as a pristine and untouchable cultural artefact. It's exactly the sort of thing that good fanfiction does - but it's not one for Tolkien purists.

And, frankly, I think that's a good thing.

[What follows will, naturally, be spoileriffic. I wouldn't normally warn you about this, given that the book has been out since 1937 and all, but there's that much new stuff here that I think it's worth doing. If you care about spoilers do not click 'Read More'. You have been warned.]

Monday, December 17, 2012

New Member Monday - Two Weeks For One

Hello and welcome, everyone!  New Member Monday is back after a short hiatus.  A hiatus you say?  Indeed good sirs and madams.  Your humble author was just this past week struck down by a vile and insidious contagion that rendered him unable to do anything except watch Ken Burns documentaries.

"You may remember my film style from that one episode of Community"
Sadly, I could not send any missives detailing my convalescence and for that I am sorry.  But there was good reason, dear readers!  SinSynn had only just finished reading HG Wells' War of the Worlds and I did not want to cause him any undue stress by fueling his nightmare scenarios with the ghastly realities of the common  cold.

New Member Monday

Hour of the Wolf 
Keywords: Warhammer 40,000, 40K, RPG, Dark Heresy, Rogue Trader, Only War

Temporary 2+
Keywords: Warhammer Fantasy, 40k, Magic: the Gathering, lotsofrage, whatever else I want to post about.