I Tried Valerian…

Related image…And it wasn’t even as good as the herb. Couldn’t make it past… I don’t even know where it was. This was Vulcan crystal paper with pink rock candy for the eyes, and lobotomy needles for the mind. I’d resisted the chorus of boos and hisses—I mean, 5th Element director! And the main (human) characters were eye candy. Well, until they opened their mouths.

Not sure what this says about the comic’s fans, but I lost IQ points just watching a piece of it. Sad, really. Lots of interesting ways the story could go, and it oozes with species that would be need to see in a Rendezvous with (a Populated) Rama kind of way. But this? This is a pizza with six times the necessary cheese and a white bread crust.

Yes, it’s all about food. I’m roasting a duck. Pretending it’s a “Mul.”

Rogue One

Finally got around to seeing the movie Rogue One. (Fair warning: spoilers below the ‘more’ link.)

I heard a lot of the hype before, and many of my writing friends saw it and most raved. Or at least, didn’t rant much. I found the hype around the movie mendacious, the acting mediocre, the plot so bracketed by the “real” Star Wars movies that it was difficult not to expect many of the dramatic moments.

Read More about Rogue One

“Hunger Games,” Transitions from Book to Screen and ScriptFrenzy

While I disagree with the YA genre for the Hunger Games, on the basis of graphic violence rather than the usual idiocy about what kids know about sex and relationships by their early teens, it is a great series. The first novel stands firmly by itself, albeit a bit of a teaser at the end. What gave the book depth and the main characters power, at least for me, was the backstory: why the hunger, how cutting the deprivation, how evil the Pan Em Capital really was.

Give costuming its due: the frippery of the capital residents, their gaudy couture , awkward, vain hair & makeup

Translating this book to a movie reminded me how the movie industry has come to see these movies. Parse out all the plot lines, keeping all but the vivid or book-memorable ones. Discard extraneous characters, scenes. Seeing the movie last night gave me a hollowed-out visual to go with the book in my mind. Casting did a great job on the visuals for the lead actors, but, had I not read the book, I doubt I’d have caught the Depression Era costuming of the Districts. Aside from a one-line homage to Katniss’ backstory with her mother, or one nightmare glimpse of a mine explosion, entire sources of power that give Katniss her survival power and personal integrity disappear. As a result she appears much more the contrary teen than an empowered, angry, focused young woman.

I give it a 7/10 on the “fun at the movies” scale. I’m sure the sequels will be as beautiful. But hopefully better informing us of their inner strengths and motivations, and less of the jiggly camera stuff.