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Sunday, May 18, 2008

Sunday Salon May 18, 2008

Good afternoon, fellow Saloners! I hope you have all had a far more successful reading week than I have!

I am dogsitting for a friend while she is in Ireland for the next 2 weeks teaching a study abroad program for the college she works for. I am hoping to spend the time here to get caught up I some of my reading.

I did read C.S. Lewis' Prince Caspian last night. My roommate and I went to see the film version on Friday night, and quite frankly, I was disappointed. It seems to be lacking the charm and the magic that the first film has. It was a very dark film, both literally (most of the scenes were shot at night or in a cave) and figuratively (it is definitely a film about war). I realized when I left the theater that I couldn't remember any of the book (it has been probably 20 years since I last read any of the books except for The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe) so thought I'd at least pull Caspian down off the shelf and give it a read. I'm shocked by how much they changed from the book to the movie. I'm sure they changed quite a bit in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe when they made that film (I would have togo back and reread the book and watch the movie again to remember it all), but there are some significant changes made to the film version of Caspian; entire scenes added, the focus of character motivations changed, scenes rearranged. I'm not in Hollywood, so maybe they felt that these changes needed to be made to make the film "better," but in that, I think they failed. I think the Narnia books are the type that depending on who reads them depends on how the book will be interpreted. After reading Prince Caspian, I felt the book was about faith,; about how faith can grow when you least expect it, and it may not always be easy at first, but if you believe and trust that faith, it will make itself known. I think the movie touched on that a little, but as I said before, the movie was really a war film. The prevalent themes of the movie were racism (instead of thinking the Old Narnians had simply faded into memory, the Telmarines had tried to exterminate them all), revenge (a whole new scene was added to the movie just to show the depths of Caspian's hatred towards Miraz) and egos (much of Caspian's and Peter's interactions at first seemed to be about proving who was the better leader, instead of working together from the first like they do in the book). Needless to say, I don't think they made a better movie.

So, that about sums up the extent of my reading this week. I received both of my Early Reviewer books this week (The Wednesday Sisters by Meg Waite Clayton for LT and Songs for the Missing by Stewart O'Nan for B&N) so I've got some good reading ahead of me for the week.

Happy reading, everyone!


Irish said...

That is disappointing to hear about the movie. Although I'll still probably go see it. Like you its been eons since I've read the book. All of Lewis' book are about the power of faith and its a shame that they didn't really include that in the novel. Because you can have faith without being all religious about it...but that is probably what they were afraid of. That they'd get flack for being a religious film.

I'll get my Songs of the Missing on Tuesday. I am looking forward to it. =) I'm also looking forward to your review of The Wednesday Sisters for thats a book that I'm interested in reading when it comes out.

Anonymous said...

I didn't know they were making another movie. I've somehow lost patience with the Narnia books. I didn't read them as a child so they've never had that very special place in my life that much loved children's books can have, but I did enjoy the first time round. gradually though I come to have more and more difficulty with the brand of Christianity that Lewis seems to be promulgating and with the very didactic way in which he does it. I think I;ll give this film a miss.

Fay Sheco said...

This film does sound like one to skip. From the trailer, it appears that they have tried to give it the look and feel of a computer game.

Anonymous said...

That's really too bad about Prince Caspian. I had been really looking forward to seeing it -- but I've only heard negative reviews. It's a great pity, especially since the first one was so very charming.

Sarah at SmallWorld said...

I'm also disappointed to hear that about the movie, although yours is about the 3rd review I've read that has not been particularly favorable. I had such high hopes!

samantha.1020 said...

I've never read The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe but I am hoping to remedy that soon.

tapestry100 said...

Thanks for stopping by, everyone! Sorry it took a while to get back to saying Hi! Without having a computer handy, posting can be something of a pain.

The more I think about Prince Caspian the more I did not like it, especially after reading the book. I agree with you Ann, that Lewis' handling of Christianity in his books leaves something to be desired. I don't think it's as prevalent in The Lion, but it seemed to be a bit stronger in Caspian. I try to look beyond the religious aspect of it to a more spiritual aspect.

And samanatha.1020, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is worth seeing! I really enjoyed the first film and thought they stayed as true as they could to the source material.