trinsy: (grin)
So a week later than the rest of the world, I finally saw Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows yesterday. It was pretty amazing. Way better than OotP and HBP. I thought it was kind of choppy, and there was one big thing I disagreed with, but overall I really loved it.
likes, loves, nitpicks, hates, and spoilers beyond! )
trinsy: (are you my mummy?)
Dear Pixar,

First of all, well done with Toy Story 3. It was fantastic, especially for a threequel, so well done. It was totally unnecessary to have it in 3D (seriously, what is up with the obsession with 3D? It's such a turn-off! You have to wear those stupid glasses that are made to fit everyone and as a result fit absolutely no one, which is super distracting, and your eyes hurt afterward. What about this is cool?), but still.

That said, remember when you used to make kids' movies that dealt with subject matter that was actually appropriate for and relatable to, you know, kids? Good times.
trinsy: (I can see that)
So yeah, finally saw Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince yesterday. I actually didn't hate it. It was pretty good for a Harry Potter film (because the Harry Potter films are not the same as regular films -- they're not Lord of the Rings or Pirates of the Caribbean, and they never will be, and I think a lot of the problems in the films stem from the filmmakers not realizing this). I mean, every film the cast is always like, "Oh, this one is so funny!" and then you see it and the humor is totally lame and it's kind of a letdown. But this time it actually was funny, and not just because some of the lovelorn angst scenes were unintentionally hilarious, but the scenes that were meant to be funny were also funny! It was such a pleasant surprise!

Spoilers, spoilers, spoilers! )

The weirdest thing about seeing this movie, though, is that it made me realize how much I don't care anymore. And yes, I just wrote a ton of crap for someone who "doesn't care", but I'm usually such a nazi and I was just so incredibly forgiving of stuff this time. I guess I'm growing out of my Harry Potter phase? I don't know. It's been a huge part of my life for so long, and I think the weirdest, scariest thing is that it feels so natural not to care.
trinsy: (ha!)
So I randomly decided to go see Twilight with a bunch of my friends at 10:00 last night.  I am exhausted now, but it was so worth it!  Most of the people I went with love the book, but Amy wasn't there so I was able to be honest about how much I hate the books, so it was all okay.  The only other lolfan was my roommate, who only knows what I've told her about the books, and thus thinks they're ridiculous.  I sat next to her and we snarked through most of it (it was a virtually empty theatre, so we weren't disturbing anyone [except during the scene in Bella's bedroom A FEW DAYS AFTER THEY'VE FINALLY STARTED TALKING TO EACH OTHER, when Edward casually tells her that he's been sneaking into her room for TWO MONTHS ... at which point I gave a small scream, and my Twihard friend I was sitting next to snapped at me, but I didn't care because HE WAS SNEAKING INTO HER ROOM AND LURKING IN THE CORNER FOR TWO MONTHS, TWO MONTHS OH MY GOD!]).  It was fun.

All my Twihard friends were disappointed, but ... the film was EVERYTHING I hoped for!  RPATTZ, I LOVE YOU!  BE MORE AWESOME!

Seriously, afterward everyone went on and on about how he wasn't pretty enough or charming enough or romantic enough or [adjective] enough, but ... Robert Pattinson is MY Edward!  He played the creepy, semi-psychopathic, bipolar, socially awkward thing PERFECTLY!  Seriously, "Spunk", be my best friend!  We will snark at the Twihards and harass Rupert as he struggles through the books, and you can tell me all about how you got pissed one night after being stalked by fangirls all day and leaked Midnight Sun (this is my pet theory), and IT WILL BE AWESOME!

Also, I don't know if Kristen Stewart is just a bad actress, or if she got what RPattz got out of the book and actually meant to play Bella as sort of blah and void of personality, but either way, she is MY Bella, except about 500% less angsty and bitchy and annoying, and I love her for that!  Oh Kristen!  Oh Robert!  You are both so lovely!  Don't EVER change!

I seriously love this film, guys.  I mean, as a film it's quite poor.  (The cuts are so abrupt and painful!  The special effects are sloppy!  The soundtrack is so over the top it's hilarious!)  But it is exactly what I wanted from film!Twilight, and I fully intend to go back for more!
trinsy: (don't be so daft)
Dear Andrew Adamson et al,

Today I am going to rationally explain to you why I'm upset with you, and why you'd better take your cue from Peter Jackson & Co. when you make Voyage of the Dawn Treader, rather than from David Heyman, Steve Kloves, and the rest of the Harry Potter crew.  Granted, I'm not a hardcore Lord of the Rings fan, but I read the books, and I understand why the hardcore LotR fans are upset with Jackson, and I think that, even so, he and his team did a damn good job adapting Tolkien's masterpiece.  You could learn a couple things from them.

First, let me just say that I do actually get that book and film are different mediums, and that some things that work in a book just don't work in a film, and visa versa.  Notice that I say some things, not everything.  I'm sure that it must be hard to adapt a book of which about a quarter is backstory, and at least another quarter features people walking back and forth across a forest and bickering with each other.  (Oh, Harry Potter crew, you are going to have so much fun with Book Seven!)  That said, just because it's hard, it doesn't mean you should just give up and change the whole plot!  That's just lazy, and that's not okay.  Yeah, you might have to make a few changes to keep up the pace of the film.  I get that.  But you shouldn't change everything.  You need to make changes intelligently, and you need to make sure they aid and add to the story.  You didn't do that.  When asked why you put in the part where Caspian's troops try to invade the castle (or 'the night raid sequence', as you call it), you answered with this:

"Director Andrew Adamson felt that the concept of mythological creatures attacking a medieval castle was quite an interesting visual, and one that had never been seen before."

In other words, you decided to put in the night raid sequence because you thought it would be kind of cool (in much the same way I suspect the HP people decided to put in an attack on the Burrow in HBP because they thought it would be cool).  Frankly, that's not a good enough reason.  This is one of the things where I completely agree with the LotR fans' indignation.  You see, in the film The Two Towers, there's a scene where the people of Rohan are going to Helm's Deep and they get attacked by orcs on wargs.  To be honest, this scene is pretty awesome and probably one of my favourites in the film, but it pisses off Rings book fans because it didn't happen in the book.  As a hardcore fan of certain books myself, I can say with no reservations that hardcore fans will never be satisfied.  But in this case I think the fans have every right to be upset, because Peter Jackson actually came out and said that the reason he decided to put it in the film is because he thought it would be cool, and that's really not a good reason to mess with canon.  I forgive Jackson, however, because he did what you and the Harry Potter people didn't do: he made sure that his 'cool' scene added to the story, rather than just being in there for the sake of being in there.  Also, I respect that he had the balls to be honest, rather than making up crap to appease the fans.  (I'm not even going to get into the crap 'logic' you used to justify the night raid sequence because I'm trying to be calm, and that pisses me off too much.)   Doesn't make what he did right, but still.

Jackson made another change in TTT, and it was actually pretty huge.  I am, of course, referring to the change in the character of Faramir.  In the book, Faramir isn't even tempted by the Ring; in the film, Faramir is tempted, and he's also kind of an asshole.  This also pisses off LotR book fans, which I get, and it upset me at first as well because Faramir is my favourite character in the trilogy.  However, getting past my initial emotional reaction, I do understand how "I would not take this thing even if I found it on the wayside and Gondor were falling and only I could save her" works in a book in a way it could never really work in a three hour film.  When you have everyone in the story tempted by this object of evil, and then you get someone that immune, it's really going to throw the pacing off.  I get that, and Jackson & Co. got that, and that's why they changed Faramir's character; but they didn't do it lightly, and they did it right.  They realized that having film-Faramir start out as book-Faramir would throw off the films, so they had film-Faramir evolve into book-Faramir.  They didn't give Faramir a complete personality transplant; he just started out a little less developed than book-Faramir.  So in a bizarre way, his OOC-ness actually made him in character.  That's the correct way to do OOC-ness (pay attention Harry Potter!).

Look, I get that making Peter bitter about leaving Narnia the first time could make the film more interesting.  I get that having Peter and Caspian get along from the start could throw off the pacing.  I even get how the whole Susan hating fighting thing could make battle sequences difficult.  Changing one of those things is okay; but you changed all of them.  The thing is, if you need to change a character to keep the pacing of the film, that's okay; but you'd better make sure it's the correct character to take the hit, you'd better make sure the character evolves into being in character by the end of film, and you'd better make damn sure you work three times as hard to keep all the other characters in character!  You may even need to change two characters to keep the pacing (e.g. Arwen); that's still okay.  But if you have to change most of the characters, well, then you need to ask yourself why you think making this book into a film is a good idea.  And no, 'money' isn't a good enough answer.  If every character has to be out of character to make the film work, then this probably isn't a book that can translate to film.  That's okay.  There are plenty of other books that can work as films.  Just adapt one of those.

Honestly, I don't think Prince Caspian is a book that can't translate to film.  I don't think every character had to be changed to keep the pacing.  I just think you were lazy and you didn't care enough.  And if you don't care enough to work at adapting the book correctly, then you aren't the right person to be adapting that book.  So stop.  Plenty of people actually care.  Plenty of people want to do it right.  The Peter Jackson of Narnia is out there.  Leave it for them.
trinsy: (bovvered)
Dear Disney,

Do you hear that?  It's the sound of C. S. Lewis spinning in his grave.


No love,

trinsy: (inverse brain and mouth)
So I saw Atonement last night, and I have to say, I found it to be much like The Notebook: High in praise and obsessive fangirls, and low in narrative and quality.

First, let me just say that there were things I liked about it.  The girl who played young Briony was spectacular, and every bit deserving of her Oscar nod.  I was absolutely transfixed watching her.  The score was also brilliant.  Whoever thought to use the typewriter as an instrument is a genius.

Aside from that, I found the story contrived and dull.  I had no emotional investment in any of the characters.  It was like I was commanded to care about them but wasn't shown why.  Robbie and Cecelia having sex in the study was extremely random when all we knew of their relationship leading up to it was that there was a certain amount of sexual tension between them by a fountain and they didn't speak to each other at school.  Then suddenly it's sex, and "I love you, I'll wait for you, I'll cut off my family for you!"  Um, sorry, did I doze off for a moment?  (I wouldn't be surprised, as any scene not featuring Saoirse Ronan was exceedingly boring.)  Because I feel like I missed something.

That might also have had something to do with the narrative form, which was awful!  This style of "Three Years Earlier/Five Months Earlier (than now, or than three years earlier?)/Two Minutes Later/Three Days Earlier/Four Days After That" "This Happened/Just Kidding, No It Didn't/Yes It Did/But Not Really" is stupid in the extreme.  And I don't think this, as some people have suggested, because I don't like stories that make me use my brain.  Rather it's because I like to have to use my brain to reflect on the story's themes rather than on trying to figure out what the bloody hell is going on.  If a story is complicated, it should be thematically complicated not narratively complicated.  The theme isn't going to have much impact on your readers/viewers if they can't follow the story.

All in all, it took me five hours to watch a two-hour film because I kept getting bored and pausing and doing other stuff.  I only kept going back because I expected it would get better, but it never did.

What I don't understand is, how come it's always stupid movies like this that get all the awards?  I'm not suggesting the generic blockbuster should be winning, but why is it movies like this, and Crash, and The Departed -- in other words, movies with good cinematography and boring/confusing/nonexistent plots -- that are nominated for/win the Best Picture awards?  Good cinematography doesn't make the movie interesting, and a unique narrative style isn't necessarily a good narrative style.  Just saying.
trinsy: (stubborn)
So I bought the Order of the Phoenix DVD as a going away present to myself before I left for Scotland. And watching the film a third time, I came across even more things that annoy me about it than I did the first and second time. Cut for your convenience (I get pretty in-depth). I really just need to exorcise these demons...

trinsy: (last words)
So I downloaded a bunch of Christmas music over the weekend, and my roommate hung up Christmas lights, and yesterday it rained and I turned off our room light and turned on the Christmas lights and sat on my bed and drank hot chocolate and wrote a Christmas story.  Well, that I was my plan, anyway.  What actually happened was I got about a paragraph into my story and then one of the other girls came in and somehow I got suckered into watching The Notebook for the first time.  I thought it was a huge waste of 123 minutes of my life, which apparently means I am a horrible person and hate love and will die miserable and alone.  Which I am actually totally fine with if it means I don't have to lay on greasy asphalt, or have sex (or almost have sex or whatever it is they even do in that scene) in a dirty, dusty, rotting house, or spend seven years crying and angsting and getting drunk and leading perfectly nice people on because I am pathetic and cannot get over it, dear GOD, people, it's been SEVEN YEARS, MOVE ON ALREADY!  So yes, my plans were rather thrown off.

I also read Six Characters in Search of an Author which is a really fantastic play and one I recommend to anyone who writes fiction.  A few quotes that exemplify this brilliance:

"A character, sir, may always ask a man who he is.  Because a character has a life which is truly his, marked with his own special characteristics. ... And as a result he is always somebody!  Whilst a man ... in general ... can quite well be nobody."

PRODUCER: And so you'd say that you and this play of yours that you've been putting on for my benefit are more real than I am?
FATHER: Oh, without a doubt. ... If your reality can change from one day to the next....
PRODUCER: But everybody knows that it can change like that!  It's always changing. ... Just like everybody else's!
FATHER: No, ours doesn't change!  You see, that's that difference between us!  Our reality doesn't change. It can't change. It can never be in any way different from what it is. Because it is already fixed. Just as it is. Forever!  Forever it is this reality. It's terrible! This immutable reality.  It should make you shudder to come near us!

"Authors usually hide the details of their work of creation.  Once the characters are alive ... once they are standing truly alive before their author ... he does nothing but follow the words and gestures that they suggest to him.  And he must want them to be what they themselves want to be.  For woe betide him if he doesn't do what they wish him to do!  When a character is born he immediately acquires such an independence ... even of his own author ... that everyone can imagine him in a whole host of situations in which his author never thought of placing him.  They can even imagine his acquiring, sometimes, a significance that the author never dreamt of giving him."

And the last one kind of makes me go, "Oh god, I hope fanfic-ers don't get their hands on this."  But seriously, aren't they brilliant?
trinsy: (silver doe)
Okay, so I saw Harry Potter Five again tonight, and I have some thoughts to add to the ones I initially wrote back in July.  Don't worry, they're [relatively] briefer and more positive.  But everything I originally wrote I still believe.

trinsy: (resurrection stone)
Okay, I know this is over two weeks after the film came out, but better late than never, yes?

trinsy: (too late)
So, I’ve been wanting to write this ever since I saw the new Pirates on Monday.  I’m very passionate about films, and I’m very passionate about these films in particular, so I’ve really felt the need to write a review on it.  If you haven’t seen it, don’t click the cut unless you want to be totally spoiled.

June 2013

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