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#271

Colonel Green

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Posted Apr 11, 2012 @ 12:50 PM

I heard on E News that they are making a movie out of the popular series Fifty Shades of Grey.

I'll admit to being surprised that the studio is making a big deal out of this, because to me a book like that raises all kinds of Won't Translate Well red flags. A big selling point of FSoG has been all the online sales, which are discreet. Even if they can successfully translate it to screen without getting an NC-17 rating (which will be a real challenge, from what I've heard; though I haven't read the book myself), I'm very skeptical they're going to get lots of people to see it in theatres. There hasn't been a really successful erotic movie since, what, Basic Instinct?
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#272

Ankai

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Posted Apr 11, 2012 @ 4:39 PM

I know that I had talked about Battle Royale quite a bit recently, but I have not talked about it here. So, now I will. I had watched the movie several times during the past few years, but had picked up the book only recently. Obviously, there are differences.

One difference was the world of Battle Royale. The book set the story in this alternate world of a dictatorship of Asia, with Japan at the head. It did not quite make much sense to me in terms of Battle Royale. The movie simply said that Japanese society had collapsed and that the military was barely holding things together. We did not see much of the outside world, but it seemed pretty normal. The collapse idea was not necessarily presented well, but it made more sense in terms of Battle Royale being an overt measure of damage control and misdirected punishment as opposed to some ritual conspiracy.

Another difference was the person in charge. The one in the book was just some guy. A bureaucrat who liked to throw his weight around. The one in the movie was a former teacher of the students and seemed like he had checked out of the world a long time ago and decided to take one last bitter ride. It was not explained how he became in charge of this group of students, but whatever.

Another difference, and it is small, is the time limit of the game. It was way complicated in the book, with someone having to die within 24 hours. The movie simplified it, with everyone but one having to die within three days. That is clear.

Another difference was the transfer students. In the book, they were already in school, while in the movie, they were just transferred on the night Battle Royale began. I think that I prefer the book version, because the movie makes it seem way to contrived, like the kids in the class did not have enough drama, so let these two wild cards take up the movie. Also, one of the "transfer" students was changed just enough in the movie to seem like a complete cypher. He didn't talk and he volunteered. This was nothing like the book. To be honest, I had wished that they had toned down his character in the book, who was some sort of emotionless savant, but they took him to extremes and separated him from any sort of backstory. Finding out that he was not a "transfer" student in the book made me like the character in the movie quite a bit less. Instead of being one of the worst of the students, he was an outsider with no attachment to them at all. Given his actions, his status as an outsider takes away some of the impact.

There was also a lot of backstory involving the sex lives of the characters. While I suppose that it may have been appropriate and accurate in such a hyper-real environment, I am glad that it was only alluded to in the movie. Then again, a bit more backstory on everyone would have been nicer.

The weapons that the protagonists received were different. It did not make a big difference in the long run, but it did make a difference in one moment when one of them gets into a fight with another character and afterwards has to deal with his own little movements that led to the fight. It makes more sense in the book, since he had a proper weapon.

There are a few other differences, particularly involving the characterisation of characters and little plot points. There were some where I liked the book versions more and some where I liked the movie versions more. It is hard to really pick them out.

Finally, the climactic scene towards the end of the game. I am glad that the movie did away with the over-the-top sequence from the book that really would seem silly in the movie. That said, I wish that certain characters had more to do in the movie version, the way that they had in the book. To say more would be spoiling things.

So, that is pretty much it.

It helps when the same guy writes the book and the script. Though that only happened after the execs were horrified at the result of the first person they asked to adapt the book...Richard "Southland Tales" Kelly. Look it up for a great laugh.

Oh dear.
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#273

ribboninthesky1

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Posted May 6, 2012 @ 3:35 PM

I read The Prestige recently, and for my part, thought the film adaptation was definitely an improvement over the book (save for the women characters, but that's a major weakness of Nolan's). Oddly enough, in both, I sympathized a lot more with Alfred Borden than Rupert Angier, though I'm not sure I was supposed to. The film has both characters as leads, but the book really felt like Angier's story, with Borden as a supporting character, particularly since
Spoiler
.

Edited by ribboninthesky1, May 6, 2012 @ 3:36 PM.

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#274

MethodActor05

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Posted May 27, 2012 @ 3:07 PM

They're doing a movie called Warm Bodies, based on the book by Issac Marion. It centers around a zombie who becomes involved with the (still living) girlfriend of one his victims, changing the relations between humans and zombies forever. It's starring Nicholas Hoult and Teresa Palmer.

I read the book and fell in love with it, but I'm kind of wondering how they're going to translate it to the screen. The fact that they changed R(the zombie) from wearing a dress shirt and tie into wearing a red hoodie seems like they're trying to make him more relatable to teenagers and dumbing things down a bit. All the Beatles and Frank Sinatra references are probably gone because of copyright stuff- in the book they mention the songs playing but they can't actually play the songs in the movie without having to pay for it. All of Julie's swearing and pot references might have to go, as well as the fact that she's covered in blood for a good bit of the movie.

I mean, I don't know- I can't see how this movie could be anything but R-rated, but if they go for PG-13, I can see a lot of stuff in Warm Bodies getting cut out.
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#275

Myndela

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Posted May 27, 2012 @ 3:30 PM

Stanley Kubrick's "Lolita". There were quite a few differences (like Delores being called Lolita by everyone, not just HH; not mentioning that Delores died in childbirth; Delores being asked to be in art films, not porn) but considering what the Hollywood code was at the time, it was just brilliant. The sexual innuendo they got past was top notch, and I liked that they didn't try to turn HH into a hero but instead showed him to be a pervy creep. Then again, I found Clair Quilty to be even creepier than him, and if we had to choose between the two for Delores, I'd have chosen Hum in a heartbeat.

"Midnight Cowboy" is also a pretty great adaptation, and such a great movie as well. They cast Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman perfectly for that film.
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#276

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Posted Jun 5, 2012 @ 1:33 AM

The movie based on One Shot has been renamed Jack Reacher. It's like they've decided to stop apologizing to all the angry fans and just taunt them instead...
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#277

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Posted Jun 5, 2012 @ 8:03 PM

I've actually really come around on the casting of Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher. Yes, Reacher is 6'2" and 220-250 lbs of muscle with a neanderthal's forehead that belies his brilliant deductive reasoning. But if you can get past the physical differences, which is admittedly a big if, Tom Cruise is not a bad choice. He was really good in MI:GP. It dawned on me as I watched: "Oh yeah, Tom Cruise is a really good actor. He's a star who works really hard at his craft, and can carry a movie no problem." So in terms of pulling off Reacher's lone-wolf, alpha dog personality, he's actually a great choice, and I'm somewhat optimistic about the movie.
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#278

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Posted Jun 7, 2012 @ 10:48 AM

I just watched the Bridge to Terabithia film, which provides a quite interesting examination of how a story can be changed if taken out of its original time. The book, written in the early '70s, has Jesse's parents very weirded out that he likes to draw and his best friend is a girl, the obvious subtext being that they're worried he's gay (though the author herself certainly doesn't condone that kind of thing). The movie, which moves the story to the present day (in 2007) has all of this really toned down; Jesse's father still gets on his case about his drawing, but it's just because it's keeping Jesse from appreciating the real hard work that goes into their farm, and causes problems like leaving a keyring in the greenhouse, where he then can't find it. And the family's reaction to his bringing Leslie home is just surprise that he might have a girlfriend.
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#279

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Posted Jun 7, 2012 @ 3:48 PM

I've actually really come around on the casting of Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher. Yes, Reacher is 6'2" and 220-250 lbs of muscle with a neanderthal's forehead that belies his brilliant deductive reasoning. But if you can get past the physical differences, which is admittedly a big if, Tom Cruise is not a bad choice. He was really good in MI:GP. It dawned on me as I watched: "Oh yeah, Tom Cruise is a really good actor. He's a star who works really hard at his craft, and can carry a movie no problem." So in terms of pulling off Reacher's lone-wolf, alpha dog personality, he's actually a great choice, and I'm somewhat optimistic about the movie.


Cruise has been here before. When he was cast as Lestat in Interview With the Vampire, the book's fans went ballistic, and author Anne Rice publicly criticized it as a major miscast. The studio invited Rice to a private pre-release screening and she took out a full page ad in several newspapers apologizing and praising Cruise's performance (which, btw, I thought was terrific, one of his best).

So I suspect some Lee Child fans may be surprised - pleasantly - by the finished product.
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#280

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Posted Jun 7, 2012 @ 7:31 PM

Here's the thing: Reacher's size is not a by-the-way characteristic. It gets mentioned constantly in the books. There are situations he gets into because of his size and situations he gets out of because of his size. The way he handles situations is dependent on his size. People react to him based on his size. It's an integral part of the character as written.

Aside from the size, I think there's also a charisma problem. Reacher doesn't really have any; Cruise tends to trade on it. He might be able to turn it off, but it's somewhat intrinsic to being a movie star. It's a fundamental difference in how you deal with people and how people respond to you.

Could this be a good movie? Sure. But it won't be Jack Reacher.
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#281

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Posted Jun 9, 2012 @ 10:46 PM

One of my favorite horror books is the Watchers by Dean Koontz. They did some crappy low budget versions but they were... well... crap. I'd love to see a really good director take this one on with the good CGI they have now.
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#282

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Posted Nov 10, 2012 @ 3:40 PM

The trailer for Warm Bodies came out. I'm cautiously optmistic here- I like the satiric, comedic edge they're going for, because it doesn't feel that off from the tone of the book. Yes, the book was more of a drama than a comedy, but there was this sardonic edge throughout the book that made a lot of sense- people living in that kind of world would need some sense of humor, or else they'd go crazy like Julie's dad did. And even though R is not wearing a suit and tie, I think his voiceover narration has the kind of deadpan humor that I pictured R as having.

I'm not so sure I'm sold on Nora, though. Nora was this kick-ass black tough chick that was formidable. Aside from Nora getting white-washed, it kind of seems like they're trying to play Nora as being like a silly teenaged girl. I hope I'm wrong on that- one of the best things about Warm Bodies was how kick-ass and tough(yet still feminine) the two females were.

I'm also guessing that the PG-13 rating means Julie's pottie-mouth won't be seen in the film. I think Teresa Palmer can pull of the character, but I'm not sure how much of Julie's edge and wit is still going to be in the film.

Edited by MethodActor05, Nov 10, 2012 @ 3:43 PM.

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#283

crowsworks

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Posted Dec 6, 2012 @ 7:09 PM

Instead of re-making every movie ever made for the tenth time, I wish someone would dig out George C Chesbro's books. This guy was writing x-files stories years before the show and better. I can see the Mongo series not taking off as Mongo - a professor/former aerialist and detective is also a dwarf. I fell in love with his 'big' brother Garth. With the CGI stuff from LOTR they could do it now or get the cute guy from Game of Thrones. Beasts of Valhalla is the best.

Also it's a sin his non-Mongo book Bone was never filmed. It's set in NY where a social worker comes across a homeless man who defends the other homeless. He is a handsome but hulking guy who carries a bone and has amnesia. When the homeless start being murdered 'Bone' is a suspect and maybe the only hope of stopping it.
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#284

corvus13

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Posted Dec 6, 2012 @ 7:30 PM

I can see the Mongo series not taking off as Mongo - a professor/former aerialist and detective is also a dwarf


Hey, if Tom Cruise can play Jack Reacher...
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#285

crowsworks

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Posted Dec 7, 2012 @ 7:07 PM

I can see the Mongo series not taking off as Mongo - a professor/former aerialist and detective is also a dwarf


Hey, if Tom Cruise can play Jack Reacher...



Calling Peter Jackson?
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#286

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Posted Dec 9, 2012 @ 7:18 PM

I desperately want a movie adaptation of The Giver. It's been stuck in development hell forever. Jeff Bridges has been linked with the project for a while, and I've become so attached to the idea that I'll be very despondent if anyone but Bridges ends up as the titular character, lol.
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#287

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Posted Dec 9, 2012 @ 11:53 PM

Yes! Seriously, why has that not been made into a movie already? It's very suited to a film treatment, although the color aspect of the story won't be as big a surprise in the movie as it was in the book. Jeff Bridges is a great choice as the Giver, and I'll be interested in seeing if the young characters will still be twelve years old, as they were in the book, or if they'll be aged up to sixteen or so to target the part of the youth audience that most frequently goes to the movies.
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#288

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Posted Dec 10, 2012 @ 1:46 PM

Oh wow. The Giver would make a great film.
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#289

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Posted Dec 10, 2012 @ 1:55 PM

It's very suited to a film treatment,

It's interesting you should say that, because in an interview that Lois Lowry did (when Son came out), she said that the film adaptation hadn't made much headway because Hollywood thought the exact opposite. The Giver doesn't have much to offer in terms of overt thrills and action; it's no Hunger Games. I guess, in a way, she's right, because the book is much more "quiet" and introspective compared to a lot of other YA/middle-grade books being optioned for the big screen. Hollywood's probably wary of that. But I still think it could make for a beautiful film if done right.

And hey, a lack of action didn't exactly stop the Twilight franchise from making it big. ;) Then again, they had the always appealing (snerk) forbidden romance angle in their favor, and The Giver doesn't even have that. Jonas and Fiona don't count.
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#290

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Posted Dec 10, 2012 @ 2:18 PM

Some books that are heavy into introspection don't make good films. The Other Boleyn Girl was a pretty bad book, but an even worse movie for this reason. So much of Mary Boleyn was told, in the book, through her own private thoughts, and that just didn't translate on film. In the film, she was even blander, when in the book, she had a secret edge.
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#291

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Posted Dec 10, 2012 @ 5:23 PM

I'd love a movie of The Giver, as it's a brilliant book! Plus there are three sequels to it, and having read the first one and having read reviews of the other two, I think it would make a really compelling quadrology. I'd hate it if they changed the age of the lead character, as I think it would impact the rest of the story...
I'm hoping against hope that The Life Of Pi big-screen adaptation will stay faithful to the book. I already feel that there's a love interest shoe-horned in there which was not present in the book, but other than that, I hope it's done right!
I was pretty disappointed by The Hunger Games adaptation, just in terms of leaving out so much detail (no Madge, no Avoxes (Avoxi?), not explaining the banned communication between districts...), some things not looking like they should in the book (the Cornucopia resembled broken plane fuselage, so not a cornucopia and was silver rather than gold!) and some things being glossed over/messed about with (the District 11 rebellion occurring too early, Katniss' struggle in the arena to find water and nearly dying in the first 24-48 hours, the forcefield on the top of the building being discovered by Katniss and Peeta which plays a part in the 2nd arena as well as in Haymitch's win, the mutts not looking like the deceased competitors and the way some of the contestants were killed off differently to how they were in the book). Some changes I liked, like Seneca Crane's execution/death, which I thought was suitably evil for the Capitol.
Some of the bits they've missed out make me wonder how they're going to explain some parts of the story later on, but I probably will go and see the next part, even if it is just to complain about how this, that & the other was missed out/wrongly done, as I find the cast excellent, especially Lawrence, Hutcherson & Harrisson (the guy who plays Haymitch), the senior Sutherland & cannot wait to see Philip Seymour Hoffman as Plutarch Heavensbee! I'm not familiar with most of the rest of the cast, bar Jena Malone & 1 or 2 others, but hopefully they'll be good!
I'd love to see Kate Morton's books be adapted to the big screen, especially The House At Riverton, which is about the events as seen/remembered by a housemaid working in a fancy home at the start of the 20th century in relation to a poet's suicide. The female characters are feisty but have heart and the costumes/setting would be gorgeous!
Room by Emma Donoghue would make a pretty gripping tale too, I reckon, and Gyles Brandreth's Oscar Wilde Murder Myseteries need to be adapted for the big screen pronto. I can picture an all-star British cast, and again, opulent settings and costumes.
Robin Hobb's fantasy novels (Mad Ship and Rain Wilds series) would make for brilliant viewing too, as they'd be very rich visually, and have interesting yet flawed characters.
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#292

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Posted Dec 10, 2012 @ 5:42 PM

It's interesting you should say that, because in an interview that Lois Lowry did (when Son came out), she said that the film adaptation hadn't made much headway because Hollywood thought the exact opposite. The Giver doesn't have much to offer in terms of overt thrills and action; it's no Hunger Games. I guess, in a way, she's right, because the book is much more "quiet" and introspective compared to a lot of other YA/middle-grade books being optioned for the big screen. Hollywood's probably wary of that. But I still think it could make for a beautiful film if done right.


I can definitely see where she's coming from. My main concern is that the film adaptation would try to shoehorn in some kind of resistance group among the people in the community that leads to an uprising. That would be the worst kind of pandering; it would soft-pedal the book's themes and fairly bleak setting in order to just turn it into The Hunger Games redux.

Like you said, put it in the right hands and remain true to the source material, and you could have a true artistic triumph.
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#293

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Posted Dec 10, 2012 @ 9:17 PM

There's purportedly a movie adaption in works for Unwind by Neal Shusterman, which is a story about a future America where the Pro-Lifers and the Pro-Choicers came to compromise...no abortions, but between the ages of 13 to 18, teenagers can be "unwound" with their spare body parts going off to live in other people, thus they're technically alive. The book follows three "unwinds" as two of them try to evade being sent off to a "harvest camp", while one is a "tithe"- someone who had been set aside by their parents as a religious tithe to go off to unwinding, and had been raised since birth to believe in the nobility of what he was doing.

It would make a great movie and fit well into the Hunger Games-teens-in-dystopian-world craze, but I can see the abortion topic being really, really hard to sell to Middle-America.

Edited by MethodActor05, Dec 10, 2012 @ 9:22 PM.

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#294

Last Time Lord

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Posted Dec 30, 2012 @ 11:20 PM

On Netflix, there is a miniseries adaptation of Les Miserables from 2000.

It has John Malkovich as Javert. And it's not only John Malkovich, it's John Malkovich in one of his pissed off Olive Garden customer performances.

Needless to say, he is the most entertainmening part of the whole thing.
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#295

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Posted Dec 31, 2012 @ 1:15 PM

And it's not only John Malkovich, it's John Malkovich in one of his pissed off Olive Garden customer performances.



Ok, this is so funny - and scarily accurate - that it needs to become part of the vernacular right now.
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#296

Colonel Green

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Posted Dec 31, 2012 @ 1:38 PM

That's a line from the Nostalgia Chick's review of The Man in the Iron Mask, featuring Malkovich (at about 4:30, and several points thereafter).

The new Les Miserables is an interesting adaptation, in that it's primarily an adaptation of the musical, but in the process of doing so it imports a number of things from the original book that weren't in the musical. Some of these are to explain plot points that the musical glosses over (such as where/why Valjean and Cosette hide in a monastery for all those years, and Marius' grandfather), others for purely artistic reasons (such as restoring Gavroche and Eponine's roles in the original novel's battle, rather than the musical's versions).
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#297

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Posted Dec 31, 2012 @ 6:00 PM

After reading a lot of criticism of Ang Lee's film adaptation of Life of Pi, I find it fascinating that one of the big sticking points for a lot of viewers (and critics) is Lee's method of dealing with the book's ending. It's clear that Lee respected and wished to honor the author's intentions, and the thematic ideas raised by the ending, but an awful lot of people seem to feel that what makes a fascinating and thought provoking book doesn't always translate well onto the screen. Similar criticism was directed years ago at Harold Pinter's rather looser fidelity to John Fowles' unique authorial POV for The French Lieutenant's Woman.

One critic said, in re Pi,that ambiguity works better in books than in movies. Do you agree with that, overall? Would it be better, IYO, to simply not adapt books that call for that sort of ambiguous ending, or to streamline it in terms of some viewer expectations?

Just ruminating here...
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#298

Last Time Lord

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Posted Dec 31, 2012 @ 7:24 PM

That's a line from the Nostalgia Chick's review of The Man in the Iron Mask, featuring Malkovich (at about 4:30, and several points thereafter).


Guilty as charged. I'm a fan of hers, and like to drop memorable lines said whenever they fit.

The new Les Miserables is an interesting adaptation, in that it's primarily an adaptation of the musical, but in the process of doing so it imports a number of things from the original book that weren't in the musical. Some of these are to explain plot points that the musical glosses over (such as where/why Valjean and Cosette hide in a monastery for all those years, and Marius' grandfather), others for purely artistic reasons (such as restoring Gavroche and Eponine's roles in the original novel's battle, rather than the musical's versions).


I have not read the book, I remember hearing that in the novel, Fantine sold some of her teeth as well as her hair. In the musical, it was just her hair, and in the new movie, it was both.

I had also heard in the book, Gavroche had a subplot of his own, and it and the fact he was Eponine's brother was cut from the musical.

I really want to read the book. I tried a free copy on Kindle, but it read like a Bable Fish Translation.
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#299

Colonel Green

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Posted Dec 31, 2012 @ 7:46 PM

The book has a million and one little side-stories, including Gavroche's interactions with two boys who (unbeknownst to him) are his brothers.

If you're looking to read the book, the recent translation by Julie Rose is superb.
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#300

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Posted Dec 31, 2012 @ 8:14 PM

There's also a whole 'relationship' between Thenardier and Marius's family that has a big impact at the end. And a bigger part for the Amis, not to mention that Eponine and Gavroche have two brothers and a sister...

I agree that the book is worth reading - though it is very, very long and detailed. I do think the musical film version really captures the heart and soul of the book, and even, as noted, restores some material from the book itself.
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