Monday, November 24, 2014

Coming (Quite) Soon

We had intended seeing Interstellar before now. Maybe we'll eventually make it to the cinema before the film disappears from the schedule. Until we get to see that movie, a couple of tidbits relating two others, for the future, which could be worth a look.

British director Paul Greengrass, best known for The Bourne Ultimatum, is to bring George Orwell's 1984 to the big screen (again). Orwell's dystopian novel will be produced by Scott Rudin, whose hits include The Social Network and Iris. No casting details for 1984 have yet been announced. John Hurt played the novel's lead character Winston Smith, in an actual 1984 adaptation of Orwell's 1984 by Michael Radford, best known for Il Postino.

I wonder who'll play Winston Smith this time? Someone a prospective audience will recognise and, more importantly, accept in such a role might be Brian Cranston of Breaking Bad; or Damien Lewis of Homeland and Band of Brothers. Either would have me impatiently waiting for the movie's release! Please don't let it be Brad Pitt or Tom Hanks!

See here: News/Entertainment
Also, clicking on "1984" in the Label Cloud in my sidebar will lead to several other relevant posts.

Director Josh Boone is planning a set of four films based on Stephen King’s 1978 long-winded novel The Stand. There has already been a TV adaptation of The Stand, as a mini-series. I think we've seen it, but cannot be certain. Having read a brief synopsis of the theme, oddly it doesn't ring many bells.

The Stand is yet another dystopian tale - they are proving popular, guarantee lots of bums on seats. If film-makers keep over-egging the dystopian pudding with many stale oeufs, though, the audience might soon be turned off. There's always the argument that younger film-goers almost certainly will not have read the novels, and likely haven't seen earlier adaptations, so the do-overs will seem new to them.

These two do-overs don't irritate me as much as some other re-makes have done. 1984 could benefit from a 21st century perspective (knowing what we know now); and The Stand, as long as the director doesn't go into full-on horror/smash-bang mode, but makes a thought-provoking set of movies, could bring the story to an entirely new audience, as well as to some who have read the 800+ page novel, and/or seen the earlier adaptation, but would appreciate a refresher.



mike said...

Hhhhmmmm...I think a young heartthrob would be a wise choice...maybe our sexiest man of the year, Chris Hemsworth. Leonardo Dicaprio could be a winner, too. Many good ones to choose that would bring Winston Smith to life and do justice to "2+2=5".

I read the review for Stephen King's "Revival" in the paper yesterday. Supposed to be horrifying. About a minister that heals with electricity and perfects his device over the years.

I am surprised by the number of younger adults that read books. According to the 18-29 age-group reads the most! It's fairly evenly divided amongst the age-groups, but 65+ has the least readership. I would have expected the retirees to read the most books.

mike (again) said...

P.S. - It would be refreshing to see a non-white play Winston Smith. Will Smith...Ricky Whittle...Tyrese Gibson...Cuba Gooding?

Twilight said...

mike ~ I've never heard of Chris Hemsworth - but that puts me well out (Intersteller-distance far out) of the demographic at which these re-makes will be aimed. Leonardo is a possibility, but perhaps a tad too familiar to silver screen audiences.

I think a 1984 re-make would be better with a familiar, but not too familiar face - and those known mainly for TV or stage until now have wide recognisability, but no huge blockbuster movies to their name (such as Leonardo's "Titanic").

Re a non-white Winston Smith. Hmmm, while I agree in some ways, I'm not too keen on changing the author's original vision in such a famous novel as "1984". If Winston Smith had not been white it would have been mentioned in the novel for sure.

Someone should write a parallel tale involving a different character living in a similar background described in 1984, but featuring a lead who isn't white, with acknowledgement by the author that the story was inspired by Orwell's 1984. That'd work.

I haven't read about King's "Revival", but assume anything he writes will be horrific - apart, surprisingly from 11/22/63, and the book he wrote about writing.

Twilight said...

mike - Forgot to say about young people's reading habits. It's not so much if they read, but what they read. Dozens of what are now called "Young Adult" novels have been published during the past decade, maybe past 2 decades. These will be read - must have been or the flow of them would have dried up long ago. but will young people (say under 30) still read "1984" or "The Stand"?

mike (again) said...

Yes, good point, but I'm glad they are reading anything of their choosing, whether classics or contemporary. Standard, pre-digital language is on the verge of extinction, thanks to Tweets and texts, and I'm often paused by these condensations (SMS language, textese or txt-speak). Remember "Newspeak" in 1984?

"Newspeak is explained in chapters 4 and 5 of Nineteen Eighty-Four, and in an appendix to the book. The language follows, for the most part, the same grammatical rules as English, but has a much more limiting, and constantly shifting vocabulary. Any synonyms or antonyms, along with undesirable concepts are eradicated."

Twilight said...

mike (again) ~ Yes, I agree - anything is better than nothing - and some of the Young Adult literature is pretty decent - husband likes "Harry Potter" for instance, I liked "The Giver".

I suppose the changes in language are inevitable. Our version of English is very different from that in medieval times, and even quite different from Victorian times. But nothing quite as drastic as might happen in the near future. (Wonder if the changes you mention are world-wide or just in the English-speaking world.)