Month: August 2011

Super 8 (Abrams, 2011)

I once knew a guy who hated Steven Spielberg. In his opinion, the Godfather of the Blockbuster was everything that’s wrong with contemporary cinema, the man that built the machine that each summer churns out reel after reel of empty, soulless images at 48 frames per second that the stinking masses will fork out obscene amounts of cash to view whilst mindlessly chewing popcorn like cattle, laughing at every fart joke and cheering as the body count climbs and their IQ falls.

Or something.  He never really elaborated on why he didn’t like him. Maybe he just didn’t think his films were very good. But either way, Super 8 is exactly why he’s wrong.


Adam Howard and the Megafranchise Part 2

The second half of the Harry Potter series is in many ways far more interesting than the first, particularly on the screen. All these upcoming films were directed by David Yates, a man not particularly famous for a few TV movies and miniseries, including the excellent State of Play. But more interestingly, it’s with Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix that the actual story of Harry Potter begins. It turns out, everything that’s come before has been setup. Now, Lord Voldemort is risen, the wizarding world is in crisis, and Harry and his friends are in far more serious danger than before.

More interesting to me, though, is the fact that, apart from some elements of the story here and there, I didn’t really know what was going to happen watching these. As I said in my last post, I had read up to Goblet of Fire, and I’m fascinated to see how this would affect my experience of these films. The books are all over 600 pages, so the films have an awful lot of plot to get through, and I’ve no doubt that there will be some shorthand used in translation from page to screen. But how much, and whether it ruins the experience, is crucial to assessing these films as films, rather than just companions to the books.

Suffice to say, spoilers abound coming up.