Stef (firecat) wrote,

Two stories about books and movies

I've never liked Vonnegut's story "Harrison Bergeron." This essay by Mike Perschon, about the story and a movie called 2081 that's based on it, convincingly argues that I've been misunderstanding it.
Websites such as Suite 101, mistakenly overemphasize Harrison’s defiant action, painting him a revolutionary hero. This error stems from missing Vonnegut’s winks, his ironic tone, and ignoring the excessive exaggeration of the handicaps.
What many studies of “Harrison Bergeron” miss in their goal to make the story into Braveheart by Vonnegut, with a clown-nosed Harrison shouting “Freedom!” at the top of his lungs, is the simultaneous satire of television.
Despite a few narrative differences, Vonnegut and Tuttle deliver an indictment of our propensity to “forget sad things,” as Hazel and George respectively are encouraged to on the page, and onscreen, respectively.
After all, it’s only television. It’s only the internet. You’ll have forgotten all about this by the time the next commercial comes on, or ... hey, I gotta go. Something’s trending on Twitter.
Here's a 10 minute making-of/preview of Peter Jackson's movie of The Hobbit. I had issues with the way the Lord of the Rings movies were different from the book in so many ways. I mostly dealt with the issues by pretending that the book was the history of the events as told by Hobbits, and the movie was the history of the events as told by the Race of Men. In the video are various scenes of crew and actors-not-in-makeup standing around inside Bag End. This visually matches my story about the origins of the books vs. the movies.

Also, gratuitous Ian McKellan!

There was something about much of Peter Jackson's narrative that seemed mocking to me. But the last bit with the Powhiri Welcoming Ceremony was kind of cool.

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