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Earthsea vs. Middle-earth

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  • David Lenander
    My coworker just called my attention to the SciFi network web-pages on their planned dramatization of the Earthsea books. Although I don t have cable, and so
    Message 1 of 4 , Aug 25 1:35 PM
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      My coworker just called my attention to the SciFi network web-pages on
      their planned dramatization of the Earthsea books. Although I don't
      have cable, and so may not see these in December, I find myself
      reflecting that one of the wonderful things about the Earthsea books is
      how different they were from _The Hobbit_ and LOTR. The bits on the
      web-site make it look like the Peter Jackson films, and even the
      narration sounds like the trailers from the Jackson films. I hope that
      Le Guin gets more money than the Tolkien estate got. Maybe she has to
      be satisfied with the great _Lathe of Heaven_ that public television
      did years ago.

      At the same time, some guilty little part of me is a little bit excited
      about seeing _A Wizard of Earthsea_ dramatized, even if it ends up
      looking like a Jackson film clone. And even if I end up waiting for the
      DVD.

      On Aug 22, 2004, at 6:32 AM, mythsoc@yahoogroups.com wrote:
      >
      David Lenander
      d-lena@... or david_lenander@...
      2095 Hamline Ave. N.
      Roseville, MN 55113
      651-292-8887 or 651-697-1807
      http://www.umn.edu/~d-lena/RIVENDELL.html
    • Jack
      ... Do wait for the DVD. I watched Dune and its sequel on DVD. It was immensely better without adverts.
      Message 2 of 4 , Aug 25 1:57 PM
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        >At the same time, some guilty little part of me is a little bit excited
        >about seeing _A Wizard of Earthsea_ dramatized, even if it ends up
        >looking like a Jackson film clone. And even if I end up waiting for the
        >DVD.

        Do wait for the DVD. I watched Dune and its sequel on DVD. It was immensely better without adverts.
      • Edith.Crowe@sjsu.edu
        The thing I m unhappy about is that they ignored Le Guin s depiction of Ged as not particularly white--he s clearly described in a way that sounds more like a
        Message 3 of 4 , Aug 25 5:55 PM
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          The thing I'm unhappy about is that they ignored Le Guin's depiction of
          Ged as not particularly white--he's clearly described in a way that sounds
          more like a Native American. Earthsea's racial diversity was a big deal
          and hero who didn't look like every other was a real departure in fantasy
          at the time. Granted, SciFi gets points for making Ogion black, but he's
          not the hero. I hope the cast as a whole is more diverse than it looks on
          the web site so far. And then there's Vetch...

          Edith L. Crowe
          Art & Humanities Librarian & Coordinator of Graduate Instruction
          San Jose State University Library
          http://www.sjlibrary.org
          (408) 808-2037 | edith.crowe@...

          Corresponding Secretary of the Mythopoeic Society
          http://www.mythsoc.org

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • David Bratman
          ... which have a toally different feel from Tolkien s book, of course. The idea of giving Earthsea a feel that s too close to LOTR is bad enough, but having
          Message 4 of 4 , Aug 29 7:58 AM
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            At 03:35 PM 8/25/2004 -0500, David Lenander wrote:

            >one of the wonderful things about the Earthsea books is
            >how different they were from _The Hobbit_ and LOTR. The bits on the
            >web-site make it look like the Peter Jackson films,

            which have a toally different feel from Tolkien's book, of course. The
            idea of giving Earthsea a feel that's too close to LOTR is bad enough, but
            having the LOTR in question be the drab imitation LOTR is worse.


            >At the same time, some guilty little part of me is a little bit excited
            >about seeing _A Wizard of Earthsea_ dramatized, even if it ends up
            >looking like a Jackson film clone. And even if I end up waiting for the
            >DVD.

            My feeling about the prospect of seeing favorite books dramatized is always
            curiosity, not excitement. This is not just awareness of the huge gap that
            always lies between intent and accomplishment in film adaptation. It's
            more that on reading a good book, my mind is no more prompted to think
            "This book would make a great movie" than it is to think "This book would
            make a good doorstop." I've read comments on Peter Jackson's work on the
            lines of "This is the LOTR movie I've always wanted," and I'm not so much
            minded to disagree as to wonder why the writer had always wanted a movie of
            LOTR. I was content to have the book.

            I don't really know if the people who say things like this are the same
            ones who respond to criticism of the movie by saying "A book is a book and
            a movie is a movie: they're different things," but this testimony - that
            reading a book makes one imagine or long for its movie - tends to suggest
            that they're not very different in those people's minds, but very closely
            related things.

            I have read novels that I thought would make good movies, though. I
            thought this as a consequent of their not being very good novels. What I'm
            thinking in those cases is "This isn't really a novel. It's a screenplay
            in disguise. Would've been better off if it were one, and somebody had
            produced it. I'd enjoy it more then."
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