Friday, August 15, 2014

The Giver (Film)

I recently posted my thoughts on the upcoming theatrical release of The Giver.  In short, I thought the trailer looked terrible - and I still think so.  At least, the trailer I was referring to was terrible.  Since coming up with the idea for this post, I've come around a little bit on some recent trailers and have upgraded the movie to just above terrible.

I think when I last gave my little review of the trailer, I was judging the film as an adaptation of the book.  However, the problem with this is that in the past I've always tried to treat the film and book versions of a story as separate; this is completely necessary, because the two mediums provide different ways to tell the same story.  I think it's reasonable for a director/writer to take some liberty with the subject matter rather than just do a scene-for-scene adaptation of a book.

The Giver (film) looks at least like a lot of focus was put on cinematography and visual effects.  It also looks like the action has been ramped up quite a few notches from that seen in the books.  I think I can understand why; the book is not exactly the fastest in terms of what's actually happening between the pages.  If you were to just adapt the book as written, it would be a pretty short film.

Still, I have some nagging feelings about this movie.  I think it's definitely unfair to judge it based on how I think it's adapted the book (and my initial reactions were that I thought it looks more like a "loosely based on" type of movie).  However, from what I've seen in the trailer, I don't really like the direction they've taken - and some of the acting looks rather poor.  It's unfortunate that they seem to have used the poorer takes of some scenes in the trailer.

Lastly though I was just reading an interview given by Jeff Bridges, who acts as a producer for the movie.  Apparently he is a huge fan of the book, and even made his own 'fan film' years ago.  It's been my experience that when an actor really loves a book, the film they push to produce tends not to be the best quality.  That's not always the case (see Moneyball), but it happens often enough.

Friday, August 1, 2014


I haven't had a lot of things itching to get out of my mind lately, but I've been wanting to write something - so I thought I would throw something together.  A hodgepodge, if you will.  I figure a paragraph on everything will do.

- I was introduced to reddit a few weeks back; I had heard of the website before, but never really made use of it.  It looked like a jumbled mess to me, and when occasionally I'd find reddit in search results, I didn't know how to navigate it.  I'm still no pro at it, but I get it now and it has given me new things to read about.

- This week I've been dropping pounds like crazy.  It hasn't been due to any extra exercise (that was last week...I put in some extra time due to some external pressure that ended up being unfounded).  The main difference this week has been smaller dinners by using portion plates.  Oh, the best part?  I'm down 14.17% body fat - or, 39.3 lbs since November 2013.  Crazy!

- 2048 is a simple yet addictive game.  In short, the object is to move numbered tiles around a grid and combine them to ultimately create the number 2048.  I've gotten has high as 1024, but that's about it.  I'm close...I can feel it!

- A while back I watched Thor: The Dark World.  It's not a perfect movie, but I found it really enjoyable - which is great for a character I've hardly related to in the past.  I've never been a big Thor fan, so it's great that the movies can make the character relevant to me.  Good comedic moments balanced with action set pieces.

- The Blue Jays are on a roll.  Sort of.  They had a spectacular month of May, which has set them up great considering the mediocre performance they've put forth in June & July.  They've picked it up since the All-Star Break, but they have a long way to go if they want to do anything in the post-season.  Sounds like Jays fans are excited again though, which is's been too long.

- Recently read The Giver; I really liked this novel.  It's really short, so it's an easy read.  I gave it five stars on Goodreads, though thinking back to the book, it's not spectacular.  Don't get me wrong - I'd still rate it five stars; but a book like Brave New World or 1984 are more up my alley than this was.  Have you seen the trailer for the movie coming out soon?  It looks terrible!