Sunday, October 31, 2010

How to Train Your Dragon

Over the summer, I picked up a copy of How to Train Your Dragon off of a Bookcrossing shelf in Singapore.  It was a quick, easy, and enjoyable read that I finished in one evening. One of those sorts — fun and relaxing.

My friends who are moving in a few days recently gave me a copy of the DVD of How to Train Your Dragon.  I thought it would be fun to watch, since I enjoyed the book so much.  I was surprised to see how different the movie was from the book, but really had fun with it too.  I am glad my friends gave it to me, as I probably wouldn't have picked it up on my own.  But with the difference between the two stories, it's fun to have experienced both versions.

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Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Book of Eli

After we watched Inception together this summer, my oldest nephew recommended that I watch Denzel Washington in The Book of Eli.  Since he mentioned it, I was looking around for it, but having some trouble finding it.  After mentioning that to some friends, they kindly watched out for the DVD until they found it and bought it for me.  It took a while still after that, but tonight I finally got to sit down and watch the show.

My nephew's recommendation was a good one.  I liked the movie, thought the acting was pretty good, and very much enjoyed the premise of the show.  The whole notion of the relationship between language and power has long been one of my main interests.  This movie nicely captures that idea and puts it into a story that makes good sense.  The way that we use words, the power they have over us, and the way we too often try to use them to obtain power over others are matters all nicely explored in the film.

The movie reminds me some of Fahrenheit 451.  Maybe that's partly because it's a book that I recommended to my nephew this summer as well, and so was kind of mindful of the connections we'd shared this summer through the things we watched, read, and talked about.  I love those moments of connection, and especially enjoyed that part of watching The Book of Eli tonight — connecting with my nephew even when we are on opposite sides of the world at the moment.

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Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Testament of Andros

I am haunted.

I read James Blish's short cycle The Testament of Andros yesterday, and I can think of nothing else.   The way the cycle spirals around and around the three characters, the world's end, the sun.... it seems to be spiraling around and around in my brain in just the same way.

It's been some time since I last read anything by Blish, but as soon as I read this, I downloaded several more stories for my Kindle.  And I am planning on reading more of his longer works when I get back to Singapore, since they are on my shelf there.  I had almost forgotten just how good a writer he is.

If you've not read Testament of Andros, it is well worth picking up. It can be read in a very brief time, but will linger in the mind long after the reading, swirling round and round in an eery sort of way.  Just like the story itself does in the telling.  It makes for a wonderful reading effect, and reading after effect.

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