Wendy (here_be_dragons) wrote,

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GoF, Finding Neverland, and Narnia

I have shed a lot of tears this past week.

Oh, don't worry. Not out of any sort of genuine personal angst (I'm not going to let Kevin's parents upset me that much), but because I've been watching and "reading" some really great stuff. And, yeah, I'm kind of a sap and I cry at the drop of a hat in movies and things. :D

I suppose I should note that spoilers abound in this entry. So, consider yourself warned. :)

It started with Narnia . . .

I never read the Chronicles of Narnia when I was a child, which seems very strange to me now, because I thought I read EVERYTHING. Well, all the standard children's classics, that is. I certainly read a lot, and those were very popular books (required reading in some places), but somehow, I managed to get through my childhood without ever picking them up. (And I know we had a copy in the house, as robingrace loved them). Then, as an adult, I wasn't sure I'd like them, since I think of C.S. Lewis as a Christian author, and I didn't want a bunch of in-your-face allegory thrown at me, so I avoided them for many years. Turns out I needn't have worried about that.

Anyhow, when I was getting ready to go on our trip to Arizona, I went to Audible to see what books I might want to download for the drive. I saw "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe," and remembered that there was a movie coming out, so I decided to download it so we could all listen. Which we did, and O.M.G., it is SO good! And Connor loved it, too. I loved it so much that I decided I wanted to "read" the others, and since we still had a lot of driving ahead of us, I went and bought the whole set on audiobooks, so we could listen on the drive home from L.A. So, we listened to "The Magician's Nephew," and started, "A Horse and His Boy." I am in LOVE with these books! So much so that I almost find myself not wanting to listen too much, because I don't want to come to the end. I think I've cried most in the "Magician's Nephew" - all that stuff about wanting something to heal his mother. O.M.G. The stories are so good - exciting and captivating. I would have LOVED these as a child (they kind of remind me of the Oz books, and I loved those passionately). Ah well. So, I missed reading them back then, which just means I get to experience them for the first time now.

Then, yesterday, I finally saw the trailer for the new film, and O.M.G., I had tears in my eyes just watching the trailer. It looks SO AWESOME! Lucy! And the Beavers! And Mr. Tumness. And most of all ASLAN!!!!! (I am in love with Aslan. He rocks SO HARD, and I can't help but feeling just a little bit of an extra connection on account of my being a Leo). :D So, now I'm all fired up about seeing the movie - so much so that I bought tickets last night so that we can go see it on opening night when my SISSY is here! WHOO HOO!!!!!! Hooray for NARNIA!!!


Then, last week when Connor and I were staying with my mom, I finally saw a film I'd been sort of wanting to see for a while - "Finding Neverland." I love Johnny Depp, and enjoy Kate Winslet as well, but for some reason, I guess I was a bit reluctant to see the movie. I haven't always been a big fan of the "Peter Pan" story (ironic, since I'm named for that Wendy), and I thought this was just another re-telling. Boy, was I in for a surprise. It's not at ALL another version of "Peter Pan." It's based on the real life of J.M. Barrie, and this was a really, REALLY good film! I came into it knowing almost nothing about Barrie, but if this film is at all accurate, OMG, he was a seriously cool guy. There were so many moments in this film that really touched my heart. Again, with the theme of a mother's illness - so very heartbreaking! I must have cried five times during this film - sometimes because it was so sad, but others because it was just so beautiful. When Barrie invited orphans to see the opening of his show (and what a wonderful idea that turned out to be). And his relationship with the Davies children. I sure hope it's all true, because if it is, it's just lovely. Well, heartbreaking, too. But lovely.

And, for the first time that I can recall, I found myself being really glad to be named Wendy. I've never really liked the name, but after watching this movie, I feel as though it's far more special than I'd ever realized - a name created by such a remarkable man. How strange that a film could make me feel so differently about something as fundamental as my name. But it has. I really like being named Wendy now.

Finally, yesterday I finally got to see the movie that most of you have been talking about (conversations I've scrolled past to avoid being spoiled, but now I can go back and read everyone's comments) . . . yesterday, we went to see "Goblet of Fire."

I liked it. A lot. And, a lot more than I'd hoped I would. It was pleasing, visually, and I think they did an admirable job of cutting the story to fit in the most important bits. Yes, there are scenes that were cut that I'd really wanted to see (like Snape in his pajamas), but on the whole, I was satisfied with what was included. I do have a feeling, though, that people who haven't read the book will REALLY not be able to understand huge chunks of what went on, more so than in any of the other films. But, that's not my problem, is it? :D :D :D

Let's see - favourite parts? Well, just about every time Cedric was onscreen, I felt teary. And I just sobbed and sobbed through a good chunk near the end of the film. I found that part of the graveyard scene to be very effective, and really captured the spirit of the book. "Kill the spare," and then he did, and Cedric just layed there and things kept on moving along. Just like in the book - you could almost miss it, if you weren't paying enough attention. I also thought Fleur's scream when they arrived back at Hogwarts was the perfect touch for that moment.

The mermaids were creepy, but also effective (and, well, they're supposed to be creepy, aren't they)? I'd forgotten about the grindylows, though, and it wasn't until Hermione made her comment that I remembered that's what those things were. Ewwww.

Also, I've heard some criticism of Emma Watson's performance, but I didn't think she overacted too much. There were only a couple of scenes when I found myself a bit distracted by her delivery. Mostly, I thought she was lovely. I was very touched by her and Krum at the Yule Ball. (And I'm sorry, I know people will want my head for this, but I still just don't like R/H. I like Krum)! I was dismayed, though, at that line they stuck in about her being annoyed when Krum watches her study. I'm pretty sure THAT'S not anywhere in the book! ;)

I was disappointed a bit by First Task - I wanted to see ALL the dragons. :D :D :D But, I can understand why they only created one. And she was magnificent! Okay, so they strayed a bit from the canon there, but I liked it anyway. There is something very cool about seeing a dragon clinging to the turrets of a very old castle. :D

I could have done without the dance lesson, in a way, BUT, I so enjoyed the stuff they did with Neville (which was set up by that lesson), that I'm prepared to say it was worth it. OMG, he's such a cutie!

The Dark Mark looked cool, as did the Morsmordre illusion. And the Death Eaters? YOW! KKK on steriods. Very creepy - not at all as I'd pictured them in my head (way creepier than I'd ever pictured them), but using pointed-head cloaks was a stroke of genius, I think. (Alhough maybe that is how she describes them in the book - I'm not always good about remembering details like that). The graveyard was also not as I'd pictured it, but I think that once I get used to it, I'll really like it. Well, maybe not "like" it, but appreciate it from an aesthetic standpoint. That statue at the Riddle grave was wicked cool, in any case. :D

There were a lot of very pretty effects, like the Goblet itself. Dumbledore seemed more like a real person in this film than in any so far, I think. I didn't really like Hermione's dress for the Yule Ball, but she was still lovely. And I thought they did a nice job of working in the whole "polyjuice potion suspicion" thing. Very nice. Maybe not enough so that non-readers will be able to understand, but it was there. I missed the house elves, but I can see why they were cut. And yeah, I also missed seeing the Dursleys. I wish they hadn't been cut.

Ah well. Those are my first impressions. On the whole, I really enjoyed the movie a lot, and Connor did too. He was scared by the graveyard scene, and wanted to come sit in my lap - but not so scared that he wanted to leave the theatre or anything. And afterwards, he said the movie was awesome. I expect I'll be seeing it again sometime soon, although really, I'm not sure I should subject myself to that. I really did cry for a long time towards the end there. :(
Tags: books, feelings, films, harry potter, narnia

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