Archive for the ‘Books to Movies and Vice Versa’ Category

Lethem’s “Gun, with Occasional Music” a future movie?

December 11, 2009

as a fan of Jonathan Lethem, I like hearing about new books from him and I like hearing of the possibility of new movies based on his books (though I don’t like Ed Norton essentially casting himself as the lead in Motherless Brooklyn). 

Guns, with Occasional Music is one of those books that I loved to read but wasn’t sure could ever be a movie. Or at least a successful movie.  depending on who is involved,  I can certainly see it being pulled off. But with its mix of Dashiel Hammet style detective story with weird sci-fi, I’m not sure I see an audience for it unless it is drastically changed for the screen. Which would take out all of the fun.

So, if it gets done, I’m hoping for something with a modest budget, modest special effects, and a director who knows how to stretch a buck and get the image he wants (I’m thinking Gondy or Jean-pierre Jeunet, personally).  Whatever happens, it’s a project I’ll probably follow.

A Foundation for the Movies

January 19, 2009

Lifted this from The Arts Blog at the New York Times: the rights to the old Foundation series by Isaac Asimov has been sold to Columbia Pictures and they are looking to make it a Roland Emmerich vehicle.

The good news is that Asimov gets another shot at the big screen. While I didn’t hate I Robot, it certainly didn’t do the book or the author justice.  If you have read the book, while watching the movie you get the impression that it was titled “I Robot” purely for the name recognition and not for any real ties to the source material. Usually I don’t have much of a problem with movies deviating from source material, they should deviate from it and play towards the strengths of their particular form and be their own interpretation rather than a straight adaptation from word to image.

My problem is when it is either done very poorly (such as Demi Moore’s attrocious “Scarlett Letter” film from the late 90s) or when it deviates from source material to the extent to have no real connection to the source material. But the latter I can more than bend with if the end product is good enough (such as Kubrick’s “The Shining” which is utterly brilliant).

So maybe Asimov will be given justice with the Foundation series being brought to the big screen. It would be nice seeing a good movie based on the books I read as a teenager and which I got passed to me from my dad who read them when he was younger.

But I have serious doubts if Roland Emmerich is going to be the one given the reins to it. I give him all the credit in the world for Stargate. I still enjoy that movie and the television shows it spawned. I’m a bit of a scifi geek and can’t really help myself.

But following that up with the lackluster fare such as Independence Day, Godzilla, The Patriot and The Day After Tomorrow doesn’t give me much hope that Foundation won’t be brought down to something with a lot of explosions and slow motion. Our best hope is that Emmerich has to pass on this for some reason and someone a bit more skilled is given the material to run with.