December 25th, 2010

Christmas Eve Viewing

I watched a bit of Prince Caspian. It was frightfully violent. The fairytale people were fighting the Spanish conquistadors. There was a cute mouse that killed grown men with a rapier. I was quite enjoying all this until a dead-eyed CGI lion turned up and everyone curtsied and bowed to it while it said pompous things. The lion had super-powers and conjured up a river god who killed the chief conquistador and then everything was fine again. The lion had been living in retirement in the forest- and the reason it hadn't intervened before and saved a whole lot of killing was a deep mystery we were advised not to question. 

Seriously, does anyone find Aslan an attractive character? I think he's ghastly. 

I cleansed my palate with Whistle and I'll Come to You- a reworking of an original idea by M.R. James- starring John Hurt as an old man grieving for the wife who has been taken away from him by Altzheimers.  The new material didn't quite fit the framework of the original- the whistle the old man finds on the beach had become a ring- thus making a nonsense of the title- but the slow pacing and murky atmospherics were just right. Forty years ago Jonathan Miller made a more faithful version with Michael Hordern in the lead that has become a classic- and this matched up to it well and was- if anything- even scarier.