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Tony Grist

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Narnia [Oct. 26th, 2005|11:17 am]
Tony Grist
The trailer for The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe makes it look just like LOTR.

Same gorgeous New Zealand landscapes.

I used to want to visit New Zealand. I don't any more. It's so fuckin' empty.

Somehow or other I've managed not to read the Narnia books. I don't quite understand how this happened. But I've dipped into them in adulthood and not noticed any stardust. Lewis talks down to kids, he's so goddam preachy...

...And he's very 1950s (see last entry.)

I've read other books by Lewis. I enjoyed The Great Divorce. But, as with other "religious" writers, he leaves me with a taste in my mouth like I've been sucking on a horseshoe- a sour, metallic taste. He doesn't trust his own perceptions and feelings, but dresses up in pretty images the cold, nasty, unfelt doctrines he's been showered with from some Northern Irish pulpit.

He says in his Autobiography that his favourite mythology was the Norse, followed by the Greek, with the Judaeo-Christian coming in a poor third, but because he believed, against his aesthetic instincts, that the Judaeo-Christian mythology was true, he opted to become a believer.

Keats would have set him right on that- "Beauty is truth, truth beauty...."

But Lewis was an establishment man through and through. He went where he perceived the power to be.


[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-10-26 09:13 am (UTC)
I think the New Zealand landscape has an unlived-in quality which is, actually, entirely wrong for Tolkien....
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[User Picture]From: airstrip
2005-10-26 10:18 am (UTC)
Yeah, it really is. Tolkien's world should be Britain with truly dramatic mountains; Britain is one of the few areas of Earth totally reshaped by human habitation, from the Bronze Age deforestations to the Victorian landscapers.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-10-26 11:38 am (UTC)
Tolkien's Englishness is part of his strength and charm. This dimension was wholly missing from the films. Even the hobbits- idealised English peasants- had been Irished up.
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[User Picture]From: airstrip
2005-10-26 11:53 am (UTC)
Good point. What the hell is with this sudden fascination with Ireland?
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-10-26 12:20 pm (UTC)
I don't think it's sudden. You guys- with your strong Irish contingent- have always had a fascination with the Emerald isle. Consider the films of John Ford.
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