sarnath: Fai from Tsubasa reservoir chronicle (Default)
I finally had an opportunity to see Cirkeln (The Circle), and I'm still not over how brilliant it was! As you might know, I tend to post when I'm still high on the experience, but I waited a couple of days this time, and yes, still perfect.

Spoilers, but if you've read the books you'll be relatively safe )

Random thought after exiting the cinema: in online sub/dub wars, it's very likely you'll find Swedes arguing vehemently for the sub side. We love our subtitles. So much in fact, that we now subtitle our own films in our own language, and I have just watched a film in Swedish with Swedish subtitles. But hey, that way you know you won't miss any part of the dialogue!
sarnath: Fai from Tsubasa reservoir chronicle (Default)
For reasons of which I'm actually not quite sure myself, I've now watched the last three of the Twilight films. It was a fascinating experience, if also intensely boring. The last one made me laugh, however, over how emblematic the battle is of the entire series: in the end nothing has happened, and everything is solved without a single sacrifice for the main characters!

And as a friend commented: it's not even pretty! the fourth film, which is about 60% footage of the wedding ceremony and the honeymoon (during which, again, nothing much happens), isn't even beautifully shot. Even Say yes to the Dress probably shows off the wedding paraphernalia to a better effect.

Positive things about the films:

  • Jasper is hot


  • Charlie is both sympathetic and funny, and occasionally seems to live in a different, much better film


  • Edward drives a Volvo, which is so hilariously white-picket-fence-and-a-dog for a vampire


  • Aro, who seems to be visiting from a much cheesier but way more fun film


  • Dakota Fanning, because she evidently loves bringing pain to everyone she possibly can in this film, and also she tosses a cute little child on a pyre


  • Lee Pace! He was also my favourite thing about Guardians of the Galaxy, and I'd probably watch a whole film with Thranduil sniping and flouncing about


I don't know what to call the point of the fourth film where a teenage romance suddenly turned into as horror film, specifically body horror, but it was... something. I especially appreciated the scene where the child kicked Bella so hard from inside her that it broke her spine. Perhaps it was just relief that something finally happened, but it was pretty horrifying, and I agree with the people who have said that this series could probably make a rather good horror story.

I think possibly this could be done simply by changing the score, actually (someone should do this as an experiment). Which, what was up with the music? I was constantly wondering: am I watching a vampire film or Dawson's Creek? And sure, we all know the answer to that, but still, the film does have vampires. Of course, it just as well mightn't have; it's not as if they do anything vampires do, like drink blood and avoid sunlight. I mean, I don't have a problem with them being able to walk about in sunlight, because we all know it's not a universal vampire trait, but is there any downside with becoming a vampire in Meyer's story?
sarnath: Bilbo sees the lonely mountain from the Mirkwood (Bilbo & Lonely Mountain)
Is it just me, or is Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit really sad stories? Just finished the last in the LotR film trilogy, and the end had me in tears, and I'm not even sure why. Or, well, it's the partings, I think.

I also watched the Hobbit Battle of Five Armies trailer, and wow, I'm going to cry throughout, aren't I? Also, that was a low blow, with the Mist and Shadows song (which always makes me cry in Towers, too).

I should read the books again, though; so much is cut from the films. I think characterisation is kind of shallow in the books, but so much of the history is missing from the films that some things are really hard to understand.

Don't approve of the Gimli characterisation, though, way too comic relief.

But as I said before, I love the Hobbit films (though the final judgement is on hold until I've seen the last one) more than the LotR trilogy, despite their failings. Of course, I love an elaborate action sequence, so many of the additions weren't failings to me. But I can't understand why they shortened the Bilbo/Smaug convo, that is one of my favourite parts! Perhaps the extended edition will have a longer scene?
sarnath: Bilbo sees the lonely mountain from the Mirkwood (Bilbo & Lonely Mountain)
Dramatic, but not too much so for a dragon, I suppose! I watched The Desolation of Smaug for the first time last week and it was brilliant. Of course, I'm not a book purist and have honestly forgotten most of it (haven't read it in twenty years at least!) despite having read it more than once.


 photo HobbitDoS01smaller_zpsa14f2793.png


They're beautiful, these films. And I'm so easily moved by epic adventure and the old school romance of the heroic quest that I'm really not reliably biased when faced with it in such a glorious package.

Also, I have joined the hordes of the Thorin/Bilbo shippers. What can I say, I'm a simple woman with simple pleasures. And they're pretty shippy, considering! I suppose I'll have a good cry at the ending, though, that's going to be depressing.

While I was at it, reading the fic, thinking about the world, I decided to watch the Ring trilogy as well, an that made me consider many things about these books and fantasy in general. Because when you get down to it, Tolkien is pretty awful at the worldbuilding stuff, isn't he?

At least I think so. )

In any case I love the Hobbit films, and I don't mind the changes. In fact, I like most of them, and wouldn't mind finding out Jackson has taken even more liberties in the last one! Sacrilege, I know, but since I don't really revere Tolkien's writing to begin with...
sarnath: A hippogriff by Tapia (Harry Potter Hippogriff)
Phew, this was a busy week! It's going to feel good to relax with Harry Potter for the weekend. I was, by the way, really excited by JKR's tweet the other day; I wonder if we're really getting more Harry, or if it's just a hint of the worldbuilding for the coming Scamander film?

As for OotP, I'm at the first detention chapter. And it's delightfully horrible.

Chapter Thirteen - Detention with Dolores )

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sarnath: Gokuu books yay (Gokuu)
Aside from reading Harry Potter, I've been catching up on the manga I'm following, like One Piece (very exciting right now!) and Attack on Titan.

Extended rambling on AoT, OP, and characters I think are underappreciated. Oh, and why grimdark is shallow. )

Heh, I think I need some AoT and OP icons!
sarnath: A hippogriff by Tapia (Harry Potter Hippogriff)
With this chapter a plot thread that I thought was handled great in this book and the next starts: the Unity of the Houses. I have rarely been more disappointed over a dropped plot than when it was forgotten in the last book, but I actually do think it's great up until then. Though I've never stopped wondering why it was dropped. It seems sort of important, doesn't it?

Chapter Eleven - The Sorting Hat's New Song )

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sarnath: Harry Potter riding a Thestral (Harry Potter on Thestral)
I'm really excited about this chapter, because it's one of the points in the series where Harry's world opens up; not in the way it did when he came to the wizarding world, but it still has a lot of impact: he makes friends outside his Hogwarts House. Well, she's still an acquaintance at this point, but she's introduced here, and one of the things she represents is the widening of Harry's world.

It's a theme of this book, I think; not only breaking down, but opening up.

Chapter Ten - Luna Lovegood )

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sarnath: A hippogriff by Tapia (Harry Potter Hippogriff)
Finally starting to feel like myself again, this week was not fun. I hate being sick, and at this point I'm terribly bored. But not with Harry! I've reached some sort of reignition of fannishness, and I'm really into it now. It's amazing how Rowling managed to write something that captured the imagination of so many, and kept it; the fandom is still, I've noticed, going fairly strong. And many of us were adults when we started to read them! I was twenty-one, I think, and the fourth book had just come out. And here I am, nearly fifteen years later (shit, really?) reading it again.

Chapter Nine - the Woes of Mrs Weasley )

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sarnath: Fai from Tsubasa reservoir chronicle (Default)
She's the best villain. I don't think I've hated a fictional character more, which is a very impressive feat considering that she's a minor government official who wants to improve school results. Hm, on second thought, I think I've just pinpointed her evil right there, so never mind. I now feel comfortable in my hatred.

Chapter Eight - The Hearing )

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sarnath: Harry Potter riding a Thestral (Harry Potter on Thestral)
I started reading HP again, after all these months! And wow, it's really been months. Where does the time go? I kind of like going through the books like this, though, especially as I've forgotten so much about them (especially the last three).

anyway, chapter seven: )

Unlike a lot of people, I really like OotP. It's where we really start to see the cracks, where things fall apart. It's Harry at his most vulnerable, his weaknesses are really highlighted here, but it's also the first step towards maturing into the person he is becoming in HBP and DH. It's a turning point in many ways, and I always find them interesting.

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sarnath: Harry Potter riding a Thestral (Harry Potter on Thestral)
We get some interesting tidbits of information about Sirius and his family, nothing much other than cleaning really happens. But that's all right, because Harry is finally enjoying himself! Short, fierce, and black-haired, he puts a cloth over nose and mouth and devotes himself to ridding the old place of weird pests. You know what that makes me think of? This:



Chapter Six - The Noble and most ancient House of Black )

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sarnath: Harry Potter riding a Thestral (Harry Potter on Thestral)
I got rid of my old tumblr because I wasn't using it and only got another to look at links that led there. I think it may be useful for something else, though; I wonder if it will work for image hosting? Since DW doesn't really have that service.

Come to think of it, it would be great if DW would allow comments by tumblr for when people post links to here from there (not that I know if that happens often, but it seems like the best option for wanting threaded discussion but the huge audience of tumblr).

Anyway, I've managed to dig up a few illustrations by the artist who made the Swedish Harry Potter covers, Alvaro Tapia. Unfortunately they're not of the highest quality, and I think most of them are photographs from an exhibition. Anyway, here's a Thestral!



I just love the wildness and strangeness in his Harry Potter picures, it really matches my view of the world even when the characters don't look exactly as I imagine them.
sarnath: Fai from Tsubasa reservoir chronicle (Default)
Easter over and done with (though I spent most of the time working, heh), time for more Harry Potter! Harry finally gets some information, but it's nearly useless and no one thinks what's revealed is the proper amount.

Chapter Five - The Order of the Phoenix )

I'm really enjoying this, slowly and leisurely revisiting a beloved canon.

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sarnath: Fai from Tsubasa reservoir chronicle (Default)
Well, well, well, Harry is not a happy camper in this chapter! But a little shouting may be good for the soul, I suppose. Letting off steam and all that. There's nothing but disappointments followed by bad news for him. Well, nearly nothing, at any rate. I'm still highly amused by many absurd things, and Rowling has suddenly remembered that Ginny exists.

Chapter Four - Number Twelve, Grimmauld Place )

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sarnath: Fai from Tsubasa reservoir chronicle (Default)
To his great joy, Harry is allowed to leave number four, Privet Drive, and he meets all sorts of new and interesting people in the process!

Chapter Three - The Vanguard )

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sarnath: Fai from Tsubasa reservoir chronicle (Default)
Moving along, Harry is hit by a barrage of revelations and Vernon Dursley, to his apoplectic rage, has his home his by a barrage of owls. Poor man, the Hogwarts acceptance letter incident must have really traumatised him.

Chapter Two - A Peck of Owls )

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sarnath: Fai from Tsubasa reservoir chronicle (Default)
So, Order of the Phoenix, then. Cedric's death in GoF was definitely a turning point in the books; from here on, death was present in a whole different way. I remember being shocked, not just by his death but by the fact that it didn't carry any great meaning. It was a horribly sad, meaningless death, so perfect for the resurrection of Voldemort.

Anyway, I found myself starting to make little notes and observations, so I might as well post them (don't know how far I'll get or what will catch my interest).

Chapter One )
sarnath: Fai from Tsubasa reservoir chronicle (Default)
I've been thinking a lot about a certain fanfic phenomenon recently. It's something I've been noticing for a long time, I think, bur haven't really put in words. I'm having a hard time coming up with a good term even now!

But I think it's something along the lines of "characterisation displaced by statistical averages".

Yeah, I'd be grateful if someone came up with a better name. I'm apparently of the Leonard of Quirm school of naming things.

So, definition. Putting it as concisely as possible, it's basically about replacing existent characterisation by what an "average" version of said character's age and sex would do or say (I would say "nationality" as well if fandom wasn't so dominated by the U.S. as it is, and characters from canons in for example Japan or Britain often have their personalities rather Americanised). Often also going to statistical averages instead of extrapolating from canon.

Examples, though, they always makes things clearer (hopefully). )

Sorry about all the Harry Potter, he's just such a good example of this! And it wasn't as structured as I would have liked it, but hopefully you'll find some kernel of sense somewhere in there.

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