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28 December 2005 @ 09:18 pm
Optimists think that this world is the best it can be. Pessimists fear that this is so.  

I saw Narnia today.

Now I really want an Aslan icon with the words: "The Top Geezer" on it.

I don't understand why people got so het up about the religious symbolism. First of all, people aren't particularly original. If something works, chances are it'll keep circling the tiny puddle that is humanity like one of those wind-up ducks.

Second, what's so terrible about the Jesus story, anyway? Take away religious hate, bigotry, crime, prohibitions, stupidity, bias, discrimination -- in fact, take away religion altogether -- and it's not actually a bad tale. An intrepid hero, a glorious death, a happy ending. I have to say I get the literary shivers from the line "Tomorrow, you will be with me in paradise."

Probably when people started thinking it was true was when the problems started.

It also made me think about 'heroes'. We make fantasy heroes great swordsmen, usually, yet what is so wonderful about slaughtering lots of people just like you in a war? I can understand single murders, for revenge or passion or hate or defence. I can't understand war. That's why the beginning of Narnia affected me so much. I was bawling my eyes out for the first five minutes. What on earth can ever justify tearing families apart like that, subjecting people to such fear and deprivation?

Hardly a new thought, mind. *sigh*

I'll respond to the MAD GREEN PRANCING FRIENDING SPREE post later. Right now, I want to slob out on the sofa and watch a chickflick. By all means, keep leaving names. Any time, any where, in fact. Chances are I'll friend them. I've only just realised that it can be a great opportunity for quality reading time and not just a popularity rate-o-meter.

Current Mood: exhaustedexhausted
Current Music: "Eleanor put your boots on," Franz Ferdinand
pir8fancier on December 28th, 2005 01:28 pm (UTC)
For a spectacular disconnect, I asked my MIL how she liked Narnia. She said (and I am not making this up). "It was so Christian." I squeaked out an, "Oh," and left the room to roll my eyes in the bathroom for about fifteen minutes.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Beware of the leopardscoradh on December 29th, 2005 02:57 am (UTC)
Yes, because boys riding unicorns happens in Mass ALL THE TIME, wot?

I really liked the battle scene! There was a phoenix! Not only did it not remind me of LotR, it was better! THERE WERE LEOPARDS!
Snakelingsnakeling on December 28th, 2005 01:35 pm (UTC)
I saw it yesterday. I liked it, even better than the book, and I now have a crush on Edmund. Who is 14 and thus completely off-limit. But Edmund in armour, wow!
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Boop!scoradh on December 29th, 2005 02:58 am (UTC)
He was certainly something less obnoxious than the 1988 version. I remember thinking, re the armour, if Peter was ever going to put his visor down! And the friend who saw it with me is very into reinactment; she claimed that whoever trained them in sword-fighting was very sloppy. :)
Ticca: Misc: Lucydaniellafromage on December 28th, 2005 02:22 pm (UTC)
Eh. There's religious (read: Christian) symbolism in writing from Steinbeck to Fitzgerald to Joyce. People who want to avoid Christian themes, imagery and symbolism in what they read are greatly limiting their choices in Western literature. (That's hardly a new thought either, obviously, but it's one that gets constantly overlooked in this sort of debate.)

One of the things I found most interesting about Narnia was the treatment of Peter killing the wolf. It was shown as much more of a defensive action than either the book or the 1989 BBC version, I'm guessing because of the environmental aspect. With today's animal-rights activism, to show on film a boy killing a wolf that actually looks like a wolf is a potentially tricky thing to pull off without making the audience more sympathetic towards the wolf, so...kudos to them.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Crackscoradh on December 29th, 2005 03:02 am (UTC)
Yes. The thing is, I don't think most authors are trying to promote, you know, religious crime, or priests raping little boys; rather they took the story behind it, which is what people like to forget, and shaped it for their own ends. *sigh* I imagine the Koran and the ... other books ... are equally as rife with potential storylines.

I was actually dreading that part, because I remember in the 1988 one it was just so forced and stupid. I mean, they were in a fencing ring for Christsakes. I don't think the whole 'giving Morgrim witty one-liners' worked either; the 1988 Morgrim was far more terrifying. It was okay, but there were shades of Dumbledore in Aslan going, 'No no, you kill the huge dangerous wolf yourself because I like to set these little tests.' (I know Dumbledore is half a century after Aslan. But still.)

(A thought struck me: if he's head of the SECRET police, why would he sign his name to a public document [condemning Tumnus]?)

Tumnus was HOT.

And the ending ... "You've got to keep your eyes open" ... I mean, I spent years looking in the backs of wardrobes for a way through ...
The Light Snarktasticsnarkophagus on December 28th, 2005 03:03 pm (UTC)
I am so stealing the wind-up duck reference. It fits so well.

Not my best work, but I'm bored enough that I saw the entry and went OOOH.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: *eats hand*scoradh on December 29th, 2005 02:56 am (UTC)
Feel free! *pets pretty shiny icon* This makes Rachel happy.
Cait: susan and peter - narniacoralia13 on December 28th, 2005 04:14 pm (UTC)
I cried at the beginning as well. Well, as soon as I figured out I hadn't actually gone into the wrong theater (I was like - why are there fighter planes in Narnia?). I re-read the beginning of L,tW,atW the other day and discovered that it had a very different tone than the beginning of the movie. The book's opening pages consist of an almost parenthetical reference to why the kids were at the professor's house, and the opening dialogue mainly consisted of Peter talking about what an amazing time they were going to have in this huge house. The film, with the brotherly tension between Ed and Peter, Susan and especially Peter struggling to do the impossible and be mother and father for their younger sibs, the heart-break of leaving a parent and home, and just the fear of the whole country, was all wonderfully portrayed, and gave me a lot more respect for the movie, which I had admittedly found a bit irritating with all the relgiosity towards the late middle of the film.
Ireland certainly has more of a claim to knowledge of religious tension than many other countries, but I know in America, especially now, there is a deep, resentful tension growing between the right-wing Christians and the moderates and liberals. Unfortunately, Christianity as a whole has been heavily stigmatized by this, and I've been brought up with a strong dislike for many of the more literal manifestations of Biblical teachings. Thus, when the allegory in the film became obvious, it was hard for me to keep from wincing. I don't however, wish that they had altered that at all - it would have been inexcusable if the film-makers had not been true to the book due to some ill-conceived notion that they know better than Lewis. I hate it when script writers and directors do this (see: Harry Potter films).
All in all, I liked the movie very much, particularly the first half or so.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Darcy Squeescoradh on December 29th, 2005 03:07 am (UTC)
I actually thought that it was part of the Dolby Surround Sound thing at first. Then it was like OMG fighter planes. And they looked so rickety and TERRIFYING!

Yes, I did miss "In the country, nothing ever happens." But that was a jolly, 1940s chin-up attitude, when what war really was was horrible and scary and meant you had to leave your parents and things.

What, the Stone Table? That was always my favourite part, with the little mice eating his ropes OMG I JUST REALISED THAT'S THE FREAKIN' APOSTLES, ISN'T IT? But like I said, the whole 'crucifixion' thing isn't a religious story, it's what people did to it afterwards that made it so. Sacrificing yourself for the good of others has always been the noblest thing one human can do for another, and just because Jesus got all the glory for doing it doesn't change the fact.

As religious propaganda goes, it was mild enough. And I absolutely adored the ending, after the first credits. WHO IS PROFESSOR KIRKE? I know I've seen him somewhere. I swear, I nearly burst into tears when he said, "I've been looking for it ever since," or something. He was Dick! And the wardrobe had a tree on it! And there was a BLUEBOTTLE!
Cait: susan and peter - narniacoralia13 on December 29th, 2005 10:15 am (UTC)
Yes, I did like Aslan very much, although I was distracted by him being Liam Neeson. I felt like he should be James Earl Jones or something, but then Mom pointed out that he was Jesus, not God, and Jesus should sound like Liam Neeson. So that's okay.
I did think they did an excellent job with the sacrafice scene, and I cried when Susan and Lucy approached him afterwards. But when they lay on top of his body ALL DAY when their brothers were fighting a WAR, I was like, "What symbolism is this?! Is this supposed to be noble?! Susan, you have a BOW! Lucy, HEALING ELIXIR! WTF?!" But then it was okay, because the scene where they and Aslan came tearing into the battle was pretty kick ass.
I still have to go with my favorite aspect being the dynamics between the kids, though, especially Peter and Susan trying to be parents. It just made me like them and sympathize with them very much.
I did love the professor. I actually had a quote from him (in The Magician's Nephew on my senior page in my high school yearbook: '"Great Scot!" said Diggory, "I do believe the whole adventure has taken no time at all!"' LOVE it.
And what's a bluebottle?
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Beware of the leopardscoradh on December 30th, 2005 03:33 am (UTC)
Jesus would probably sound more like Saddam Hussein, as they come from the same area (I think). But let us not split hairs. :)

That was very dragged out. I mean, they were supposed to follow him in the night, untie his ropes when the Witch's army left, and then leave to tell the others. And when the sun came up the Stone Table cracked. It was a bit OTT, I'll agree.

I really liked the old version where Aslan breathes life into all the statues in the castle. We only got to see Tumnus. *pout* Who was, admittedly, ver' hot.

Their lips annoyed me! They were like two pillows!

A bluebottle is a type of fly. The room with the wardrobe looked exactly as I'd imagined it, and then they had a fly buzz in, just as Lucy sees in the book! Oh, the detail. ♥
Caitcoralia13 on December 30th, 2005 10:00 am (UTC)
Dear God, I HOPE not Saddam Hussein! And anyway, he would probably have a slightly different accent, since he would, one assumes, be speaking Hebrew, rather than Arabic (which I assume is what Hussein speaks).

Being attracted to Tumnus freaked me out totally, but I loved him very much. I was glad that he was up to no good when he was getting Lucy to come back to his house for tea, because we should not be teaching our children that friendly men at lamp posts are okay to go home with. And they may call him a fawn, but let's face it: he's a satyr, and we all know what the deal is with them, and it is not all tea and sardines.

You mean Peter and Susan's lips? Or all of them? I don't know, I thought it just made them look young... I think I kind of looked like that when I was younger, but maybe not as much. I can see it being annoying though. I think I will notice that from now on.

Oh, THANK you! I know I have been confused by "bluebottles" before - either in HP canon or fanon. Oh, and what the HELL is a budgie? (Is that even how you spell it?) I think I've asked you this before and you said it was a parrot or something, but I can't remember for sure. I just know that the way they talked about them in HP made me think that they were mosquitoes, and then in book five when a water-skiing budgie was on the news, I was like "WTF?!"
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Made of cutescoradh on January 1st, 2006 09:24 am (UTC)
I believe Jesus spoke Aramaic? And that's not just Mel Gibson speaking, it is actually true, I read it somewhere years ago. (Oh ... now I remember. In a book written by a medium called Sylvia Brown. Apparently that's what they speak in Heaven, too.)

I know! I mean, when I was a kid I hadn't a clue what a faun was and I remember my mother teaching my own to pronounce 'Tumnus.' Now I've grown up and associate 'satyr' with 'saturnine' and, basically, sex fiends. You have to love how Lewis totally raped the whole idea behind it and took out all the natural sex fiend part and turned him into a big warning for Stranger Danger instead. *eyeroll*

I reckon they looked anaemic, too. But it struck me that it is what pure Angalo-Saxons tend to look like -- pasty and puffy lipped. And obviously they can't help it, but I like my men a bit more lean and sinewy. *licks lips* Like Tumnus'.

*rolls about laughing* I'm sorry, it's just such an odd thing not to know! I used to want a budgerigar as a pet until my mother told me she thinks it's cruel to keep birds in cages. They're some relation to parakeets, I think (which are smaller and prettier than parrots, and you can grow certain trees in Australia that they'll be attracted to. That and Monarch butterflies. Real pretty!). They tend to be blue with white and black stripes on their chests or green with yellowy chests, small annoying little buggers that go tweet a lot. Look a lot like Tweety Bird? I'll get a picture for you when I'm back at college and not on the slowest connection known to Man ...
Cait: L/J - grow upcoralia13 on January 1st, 2006 10:34 am (UTC)
That's true, you're right.

I like little boys. There, I said it, and it's true. Let's take a look at my track record, shall we? Daniel Radcliffe, Tom Felton, Jeremy Sumpter, King Peter what's-his-face... Sigh. At least I'm not as bad as my suitemate, who, when her (two years younger) boyfriend turned eighteen said, "I don't know, I just feel... like he's too old for me." And I least I throw in other people, like Cedric, Hayden, Jesse Spenser, Simon Tam, Ewen - and yes, I know I am mixing real names and character names in there.

Okay, my best friend has had those things for ages. I think she just calls them parakeets. So... maybe not the same, then? Although they have the same coloring you described. Hm. Budgerigar. Even in the American edition of book five, they use that word. Seems cruel, somehow. After all, we're naught but simple Americans, who don't know what a "philosopher" is.

Slow connection? Back home, then? Or is this just your flat?
every Starbucks should have a polar bearscoradh on January 2nd, 2006 11:23 am (UTC)
Jesse Spenser, Simon Tam, Ewen

-- and they are?!

Or George III, don't forget that one. :P

Nah, my flat's the one with the excellent and fast connection. *eyes it* Back home I have the slowest dial up ever -- 38 kb per minute!
Caitcoralia13 on January 2nd, 2006 12:47 pm (UTC)
Simon is the doctor from Firefly you are going to make gay. Forgive my creative spelling of Ewan (McGregor), and Jesse Spencer - I was moving pretty slowly yesterday.

George III? Like, the king the American colonies rebelled against? *looks confused*

Too bad. :( Is it good to be home, at least?
every Starbucks should have a polar bearscoradh on January 2nd, 2006 01:01 pm (UTC)
Yeah, there was some film about him that certain Americans thought was a trilogy ...

Back at college now! Dissection first thing tomorrow. Lovely.
Caitcoralia13 on January 2nd, 2006 01:59 pm (UTC)
DISSECTION? BACK AT COLLEGE?? DISSECTION??? FIRST THING???? These are all horrible things!! I will try not to mock you with my two more weeks. I will try... a little.

Oooh, right, I remember you telling me that! *facepalm* Some Americans should just not talk. Not the smart ones, like me, of course. After all, me not knowing "budgie" was perfectly legitimate. ;)
every Starbucks should have a polar bearscoradh on January 2nd, 2006 02:25 pm (UTC)

*in the corner*

*and nobody should put Baby in the corner!*

Consider: there is a 60 comment long thread because I didn't know what making out meant. I shouldn't worry. :)
Caitcoralia13 on January 2nd, 2006 02:47 pm (UTC)
Baby in the corner made me laugh out loud. Oh, Patrick Swayze. Oh, that whole movie. Oh, giggle.

You are quite the LJ maven, my dear!
every Starbucks should have a polar bearscoradh on January 2nd, 2006 03:06 pm (UTC)
Maven? Quoi? I like the sound of that word.
Caitcoralia13 on January 2nd, 2006 08:49 pm (UTC)
A maven is like a queen of social gatherings. She knows everyone, and they all know her, if not each other. Through her, they might meet and become connected, but she is the cause of all such things.
It is a good word, and you should use it all the time.
every Starbucks should have a polar bearscoradh on January 3rd, 2006 12:57 am (UTC)
*struts* I am the total maven of this (chocolate) casbah!
Caitcoralia13 on January 3rd, 2006 10:35 am (UTC)
:D Very good usage.
(Deleted comment)
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: o_Oscoradh on December 29th, 2005 02:55 am (UTC)
I shall get on it, then! Tom Riddle, eh?

Well, I didn't have that choice. MoaG isn't coming out here for another month at least, I'd imagine. :(
Minnow: Narnia2minnow_53 on December 29th, 2005 01:44 am (UTC)
The Narnia books were written specifically and explicitly as Christian allegories: the religious element was never meant to be subtext. It IS the text.

every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Draculascoradh on December 29th, 2005 02:54 am (UTC)
Really? I worshipped those books when I was a kid. Round about the same time I was so staunchly religious that I wanted to become a nun. Yet I never saw the Aslan=Jesus analogy until years later. Perhaps because I'm so literal minded. It's a story about four kids, a lion who comes back to life and an evil witch. If it doesn't specifically mention apostles, crosses and Pontius Pilate, then it completely passes me by. ♥
Minnowminnow_53 on December 29th, 2005 10:19 am (UTC)
Well, it was written by someone from a particular culture in which it was accepted that all those elements would fuse to create instant allegory! A bit like Orwell and Animal Farm. Of course, a lot of C.S. Lewis's context seems archaic now, and anyway, books are much more fun at face value. ♥ That's the great advantage of never studying English at university level, actually: I think you can enjoy literature a hell of a lot more. :D