The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (Peter Jackson 2014)

 

Peter I *smack* still *CLANG* love you *crash*

And I will never stop. I Love your middle- earth movies, and I love you. And after this third instalment It was for a moment completely unclear for me if this love is blind or clear- sighted. I think, somewhere far underneath the heartache I now feel, as I say farewell PJs middle earth, that I am disappointed over this last movie.

However, I don’t think it’s only my inclination towards escapism, to dream myself alternate worlds that has made me love the Middle Earth films. I do not think it is merely my too- rich imagination that create the very alive beauty of these movies.

Because I would not have been able to feel this love and dedication to a fictional universe without it being alive to its creator. It is alive for him, and he love the characters that live inside it. You are inside a shared and loved reality when you watch these movies, and you can feel the respectful dedication from thousands of fans brush against your skin when you move through it.

So I was trying to be disappointed. But after all I am unable to. I realize that it is absurd to be disappointed, it’s like being disappointed over something that just is, like the sky or your child, or it’s even so absurd as being disappointed for being loved. PJ gave us his love, by making these movies, and probably he receives a lot of love for his work, too, and experienced it during the making of the Middle Earth films.

In this friendly climate that surrounds the LOTR and the Hobbit trilogy, it feels out of place to start complaining or hating, even if I did feel a little estranged to some elements, in the last film particularly, like the giant worms and the conveniently spawning battle goats. But you know, I feel estranged to my own husband too at times. For example he prefers flying a drone to flying in a real plane, even though he has a plane certificate. I do not understand. Nevertheless, the reality that is created around the two of us us is a place where I can be happy. But I am disappointed at times, I am, disappointed inside this world.

In a similar way, I can be disappointed over the BOTFA, but the movie is, after all, creating the reality where I can be disappointed in. It is because I believe in, and love, PJ’s Tolkien universe, that I can be disappointed over it. And who has made me believe and love?

Its Peter, Peter. That little boy. That wise man.

I need to say one more thing that probably will seem more like Tolkien -blasphemy than anything else will, to some haters and homophobic. But as it is stated: they have already been paid in full. So I’m not sorry to say it is the truth:

It is a story in the film told under the lines, that tears in the lining of the soul. It begins in the second movie, in the darkness of Mirkwood, when Bilbo is caught unawares by his own love for the One Ring. Martin Freeman plays out this subtle but central plot in a way that is incomparable genius, and his performance adds abysses of depth to the seemingly mainstream blockbuster third- hobbitfilm. Freeman and PJ reveals that their story is a tragedy, that the happy ending we yearn for sure as any prophesy will slip between our fingers. Bilbo Loves Thorin, and secretly with more passion than what (after Middle Earth standards…) is appropriate for the occasion. Freeman have himself remarked upon Bilbos lack of sex life/ libido.     Now there is no lack any more. Bilbo has finally become a whole character, more whole than the literary figure ever was.

Although I am not so sure of Mr. Armitage, I actually see Thorin as a straight dwarf. This is a one- sided love- affair. One – sided, but no less acute.

Martin Freemans as the hobbit shows us what real love feels like. Witness, just the kinda thing Tauriel wishes to have no more of: When Thorin dies, we watch Bilbo crying out, and then place his homeless love on the ring, like it somehow comprised the memory of his hearts king.

Then he loves it with fierce passion and great misery ever after.

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Thorin x Bilbo by DG

 

king thranduil by Hogan McLaughlin hoganmclaughlin.tumblr.com cabins.deviantart.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell – Susannah Clarke

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Illustration by Portia Rosenberg from 1. edition (2004) of Strange & Norell on Bloomsbury

Apart from Tolkien who is a holy man and except for the a little cynical un- romantic finale, this story, in the fantastic style and put to the neapolitan era , is a whole galaxy ahead of all other literary mischiefs done by authors and published as «fantasy, not literature». You can’t deny this, because Neil Gaiman agrees with me. This world Clarke writes us is so real that we can taste the snowflakes as they tasted in the pure, only newly polluted and unmelted 1800’s. And at the same time as it is real, it is magically transparent, in the degree of causing a little headache, as you first are transported body and soul back to the 1800’s, and then you fall through the pavement of these icy winter streets, and down underground into the brugh, and the dangerous uncontrolled world of the Gentleman. Here’s a true badass you can fall in love with. Now we talk dark secrets, such as the earlier mentioned mr Grey knows nothing about. Never again will you be able to trust a group of birch- trees, and you will be rightfully suspicious to things you really relied upon before, like for example your own sadness. This book, that like the old folk tales, has layers of wisdom implemented in and under the story, may show you that sadness is one of the roads to Perdition, understood as never being able to return whole and safe to your armchair, in front of the fireplace, again. Therefore see too that you read all the book’s fat footnotes carefully and learn well the spells that still works.

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The Virgin Queen (TV mini series 2005)

BBC’s 2005 version of the not so new but latest attempts on depicting the story of  the maybe quite lonely life of Elizabeth the first, is by far the best Version I’ve seen. The Cate Blanchett – queen of 1998 and 2007 was highly believable too, both as young and virile and as tragic and bald, but the director Shekar Kapur managed to screw it all up in the second movie, where he had started something that at least worked as a classic Hollywood romance/ period drama in the first. The HBO series of 2005, starring  Helen Mirren and Jeremy Irons, whom we all must respect, seems a little bit too small, like it was filmed in an upper middle class living room or something.  And the queen here is just so well, so unblinkingly sure of herself that it kind of takes the sting away from the plot. The BBC series , on the other hand, with its ecstatic soundtrack (Medieval Baebes) and lingering, painful and almost ugly tragedy, will prevail for a while. Except for the single- minded glorification of the protestantic tradition in Great Britain, this series is well made, where it is not merely shining, and it is beautiful, and horribly sad.

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The trailer for Fifty Shades of Grey (Sam Taylor-Johnson 2014)

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The trailer for Fifty Shades of Grey has become one of the most popular bla bla bla. Like the books. Then it is also very speculative. like the books. And that is okay. It’s just that the speculation upon womens (and gay mens) most primitive emotions are very badly hidden. The books and the movie trailer (which is all I ever want see of this movie) kind of makes primitive emotions more primitive, until they are merely silly. In movies, that are not explicitly adult movies, the speculative approach to the audience has to be well hidden if it is to be truly, cleverly, respectably speculative. I watch this trailer, and merkt die Absicht, (feel the purpose of the producer/ director) and I get depressed. I don’t like the feeling of being some kind of piano the directorpeople play on, but of cause I am, and any viewer are bound to be. It is just so important that we are kept a little more unaware of it.

I do not at all enjoy watching the primitivity displaying onscreen, and it irks me  to see that this is a brand created and designed perfectly (too perfectly, as when perfect bickers and fall into heartlessness) for the group I belong to:

We are presented for some kind of woman- child, exactly the woman we like to see ourselves as when we are at our most self- pitying/ glorifying mood: Beautiful, clever, and innocent like the holy Maria. Then some mystical man- person appears, with his head cut off by upper part of lens. When his head finally is allowed to ascend  down to the screen it is completely out of focus, like our eyes are filled with frustrated tears for not being able to see the wretched face of this character! We become very curious, and we are driven to keep watching, allured to think this man has deep complex secrets, and many people may forget the secret hidden is just the plain view of his facial features. Then the trailer proceeds like a machine unto playing upon our desire to be recognized. Ah, allways dreaming of it: He acknowledges instinctively (as every man really should have done, if the world was fair!) that this school- uniform- clad grown up woman is hugely interesting as person, you can see that from her cleavage. But then, when his OK face is at last given to us, and we start to loose interest in the nothingness displayed before us, we understand that it is with man with dark secrets we have to do! How exciting! With special us (as projected into poor miss Steele!) we can heal him, make him whole and happy again, and then we have a purpose to our lives too! We will promptly show him true love, read as sex. (Most women basically feel in this pattern, and pity them who have not during their upbringing and education learnt to steere this not so constructive emotions, an inheritance from who knows what age, and keep sending letters to murderers and dark- secret –holders that sits in prisons)

And then the dark secret is revealed, and that is allready in the trailer! Mr. Gray is a sado- masochist, mostly on the first term of the word, it seems. And that is saying a great deal of his complex personality, or….? He’s got a room with a key, baby brother to ol’ Bluebeard that he is, but it is filled with sex toys, not former wives, so then I believe Christian Gray is not so much in need of investigation from my side as I first thought. But the director and writer and a lot of other people do not agree. This affliction (??) of his, they want us to believe, and some want to believe, is a testament

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to Greys tormented, diversity- ridden soul. By this point I am satisfied, to the point of a little sick, and not in need of any sensual movie any more, thank you for the trailer!

Bluebeard art by Alykam Burdzaki alykam.deviantart.com


 

Stories We Tell (Sarah Polley 2012)

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I can’t find any flaws in this Documentary. It worries me. I allways find flaws, always rather major ones, in all movies I watch. Maybe Sarah should have lent more heart to her step- siblings stories, but that is a moral question, more than a filmatic one. But I quess her decision about keeping this shocking and dramatic part of her movie low comes from the need to keep focus and pace in her main storylines. Damn it, I’m not able to deconstruct it, neither. I’m not able to put my finger on what exactly it is she does that makes me end up crying happily and wretchedly sorrowful in the sofa. Makes me crazy. A fantastic director!