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Cultural Round Up: September

Yeah, yeah I know, it is more than half way through October. I have been slack. Very slack. In my defence I will say that the last month has involved moving house and starting a new job, so those things have distracted me from blogging, and also limited my access to the computer. But here I am. and here are some amazing houses made of Lego to distract you from my slackness.

BOOKS

Games of Thrones George RR Martin Having seen the series and finding myself in an airport without a book to read, I couldn’t resist diving in. And it was worth it. even though I had seen the series and essentially knew what was going to happen, I found it page-turningly compulsive reading. The writing is engaging and easy to read. I was interested to see how closely they had stuck to the book for the series, but also the little differences. I thought that Sansa’s revelation in the book is more compelling, as you see her suddenly understand with horror how almost everything she had thought before was wrong. And the differences in the character of Catelyn Stark are interesting. Having read the book now though, I am not sure I will be able to hold off til I’ve seen the next TV season before I read no 2, as I had previously planned.

MOVIES

Harry Potter 1-3 With the 7 yr old now a massive Harry Potter fan and reading his way through the books, we have watched the first three films again. Firstly, it is hilarious to see all the actors so young again. I still don’t understand why Christopher Columbus was ever allowed to direct any Harry Potter film. The direction is so over-the-top in the first two films it is sometimes unwatchable, with the child actors apparently encouraged to over act and mug all over the place. It is interesting by the third film, when the child actors are no longer just children and there is a new director how much better that film is. The darker hues and more restrained approach, along with some wonderful performances from the adults makes it such a more enjoyable experience. The general awfulness of aspects of the first two films also makes Alan Rickman’s performance as Snape just that little bit more fabulous also I think. Rewatching The Philosopher’s Stone, Rickman manages to inject Snape with a level of ambivalence and pain – he isn’t a one-dimensional villain in any sense. In fact, it is interesting that you can see in The Philosopher’s Stone the Snape which is revealed in the final Harry Potter, which is all the more extraordinary as that book hadn’t been written yet. I think that Rickman manages to capture the essential qualities of Snape beautifully throughout the series. Nonetheless, while 1 and 2 might be enjoyed by the kids, they aren’t the films I’d take a lot of time out to rewatch – 3 however is well worth rewatching, and rewatching again.

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2 responses to “Cultural Round Up: September

  1. I have to say, Rickman is a brilliant actor.

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