Saturday, December 15, 2007

The Golden Compass - Movie Review

Sly B and I went to see The Golden Compass yesterday. It was cold and snowy, and we ended up being the only people in the theater, which was a first for both of us and kind of cool.

I went in to the movie expecting little. I didn't expect to like the film because 1) I liked the books and am usually disappointed in film adaptations of beloved source material, 2) I cannot stand Nicole Kidman, and 3) there was a lot of talk about screenplay's elimination of all the religious subtext from the story.

With a few exceptions, I was very pleasantly surprised. I found the film to stick fairly true to the story told in the novels, Nicole Kidman made a perfect Mrs. Coulter, and the religious stuff was there without question. In addition, the special effects were outstanding, and the look and feel of the film really worked for me in terms of telling this otherworldly story. I thought it was just great.

The few exceptions I mentioned above were 1) the glaring lack of people of color in the film. The Gyptians are white?? Not in my reading of the books; and 2) I wish that the film had spent more time in Svalbard. That part of the story was glossed over to quickly in the film, IMO.

I'm going to give this 3 out of 5 _______. I think that it would have been bumped to 4 had the casting been less white, because I couldn't stop thinking all the way throughout the film, "the Gyptians are white???"

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