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Book Report: Stardust

Perhaps here would be the appropriate place to attempt a comparison of the books and film adaptations of The Princess Bride and Stardust. Sadly, Your Humble Blogger hasn’t time, or really will. I am starting paid employment today, and although it is part-time, raising the Youngest Member is still full-time, and then there’s the Perfect Non-Reader, and my Best Reader, and myself, and there’s this house, too. It’s likely that blogging will be a low priority matter for a little while, until I reach equilibrium again. Or, maybe, work will spark me to greater bursts of energy, which will spill over into the blog. Or the Youngest Member will start sleeping through the night. We’ll see.

At any rate, the essay in question would have to look at the way the framing devices in the book and movie of Bride work, and how the film of Stardust uses narration and the new opening scene in London to invoke an entirely different sense of storytelling. And how characters are pushed and pulled depending on their (perceived) box-office drawing power. In Stardust, particularly, Michelle Pfeiffer would never have bothered to play the character as it was in the book, and Robert DeNiro presumably was enticed to play an All-New Part Written Just For Him. It’s how these things get made. Which is fine. But there it is.

The ending of the Bride adaptation was successfully taken from (one of the) ending(s) in the book fairly directly, in large part I think because William Goldman is a screenwriter who understands about endings. Neil Gaiman has written for the screen, which meant, really, that he didn’t insist that the sweet but low-key ending in the book would work on-screen. Personally, I liked having everybody all together in the witches’ lair, and the Zombie Septimus swordfight was wonderful, really inventive and clever and preposterous and funny and lovely, but on the whole the Boffo Ending took too long, and the epilogue took too long, as well, since there wasn’t any particular point to it (unlike the epilogue in the book, which I don’t think would have worked better, but at least had a point to it).

On the whole, though, the adaptors successfully (imao) took the risk of adding lots of stuff to a book, while Bride was much closer, in large part because it could do that and still work as a movie. I would love to read (or even someday write) an essay on the details of that, scene by scene. But I doubt it will happen.

Tolerabimus quod tolerare debemus,
-Vardibidian.

Comments

IMAO?

In My Ass Off?

In My A Opinion?

A typo, or Intertube slang with which I am unfamiliar?

Matt


I think when he's used this in the past, it's been "In My Arrogant Opinion," in contrast with both IMO and IMHO.

YMMV.


Yes, my blogging is humble (in stature and capacity), but to describe my opinions as humble would be just silly. Frankly, describing them as arrogant is understatement bordering on litotes.

Thanks,
-V.


Ah, arrogant! I wondered.

I kind of like "In My Ass Off," but I am of course a Discordian with an overblown appreciation of dada humor. YMMF.

peace
Matt


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