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Thursday, 20 October 2011

Film Review part 1/3:Conducting the ideas

In this post I will present the first part of constructing my review which is just the text of what I think of the film, no pictures might be included but it will be observed as time goes on.
So here is my textuual analysis on The NeverEnding Story.

The NeverEnding story

In the world of film making, there can be adaptations of a book every now and then, some can work out and some cannot, but in this case I am looking at a good role-model for book adaptations, this is The Neverending Story (based on Die Unendiche Geschiche by Michael Ende)

Director: Wolfgang Petersen .
Stars: Noah Hathaway :Atreyu .
Barret Oliver :Bastian Bux .
Tami Stromach :The Childlike empress /T he Southern oracle.
Alan Oppenheimer :Narrator / Gmork / The Rockbiter / Falkor .

Plot: Bastian (Barret Oliver), a troubled boy hides in school to read a special book from the library, in the story is the magical land of Fantasia with strange landscapes and strange creatures wonderful to imagine, but there is a “nothingness” that is destroying all of fantasia, it is up to Atreyu (a individual of fantasia played by Noah Hathaway) and Bastian to stop the crisis and save fantasia.

The first thing I can say was good was the use of the German landscapes and locations due to being mountainous and giving the land of Fantasia a mystical and mysterious appearance, the film sets are also equally great, giving the setting and characters more power for the audience to see and admire.
The “real world” appears to be Manhattan, North America, it may not be as enhancing as Fantasia and is too clean to be a city street adding to a bit of unreal ism in the city, but it serves as reality so it is no big hassle for me.

For a fantasy movie (and a movie based off a book), the performances are quite what I expect them to be with fantasy characters with each individual voice to represent as to what they are and for reality you can hear the people as they are people, meaning that the difference between reality and fantasia is great, and the acting overall makes me satisfied that there was a lot of thought when making the characters and finding the right voices to then, which persuades me that this is a film with a lot of heart to see.

Within the key scenes of the film, animatronics are used to represent the creatures of fantasia which is done in a way more realistic and lifelike than Jim Henson’s the Muppets which is quite good, and to convey from the real world to the world of fantasia, simple camera cuts are used to keep the audiences surprised and interested to carry on watching the movie so I can say that all is well with the movie.
The general theme of the movie is fantasy, as to how everything can be so beautiful and wonderful and yet destroyed by the “nothingness” (which represents lies, terror and naughtiness) and how we must keep to the fantasy in order to survive, also the movie is central to Bastian growing up as he was first hunted down by a group of bullies and then becomes more and more confident in the face of danger as he progresses on reading the book.
The soundtrack is quite good which is a mix of the instruments pop music uses as well as the classical instruments which matches the real world and fantasia quite perfectly, and makes the audience and myself feel persuaded that fantasia is rally a fantasy world, and to even lighten things up there is a theme song to the movie at the opening and ending credits of the movie which makes me think as to what the movie is or isn’t.

As a representation of the original book, well there had to be a lot of changes to accommodate the movie time and being sure that the audiences have to be kept excited (like only adapting one half of the book), and some things had to be modified in order to accommodate the technology at the time, meaning that some characters have to be omitted, and the same reasons for the differences goes to the budget of the movie (despite being the most expensive movie not produced by the USA or USSR at the time), but as a movie itself it works out pretty good as the characters are as represented as from the book, and even the most major of changes to a character design or characterisation does not annoy me as I keep on getting charmed by them as well as keeping a good memory of them, and the plot is satisfying as it still maintains it’s message and gives us something good to remember and keep the fantasy alive.

Final thoughts: as a adaptation of a book there are a lot of changes (even the movie is based on only one half) which could detest some fans of the original book, but however as a movie by itself, it works in the most imaginative and most creative way ever, with creatures to be fascinated by, a great amount of dedication to make the props and creatures and great dedication to finding the correct actors and voices for the characters, so go pick it up and you’ll be riding in a fantasy.

May the Hype stand down.

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