Thursday, March 19, 2009

Another comic book, errr, graphic novel hero

The mighty Thor and a freakishly huge black guy: gay old times

That crazily inconsistent British actor, Kenneth Branagh, is directing the movie adaptation of the graphic novel series Thor. Apparently, Josh Hartnett is the front runner to get the role, much to the chagrin of fans of the series. They say Hartnett is too reconizable, too handsome, and too likable. Now hang on for a minute. Are superheroes supposed to be unfamiliar, ugly, and aloof? Is Shrek the new caped The last time I checked, there were no complaints about casting Robert Downey, Christian Bale, and Tobey Maguire in roles that require them to wear spandex and other weird costumes.

I would probably see the movie when it comes out in May 2011. I'm really not familiar with the story lines involved in Thor, but I'm very much intrigued with a Nordic god as a superhero. Will the mighty Thor still carry that hammer? I just love it already -- tight costumes, huge pounding devices, and lush blond hair! If only they'd lay off those pigtails. I predict that when the movie's about to be shown, our bookstores would start putting several overpriced Thor graphic novels in their shelves. (You can't help but notice all those Watchmen posters when you enter a book shop these days.)

Speaking of movies and books, this year's Oscars inspired our local bookstores to display The Reader, Revolutionary Road, and Slumdog Millionaire (or Q&A, as it was originally titled). I've read The Reader years ago, and I have to say that it was a very satisfying experience. It's the kind of book you finish in one sitting and it feels painful to turn the last page. I can barely recall the details of the novel though, but I think the movie pretty much stayed true to it. Something that we can't say for those hundreds of disastrous movies from otherwise brilliant novels -- The Golden Compass, The Count of Monte Cristo, Brideshead Revisited, and even Confessions of a Shopaholic. My favorite adaptations recently are the sublime Bridge to Terabithia and Atonement.