Jarruttelua alkupuoliskon aikana. Edestakaista jaarittelua, ympäripyöreää jahkailua, teksti kiertää kehää kuin Liisan rukki. Ei luoja. Matin ja LiisanJarruttelua alkupuoliskon aikana. Edestakaista jaarittelua, ympäripyöreää jahkailua, teksti kiertää kehää kuin Liisan rukki. Ei luoja. Matin ja Liisan pirtissä nukutaan, syödään, haukotellaan, poltellaan, kinastellaan. Yleensä realismi on parhaimmillaan ajatuksia herättävää sekä hyvällä tavalla karkeaa, mutta Rautatie on pahimmillaan vain pintapuolista ja yksitoikkoista arkiaskareiden luettelointia.
Ahon kuvaus pääseekin oikeuksiinsa (aivan liian vähäisessä) luontokuvauksessa. Varsinkin ensimmäisen kappaleen alku hengittää nurkassa paukkuvaa pakkasta, korpimetsän hiljaisuutta ja tupien tulisijojen lämpöä. Kun Lapinlahdelle on ilmestynyt rautatie, se tunkeutuu vaivihkaa Matin ja Liisan arkielämään. Uni häiriintyy ja asiasta kinastellaan, kunnes rautatiestä kasvaa lähes myyttinen abstrakti asia, joka vetää hitaasti mutta varmasti puoleensa. Matin ja Liisan taipumus peitellä omaa naiiviutta ja tietämättömyyttä on hyvin tuttua vielä tänä päivänä.
Aika ei ole staattinen. Uusia keksintöjä tulee, käytännöt muuttuvat, maisema muuttuu. Mikään ei pysy samana, ja jotkut tempautuvat tahtomattaan mukaan kun jotkut istuvat rohkeasti kyytiin ja antavat nykyajan puksutella eteenpäin. Matti ja Liisa eivät uskalla myöntää toisilleen ja muille olevansa pelokkaita. Uteliaisuus ei tunnu mukavalta, koska suuren ja mahtavan rautatien kohtaaminen aiheuttaa lopulta vain pettymyksen. Junaakaan pariskunta ei taida ikinä täysin ymmärtää (aluksi Matti luulee sen tarkoittavan tavallisia vaunuja, joita vetää halkoja syövät hevoset). Sää (ja mieli) kuitenkin kirkastuu lopulta: "loristen laski sula vesi yönsä päivänsä rinteitä pitkin, riipaisi kerrassaan kaikki hanget ja nietokset pelloilta ja aitovarsilta alas alankoihin ja notkomaille, joissa lahnankukkia sitten sadoittain sikisi puronvarsille, ja tuore kesänurmi siellä täällä viherteli".
Moni asia pelottaa, mutta lopulta ne eivät välttämättä olekaan aivan niin elämää hallitsevia kuin on luullut. Aho vaikuttaa olevan puolueellinen maalaisten elämäntavalle, mutta ehkä muutoksen kanssa voi sittenkin elää kun on ensin saavuttanut mielenrauhan. Junan rautainen ja koliseva hahmo ei jyrääkään kaikkea alleen niin kuin se eräälle lehmälle teki.
Ehkä minäkin pystyn hyväksymään sen, että Aho tuntuu etsivän esikoisessaan vielä omaa tyyliään....more
Ibsen's plays are a problem for me. They never appeal to me as much as I would like to, although they have a lot that should make me like them. PlaysIbsen's plays are a problem for me. They never appeal to me as much as I would like to, although they have a lot that should make me like them. Plays are obviously at their best when the director and actors breathe life into them and when the scenes are interpreted in different ways in different productions. Ibsen's plays, however, don't even make me interested to see them on stage.
Rosmersholm isn't really an exception in this regard, but I did like it more than the others I've read. It carries its White Horses, the ghosts from the pasts, throughout and there are grand themes from politics to marriage. It all seems to lack depth, though, and the dialogue isn't particularly impressing. Maybe if the play had focused on something more specific and expanded that into something greater? Act four was what really ruined the preceding scenes for me. It's silly, implausible, and sudden. The ending would probably work in a Zola novel, but Ibsen doesn't handle it well. It's almost like it belonged into a different play altogether.
Where Ibsen does succeed, however, is in characterising Johannes Rosmer. I didn't feel his anguish or any of the oppressing presence of the past, but it was interesting to follow Rosmer's struggles to decide whether he should continue his position as a traditional aristocrat believing in Christian values, or to follow the path of liberalism and therefore achieve possible happiness. Rebecca is another well-developed character, who ends up being the catalyst at both social and political levels. The slow build-up gradually reveals the truth behind the characters' masks and uncertainty is replaced with disillusionment and tragedy. I just wish the downright comical ending wouldn't exist....more
Like so many other kids, I was first introduced to the spotted dogs when I saw the Disney movie. Thinking about it now, I think part of the reason whyLike so many other kids, I was first introduced to the spotted dogs when I saw the Disney movie. Thinking about it now, I think part of the reason why I liked it and The AristoCats (1970) was the animation style. The sketch-like style achieved with the cheaper Xerography technique made them slightly rugged, and the only contemporary animated films I've seen that have the same tone are the ones by Sylvain Chomet. Being a cat person, I don't think I ever cherished the 101 Dalmatians (1961) as much as I did The AristoCats, but I wanted to see if the novel has the same charm than the worn out VHS tape we used to have.
One Hundred and One Dalmatians is indeed charming and cute, but without underestimating the reader. The Dearly family on a walk with their cook and butler in tow, the infamous Cruella de Vil who was expelled from school for drinking ink now covers everything with pepper and loves fire, Jasper and Saul whose favourite tv show is What's My Crime? and dream of being contestants in it (a parody of the charming What's My Line, which I really recommend checking out from Youtube if you're into game shows and pre-70s celebrities), all the dogs with different personalities etc.
The Dearly family might seem too perfect and syrupy at first, but in the end they come across as very genuine and lovely people (and dogs). Cruella is an over the top caricature-like villain in all her diabolicalness, but somehow it works. I suspect children would find her funny instead of too scary, despite the fact that she's extremely evil. The inner lives of the dogs show themselves as mysterious for the people in the book, but the reader gets to know all the secrets and root for Pongo and his rescue operation. You know everything will turn out alright for them, but you never know who they meet next. The little boy represents all those who are scared of the unknown: he's bad only because he has never known any dogs. It's easy to be dismissive of those who aren't part of your life.
On the other hand, when read with adult eyes there seems to be a stance about domesticity that some may take issue with. Missis Pongo is gentle and motherly but a real dimwit (not knowing the difference between left and right even after an explanation is a source of great amusement for the characters etc.). Cruella is glamorous but evil and a rotten housewife. The comparison is noticeable, but I don't think it poses a big problem, especially when you consider how Mr. Dearly takes care of the puppies and the determination Missis has to find her puppies. There are actually several points where it could be argued that Smith went into the opposite direction than what might be assumed from the publication year.
One Hundred and One Dalmatians is heartwarming and quirky, but it didn't quite win my heart. It doesn't have the edge I'm looking for in children's literature, and I just can't make myself to be interested in the adventures of animals (despite being a huge animal lover; a personal zoo would be nice). A lovely light read for a summer day, though, and the different dog personalities are somewhat amusing. The touching ghost dog scene is also particularly noteworthy, and the one where the dogs wander into a church, because it makes you think about Cruella de Vil from an entirely new angle. So there's a lot that speaks for the novel, but it still failed to reach me completely. If Smith has the same approach and writing style in I Capture the Castle (1948), though, then I'll look forward to reading it....more
Rossetti's paintings are out of this world. In his poetry he goes even further by describing intimate relationships. The sensuality was beautiful andRossetti's paintings are out of this world. In his poetry he goes even further by describing intimate relationships. The sensuality was beautiful and it's easy to understand why the poems were controversial (a couple falls asleep after sex etc.), but in the end the purpleness and the excessive praise for love and beauty proved to be too much. Even in small doses....more
One of those short and nifty stories that you read and probably like as well, but which you'll forget in the months to come. Pushkin has a much lighteOne of those short and nifty stories that you read and probably like as well, but which you'll forget in the months to come. Pushkin has a much lighter touch than his fellow Russians, and I think that is starting to be a problem for me. Not once did I actually feel the protagonist's greed, and the matter-of-fact ending abruptly wrapped things up....more
The topic is extremely important, that goes without saying, and the concept of the comic is very much appreciated. I just felt that the execution coulThe topic is extremely important, that goes without saying, and the concept of the comic is very much appreciated. I just felt that the execution could have been better. The art is wonderfully vibrant and colourful, but the story itself is much too rushed and feels superficial and crushed underneath the heavy message....more