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The Golden Compass

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message 1: by Nicole (new)

Nicole (nlojeda) | 42 comments I crammed the first book and hid from the previews before I watched the movie. Sure enough, I was disappointed. I should've allowed more time in between reading the book and seeing the movie. Nicole Kidman is great though and I look forward to the other movies being released. Whether or not I will read the rest of the series is another story...

message 2: by Arctic (new)

Arctic I read the books four years ago and liked them very much. Just saw the movie on Monday and also liked it. It seemed to touch on everything I could recall from the book, though some things definitely seemed changed. The end could have been a lot better and smoother, for one. Loved the shape-shifting daemons though.

definitely finish the series if you can. it gets much more interesting as you go.

message 3: by Ed (new)

Ed | 220 comments Mod
I saw the movie and really enjoyed it! I need to now read the entire series.


message 4: by Evelyn (new)

Evelyn (planetevelyn) | 2 comments Saw The Golden Compass last night, and thought it was a great movie. Better than a lot of movies aimed at adults. The cgi was done well so that you could forget you were watching special effects. And if only London really looked like that!

I haven't read the books but have been meaning to for several years. Now they are really on my to-do list.

message 5: by Pamela (new)

Pamela (foxglovewitch) I read the books a couple of years ago and was both excited and scared to death of the movie. Overall, I thought it was very faithful to the story with one major exception. The books are dark. Horrible things happen to children, and that is a huge part of Lyra's motivation to do what she does in the later books. The movie scrubbed all of that away and turned the story into some kind of adventure on the snow, whee! I nearly had a heart attack when the end of the movie rolled around and a Very Important Scene was cut completely out.

The movie was beautiful, well-cast, and very well-acted, but I really wish they'd left in the dark, nasty side of the story. It would have given it much more punch and power.

message 6: by [deleted user] (new)

I agree with The Discriminating Fangirl--I couldn't believe what they left out at the end of the movie. But I should have seen it coming because the rest of the movie was pretty PG. I loved how dark the books were and it was unfortunate that that element was left out of the movie. But I understand why. If the movie had been faithful to the book, its subsequent rating would have excluded children from seeing the movie. That leaves the adults, but I don't think the movie was marketed to adults. The book was adapted for the screen with a specific audience in mind (children) so they had to leave out the dark stuff.

That was my biggest beef with the movie. Instead of doing a faithful adaptation of the book, the movie makers buckled under pressure to make a "vanilla" movie. They were afraid of the controversy that developed around the movie. A week before the movie came out, I received an e-mail forward warning me not to see the movie because it tells kids not to believe in God. Which is total crap. I wanted a ballsy movie, but instead I got a neutered one. It will be interesting to see if they make the other two books into movies, and how they will handle those. They were far darker than the first one.

On another note, Nicole Kidman was an inspired choice as Ms. Coulter. I couldn't look away every time she was on screen.

message 7: by Arctic (new)

Arctic I read that Mrs Coulter was written by Pullman with Kidman in mind. definitely shows.

And I agree with the both of you on the missing pieces. They kind of introduced the issue and then just left it hanging without addressing it further. Bugged the heck out of me and made the ending completely wrong.

message 8: by Zan (new)

Zan | 4 comments I have not read the books and did not like the movie. Odd -- I wonder if this is a case of liking the movie less if you haven't read the book. So often it's the other way around.

message 9: by [deleted user] (new)

I've actually heard the opposite. People who haven't read the books seem to like the movie more than those who have. Maybe you'll like the books more.

message 10: by Dottie (last edited Jan 05, 2008 08:04PM) (new)

Dottie (oxymoronid) I have heard that that big cut off at the end is being planned as the starting point of the second film and I''ve been thinking that if that is true then perhaps some of the darker bitsd which were underplayed may be used to lead up to the big opener. Just thinking out loud.

I am not -- no make that I was not a fantasy/etc reader but was led into some reading and finally ended up taking my daughter's advice to read these -- loved them -- loved this film.

I just don't get the controversy if one is really paying attention to the story. And then there's the fact that it IS a story.

message 11: by Arctic (last edited Jan 05, 2008 05:21PM) (new)

Arctic I agree Dottie, it's being painted as more controversial than it actually is, which in turn is just fueling the fires all the more.

I suppose putting the end at the beginning of the next film could work, but still it presents continuity issues and just comes off sloppily.

Did anyone else have a problem with how some of the names were pronounced? I always said Lyra's name completely differently when reading the books. For me it was Lee-ra Bel-la-QUA whereas in the movie it's Lie-ra Bell-LACK-qua. The last name really bothered me. The first name I can live with.

message 12: by Evelyn (new)

Evelyn (planetevelyn) | 2 comments I've found that Nicole Kidman is great when she plays cold, unsympathetic characters. So Mrs Coulter suits her well. Its when she tries to play warm, likeable characters that she comes across as wooden and superficial.

message 13: by Alexandra (new)

Alexandra Evelyn, that's exactly what I think re:Kidman also. She's a good actress, in the right part. So sometimes I like her in a movie, sometimes I do not.

message 14: by [deleted user] (new)

Going back to what you said, Dottie and Arctic, how could they put the ending at the beginning of the next movie? Talk about a dark way to start a movie off!!!!! I'm crossing my fingers that the next one will be true to the book, and much darker. So, that kind of beginning will be fitting.

message 15: by Dottie (new)

Dottie (oxymoronid) That was my immediate thought -- what a bleak beginning after the lightened up first film we were given. BUT I also think some of the darker bits may be fed into the start before the end bit is put in place -- still will make a darker film of the second one. I just want them to do this in such a way that the next film is as lovely to see however dark the topics/scenes -- I thought this one was visually just as good as could be and the sounds were great also. I want that quality to carry through the series of films and for the films to stay true to the overall story even if they have and continue to do some shuffling.

And Artic -- was it you who talked with me about that awful end titles song Lyra? Ugh -- no offense to fans of this person who performed it and I think wrote it but that was one horrible song.

message 16: by Nicole (new)

Nicole (nlojeda) | 42 comments I wholeheartedly agree Alexandra!

message 17: by HELINA (new)

HELINA | 2 comments SO, for school over the summer we had to read The Golden Compass it was great. It truly was my third time reading it ! SO the movie was great did not finish the end of te book and it left out of couple of readlly important things but the Daemons were great !!!!!!!!!!!! Nicole Kidman was awesome but I thought that Lee Scorsby would look younger but as the movie went by Lee Scorsby looked fine. IN th efight between th epolar bears the re was surprisingly no BLOOD i was getting ready to close my eyes for all th eblood that was going to happen but when Iorek grabbed the other polar bears jaw other and flung it in the air the was no blood at all!!!!!!!!!!!! Bu tI really liked the movie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

message 18: by Arctic (new)

Arctic Ha ha! Yeah I thought the no blood thing was kind of silly too. But that's what you get in a kid's movie. Walden Media did the same thing with the battle scenes in The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe. I was hoping New Line might be a little more risqué in in that regard, but not so.

I will say though, that even just showing the daemons disappearing left and right during the fight scenes, especially the final fight scene, was pretty graphic if you think about it. Each flash of light was someone's soul blinking out of existence. With blood there's still the possibility that these people are just wounded, but with the disappearing daemons there's no doubt, they were definitely killed.

message 19: by [deleted user] (new)

Her name was supposed to be pronounced Lie-ra due to how important lying was to her character.

message 20: by Arctic (new)

Arctic Hmm...that would definitely make sense, though I still think my name for her sounds better ;). I really need to reread these books - it's been too long.

Dottie - it wasn't me that you mentioned the end song to, but yeah it didn't really seem to fit very well. I've never been a huge Kate Bush fan, though. Tori Amos (similar voice) however is awesome. I suspect the song still wouldn't have fit even if Tori sang it though.

message 21: by Kate (last edited Jan 07, 2008 05:13PM) (new)

Kate | 4 comments I also was very disappointed and found it but a shaddow of the book. If you hadn't read the book, did it even make sense?

message 22: by Ed (new)

Ed | 220 comments Mod
Checked the book out today along with the Thirteenth Tale. :)

message 23: by Otis (new)

Otis Chandler | 1 comments Does anyone know the correct pronunciation of 'daemon'? I thought it was "day-mon", but the movie went with 'dee-mon', which was a big change in my mind anyways...

message 24: by Arctic (new)

Arctic good question. I just looked it up and it looks like it depends what source you ask. I always said 'day-mon' too, though I think that's because I didn't want to think of them as demons, which I automatically associate with devils. Another valid pronunciation is apparently 'die-mon', which makes good sense if it's derived from latin.

message 25: by Bricoleur (David) (last edited Jan 10, 2008 02:54AM) (new)

Bricoleur  (David) Soul (bricoleur) | 1 comments Daemon is simply a British (chiefly) variant of Demon... and pronounced the same way...

As for derivation from Latin ... well, I think the best guess of modern scholarship is that the "ae" dipthong was pronounced as in /ai/ ) but that even this is not totally consistent as usage appears to have actually morphed over the spell of the Latin empire ... so the pronunciation depends on what period of history it was being used in! So there is indeed some case for going with the construct "ae is Like ai in aisle" in actual Latin usage but this was not picked up in the English usage so isn't relevant to current debate.

I believe (but am not positive that my Latin teacher had not just embellished the story) that the folks at Cambridge and the Folks at Oxford had quite different "rules" for "proper" Latin pronunciation ... and there was a period of quite heated debate but examination of Latin poetry and comparative pronunciation of Latin words in many different languages have more or less settled the arguments.... for the linguists at any rate.

I think the "DAYmon" pronunciation owes much of its popularity to the word being hijacked by the Unix community ....

message 26: by Joel (new)

Joel | 6 comments I am fascinated by how many of you didn't find this movie painfully crappy.

I haven't read the books it's based on, though, and was hoping someone on here who hated the movie could make an argument for me to read the books anyway. If you can, please let me know.

message 27: by Pamela (new)

Pamela (foxglovewitch) Joel, out of curiosity, do you actually like any movies? Because you've popped up in several threads here complaining about how terrible and horrible and completely crappy all of these movies are, and frankly, you haven't given any criticism that might be taken seriously. "It sucks" is kind of difficult to take as valid criticism.

message 28: by Rindis (new)

Rindis Don't get to see many movies, but ended up seeing this on my employer's dime.

Read the first book a few years ago, and liked it, but not enough to immediately pick up the nest two.

So, seeing the movie, I could hardly remember the book going in, but the movie reminded me of much of it.

In fact my general review has been that it's the Cliff's Notes version of the book. Everything's there, but it's so condensed that I echo another poster's concern: does this make any sense if you haven't read the book?

I thought the daemons exploding into sparks was a nice way to show death in a PG way, but it was overdone. One shot, one shower of sparks. Apparently no one is ever just wounded in this universe.

message 29: by Nicole (new)

Nicole (nlojeda) | 42 comments I found a movie Joel liked!

The Orphanage! I didn't like it much and he disagreed with my review:

Per Joel:

"Just saw it a few nights ago, and I disagree with some of what you have to say.

1) Just because he CAN do awesome fantasy, doesn't mean he should have to when putting together a story. I liked this story just the way it was.

2) There were a couple good make-everyone-in-the-theater-jump scares in this one that were well worth the price of admission."

message 30: by Pamela (new)

Pamela (foxglovewitch) I have to agree that this is definitely the Readers Digest condensed version of the book, but I was pleased that they at least didn't make any major changes or omissions in terms of storyline (except for the HUGE glossing over of the more unpleasant aspects of the story). My best friend hasn't read the books (yet; I'm harassing her about it all the time), and she thought the story made sense though it felt a bit rushed at times.

message 31: by Robert (new)

Robert | 51 comments I saw a sneak preview of "The Golden Compass" with one adult and three pre-teenagers. I was the only one of the group who had read the book and it struck me that much of the film might be rushed and confusing to the newcomer. While they acknowledged a kind of hectic pace in the film, the story itself made sense to them...

message 32: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey | 20 comments It is possible that they may never do another movie in the series because this movie just didn't bring in the coinage for a major movie in the US and New Line used some of the overseas revenue to fund the movie. According to Wikipedia, New Line currently has no plans for the sequel

message 33: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie | 85 comments I really enjoyed the Books and also the movie!

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