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The Golden Compass

I haven’t read any of the books in Phillip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy, but I have to say, The Golden Compass looks like a real winner. How can you go wrong with talking polar bears (called “ice bears”) and anti-religion overtones (I assume those haven’t been cut out entirely)? Also, I believe I saw James Bond talking to a tiger in the preview. And Sam Elliot. In a fantasy movie.

This is so going to flop.

Categories: Culture
  1. November 8, 2007 at 12:47 am

    I, too, have never read the books but the trailer looked interesting. I have always been a Sam Eliot fan and anything fantasy will get my immediate attention. I hope it makes it to Dillon.

    Moorcat

  2. November 8, 2007 at 11:50 am

    I read the entire trilogy several years back at the urging of a friend. I’m not a sci-fi fan by any means, but he insisted that I would love them because they present a unique argument for the baleful influence of religion on humanity. However, I expect the movie will go down in flames.

  3. November 9, 2007 at 4:12 am

    Flop? FLOP?! This has:

    Sam Elliot kicking ass with a bolt action rifle in a fantasy world.
    James Bond.
    Evil monkeys.
    Saruman.
    Motherfucking ICE BEARS, leaping about and colliding in mid-air just like in Saving Private Ryan!

    Say what you want, but with ingredients like that… Ridley best be quakin’ in his boots at the Oscars.

  4. November 9, 2007 at 10:52 am

    Yes, but it also has Nicole Kidman, who hasn’t had a hit since The Others.

  5. November 9, 2007 at 12:31 pm

    For all the snark offered here; that series does have a fascinating mythology to it; the most important ingredient for a winner, in my book.

  6. November 17, 2007 at 2:03 pm

    If the Christian Coalition gets it’s way, it’ll flop. But since they’re boycotting it, it’s guaranteed the plus-one and I will go see it! 😛

  7. November 18, 2007 at 6:17 pm

    It does look intriguing, but I am disheartened by the attacks on the movie (and the books) by so many religionists. Many of them are appalled that the movie will try to “convert” Christians to become atheists…to which it is only logical to wonder about Christian attempts to convert atheists (and other non-Christians).

  8. Jim
    December 9, 2007 at 3:10 pm

    Well, it’s officially one of the biggest box office bombs of the year. So all of the atheists weeping and wailing over the criticism of the film will have to find a new pet project. It’s gone.

  9. December 9, 2007 at 4:06 pm

    I wanted to see what all the hullabaloo was about, so I went opening night. Went in expecting it to be poor, and hot damned if I wasn’t right:

    1. It did indeed have Sam Elliot kicking ass with a bolt action rifle. Which was awesome, mostly because there’s no reason whatsoever for there to be cowboys in this film.
    2. James Bond is in it for less than 15 minutes. But that’s ok, I just wanted to imagine the 2nd biggest name in the film being awesome, and not actually see him.
    3. Nicole Kidman doesn’t beat her monkey enough.
    4. Sauraman does NOT fight Gandalf the Polar. It was disappointing.
    5. There is ONE ice bear fight. That’s right- the most ridiculous, over-the-top species I’ve ever seen prominently promoted for a fantasy film grace the screen in full glory for a solid 5 minutes. However, the end of the fight is possibly the most shocking bit of graphic violence I’ve ever seen in said genre.

    All in all, it’s a horribly convoluted plot. Imagine knowing nothing about Lord of the Rings and what it would feel like to start watching it in the middle of The Two Towers- that’s how The Golden Compass begins. I’m an atheist, but I’d rather parents rent Chronicles of Narnia for the kids than take them to this, simply because Narnia is actually a well-constructed and entertaining story (for the wee ones, anyways).

    As far as the atheistic elements go… There really aren’t any that are clearly displayed. There’s a few metaphorical criticisms of the church (which I really doubt anyone under the age of 15 would see), but beyond that you’re really going to have to dig to find them- and chances are you’ll be spending your time just trying to figure out the plot and who the fuck 90% of the characters are, much less the subtext.

    I will say this though: It was almost worth $6 just to hear Ian McKellen’s deep, booming voice say- from an Ice Bear to a wee little girl- “You want to RIDE me?”

    The Golden Compass: Go for the subtle beastiality, stay home for a good story.

  10. December 9, 2007 at 4:29 pm

    So all of the atheists weeping and wailing over the criticism of the film will have to find a new pet project.

    Um, I think you mean that morons wailing about it being anti-Christian will have to move on to their next ridiculous outrage.

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