Thursday, February 8, 2007

I wish I had a soundproof room . . .

Where I could scream out my frustration with impunity. I guess I'll settle for the vacuum that is my own little corner of cyberspace.

What, you may ask, would prompt such an outpouring of rage? Well, I keep being treated to televisions commercials for the upcoming film adaptation of "Bridge to Terabithia." Especially on ABC (what a shock...). Now I, like many children born in the 1980s, sobbed my way through "Bridge to Terabithia" as a young girl. I read it while on a car trip, and I think my parents thought I was having a breakdown in the back seat. Later, in film school, I used to imagine what an adaptation of "Bridge to Terabithia" would look like (I've heard there is a pretty wooden TV adaptation from 1985, but I've never seen it).

So, when I heard that Disney/Waldenbooks were adapting "Bridge" into a feature film, I wasn't sure how to feel. I've been burned before - as a fan of "Dinotopia," I was pretty much insulted by the TV movie treatment that book received (it has the gorgeous visuals built-in - how hard is it?) - but I've also seen some pretty great adaptations. "Babe" and "A Little Princess" (Alfonso Cuaron version) come to mind. I thought I'd give them the benefit of the doubt.

Then I saw the trailer. Now, having not seen the film itself, I don't presume to judge on how the final product has turned out. Trailers can be awful deceptive. Still, the trailer for "Bridge to Terebithia" left me with the feeling that there were two likely outcomes to this venture:

One. The digital trolls and fairies and knights mean just what I think they do - "Bridge to Terebithia" has been turned into a sort of "Spy Kids" type film. And they've copped out on the tragic ending.

Two. The film is a pretty faithful adaptation of the book with perhaps an excessive amount of CGI. But since it is represented as a kiddie action-adventure flick, parents take their children to see it, only to end up seriously bummed out (with sobbing progeny).

In option one, you piss off the purists. In option two, you piss off the people who paid to see one type of film (action! adventure! trolls!), who get another (senseless tragedy!).

I guess only time will tell if I'm right on this matter. In the meantime, rent "A Little Princess," 'cause it's great.

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