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As the World Falls Down

Generally, I avoid talking about health issues on LJ/MySpace, as I usually consider that sort of thing firmly in the realm of the private. But I've been suffering from an apparent TMJ flare-up since mid-October, and the last two days, in particular, have been excruciatingly uncomfortable. Not sleeping well, and during the day, the pain makes concentration almost impossible. And there's all this work that absolutely will not wait for this thing to pass. Though I could ill-afford the time away from the desk, I took yesterday off, trying to recover a bit, but the way I feel this morning, I'm pretty sure it was a futile gesture. (And please, no suggestions for treating TMJ).

On Tuesday, I began the "reverse lycanthropy" piece for Sirenia Digest #24, which I am calling "The Wolf Who Cried Girl" (thank you, Spooky). I did 1,006 words, and hopefully I'll be able to pick up today where I left off, as I need to get this one written and away to Vince by Monday.

Yesterday, we attended a matinee showing of Frank Darabont's adaptation of Stephen King's novella, The Mist. I went in hopeful, but skeptical. I left the theatre stunned and duly impressed. As I have said so many times before, I'm not a film (or book) reviewer, but you can find a review that says a lot of what I feel about The Mist at "Aint It Cool News." My complaints are few. I do wish the film could have spent more time on build-up, showing more of the storm that preceded the coming of the mist, the water spout, etc. Also, I think Thomas Jane as David Drayton is a problematic bit of casting in a film that is otherwise very well cast. On the one hand, Jane has the sort of bland everyman quality that King so often brings to his protagonists, and I can't say that Jane's that far off from Drayton as written in the novella. The problem arises, I think, from Marcia Gay Harden's superb performance as the zealous Mrs. Carmody. Gay's Carmody calls for a more passionate counterpoint, someone with a lot more screen presence than Thomas Jane. That said, yes, I was impressed. This is a story I've been wanting to see filmed since I first read it in Kirby McCauley's Dark Forces almost thirty years ago, and I am very glad that it wasn't made until sfx technology was able to catch up with King's vision. The creature design, which includes work by Bernie Wrightson, is wonderful. But the most stunning thing about Darabont's take on "The Mist" is its ending (which I will not spoil). I went in figuring that we'd either get the ending from King's story or we'd get a much rosier ending dictated by test-audience opinions. Instead, Darabont takes away King's bleak and unresolved ending, and in its stead we are given an ending that is far, far bleaker, and perhaps equally unresolved. This is, I think, the first real post-Katrina horror film, and the blow delivered by the last five minutes of The Mist seemed, to me, very much a comment on the American government's too-little, too-late response to the flooding of New Orleans. All in all, a chilling, powerful film that's much more about the frailty of civilization and just how thin a veneer "humanity" is, than it is a film about the Lovecraftian monstrosities lurking in the fog. Strongly recommended.

And for everyone who's wondered what I mean when I speak of the Second Life town of New Babbage, here's a brief tour, including a few shots of the Palaeozoic Museum:



...and as long as I'm at it, I'll repost the clip from The Culture Show:

Comments

( 10 comments — Have your say! )
chris_walsh
Nov. 22nd, 2007 04:41 pm (UTC)
Glad The Mist worked for you; I'm looking forward to seeing it (and one of these days reading the original; I have copies of both Dark Forces and the actual King collection The Mist headlines). For what it's worth, Darabont mentioned that when he told King how he'd changed the ending, King's response was "If I had thought of that, I'd've used it." So I took that as a good sign.
greygirlbeast
Nov. 22nd, 2007 06:09 pm (UTC)

For what it's worth, Darabont mentioned that when he told King how he'd changed the ending, King's response was "If I had thought of that, I'd've used it."

Thanks. I hadn't heard that, and it's good to know that King approves.
robyn_ma
Nov. 22nd, 2007 05:40 pm (UTC)
I'm sorry you're in pain.
greygirlbeast
Nov. 22nd, 2007 06:10 pm (UTC)

I'm sorry you're in pain.

Me too.
sovay
Nov. 22nd, 2007 08:25 pm (UTC)
I hope you are soon in less pain. Have as easy a day as you can, then, and I look forward to wolves who cry girl.
setsuled
Nov. 22nd, 2007 08:47 pm (UTC)
But I've been suffering from an apparent TMJ flare-up since mid-October, and the last two days, in particular, have been excruciatingly uncomfortable.

Ow, that sucks.

"The Wolf Who Cried Girl" (thank you, Spooky)

The story's even more intriguing now. Have you seen this?
greygirlbeast
Nov. 22nd, 2007 09:32 pm (UTC)

The story's even more intriguing now. Have you seen this?

Have now. :-)

derekcfpegritz
Nov. 23rd, 2007 12:52 am (UTC)
The Mist was COMPLETELY bitchin', and the film's ending was about five times better than the novella's. I still would've liked to have seen the gigantic tentacle-monster devour everyone, but, hey...can't have everything you want.
nightwitch
Nov. 26th, 2007 08:10 am (UTC)
I also read The Mist years ago in Dark Forces and have been waiting for (and dreading the idea of) someone filming it....dreading because I like this story very much, and it's a story that could easily be filmed badly. I'm glad they did an adequate job with it and, after reading your comments, actually look forward to seeing it this week.



It's nice seeing Babbage on film.
cdennismoore
Nov. 26th, 2007 03:07 pm (UTC)
That ending broke my heart.

The thing that crossed their path while they were driving made me glad I saw it in the theater; I think the grandeur would have been lacking on a television screen.

Hope you're better soon.
( 10 comments — Have your say! )