Tom Ramcigam (magicmarmot) wrote,
Tom Ramcigam

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Took some time to try and relax today. Partially successful, I'm a little less neurotic. Took Sadie for a walk today, and she loved it. We got outside just when it started to snow, and she was so very excited, trying to catch the big fluffy snowflakes. Only squirrels would have been better.
Power-nap after the walk, near unconsciousness. Up in time to put dinner in the oven in time for Barb to come home. Then finished off "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep" by Philip K. Dick. This is the book that "inspired" the movie Bladerunner, which is one of my favorite films.

Inspired may be the wrong word. Fever Dream may be more appropriate. They are two very different stories. I was glad to read the book, as it has a depth and insanity that the movie doesn't really carry, and the surreal blending of reality in the book is a perfect tonal touch for the journey of Deckard. It's a depressing book-- PKD tends to avoid the happy ending-- but the structure of the journey is solid.
It's interesting from the standpoint of considering film adaptations of novels. BladeRunner is clearly not an adaptation, and I don't think it was ever meant to be (I have some storyboards from an earlier draft of the movie that never made it in, probably due to cost issues; they are way cool, but again don't reference the novel at all).
So it gets me thinking of how I would go about making a film adaptation of the book. It's probably not a project I would choose. For one, trying to adapt a novel into a film is almost a losing proposition from the beginning. A novel can delve into a depth that a film cannot: a film is limited to two hours, and it's an inherently passive medium, where a novel actively involves the imagination of the reader (as an example, look at LOTR. There are a lot of things missing from the books, but it still makes a wonderful movie).
The other side of that coin is something I'm less able to define. The book has a definite story arc, but the structure of the story is a little chaotic, like it was forced into being a linear narrative. For instance, the acceptance of Mercerism early in the story is key to the resolution, but it is difficult to accept as an individualist. It's uncomfortable, like the Orwellian world of 1984. None of the characters are comfortable. They are all angst-ridden or incomplete in some way, and there is no refuge for the viewer, no character that can be a carrier for the experiences of the story.
And the primary story arc, which is Deckard's journey, is not an empathic experience. It's not thoroughly clear what aspect of Deckard has been resolved.

Okay. I am certainly willing to concede that a film does not need to follow the conflict-resolution story arc. Particlularly independent film, where you are much freer to experiment with style and content. But consider that most memorable films have a clear story arc, where a resolution is indeed reached cleanly (or at least elegantly).
I don't know that I could pull that out of Electric Sheep.

Late night TV:
God help me, I've become enamored with Blind Date. Think of a show where you are set up on a blind date, all expenses paid, and the TV cameras go along. Then the highlights of the date are edited together, and commentary is added like a cross between a sports play-by-play and pop-up videos. My favorite part is the "dates from Hell" section, along with the Hall of Shame. It's funny in its own way, and frightening: I don't know if I'm just old-fashioned, but I tend to want something different on my dates. Maybe something more substantial.
Ah, well. It will pass.

Spelunking the soul:
Feeling relatively good today. Still avoiding some things that I should probably be doing, but taking the viewpoint that it's okay to occasionally NOT do something, I don't HAVE to accomplish something every damn day. At least I'm trying to rationalize that in my mind.

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