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Five Books That Would Make Great Movies - Mo's Journal
February 2nd, 2007
04:24 pm

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Five Books That Would Make Great Movies
This week's fannish5.

Robert A. Heinlein The Moon is a Harsh Mistress This is such a visual book, I’ve never understood why it wasn’t made into a movie. Actually, have any of his but Starship Troopers? I didn’t see it, but it’s on everyone’s top ten worst movies lists. But I digress.

The Moon is a Harsh Mistress has everything I want in a movie – exciting plot, interesting characters and lots happening on screen. It would be great for special effects. And while Stranger in a Strange Land was a defacto hippie manifesto, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress was the Heinlein novel for the conservative crowd, back when “conservative” meant “small government” not “homophobic.” So perhaps this one would be more palatable to mainstream America. Anyway, not heavy-handed in the politics at all and just oh so much fun. I’ve seen it in my mind’s eye since I first read it. I want to see it on the screen!

Geraldine Brooks March I read this a few months ago and just loved it. I keep thinking about it. It’s wonderfully detailed historical fiction with believable characters. It’s also fanfiction. Remember Little Women? For the entire first half, the father is absent, serving as a chaplain with the Union Army. He comes home devastated – a changed man – but you never know what happened to him. This is his story. It’s heartfelt and believable and full of wonderful dialogue. It’s just ripe for movie-making.

P.G. Wodehouse The Mating Season It really could be any of the Jeeves and Wooster books, but my lover and I have been reading this one aloud and I’m enjoying his wit all over again. Light comedy with lots of dialogue and wonderful scenery and clothes – perfect for a film. I know there was a TV series, but I don’t think there have been any films and the Jeeves and Wooster novels are certainly involved enough to last for two hours.

The Starr Report Much as I think the whole impeachment effort was completely misguided and the country's focus on l'affaire Lewinsky kind of insane (did the reporters of all the major newspapers in this country really talk about nothing but blow jobs for a year?) it’s a great story, full of drama, larger-than-life characters, secrets, betrayal and sex. John Travolta could be Clinton again.

Mina de Malfois, Volume 1. I’ll repeat what I said when Mina’s author first decided to grace fandom at large with what had previously been amusing tales told a small group: The stories are a hilarious, insightful and ultimately loving parody of Online Fandom As We Know It, written with homage to Wodehouse's Jeeves and Wooster stories. Part roman a clef, part pastiche, the Mina stories never fall over the edge into meanness. They remain loving portrayals of fandom's ideosyncracies and fans' peculiarities.

Mina is a BNF who will remind you of several people you know. She's self-centered and self-absorbed, yet somehow in spite of all that self-focus completely lacking in self-awareness. Like Bertie Wooster, she manages to be loveable nonetheless. Archivist12, known as Arc, is in the Jeeves role, and she is the behind-the-scenes brains who manages to keep Mina out of trouble most of the time and make trouble go away when Mina doesn't have the sense to listen to her. The stories are truly LOL funny but also with lines with a quiet cleverness that you go back to read again and again, marveling at the layers of parodic meaning and leaving the reader madly in love with Arc and only wishing she were real.

Okay, it’s kind of unlikely that there will be a movie about a fanfic writer. But I can dream, can’t I?



That was a fun one! Thanks marag for suggesting it!

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Comments
 
From:joel_rosenberg
Date:February 2nd, 2007 10:55 pm (UTC)
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Puppet Masters. Not particularly good except when compared to Starship Showgirls From Outer Space.

Destination Moon doesn't count, I guess; he wrote the screenplay, though.

I don't think I agree that Moon would make a good movie, although it would be easier to do than a good version of Starship Troopers, as most of the important stuff in that happens with people sitting around in a classroom or in Juan Rico's head.

Glory Road, on the other hand . . . or -- better -- Have Spacesuit.
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From:ringthebells
Date:February 3rd, 2007 02:51 am (UTC)
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My husband loves the Starship Troopers movie, though he cheerfully admits that he loves a lot of bad movies. I thought the movie was okay, though it bore very little resemblance to the book. The trouble with watching the movie is that it starts me thinking about the book, and then there's the ensuing ranting and/or depression (I found the book extremely troubling).

I read "Stranger in a Strange Land" only very recently (like, a few weeks ago!) and pretty much enjoyed it, though I thought it was hilarious (in a frustrating, sad way) how he tied himself in such knots to insist that there was absolutely nothing gay happening during the orgies. 'Cause gay people are unnatural, as any man from Mars can tell you.
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From:mofic
Date:February 3rd, 2007 02:53 am (UTC)
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'Cause gay people are unnatural, as any man from Mars can tell you.

Bwahaha! I'd forgotten about that stuff.
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From:realpestilence
Date:February 9th, 2007 02:13 am (UTC)
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Jeeves & Bertie were *made* to be slashed. I recently read a fanfic about them that was excellent, sounded just like Wodehouse...er, can't remember the name or title, of course. *coughs* But it was very good...and that's no comfort, is it?

Starship Troopers had the odd moment or two of humor, but it was mostly a violent, very *loud!!!* movie about humungous bugs; no doubt there was a lot of subtext about stuff, but it gets lost in the carnage. Not worth seeing, even for camp or discussion value, at least to me.

I've always thought Heinlein overrated, anyway. 'I Will Fear No Evil' and 'Friday' *could* have been interesting explorations of gender roles; but they devolved into bedroom romps.


I think I might do this meme, too, once I scrounge up 5 books whose authors *and* titles I remember.



Pesti
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From:mofic
Date:February 9th, 2007 01:14 pm (UTC)
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I'd love to see your version of the memes.

I agree on I Will Fear No Evil and Friday. I still love the juveniles and a lot of the earlier adult novels.
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