Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Golden Compass - Film



Rating : 3.5/5

Based on the novel of the same name or Northern Lights to us Brits by Philip Pullman, the film follows Lyra in a parallel universe to us. She lives in Jordan College but things start to change when her uncle Lord Asriel comes to visit and she saves him from being poisoned by the Magistrium. She is given an Alethiometer (Golden Compass) by the dean of the college which she is to take with her and keep secret when she travels with the mysterious yet captivating Mrs Coulter who has promised to take her to see the armoured bears in the North.

Before leaving Lyra's friend Robert is missing and she suspects it is due to the Gobblers who have been stealing local kids. Lyra has promised to rescue him if anything happens. She finds evidence linking Mrs Coulter to the Globblers and runs away on a mission to escape and save Robert. Along the way she befriends a witch, an aeronaut named Lee Scoresby, an armoured bear called Iorek Byrnison and the Gyptians who aid her in her quest. She has to learn to read the Alethiometer which is the last of its kind in the world. It's function is to tell the truth using a combination of different symbols.

I enjoyed this film although my husband didn't. It's been a few years since I read the books (which are infinitely better of course), and this was a little like the edited highlights. Dakota Blue Richards was a great Lyra and the seamless links between Pan's daemon form changes were done really well. It ended a little before the end of the book, but it seemed to feel right and fit well. Sam Elliott was also perfectly cast as Lee. I am looking forward to seeing how they do the next in the series The Subtle Knife.

5 comments:

Literary Feline said...

I really want to read the books now, having seen the first (hopefully it's just the first!) movie.

Nymeth said...

How come Alex didn't like it? I need to find the time (and the courage) to go see this one. It's good to see positive reviews, though. I'm especially glad that you thought the ending felt natural... I was a bit scared when I was told they'd left out the last few chapters.

Melody said...

I haven't watched the movie or read the books yet, but I think I will check out the movie first, hehe...

Rhinoa said...

Alex didn't like it because he thought a 2 hour movie wasn't enough to justify the complex ideas in the book. Also the daemons were just like talking animals and he didn't think they translated very well. He thought it would have been better as an animation.

Literary Feline and Melody - Read the books!

jehara said...

i saw the movie a few weeks ago and thought it was good. i am now almost finished with the book. enjoying it so far.