April 25, 2014 § Leave a comment
Given that I previously mentioned I’m a fan of dystopian future involving murder as a form of entertaining sport back in my Hunger Games review, I should also mention that I’m a fan of dystopian sci-fi genre overall and George Orwell’s 1984 is one definitive example of it. I read the novel, know the story and seen a couple of movie adaptations. And for a while now, I heard of a remake (or re-adaptation) of the story going around with people like Tim Robbins being involved (which never happened but he did adapt it as a stage play) and just recently this past January, there’s a new adaptation on the way but it’s not the kind everybody is hoping for.
Why? Well, it’s under the new title Equals (because it’s thirty years after the date setting so yeah) and this adaptation is made possibly as an cash-in to recent movies based on young teen dystopian franchise like Divergent and The Hunger Games. I can honestly deal with 1984 being catered to that kind of audience but it doesn’t help that Julia in this adaptation is – I shit you not – Kirsten Stewart of all people. So Hollywood said yes to this idea but no to Tim Robbins giving his own take but yes to this? Is it worth it or is it a bad idea from the get-go? Well, let’s see who else is involved besides Bella Swan herself.
Other than Kirsten, there’s not much cast so far except the person playing Winston Smith and that person is Nicholas Hoult. Honestly, he’s an alright actor given that he’s good in X-Men: First Class and About A Boy. But I’m not sure about him playing Winston Smith in the same way that I’m not sure about Kirsten playing Julia. He might do well or not so it depends if he have the chops to play that’s previously played by John Hurt and Peter Cushing.
Now on to Kirsten Stewart and what else is there to say about her after my Twilight reviews to be honest? I did mention before that I don’t mind her in other roles besides Twilight but this obviously is not part of it. In her recent interview, she stated that the concept is “overtly ambitious” and that it’s the “most devastating story” which I can’t argue but then it comes to the part where she also said that “it’s a love story of epic, epic, epic proportion”. Uh okay, 1984 is indeed considered a love story and is somewhat epic but the way she said it makes me think she only read the wikipedia article and only doing this for a paycheck.
Now straight to the director himself, Drake Doremus and I had to confess but… I never seen his work before I wrote this article. Other than seeing a DVD cover of Spooner in my local video store, I have not much opinion on this guy but I did rent something of his so I will look into it. I did check his interview as well and it seems he knows the source material and what he’s talking about so will he do the adaptation well? Only time will tell. But that is good light to this when we have writer Nathan Parker involved and given that he script the awesome Sam Rockwell movie that is Moon, it might turn out fine… I hope!
And lastly, let’s get to something about this adaptation. Recently, it’s revealed that Equals is actually more of an adaptation of the 1956 adaptation of the novel that stars Edmund O’Brien and Donald Pleasance instead of the novel itself. And as much as that adaptation is good, it did have changes involved. For one, it has somewhat a “happy” ending with Winston Smith seeing his former love Julia for the last time but then ditches her and became a total fanboy to Big Brother.
Yeah, sorry about the joke but really, he did praise Big Brother big time and it’s nothing like the source material. Well okay, the novel has Winston praising Big Brother in the end but in the bleak effect to the point that he wishes for execution. Again, the 1956 movie is good but it’s nearly the kind that lets George Orwell spin over the grave. So will I check further on Equals and see the movie myself? I will but suffice to say, the adaptation might be good on more in its storytelling and less on the acting.