27 December, 2011
Hello dear readers ...
I read the following at Jo Blo (the site for Movie News) and had to comment on it. Firstly, I want to say how great Jo Blo CONSISTENTLY is, as well as how great one of their leading correspondents is; Mike Sampson (who wrote this). It's on the (at press) much controversial replacing of the 'Thor 2' director. Recently announced (at press time) Alan Taylor will take the reigns. But I'll let Mr. Sampson tell it --
Patty Jenkins had been hired, at the suggestion of star Natalie Portman, to direct Marvel's THOR 2. But as Jenkins and Marvel had continuing script discussions it became clear that Jenkins, who hasn't directed a film since 2003's MONSTER, was in over her head. So despite Portman's protests, Marvel and Jenkins parted ways and the search for a new director was on. Enter "Game of Thrones." Marvel was looking at two directors who had been working on the popular HBO series - Alan Taylor and Brian Kirk. Well over the holidays, it was confirmed that Taylor has gotten the gig and will begin directing THOR 2 (which I'm sure will have a fancy subtitle) next year. How happy that makes Portman, who was reportedly "furious" when Jenkins was fired, remains to be seen. It also remains to be seen whether Marvel gives a shit. Let's all be honest and admit that the Jane Foster storyline was the least interesting part of the original THOR. More Asgard please. Another good question to ask regards who the villain will be in THOR 2. Loki will be the main villain in THE AVENGERS and audiences will likely need something fresh for the THOR sequel. Maybe Enchantress?
So there it is, the original post in its entirety. What I want to chat about very quickly is the comment on the Jane Foster storyline. That it's the "least interesting part of the original." While for some viewers it may not have been as exciting as Asgard or the battles on Earth, let's be honest (to use Mr. Sampson's benchmark), IT'S THE ANCHORING OF THE MOVIE. You want to make a movie about The Civil War ('Gone With The Wind')? Give it a love story. You want to make a movie about The Sinking Of A Ship ('Titanic')? Give it a love story. You want to make a movie about a (and let's be REALLY honest here) fairly lesser known super hero such as Odin's son? For God's sake give it something that everyone can relate to, especially the girlfriends that are being dragged to it by their comic-book-loving-boyfriends (and I'M a comic-book-loving-boyfriend).
GIVE IT A LOVE STORY.
I can't think of a story that isn't a straight-forward love story that doesn't have a love story. Why? BECAUSE WE GET IT. (To be fair, I'm even considering 'Aliens' which, while "mother-daughter" between Ripley and Newt, is still that bond; much like 'Field Of Dreams' between father and son. But that's for a longer article ...)
I'm thinking back to the 'Solaris' commentary with James Cameron and Steven Soderbergh in which they both wax lyrical about being suckers for a good love story (which 'Solaris' CLEARLY is, though I don't want to spoil anything here) ... and how much I'M a sucker for a good love story ... and how aren't we all?
BECAUSE WE GET IT.
Really, it's the anchor of most movies, and how is that ever a bad thing? Especially in the case of this "lesser known superhero" (I'm talking outside us fans) in which HOW CAN WE NOT have a love story between a god and human; not just as an anchor for the audience to the comic, but, just as significantly, God to Earth? He needs to care about this "lesser realm." Why?
'Cause she smiled at him.
And really, guys, isn't it ALWAYS as simple as that?
As I say, I don't want to take anything away from Jo Blo or Mike Sampson, as they consistenly do great work. I just read that and had to say, "Whoa-whoa-whoa-whoa-whoa, shut the front door." 'Cause -- God, I don't want to sound cheesy here, but -- love IS the anchor. Especially in story; poetry, song, story, film, tv, all of it. Lose that? Lose your audience. And, let's be honest here once more: isn't it our audience for whom we all write?
God, even The Beatles wrote, "Love love love." Now you want to argue with The Beatles?