First off, we’re in the thick of First Communion season….get your signed books here.
Friendship with Jesus – B16’s dialogue ith First Communion children
Be Saints! – B16’s dialogue with British children
I don’t have copies of the next two in the bookstore, but you can find them in most Catholic bookstores and online.
Also – Mother’s Day isn’t too far away…..how about The Catholic Woman’s Book of Days?
- Over the weekend, I blogged on pseudo-culture – the BBC show Happy Valley and the post-war noir In a Lonely Place.
- Not much going on this past weekend. 11-year old had a piano competition/judging thing on Saturday and they served at Casa Maria on Sunday, so we were tied to home. That’s okay, we’ll be flitting about soon enough.
- We watched Ben-Hur. Over three days. I hadn’t seen it in years. Probably close to forty of them. You know it’s about four hours long, right? You can see how that happened – given the filmmaking conventions of the day and the fact that if you are going to spend a heap of money on a production, you might as well go all-out and give the audience its money’s worth.
There is a remake of Ben-Hur coming out and I’ve read a bit of well I never online and can’t remake a classic!
Well, yes you can. The 1959 version was a remake of the classic silent version, and really, don’t make pronouncements about it being impossible to improve on the ’59 film until you actually rewatch it.
The length is unnecessary. Those long, lingering dialogue scenes are melodramatic and often risible. Charlton Heston is a terrible actor in this thing. I mean…terrible. The best scenes are the famed set-pieces: The galley scenes, the chariot race and the leper-colony material. The chariot race remains spectacular. Everything else is overlong, stiff and too reverent. The score, as per usual with films like this is overwhelming. Shut up.
The new version doesn’t look particularly good, though – just judging from the trailers and given that the production team is that Roma Downey crew, we can be sure that the Christian content will remain intact. But it’s also a good guess that an in-your face CGI-enhanced chariot race will have nothing on the Boyd/Heston matchup of ’59.
And remember that when the snarky protests come about Ben-Hur being “too Christian” the book was subtitled A Tale of the Christ. It’s about forgiveness, a forgiving heart and mercy that was only found through an encounter with Christ. It comes through in the ’59 version of course, since the movie was part and parcel of that late-50’s Biblical epic boom, but it is pretty stilted and dramatically reverent.
We had watched Gladiator the week before and had good conversations comparing the two (as in – the plot was just lifted and transposed) and then digging a bit into history, checking the accuracy (not much on Gladiator, of course) and looking into the history of the filming of both, as well.
- Random bloggy link of the day: Taking class notes by hand is far better than doing so on a computer. Tech-crazy schools always bragging about being all-digital, take, er, note. You’re helping no one except tech companies.