Sunday, March 13, 2011

Movie Monday #1: Never Let Me Go, Kazuo Ishiguro

Welcome to the first official segment from Reading Loves! Watching movies based on books I've enjoyed is always fun for conversation, especially with my husband who doesn't read. I find myself going through the differences, what was left out, changes in mood, etc even though I'm positive he's only humoring my interests! Now, you can be subjected to it also!

Very different fromThe Remains of the Day. I also appreciate that Ishiguro didn't take the extreme,Oryx and Crake route with this plot. It did, however, feel more like a slow build up in a 'M. Night Shyamalan's The Village' kind of way... OK, so reviewing this novel without giving anything away is difficult. 

Ishiguro is still very delicate with his prose style, even if I do agree with other reviewers that it's sort of a tease to haze over the many interesting questions and issues that a concept like this stirs up. In other instances though, I've been known to appreciate it when the author leads you in a particular direction but allows the reader to make of it what they will. I guess Margaret Atwood makes me lazy. 

Ishiguro's novel doesn't even come close to scaring the reader as much as Atwood or Huxley do, because he barely scratches the surface; and it's pretty apparent by the aforementioned delicate prose that he does in fact intend this to be the case. I love how colloquial the protagonist Kathy is in her anecdotes, but she's not a very strong voice for such a heavy concept. I suppose the showcase of the novel wasn't supposed to be those ethical questions brought up by the "sci-fi" element, but more so a truly unique look at uncertainty whilst growing up.

The screenplay for the film by Alex Garland certainly seemed to angle the focus of the movie in that direction. The colors in the film were so beautifully muted, it really did have a gray, unknowable feeling. 

Kathy's final narration before the credits was quite beautiful: "I  remind myself I was lucky to have had any time with him at all. What I'm not sure about, is if our lives have been so different from the lives of the people we save. We all complete. Maybe none of us really understand what we've lived through, or feel we've had enough time."

Some scenes felt a little disconnected from the whole of the film. I feel like the only reason they included Kathy's tape in the movie was to explain the title; it really didn't do much for Kathy and Ruth's relationship, as the movie didn't have time to dive into it until Ruth created a love-triangle. 

Also, the book was far less explicit about what was up with Hailsham than the movie was. Miss Lucy sort of let the cat out of the bag quick in the film.

All told, I enjoyed the film; it didn't change anything substantial. It evoked just the quiet, thoughtfulness that Ishiguro's novel did.

Never Let Me Go, Kazuo Ishiguro
ISBN: 1400078776  

1 comment:

  1. I haven't watched this movie yet. I just might have to now. :-)