CineMathematics or CinemaThematics. Your choice

Monday, March 31, 2008

Sundae Monday, Dear Reader

Before I get to this week's videos, I want to tell an amusing anecdote from earlier today. Today I went out to the Cine Lumiere, which happens to have some of the best programming in London (a Marcello Mastroianni retrospective followed by a week of Colossal Youth? Oh Hell Yes). This evening there was to be a showing of Robert Altman's The Player, which I haven't seen. After a lengthy introduction, the lights dimmed and the film began. A title card came up "Players." Hmm. I know the film is a satire, maybe this is a joke, right? Wrong. It turns out that the theater accidentally received a 70s tennis film instead of Altman's take on Hollywood. The worst part? They wouldn't even let me watch Players. Sigh. Ah well, c'est la vie.
This week I present "Wizard People, Dear Reader." If you have read any reviews of the SXSW entry We Are Wizards, then you may have heard the name Brad Neely. He recorded an audio narration to the film version of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. One of the wonderful things about this is it both hilariously comments on the action of the film and allows a viewer to deconstruct the film on a purely visual basis, if one were so inclined. It's telling that Neely introduces his narration as "a book on tape," even though he is clearly narrating the film. There is nothing particularly exciting about the film visually, and this underlines the fact. It's still worth watching all 34 parts on YouTube because they are hilarious. Just keep in mind that Neely takes liberty with names, so you shouldn't be surprised to hear about Hagar the Horrible, the Wretched Harmony, Professor Hardcastle McCormick or Professor Snake (in this version, Snake is a woman). I'm just posting a few of my favorite moments, but feel free to check out the rest.

Chapters 1 & 2 ("Magical deeds are afoot Dear Readers. Magical darkness a must"):

Chapter 8 ("Holy Balls! He bought the Turkish Owl!"):

Chapter 19 ("Wink Wink, Harry. Wink Wink"):

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Blogger Liz said...

It's like the intellectual's MST3K.

The first film really was awful, wasn't it? No style, no spark, no panache. I sound like a fashion designer.

9:27 PM

Blogger Dan E. said...

I don't know if it's the intellectual's MST3K, but the commentary certainly is similar. I wouldn't call the film awful. In fact, with the exception of the Goblet of Fire, I would say that the style of the films reflects on our wizards' skill levels. As they can do more complex spells, the films' style has grown more sophisticated.

Looking back over that, this sounds really pretentious, doesn't it.

6:05 PM


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