Friday, December 16, 2011

Movie Review: "Bag of Bones" (2011)

Q:  How's it going, Bryant?

A:  Pretty good, Bryant.  'Sup?

Q:  Ah, you know; the usual.

A:  Cool.

Q:  You know why I'm interviewing you today?

A:  I suspect you want to pick my brain about the A&E movie version of Bag of Bones?  Am I close?

Q:  Dead on, my friend.  Dead on.  Did you watch the movie?

A:  I did.  Why do you keep calling it a movie?  It's a miniseries, not a movie.

Q:  Nope.  It's a movie.  Sorry, but in order for me to think of it as a miniseries, it's got to be longer than two nights.  Hell, add both parts together and it's not even as long as The Return of the King.

A:  Almost as good, though ... right?

Q:  .....

A:  Hurm...

Q:  Anyways ... yeah, just because it aired in two parts doesn't make it a miniseries.  That's a movie.  And call it what you want: movie, miniseries, or whatever, it was crap.

A:  Did that surprise you?

Q:  Nope.

A:  I didn't think so.

Q:  Did you like it, Bryant?

A:  I did not.  I liked it slightly more than I expected to like it ... but overall, it was awful.  But before we get too far into playing pinata with this piece of crap, can we talk about what I liked for a while?

Q:  Sure.  Example...?

A:  Here's a visual hint:
  



Q:  Ah...!  Pierce Brosnan!

A:  Indeed.  As you know, I'm a life-long James Bond fan. I've been a Bond fan for even longer than I've been a Stephen King fan, so it's kinda cool to see those two fandoms cross over a bit.

Q:  A lot of people cried foul when Brosnan was cast, though, didn't they?

A:  They did.  I was even one of them.

Q:  Why?

A:  Well, because Mike Noonan in the novel is substantially younger than Brosnan: nearly twenty years younger, in fact.  Also, I seemed to remember Mike showing a great deal of weakness during the course of the novel, and it feels to me like if you want to cast someone to show a lot of weakness, you DON'T cast James Bond.

Q:  True.

A:  Problem with that is, I had failed to remember a few things.

Q:  Such as...?

A:  For starters, I wasn't remembering the novel particularly well.  Mike is emotionally damaged, and he is definitely fragile in some ways, but he's not a weak character; far from it.  In fact, there are numerous times during the narrative when Mike has to make split-second decisions.  He runs on instinct a lot, and he has a lot of moments of being highly decisive, and those are qualities that an actor who once played -- very successfully, I might add -- James Bond is going to possess inherently.  So, from that viewpoint, Brosnan was actually great casting for Mike.  I'd forgotten something else, also.

Q:  What's that, Bryant?

A:  Well, I'd forgotten that in real life, Pierce Brosnan is a man who knows what it's like to lose his wife.  His first wife, Cassandra Harris, died after they'd been married for over a decade.  Now, normally, I hate bringing up biographical details like that, because they typically don't have much relevance.  In this situation, though, if I'd remembered that Brosnan had that sort of real-life similarity to Mike Noonan, I'd have been a lot more supportive of the casting decision.  As was, I was for it, but only because I like Brosnan as an actor; I thought he was miscast quite badly.  I was wrong about that; he was actually cast quite well.

Q:  After seeing the movie, did you think he was good in the role?

A:  Yes.  I thought he was very good indeed.  There are several scenes in which that's not true, but it is due to poor directing and/or poor editing and/or poor screenwriting; I don't think Brosnan should be blamed for any of those scenes.  We'll talk more about those later, though.  For now, we're still in the "saying nice things" phase of the interview.

Q:  Fair enough.
  



A:  One of the things I really liked about Brosnan's performance was that he was really good playing the grief.  I saw some reviews which were unkind to his ability to cry, but I thought he was fine during those scenes.  He excelled, I thought, during the scenes in which he in playing Mike's quiet desperation.  He feels -- whether due to personal experience or due to simply being a good actor, I don't know -- like someone who has really and truly just been emptied out.
  


Q:  Yeah, that scene of him sitting there playing Jo's -- I assume it is Jo's, at least -- ukulele was one of the better moments of the movie.

A:  Agreed.  And there is a nice call-back to it during the montage scene in which Mike is sorta getting his writerly mojo back.  You see him playing it again, but looking a little bit more confident, a little bit less glum, and you know it means Mike is beginning to recover.  It's going to be a slow, painful process ... but at least it's begun.
  


Q:  Right.  Bryant, don't you think that's the sort of thing film is well-suited to do?  Convey emotion in that way, I mean?

A:  Absolutely, and I think it's essential to truly capturing Stephen King's voice on film.  In prose, he's a master at building a bond between the reader and the characters he's created.  It's his strongest talent.  I think that's what people mean when they talk about how readable he is; when people say that even when they don't like his books, they find them to be compulsively readable, I think that's what lies at the heart of that sentiment.  We read what he's writing and we think, "That could be me," or "That's me," or "I'm glad that's not me."  And I think that most of us probably don't know what it's like to have a spouse get run over by a bus, but I also think that ALL of us have had cause to feel emotionally devastated in some way.  Maybe we lost a pet, or just got stood up on a date; something has hit us hard.

Q:  Right...!

A:  Think back on the best Stephen King movies, and I think you find a lot of scenes where we find ourselves bonded to one of the characters.  Unfortunately, I think creating that bond is one of the things that director Mick Garris is the worst at achieving.  Let me amend that statement a bit: he can achieve it, but he's not very good at sustaining it.

Q:  Are we going into negative land now?

A:  No, but we will.  Those scenes with Mike and the ukulele, though, were good, and there were other similar scenes during Part 1 of the movie.  On the whole, because of that, I think I'm ready to proclaim that Bag of Bones marks a step forward for Mick Garris.  I still don't think he's made a good movie, but this is his best movie, simply because -- for once -- he shows at least some grasp of subtlety.

Q:  So what else did you like?
  


  
A:  I thought Annabeth Gish was really good playing Jo.  More importantly, I thought she and Brosnan had a nice chemistry during their small amount of screen time together.

Q:  Gish is hot.

A:  Bryant, we don't traffic in that type of crudity around here.

Q:  Yes we do.  She's hot and she makes my dingus tingle.

A:  .....

Q:  Well, she does.  More like Bag of Boners.

A:  .....

Q:  .....
  


  
A:  She is awfully good-looking; it's true.  Always has been, and probably always will be.  She's also a really good actress; I always believe in her when she's on the screen.  I loved her on Brotherhood, and I wish she'd gotten more time on The X-Files, too.

Q:  Yup.  How'd you like Melissa George as Mattie?
  


  
A:  I liked her in some ways and disliked her in others.  Let's put it this way: I think she did a fine job of delivering the kind of performance Mick Garris asked from her.  I've got problems with what Garris did to the character -- major ones -- but I don't think Melissa George is at fault for that.  So on her own, she was fine.  You know who else was fine?

Q:  Who?

A:  Anika Noni Rose.  She was a great Sara Tidwell.  Even during the scene in which she curses her attackers -- which bordered on being campy -- she was really good.  I think she's got a hell of a future. She's a great singer, too.

Q:  Also: hot as hell.
  


  
A:  I can't argue with that.  Between her, Annabeth Gish, and Melissa George, the movie did have some beautiful women. Also: some relatively beautiful production design and cinematography.  I really liked all of the paintings which are hanging in the lakehouse.  I assume we're supposed to take them to all be paintings that Jo has done.  That's a change from the novel, but it's a good one: Annabeth Gish feels like a painter somehow, and it feels right for the relationship between Mike and Jo.  Also, it lends a bit of a feel of there constantly being some sort of feminine energy surrounding Mike, looking down on him, sometimes helping, sometimes hurting.  Visually, Mick Garris can be capable of producing lovely images, and I think the production design of the lakehouse helped him with that big-time in this movie.
  





  
Q:  Why do you keep calling it "the lake house"?  It's got a name: "Sara Laughs."

A:  No it doesn't.

Q:  I read the novel, Bryant; trust me.

A:  Trust ME, Bryant.  The house does not have a name in the movie.

Q:  It ... oh, you're right...!  They never mentioned it!  Did they mention that Sara Tidwell used to live there?

A:  I don't believe so, no.

Q:  Well, that's an odd thing to change!  Say, Bryant, can we start bashing this movie now?

A:  Oh, yes; we certainly can.  Where would you like to start?

Q:  Well, let's start where we already are: how did you feel about the changes made to the story?

A:  I didn't care for them.

Q:  Sigh.  Are you one of those "no changes to the book!" people?  Will you, for example, be upset if Roland does not have blue eyes in the eventual Dark Tower movies?  Do you focus on the novel to that degree?  Did you mind Tom Bombadil not making it into Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings?

A:  Slow yer roll there, Bryant; lemme keep up!

Q:  Sorry.

A:  Let's go in reverse.  I did not miss Tom Bombadil in the Lord of the Rings movies; he is an intriguing character in the novel, but if he had made it into the movie -- even if P.J. had toned down all the singing and whatnot -- then I think he would have created some unrealistic expectations in the audience.  Or, more likely, just confused them.  So, no, I don't focus on the novel too heavily.  For example, I couldn't possibly care less what color Roland's eyes are.  I'm fine with them being blue in the novel; I'd also have been fine with them being brown or green.  His eye color is completely irrelevant, and if you are the type of person to focus on that as something a movie HAS to get right, then I honestly don't know why you would ever -- EVER -- watch a movie based on a novel you'd read.  You're doomed to disappointment if you do.  That's not me. So, to be clear: feel free to make changes to the source material.  However, you need to do so from a place of understanding what is and isn't dispensable.  Also, you need to understand that if you DO make a change, you have to change it fully.  A story element in a novel is like cancer: if you're taking it out, you'd damn well better take it all, or it's bound to cause you problems.  And some cancers simply can't be removed without killing the patient.  It's a fact of life, and a fact of adapting prose into film.
  



Q:  You're proud of that last paragraph, aren't you?

A:  Little bit.

Q:  Fair enough.

A:  We could spend all night talking about the changes Mick Garris and screenwriter Matt Venne -- which is pronounced "Vain," apparently (and ironically) -- made to the story.  But instead of getting bogged down in listing them, let's take a few examples and see how the changes function.

Q:  Sounds good.  Name the one you thought was the worst.
  

  
 
 A:  I barely even recognize the movie's version of Mattie as being the same character as the one in the novel.  Same goes for Kyra.  A lot of people will focus on the change to the characters' ages.  In theory, I don't mind that.  Aging them up for the movie actually makes sense: unless you're Steven Spielberg, I have very little confidence in your ability as a director to find an actress to play a version of Kyra who is three years old.  She frequently seems older even in the novel, but King gets it right more often than he gets it wrong, I think; not by much, but by enough.

Q:  Agreed.

A:  As for Mattie, if you're casting Pierce Brosnan -- who is rapidly approaching sixty -- then you simply cannot get away with having Mattie be in her early twenties.  An age difference of twenty years is one thing; an age difference of nearly forty years is an altogether different thing.  (By the way, in a different version of the world as we know it, I'd have cast Jon Hamm to play Mike, and Amanda Seyfried to play Mattie.)

Q:  I like them both.

A:  Me too.  However, in theory, there's nothing wrong with Pierce Brosnan and Melissa George.  The problem lies in the fact that one of the novel's major components is the custody battle between Mattie and Max Devore, and a big -- massive, even -- part of the reason why that custody battle is plausible is that Mattie's age IS a major issue.  She's a good -- maybe even a great -- mother, but to the outside world looking in, she's trailer trash: Max is able to successfully plant the seed of doubt in people's minds that Mattie is irresponsible, dangerous, and unfit to raise a small child.  All of that is gone from the movie.  Every last bit of it.  Nobody would look at Melissa George's Mattie -- a beautiful, vivacious, well-put-together, and obviously thoroughly stable woman -- and even consider taking Kyra away from her.  Furthermore, because Kyra is older, and would be able to speak up for herself and for her mother, it becomes even more implausible that custody proceedings could ever have gotten as far as they did.

Q:  Well, that's true, but ... the scene in which Kyra is walking down the road is still there.  Isn't that enough?

A:  Absolutely not.

Q:  Why?

A:  Because Kyra is now older.  She's old enough to know not to walk in the middle of the road.  She's old enough to know not to leave the house without her mother's permission.  In the novel, the scene works because it's plausible a three-year-old could get a little huffy and then go off on her own.  Here, it's ludicrous; even moreso because there's no hint that Kyra has gotten a little huffy.  No, she's just a smiling, cute-as-a-button kid walking down the middle of the street.  It doesn't fit her character at all; she's obviously smart enough to know not to do any of those things.  So, why is she behaving that way?  Simple: because Matt Venne and Mick Garris were too daft to realize that when they aged Kyra up, they had to apply that age change to her behavior throughout the movie.  Here, in one of the story's most important scenes, they failed utterly at that goal.

Q:  What else...

A:  Oh, I'm not done talking about Kyra and Mattie.

Q:  Oops.  My bad.

A:  Quite alright.  The worst part of the changes to those characters is the change they made to have Lance Devore be complicit in the curse: he tries to murder Kyra by drowning her in a sink, and Mattie then shoots him, killing him.

Q:  Actually, doesn't that make more sense?  The curse, naturally, should have fallen to Lance, even in the novel.  Right?

A:  That's true.  In the novel, though, he clearly dies accidentally before that ever happens.  I don't think King ever comes right out and states it as such, but it seems logical.  And that is what causes Max to suddenly want custody; it's Sara's curse working on him.  I mean, he's a bad, terrible person, so there's that, too ... but, mostly, it's the curse.

Q:  So what's wrong with the idea of having Lance try to kill Kyra?

A:  Again, in theory...?  Nothing.  But that is a major change, and unfortunately, Garris and Venne -- again -- failed to get all of the cancer out.  At no point in the movie does Kyra act like a child whose father tried to drown her, only to be shot dead by her mother.  If that had happened, it seems like Kyra ought to seem a bit more unbalanced.  Same goes for Mattie: she doesn't seem like someone who's been forced to murder her own husband in order to save her daughter's life.  Does she?

Q:  No, she really doesn't.

A:  That, to me, is purely idiotic from both a writing and a directing standpoint.  And there was no reason, ultimately, to make that change.  What's the difference between Lance falling off a roof and Lance getting shot to death?  I ask that literally: what, in THIS movie, does that change create to benefit the film?

Q:  I'm not coming up with anything.  Because either way, the result is the same: Max Devore inherits the curse, and begins seeking custody.

A:  Exactly.  This is an example of the movie making a change to the story that fundamentally makes the story more -- not less, which is what story changes to a novel's story tend to be all about achieving -- difficult and complicated to convey.  It is a boneheaded maneuver on  every level.  And frankly, once it got to that point, I lost almost all interest in the movie.  I'd been mildly enjoying it up to that point, but from there, it was all downhill.

Q:  What else didn't work for you?

A:  Can we talk about the scene in which Rogette throws rocks at Mike?

Q:  Absolutely.

A:  Terrible scene.  It begs credulity even in the novel.  There, it works for two reasons: one, Mike himself has a hard time believing that it happens; and two, because despite the implausibility of it all, it becomes so dangerous a moment for Mike that he comes very close to dying.  You get the sense that the only reason he doesn't die is because Rogette wants him to stay alive so as to fulfill Max's purpose for him.  In the movie, she sucker-punches him off the cliff; that works because it IS a sucker-punch, and even from a frail old woman, that could work.  And if the scene had ended there, with Max and Rogette laughing down at Mike, having sufficiently demonstrated their power over him, then I'd've felt like it came off relatively well.  But, no: Garris and Venne just HAD to keep the rock-chucking.    AND THEN THEY HAD HER NEVER ACTUALLY HIT HIM!

Q:  That is weird.

A:  I know, right?!?  Now, I'll admit that if I'd never read the novel, I might not care about that.  But it's another example of changes that simply don't make sense.  The whole point of this scene is ... well, there are several points to it.  One is to allow Mike and Max to have a face-to-face scene; well, that's already happened in the movie (though Max isn't able to be too nasty in that particular scene), so the scene on the cliff is already headed down a path of obsolescence.  The main point, though, I think, is to bring Mike back down to Earth a bit: to demonstrate to him that he is NOT in control of the situation around him.  In a way, it's a foreshadowing of what ends up happening to Mattie: it shows that these people are playing for keeps.  By removing the danger of the scene, what you're left with is a really terrible performance by the actress playing Rogette (Deborah Grover), who simply looks silly.  She's cartoonish; she's campy.  The scene stops the movie dead in its tracks for all the wrong reasons, when it could have done it for all the right reasons.
  


Q:  That's harsh.  Not overly harsh, though; just ... harsh.

A:  Okay, so let me return to being somewhat more positive.  Here are a couple of examples of changes to the story I didn't mind at all: one, having there be no mention of Rogette being Max's daughter; and two, having it be Mike's brother, rather than Jo's, who is seen with Jo at Dark Score Lake.  For the movie, they essentially combined those two brother characters, and that's fine by me, because it was thoroughly accomplished.  That's a common trick in adapting a novel to film: when possible, combine characters, because it saves on hiring actors, and gives the ones you've already got more to do.  Even Stephen King himself has done it: in his screenplay for The Stand, he combined Rita and Nadine into the same character.  And there, it worked.  It works here, too.

Q:  So you really don't mind changes to the story in all instances, huh?

A:  No, of course not.  They simply have to make sense within the context of the movie.  Many of the changes here make no sense.  Oooh...!

Q:  What?!?

A:  I thought of something else that makes no sense...!

Q:  Do tell...

A:  At the end, when the day has been saved, Mike and Kyra go out in a canoe on the lake.

Q:  Yeah...?  And...?

A:  That's just dumb.  Twice now, poor little Kyra has nearly been drowned.  At this point in the story, it's been only a few hours since Mike himself briefly thought about drowning her.  And you're telling me he suddenly thinks it's a good idea to take her out onto I'm Goan Kill Yo Ass Lake IN A RICKETY FUCKING CANOE?!?  Really?!?  You're going to tell me Kyra wouldn't freak out at the very idea?  You're going to tell me, further, that the police would allow it?
  


 
Q:  Those are fair points.

A:  You're damn right they are.  And by the way, I'm not dense: I get the point.  Garris is showing us that the lake is now a safe place again.  In a way, it makes thematic sense as an ending.  However, in order to achieve that, all character logic has to be thrown out the window.  And given how heavily King stories -- Bag of Bones in particular -- function as character pieces, this seems like the exact WRONG move to make.  It's another example of why Mick Garris is simply not qualified to adapt Stephen King.  

Q:  Hell, that's okay; there's no shame in it.  Stephen King isn't even very good at adapting Stephen King, is he?

A:  No, not really; his screenplays for The Stand and The Shining and Desperation are efficient at getting the stories onto the screen, but they eliminate so much of the poetry, so much of the stuff that makes the stories actually work.  I've never done it, but I assume it's hard work to adapt a novel like one of those, or this one.

Q:  I feel bad for bagging on Mick Garris all the time.

A:  I do too!  Every interview I've ever read or seen with him, he seems like a cool dude.  If he ever got the opportunity to direct a genuinely good screenplay, maybe he could do something good with it.  I think Bag of Bones shows some improvements from him.  He's done poor work with Stephen King projects, but visually, he IS capable of creating striking images.
  


  
Q:  I feel like I have to ask you this: are you being overly dramatic about all of this?  After all, it's just a stupid movie.  It's not like it hurts the novel; it's still there, on the shelf, for you to read if you want to read it.

A:  That's true.  And if there had never been any good Stephen King adaptations, I'd agree with you.  But there have been.  There have actually been a lot of them that are at least decent: Carrie, Salem's Lot, The Shining, The Dead Zone, Cujo, Christine, Stand By Me, Misery, The Shawshank Redemption, Dolores Claiborne, Apt Pupil, The Green Mile, Hearts In Atlantis, Secret Window, The Mist ... now, I know some of those aren't universally loved, but they've all got plenty of credible supporters.  And I probably left off a few I could have included.  My point is that it IS possible to adapt the man's work to the screen.  Maybe not all of those titles are home runs, but a few of them are, and NONE of them -- even Brian DePalma's Carrie, which I personally dislike -- are bad movies.

Q:  So, why can't we get that every time?  Is that what you're asking?

A:  More or less.  Really, though, my point is this: that ought to be the minimum we should expect, and the minimum we should accept.  As such, Mick Garris's Bag of Bones simply does not make the grade.  I know some King fans enjoyed it.  But honestly, I'm not sure why.

Q:  You enjoy Children of the Corn.

A:  Only in the "so bad it's good" sense.  Well ... mostly only in that sense.
 
Q:  You enjoy Maximum Overdrive!

A:  I do!  It's a terrible movie, but it's a cocaine-fueled bunch of nonsense that was probably only ever intended to be stupid fun.  And it comes close to actually managing to be that!  I think there's a lot smaller gap between intention and achievement on display in Maximum Overdrive than there is in Bag of BonesBag of Bones wants to be a heartfelt romantic ghost story; it wants to seriously explore loss and recovery.  And yet, it has scenes in which James Bond (A) fights a tree limb and (B) spends several seconds getting his ass beat by an elderly woman in a bathroom.  It falls badly short of its goals; Maximum Overdrive at least HAD very few goals.

Q:  God...!  I'd forgotten that bathroom scene at the end when Rogette starts actually beating Mike's ass.  That was terrible!  And the scene with the tree limb...!  Did that make you think about Martin Landau playing Bela Lugosi in Ed Wood, wrestling with the rubber octopus?

A:  Boy, DID it!  I thought, this man played James Bond for nearly a decade: you simply CANNOT be doing this to him!  And yet, they were; they really were.

Q:  What else should we talk about?

A:  You're the interviewer, dude.

Q:  Right-o.  Did you catch the Lisey's Story reference?

A:  I did.  That one made me chuckle.  I was less amused by the Misery reference toward the beginning; it was a bit on-the-nose for me.  But it was okay; it probably made a lot of people watching happy, and that's okay, I guess.
  


  
Q:  Were you shocked when Jo got hit by the bus?

A:  Not at all.

Q:  Really?

A:  Really.  I mean, yeah, I knew because of having read the novel that something was going to happen.  Even so, if I had no idea what happened in the story, I'd've known something was up.  Jo walks into the frame all the way over on the right side of it, looking determinedly ONLY to her left...?  That's cinematic language for "something's about to happen, folks!"  Sorry, I've just seen too many movies to be fooled by something like that.   It wasn't a bad scene, though; just a little transparent.  And Brosnan was terrific when he runs out and finds her.  Here, again, that's a change I don't mind: it gives the movie the immediacy that film can provide.  And the makeup on Annabeth Gish was oogy.
  


  
Q:  It really was.  Speaking of oogy, how about the rape scene?

A:  Terrible.

Q:  Yes.

A:  No.

Q:  No?

A:  Not for the reason you mean, I mean.  I mean "terrible" as in poorly-executed.  The actor playing old Max was bad, but the actor playing young Max was even worse: he was throwing an unwanted hump into poor Sara Tidwell, but he was doing so so lazily and with -- pardon me, but there's simply no other way of saying this -- such inconsistent thrusts that all I could think was, "Does this poor bastard have ANY idea what he's doing?"  And that's not what you ought to be thinking during a rape scene.  You ought to be thinking NOTHING during a rape scene except "Jesus, this is horrible and I hope it ends soon."  You want to see a well-done rape scene?  Go watch Frenzy.  It'll give you nightmares.  Which it should; rape is an atrocity, and if you're going to film one you'd better damn well make it hurt right down to the marrow.  Here, I could only think about how poorly the actor was thrusting, and how vacant the looks were on the faces of the extras playing Devore's accomplices.
  


  
Q:  Yeah, you're right: it was pretty bad.  That guy looks like he's thinking about Farmville.

A:  He does.  And the others are no better; the scene keeps cutting away to those looks, and it's like they're watching someone write haiku or something.

Q:  Say, we've barely mentioned two other prominent cast members: William Schallert as Max, and Caitlin Carmichael as Kyra.  Your thoughts?
  


  
A:  Well, I thought Schallert was decent; not good, particularly, but not bad.  Carmichael, on the other hand, was quite good.  She was at her best during the climactic scene in the bathroom: she looked genuinely frightened.  Hopefully, that is the result of good acting and not the result of child-labor-law violations of some sort.
  


  
Q:  Final thoughts?

A:  I thought of what I'm going to say on Facebook when I post a link to this review: "I have come to here to do two things: chew bubblegum and eviscerate Bag of Bones...and I'm all out of bubblegum."

Q:  That's a They Live reference, right?

A:  You have to ask?

Q:  I do not.  Nice talking to you.

A:  And to you, sir.  We should do it again sometime.

Q:  Ehhh...

A:  Be that way, then...!

4 comments:

  1. I have tried to watch Bag of Bones three separate times (when it first aired, when it first came out on DVD, and last week) and I can never make it through. I think you nailed it here; it doesn't work because the changes it makes are half-assed and undo the continuity of the characters and the plotting.

    I haven't finished the book yet but will probably wipe it out on the train today. But the big changes that you mention are so muddled in its translation to the screen I keep shaking my head.

    Very fun review.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, sir! I certainly had fun writing it. Way more fun than I had watching the movie, that's for sure...

      And what a shame that is. There was (and still is) a great movie to be made out of "Bag of Bones." I would have loved to have seen it get made.

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    2. Just got to the part of the book (nearing the end) where Mike finds the owls and the newspaper clippings...

      Still chuckling over Bag of Boners. (And kind of amazed at myself for not making that joke immediately upon hearing the title, at any time since it came out til now!!)

      Good call on the rape scene in Frenzy, as well. Man, that movie. I haven't seen it in forever, something I need to rectify soon.

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    3. Yeah, when I came up with "Bag of Boners," I was pretty pleased with myself.

      As for that rape scene ... yeah, that might have been the low point of the movie. Excepting the good performance by Rose, it is incompetent filmmaking; I don't know how else to describe it.

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