Friday, April 29, 2005

Class I Sci-fi Geek Reporting

Just got back from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Having read the books, I can not say that I have seen a better adaptation of a book to a movie. The spirit of the book was there, more than enough to be recognizable, but with a number of additions that blended in perfectly. I knew going in that Alan Rickman as the voice of Marvin the Robot, who is constantly in the throws of meloncholia, was inspired casting. What proved to be a wonderful surprise was the wonderful casting and chemistry between the rest of the cast.

Aliens from the Jim Henson Creature Shop did the one thing that CGI creatures can't do, which is give an actual target for the actors to look at. No matter how good an actor might be, or how talented the animator, a conversation between an actor and a CGI character never really meshes. Compare scenes of actor/synthetic interaction from Farscape and The Phantom Menace. If anything, I would say that having a physicality to a character in the scene lets the actors play off of it.

Related: Two really cool trailers. I may have just been dumping on Episode I of Star Wars, but Episode III is something I have very high hopes for. If only because I understand that Lucas did not write the script. If he didn't try to direct the actors, all the better.

The other trailer was for Serenity, a movie based the TV show "Firefly" that never drew more than a cult following. Taking the "Final Fronteir" theme almost literaly, it was a space-based action adventure concept with a very strong dash of western influence. Not much more that I can say, so I'll let the site tell you more. Come on, September.

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