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Anyone read "The Road"?

 
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 03:30 pm
@DrewDad,
but no better movie than "Pulp Fiction"
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 03:31 pm
@DrewDad,
I'll add this: nihilism and existentialism have their place, but the author shouldn't get so wrapped up in his own pretenses that he ends up destroying the storytelling. There are good stories that make one examine these same issues.
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 03:34 pm
@farmerman,
I am not a fan of Pulp Fiction, because I think Tarantino's intention was "let's put all the disgusting, violent filth we can into this movie, and make people think they're enjoying it."
Gargamel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 03:37 pm
@DrewDad,
I don't at all think McCarthy is dressing everything up in metaphor. I think he goes to great pains to depict the post-apocalypse as realistically as he can. The absence of plot is part of that; plots are a construct of fiction. I think taking canibalism, cold, etc. at face value still reveals greater themes. How flimsy civilization is, the madness inherent in clinging to faith and love against all odds. When he's interested in metaphor he throws in a dream sequence.

The deus ex machina is indeed baffling. And in fact so instantly unappealing it's easier to close the book and remember the good **** than it is to think about what the author's intent was. I'm serious. I read the book months ago and haven't yet thought that one over.

But so it goes. Huck Finn has the worst ending in all of literature but it's still worth the first three-quarters.
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 03:48 pm
@Gargamel,
His "great pains" didn't pay off, IMO. The piece-meal cannibalism, for example, doesn't ring true. We don't cut off cows' legs one at a time, right? Never did, even when people slaughtered animals on family farms. Bandits don't randomly walk down roads, they set up ambushes.

IMO, it's a poor entre into the disaster novel genre. It was done better in Earth Abides, with many of the same themes. Niven and Pournelle did it better in Lucifer's Hammer, with many of the same themes, including cannibalism.

Gargamel wrote:
plots are a construct of fiction

And this is fiction. A plot provides the framework upon which you hang your philosophy. He could have written an essay, and done a better job of getting his meaning across.
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 04:03 pm
@gustavratzenhofer,
gustavratzenhofer wrote:

If you are speaking of Michael Crichton's book, well, that was somewhat entertaining, but not one of his best.


No, you're thinking of "The swamp" ...that's something else.

I am talking of this one http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Swarm_(novel)
by Frank Sch├Ątzing.
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 04:23 pm
@CalamityJane,
http://contemporarylit.about.com/od/mysteryreviews/fr/prey.htm
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 04:29 pm
@DrewDad,
Quote:
Re: farmerman (Post 3889397)
I am not a fan of Pulp Fiction, because I think Tarantino's intention was "let's put all the disgusting, violent filth we can into this movie, and make people think they're enjoying it."
That excuse may serve you quite well, however, dont project it upon all others. Sometimes a Badass ************ is just a badass ************ , nothing more. Tarrantino extracts all his characters and plot lines from others. He doesnt ever deny it. He just does it better and for that hes often pilloried by folks who want more meaning.
Gargamel
 
  2  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 04:44 pm
@DrewDad,
DrewDad wrote:
The piece-meal cannibalism, for example, doesn't ring true. We don't cut off cows' legs one at a time, right? Never did, even when people slaughtered animals on family farms. Bandits don't randomly walk down roads, they set up ambushes.


Pretty nitpicky. We refrigerate and mass-distribute cows legs. And if I remember correctly there were bandits with a lookout shed and bell to ring should they see people on the road. Perhaps the ambushes you would have preferred were more frequent closer to the apocalypse, when there were...people. The father's and son's encounters with others are few and far between. You'd be wasting your time, lying in wait for weeks.

You may not like the plot, but that doesn't mean there isn't one. There is still a backstory, a conflict, crisis action, and a resolution. There is incremental perturbation. Things are bad, they get worse, they get better, they get really bad, and they get better again. In that sense the Road is no different than the most traditional novel. It just so happens that his philosophy is best underscored by emphasizing long stretches of gray nothingness, the eternity the father has each day to contemplate the purpose of continuing onward. But even so, the threat of starvation alone created enough tension to keep me interested.
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 05:00 pm
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:
That excuse may serve you quite well, however, dont project it upon all others.

What excuse did I project onto others? I certainly don't require everyone to share my opinions.
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 05:06 pm
@Gargamel,
Gargamel wrote:
We refrigerate and mass-distribute cows legs.

But we don't hack of a cow's leg, provide it medical attention so that it survives, eat the meat, then go back to hack off another piece. I'm sure he meant to portray how cruel people can be, but it just didn't seem authentic; it seemed contrived.

Gargamel wrote:
You may not like the plot, but that doesn't mean there isn't one.

You were the one lauding the idea of something being plotless. I certainly expect a decent plot.

Gargamel wrote:
But even so, the threat of starvation alone created enough tension to keep me interested.

That makes one of us....



I doubt either of us will convince the other; let's just disagree and move on.
Joe Nation
 
  2  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 05:35 pm
@gustavratzenhofer,
And what did I think?
I think I loved the book in the way you love things which you know are bad for you. This depressing tale, full of long, tension filled segments separated by horrific terrifying spasms of conflict literally haunted me for days after I'd finished it.

Was I glad at the end when the boy is enfolded into some kind protection (at least for the moment)? No. I was just glad the book was over and the tale was done. Or I was done and the tale was over.

Joe(I took a hot shower, shampooed my hair and poured myself a glass of wine as soon as I got into my bathrobe.)Nation

PS The most unbelievable part for me was them finding the cache of food. I was glad they did, but I shook my head at the writer. He was buying time for his two lost souls.
0 Replies
 
Gargamel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 05:46 pm
@DrewDad,
No.
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 05:50 pm
@gustavratzenhofer,
Good book? Nah... excellent book. Wink And uberdepressing. Kept getting teary eyed reading it. Though the unorthodox writing style used by Cormac McCarthy took a while getting used to and it actually fit with the postapocolyptic storyline.

I tend to be a relatively slow reader yet I finished reading it in about 2 evenings.
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 05:52 pm
@gustavratzenhofer,
gustavratzenhofer wrote:

If you are speaking of Michael Crichton's book, well, that was somewhat entertaining, but not one of his best.

I didn't read The Swarm but it isn't a Crichton book.

The Swarm: A Novel (Hardcover)
~ Frank Schatzing (Author)
http://www.amazon.com/Swarm-Novel-Frank-Schatzing/dp/0060813261
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 05:53 pm
@djjd62,
djjd62 wrote:

really enjoyed it, it made the 200 yard trip back to the house in the dark a little creepy some nights

You've earned my deepest admiration for this feat of bravery djjd! Razz
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 05:56 pm
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:

but no better movie than "Pulp Fiction"

I can think of at least 100 films better then Pulp Fiction! Razz
Check out my profile for an enlightened film education! Cool
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 28 Jan, 2010 06:00 pm
@DrewDad,
DrewDad wrote:

I'll add this: nihilism and existentialism have their place, but the author shouldn't get so wrapped up in his own pretenses that he ends up destroying the storytelling. There are good stories that make one examine these same issues.

SHHH! Hush on the nihilism! You'll draw that insane Amigo to the thread!!!
0 Replies
 
 

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