Friday, December 05, 2014

Peter Pan and Scan

Taking  a week off from the doldrums of my everyday life has allowed me to catch up on some things-a new
script for next summer-and various entertainment options that are often out of my grasp due to time limitations. After all, there are only so many hours in the day and, damn it to hell, here I am at the end of my vacation whining about how quickly the week has passed.

I could have thanked my lucky stars that the power blanked off for a couple hours last evening during NBC"c PETER PAN-LIVE! event. The truth of the matter was that I wasn't really going to watch it anyway. In the first place, I don't care much for PETER PAN and only wanted to catch Christopher Walken, probably half the reason anyone else turned in. It's that curiosity factor and he certainly was the main selling point. The man is a national treasure.

Allison Williams seemed to be a bland choice as Peter. (On the other hand, Lena Dunham would been an excellent Smee) I'm still baffled as to the gender-bent casting of this role anyway. Sure, it's a tradition that goes back to its origins on stage, but is it always the case? It's not like I'd want Justin Bieber for, well, anything. This was a missed opportunity, let's say, five years ago. (How long has this little turd been around?) I know. Too long. However, a production of PETER PAN with the Bieb would have been a blockbuster of epic proportions. In most film adaptations, Pan is a male role, namely the Disney cartoon and HOOK w/Robin Williams that Michael Jackson was attached for awhile.Maybe if Meg Ryan played Peter, it might have been a success. Or not.

The musical has been primarily female, Mary Martin being its most famous followed by Sandy Duncan, Kathy Rigby and anyone else I haven't bothered to research for this blog.  Surely there are more interesting choices that could have been made. Miley Cyrus for the win? Personally I would have gone with Amy Schumer. And why not cast a woman as Captain Hook? Kathy Bates, perhaps or even Bette Midler. Hey, Renee Zellwegger's not busy. Neither is Meg Ryan for that matter. As for Tinkerbelle...don't get me started....

I finally caught up to GONE GIRL, a fine adaptation of Gillian Flynn's insidious novel that has the same exact problem as the source material-the ending. Flynn painted herself into a corner in the last quarter of her tome and I had hopes that director David Fincher would have been able to rectify this situation. Unfortunately, he only made it worse. (I won't elaborate because a story like this tends to sink from spoilers and I ain't goin' there. Ever.) There is much to recommend here with its 75% success rate, a surprisingly fine performance by Tyler Perry and the phenomenal Rosamund Pike in the lead. I also have the highest praise for Gillian Flynn's other novels, DARK PLACES and SHARP OBJECTS, the former adapted into an upcoming film with Charlize Theron and the latter set for HBO.

My favorite binge of the week has been the French mini-series THE RETURNED, a show not unlike ABC's RESURRECTION story-wise  with the exception that this show holds my interest. I'm only half-way through this eerie tale of the dead returning to life (unzombiefied, thank you), but I can't think of another new show other than TRUE DETECTIVE that has riveted me this much all year.  I understand there is an American adaptation on its way, so I urge to watch this instead. FOX has already mucked the fine BBC show  BROADCHURCH with its mediocre GRACEPOINT. Who knows how they'll bland this up for the American palate?

I guess I should go out and enjoy the rest of my vacation. Hey, it's time to go to Costco!
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