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 Post subject: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2013 9:59 pm 
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Anybody else excited for the movie?

Trailer

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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 12:54 am 
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HECK YEA

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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 10:39 am 
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Evaders99 wrote:
HECK YEA

Yeah! That's what I'm talking about!

Oh, and the link in your siggy, to Evaders squad coding, is broken. Or rather, the site is missing. Just sayin'.

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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 6:26 pm 
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That looked well cool!

Hadn't anything about this film until now - cheers, nice post

Looking forward to that - right up my street :D


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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2013 1:40 pm 
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You haven't heard of the book? It's great. My avatar comes from the front cover of the companion novel, Ender's Shadow.

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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2013 4:45 pm 
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Nope not heard of it. And unfortunately for me once I've seen the film I can't read the book.

It's not that I don't like reading - I stand by the axiom: "There's nothing better than a good book"

but all the mystery's gone out of it for me. Besides which I spend WAY too much on time on the computer; so don't get much reading done nowadays :)

But yeah! Can't wait to see the film.


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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2013 11:19 pm 
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Read the book anyway. There's only so much the film can convey, esp on a character's own internal thoughts. Orson Scott Card writes some interesting characters, I'd say it's really hard to show on screen sometimes.

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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Sun May 26, 2013 5:24 pm 
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Or read the book first! You have a few months to finish it before the movie even comes out.

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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 6:40 am 
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Sharp thinking Master Xan! :wink:

I fear it has zero chance of happening at the moment though...

...as I've very recently been introduced to GameRanger and have several games of Supremacy -ahem- I mean Rebellion, on the way (any idea why they changed the name for over here? - I read on some French website that someone thought it had something to do with the politics revolving around the former British Empire and the American War of Independence! - I find that a little difficult to believe! That was a all a very. very long time ago and IMO has little, if any, bearing on the issue)

Anyways I digress, back to Rebellion:

- I seriously have the bug for the game...once again! Probably won't be able to get enough of it for at least a month or two!

Huge thanks to SWR for cluing me into it. (BTW our newest member, Orca43 is one of those I'm playing against - and I think our game worthy of noting in the Gaming Stories Section - post to follow)

@Evaders - couldn't agree with you more: it's a well known phenomenon when transferring from book to screen, that a considerable amount is lost in translation; whether it be budget/time restraints (a 3 hour film's got to be really good for most to sit through it) or simply the constraints of the media - as you say, it can be difficult to communicate a character's internal monologue and thought process on screen. This usually leaves those who have read the book to feel cheated or disappointed in some way, shape or form.

I would like to note a series of films where I actually think the screen version improved upon the book: Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.
I'm primarily talking about the Hobbit as this is the only book I've read of the series (well half of it - sorry IMO it was boring and I gave up half way through). I thought the film version was a substantial improvement on the book (apologies to any Tolkien fans out there) and I have friends who read Lord of the Rings and said the same about the films; whilst there are lots that were missed out from the books, they felt Tolkien had left bits in the book that never got explored and seemed superfluous to both the plot and the characters. As such they considered Jackson's film version better overall, which I think is fairly unique.
- I'd be interested to hear anyone's views on the subject...

However, I have to come back to the point that I can't read a book if I know the story - it's the mystery and the desire to learn what happens next that keeps me turning pages - once that mystery's gone, I find it a real trudge (I take it I'm alone in that feeling?).

It probably has more to do with my reading age than anything else: despite my protestations towards being an intellectual, my preferred reading material tells a different story - my bookshelf still has the Fighting Fantasy, Dragonlance and Star Wars books I grew up with (I still re-read the Thrawn books once in a blue moon) and hasn't been overly fleshed out by more mature reading, such as Raymond E Feist's fantasy series, Stan Nicholes' Orcs or Wendy Alec's very unique (and highly recommended) fiction on the war between the Christian forces of Heaven and the unholy legions of Satan (no I'm not religious in case you're wondering, it's just a damn good read).

What all these books have in common is that they're all fast paced and primarily plot driven stories. Not that I'm adverse to character development - Dragonlance's Raistlin Majere will always be my childhood hero...with Grand Admiral Thrawn a close second :wink:
But generally the books I enjoy are able to do both without heavy narrative description (such as the like of Tolkien - sorry again to any fans out there) that I personally find a complete turn off.

Hence I wonder if it's reasonable to say: my reading preferences are somewhat juvenile to say the least?


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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Wed May 29, 2013 12:14 pm 
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I agree, the movies did good things for Lord of the Rings. I'm still undecided on the Hobbit; we will see as the other movies come out (though it may not be a fair comparison, as the movies include material from the Silmarillion).

Plot driven novels are not juvenile, they are standard fiction. Heavy characterization and/or stressing themes over plot is called literary fiction. I typically find literary fiction to be worthless. It is often an author's means of getting his opinion to the masses, rather than a viable story. I would rather read an opinion article than a short story or entire novel that tries to hint or suggest his opinion. I'm too blunt of a person to waste that kind of time. Some say it is more powerful, because the reader connects to the characters and "gets it" more than from an opinion article; that could be true of some such stories, but too often the author just manipulates the reader's feelings to underscore an opinion.

As I said, literary fiction can also focus on the characters, usually using fairly average-seeming people and expounding on them in some fashion. This can be fun in a short story, but to me, it isn't novel material. You spend a few hundred pages learning a character's personality and almost nothing more. That is just not interesting to me, though I know many people who are interested in it, so I try and keep my grumbling to a minimum. To each his own.

The arguments between standard and literary fiction is what drives the arguments between sci-fi/fantasy and contemporary genres. Proponents of contemporary fiction, what I am calling literary fiction, think sci-fi and fantasy novels are brainless "go save the world from the bad guy" stories, lacking any insight into the human condition. Often, they are right. Doesn't mean sci-fi and fantasy novels are not fun to read. Sci-fi/fantasy folks content that contemporary (literary) works have little or no plot, and are just an author vomiting his opinions on the page with fancy language, lacking any semblance of story at all. Often, they are right, but that doesn't mean those who enjoy studying human nature or understanding people from other cultures/time periods don't enjoy it. They do. Why the two camps can't just agree to disagree, I don't know. Whenever someone bashes a novel with these sorts of arguments, I usually ignore that person's opinions, as they are usually just biased.

Now when you mix literary fiction with standard fiction, you can get something magical. A plot driven story that actually makes sense and is interesting, mixed with unique characters that are well fleshed out. The "theme" and author opinions are often still included, but when there is a plot to back it up, I can get into the plot and ignore the author's ideas if I want to. These books are, to me, some of the best books ever written. They are hard to find, as few authors can successfully characterize AND come up with a really good plot to engage those characters.

Ender's Game is one of those rare gems. Ender's Shadow is, too. The sequels to Ender's Game are much more literary, while the sequels to Ender's Shadow are much more standard. But Ender's Game and Shadow are two fantastic novels. I have read hundreds of novels in a dozen genres, and Bean (the main character in Ender's Shadow) is easily in my top five favorite characters. To me, he is cooler than Yoda, more real than Captain Ahab, more flawed than Honor Harrington, more dangerous than Thrawn.

If you can make the time, you really should read Ender's Game. Even if you can't, I think Ender's Shadow will have enough unique content to be worth your while, even after seeing the movie. Sorry for the long post.

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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 2:51 pm 
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Not at all - it was a pleasure to read...a true pleasure 8)

You seem to have encapsulated exactly how I feel about a good book :) :

"A plot driven story that actually makes sense and is interesting, mixed with unique characters that are well fleshed out....
...They are hard to find, as few authors can successfully characterize AND come up with a really good plot to engage those characters."

- and I have a Devil of a time finding authors I like, let alone love!
I too, am usually disgruntled with pure literary fiction. That coupled with a little personal experience has made me some what wary of accepting book recommendations but you really seem to know where I'm coming from.

So much so, I'm going to put Ender's Shadow (and maybe Ender's Game, film dependent) on my book list!

- now I'll be honest: there's two and bit books in front of that...and at the speed I've been reading of late, it could take years (though that naturally fluctuates wildly);
but I resolve here and now that I will give it a go.
And my thanks for such an insightful recommendation - you've really piqued my interest :D


I hadn't realised the Hobbit film had used material from Silmarillion - it has been an extremely long time since I got through half the book; perhaps I wasn't being fair in my assessment. For me it was the dwarves in Bilbo's house at the start: I remember this being quite tiresome (maybe too young to appreciate?) in the book but the film really brought home to me the humour of the piece (I really enjoyed both the hobbit and the LOTR films - they are to fantasy what Star Wars was to sci-fi, imo).

I don't suppose your a fan of Game of Thrones or Battlestar Galactica?

P.S. I had to look up the Honor Harrington reference - hadn't heard of that one, interesting though


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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 6:09 pm 
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Harrington is one of my favorites, though the latter books in the series have really slowed down- focusing too much on political stuff. Honor herself is a very loveable character, if perhaps too perfect, and the plot is good.

If you haven't been told/looked it up, Ender's Game is the story from Ender's perspective, while Ender's Shadow is (mostly) the same events from Bean's perspective. I liked Ender's Game, but Shadow was even better. Possibly because I never liked Ender's siblings; they are too smart.

In the Hobbit movie, you may remember the meeting with Gandolf and others, discussing the growing darkness? If memory serves, they mention a lich, and have the sword. I've been told that is part of the Silmarillion. Having never read it, I can just relate what I've been told, though it makes sense: the Hobbit is not long enough to make three movies out of. Unless you went with Tolkien's speed. You are not alone in getting bored with the books- I had to skim whole chapters when I read Lord of the Rings. Dwarves singing, and singing, and singing? Page after page describing Rivendale? No thank you. In movie format, all that material is fabulous. We can have interesting things going on on the screen while listening to the dwarves, and a few moments of imagery does more to show Rivendale than a chapter describing it.

I haven't read or watched either Game of Thrones or Battlestar Galactica. Galactica I have almost picked up a few times now, but something always gets in the way. Game of Thrones has only been tempting me for a year or so- too short a time to reach the top of my own list. I keep meaning to finish Stargate, or watch the Clone Wars show, or finish Star Trek Voyager, or read the 30-odd books I own but haven't read, or finish my own novel... And that's leaving out video games.

Why do you mention those two?

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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 8:59 pm 
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Game of Thrones is quite a read. It is a long, dark political fantasy - no characters are spared. I love the books, but realize that RR Martin writes really long books and that it will be a while before he finishes the last two. It took him 5 years to get out the last book.
The TV series does great with the source material. There really isn't a whole lot I'd complain about, they got the casting done well and it fits the mood of the books. I think they actually can't be as graphic as the novels obviously, but for a tv show it's pretty much there.

Battlestar Galactica - the new series rocks. It's a dark character drama in space, not really a "scifi" show. I think the actual miniseries intro is a little too long and plodding, but it sets up the rest of the TV seasons for where they are headed. Lots of great twists and turns, though the ending was disappointing.

I really recommend both. I pretty much absorb action TV shows, anime, scifi books these days. Just finished the final season of Fringe and working on Alias season 4.

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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Fri May 31, 2013 11:16 am 
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Is Alias any good? I thought about watching it, back in the day, but it seemed so... commercial. Just cast a pretty girl as the lead, put her in leather, and bam. Instant TV show. Is the show better than that, then?

Also, do you have any anime recommendations? I find myself being very picky with anime. It is hard to find stuff I like.

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 Post subject: Re: Ender's Game
PostPosted: Fri May 31, 2013 4:06 pm 
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Alias is decent, there's a good bit of commercial because that's the way its targetted early on. But once it gets into the actual season arcs and character drama, it comes together really well. It's JJ Abrams again, so I really enjoy it. It's a kinda of prototype to Fringe and some of his later works.

Anime: top recommendations for guys Ghost in the Shell, Death Note, Code Geass. Massive amounts of mindf*** all around and a lot of depth for an anime. They will make you think.
For more mainstream: Full Metal Alchemist (Brotherhood > original), Tsubasa Chronicles, Shakugan no Shana, Blood+, Darker Than Black
For more off the beaten trail: From the New World, Shiki, xxxHolic, Steins;Gate, Gosick
I can recommend more depending on what you end up liking.

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