Recent Film Reviews
Old Film Reviews
Navigation

The new album from Al Rose. Available at CD Baby,  iTunes and Amazon.

If you like the cut of our jib over here at The Moving World, please consider kicking a little something our way.

Journal Archive
« Palindromes | Main | Enron: The Smartest Guys In The Room »
Wednesday
Jun222011

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy  

Despite their being cultural touchstones for many a smart, nerdy chap I’ve known over the years, I’ve never gotten around to reading Douglas Adams’ “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” novels, the first of which came out in 1979.   Now comes this many-years-in-the-making screen version, for which Adams, who died in 2001, was a co-screenwriter.   A friend of mine who’s read the books reckons that only about 40% of what’s on the page made it into the movie.    

One would have to be mad to try to summarize the plot.  So let’s have a run at it: after Earth is blown to smithereens to make room for an intergalactic highway, English everyman Arthur Dent (Martin Freeman, always a pleasure) finds himself careening around the galaxy with a motley crew searching for the meaning of Life, the Universe and Everything.  

I’m no judge of how well filmmakers Nick Goldsmith and Garth Jennings (a.k.a “Hammer & Tongs”) have translated Adams to the screen, though I can say that they’ve brought a keen visual imagination to bear on the material.   Furthermore, if, as I’ve heard tell, so much of the humor of the books is in the narration, then the film is well-poised in that it’s got excellent voiceover narration from Stephen Fry (who played Jeeves so perfectly in Granada/PBS’ P.G. Wodehouse adaptations).  

Speaking of the great Wodehouse (one of Adams’ favorite authors though their milieus couldn’t be more different), it strikes me based on this movie that the two writers share much, including a gentle farcical tone which, though never mean-spirited, nevertheless utterly deflates all pomposity.   True brutality exits not in their universes.   Though constantly “in the soup”, their characters hang on in quiet desperation, implying that there’s no crisis that can’t be gotten through so long as we don’t succumb to the true enemy of the human spirit: humorlessness.  

I’m looking forward to catching up with Adams' books after all these years.    

- May 15, 2005

References (6)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.
  • Response
    Response: www.radowitz.de
    upOJfUb Buy Cialis Online
  • Response
    First Time Fatties
  • Response
    Response: XCcuROPn
    The Moving World - Old Reviews - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy  
  • Response
    The Moving World - Old Reviews - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy  
  • Response
    The Moving World - Old Reviews - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy  
  • Response
    The Moving World - Old Reviews - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy  

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>