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I went to see the film adaptation of The Host, by Stephanie Meyer, at the weekend.

All in all, it was a remarkably accurate adaptation, considering what the film industry normally do to books.  I did spot a few places where the action was subtly different to the way it was described in the book, but the main plot items were all there, and all in the right order.  There were no characters missing, or extra characters, as sometimes happens.

For those who don’t know, the Earth has been invaded by body-snatching alien “Souls”, who have turned it into a paradise with no war, hunger, disease, or rude people.  The down side, of course, is that you lose control of your body, causing most people to just give up and fade away.  Melanie, one of a small group of human survivors, is captured and infested, but she resists, causing her alien companion no end of problems.  And, incidentally, being involved in a complex love-polygon in which the Soul and the Host are in love with different people.

It must be tricky to make a film adaptation of something where a large portion of the action occurs inside someone’s head, but they did very well.  The person in control of Melanie’s body always speaks out loud, with the passenger doing voice over, so you can tell who is speaking.  Their arguments are some of the best things about the film.

The characterisation worked well in both book and film, although in the film the relationship between some of the humans was not as clear as it could have been, and you don’t get to know some of the supporting characters as well.  There’s only so much you can do within a sensible film time-limit, I suppose.

I enjoyed the book more than the film; whether this is because of how the action translated to the screen or because I already knew what was going to happen when I watched the film I don’t know.  However, while I would happily read the book again (in a few years time), I’m not sure that I would bother watching the film again.

 
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There’s a film, called The Singularity is Near, which is the subject of this article at the New Scientist.  The film itself has to be paid for, but here’s a trailer:

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Frankly, the description given in the NS article gives you a better idea what it’s about.  You should go read that if you’re confused.  It also points out a few holes in the film.  But anyway, I had a point.  I can’t remember what it was…

Ah, yes.  The last line in the trailer is this:

People think that because its been in a movie it can’t happen.

How true do you think that is?  There are certainly plenty of counter-examples.  Moon landings, underwater cameras, jet packs, even adamantium is getting closer to actually existing.

On the other hand, I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve seen the White House blown up, and I’m pretty certain that the Secret Service are quite good at preventing that in real life, so I can see why people would stop believing in films.

Opinions please!

The Author

Nicola Higgins is a 30-something martial artist who runs two Brownie packs and works full time. She somehow still finds time to write.

Her favourite genres are near-future and alternate world science fiction and fantasy.

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