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Mediated Utopias: From Literature to Cinema

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Edited By Artur Blaim and Ludmila Gruszewska-Blaim

The volume comprises adaptation studies of ten selected utopian/dystopian fictions written and filmed in Europe and America during the 20 th and 21 st centuries: Things to Come, Lost Horizon, Nineteen Eighty-Four, Lord of the Flies, The Andromeda Nebula, Brave New World, Total Recall, The Secret Garden, Harrison Bergeron and Never Let Me Go. It focuses not only on the ways of constructing fictional realities and techniques of rendering literary utopias/dystopias into film, but also on their cultural and political determinants.
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From Philip K. Dick’s Dystopian World to Hollywood Utopian Vision: “We Can Remember It for You Wholesale,” Wunderkammer, Memory and Total Recall: Zofia Kolbuszewska

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From Philip K. Dick’s Dystopian World to Hollywood Utopian Vision: “We Can Remember It for You Wholesale,” Wunderkammer, Memory and Total Recall

ZOFIA KOLBUSZEWSKA

Like many Dick fans, I was dazzled by some of these movies before I ever picked up Dick’s short stories and novels. But when I found the original stories, I noticed something was amiss. I felt like Deckard, Quail, or Anderton: something weird was going on. And it wasn’t just that ‘the book is better than the movie,’ as that pretentious friend is always telling you. This wasn’t just a matter of details or minor plot points. Something essential had been lost in translation from print to film. (Ethan Mills)

In “Hollywood Doesn’t Know Dick” Ethan Mills juxtaposes the Dickian worldview and what he refers to—tongue in cheek, so to speak—as the “Holly-worldview,” and contends that the Dickian worldview is generally hostile to “our Hollywood aspirations,“ which are based on the premise that good defeats evil,

free will secures the triumph of the human spirit and our heroes discover knowledge of reality and virtue (all before the credits roll). The Holly-worldview says that the universe is a nice place, although you have to de ← 155 | 156 → fend it against the occasional villain. Movies must have happy endings. Villains must be punished and heroes must learn valuable lessons. It probably wouldn’t hurt, either, if the heroes find true love. (4)

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