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Ender’s Defenders

Friday 25 October 2013, 17:19

Mark Kermode Mark Kermode

The big new release this week is Ender’s Game - a smart, thoughtful sci-fi movie. It’s courted controversy because of the opinions of the writer whose novel it is based on. But why should his views have any bearing on what we think of the film?

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    Comment number 1.

    A book is a product of one person, a movie several hundreds (to varying degress).
    Perhaps if the director or lead actor has bizarre beliefs then maybe some viewers may want to give it a miss, but the original author.. no.
    Btw - thank goodness we appear to have dropped the 'Sir' from Mr. Kingsley's name.
    Oh... and FIRST!

  • rate this

    Comment number 2.

    Ideally, no, but there are some Organisations which forbid (or something like this) affiliation to various other Organisations which purport certain beliefs.

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    Comment number 3.

    My wife reads books, I watch movies, we both have very different opinions on this, she will say ohhhh! it's not as good as the book. I think movies are made by people who love movies and they know what looks good on the screen and what transcends well. Plus when an author publishes a book it is then given to the world and not everyone agrees with what's in there and that goes for movie makers, some might think they can improve the story by changing it, be it right or wrong. Books are a starting point for people to give their own interpretations, just like a song, there are bad versions and versions that are better than the original.

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    Comment number 4.

    I've always held a strong belief that a piece of art, once publicly released, is freed from it's creator. Enders Game is a beloved sci-fi novel and discounting it's values as a work (or film) because the author has certain views you disagree with, shouldn't effect your opinion of the work. If their views had any influence on the work, then that's different. But that's not the case with Enders Game.

    The whole debate kind of reminds me that Roland's Barthes' nailed it with his theory of the 'Death of the Author'. " The essential meaning of a work depends on the impressions of the reader, rather than the "passions" or "tastes" of the writer "


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    Comment number 5.

    To be perfectly honest I don't care what his personal views are 20+ years after he wrote the book. Those views aren't present in the novel. And after 20 years of being a bestseller and required reading in the US school system boycotting the film isn't going to have any significant effect on him personally, he'll have been paid for the right to the story already.


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Outspoken, opinionated and never lost for words, Mark is the UK's leading film critic.

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