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Friday, November 02, 2007

Say goodbye to Hollywood

One of my favorite sf novels is Steven Gould's JUMPER. Wikipedia:

Jumper is a 1992 science fiction novel by Steven Gould. It tells the story of Davey, a teenager who has just escaped an abusive household. Davey discovers that he can teleport himself by using his thoughts, although he doesn't know how it works. As he tries to make his way alone in the world, he looks for his long-lost mother and uses his talent for criminal activities and to foil hijackers around the globe. The book received generally positive reviews.

To this I would add merely a few further notations -- when the NSA accidentally finds out what Davey can do, they chase him all over the planet trying to capture and exploit him. Davey's decision to finally use his powers to specifically battle against hijackers is motivated by the murder of his mother during such a crime. Beyond that, Wikipedia has summed the book up pretty well, although they haven't said anything about the intelligence and talent Gould has poured into it. Honest, if you haven't read it and you enjoy solid, smart SF/superhero stuff, you could do way worse.

So I found out today that there's a JUMPER movie slated to come out next summer. That's a big huzzah, right? Well, let's go to our friends at Wikipedia again:

Jumper is a 2008 science fiction film based on the science fiction novel Jumper by Steven Gould. The film is directed by Doug Liman and stars Samuel L. Jackson and Hayden Christensen. Jumper is slated for a February 15, 2008 release.

Premise

"A genetic anomaly allows a young man to teleport himself anywhere. He discovers this gift has existed for centuries and finds himself in a war that has been raging for thousands of years between 'Jumpers' and those who have sworn to kill them."

Cast

* Hayden Christensen as David Rice, a young man who discovers the ability to "Jump", or teleport.
* Samuel L. Jackson as Roland, the leader of the Paladin organization, whose goal is to kill Jumpers deemed too powerful to exist.
* Jamie Bell as Griffin, a Jumper who has fought and evaded Paladins since his childhood.
* Rachel Bilson as Millie Harris, David's childhood friend and also his crush.
* Diane Lane as Mary Rice, David's mother who abandoned her son when he was five years old.


That screaming in your head is me.

I started to list all the ways this film adaptation is deeply and irrevocably wrong, but, honestly, there's no point. I hope Gould got a big Hollywood movie check for the rights; hopefully it's consolation for the way his concept has been raped.

Now, let's move on from that to something much more pleasant. Last Christmas, the Always Esteemed Scott Shepherd sent us a package of holiday gifts, and among them was a trilogy of books called THE GREAT GAME by some guy named Dave Duncan. They're big thick books, and I've never heard of Dave Duncan, and I'm a moody, sullen bastard when it comes to reading stuff by authors who are new to me, so those books have resolutely gravitated to the bottom of my usually impressive in stack for the last year. But, finally, last week, I finished off the last vaguely interesting looking thing I had on top of them (CAGE A MAN by F.M. Busby) and stared with vague distaste at a hardcover copy of THE SHRINKING MAN by Richard Matheson, which I'd read a long time ago and really wasn't in the mood to read again.

So, I picked up PAST IMPERATIVE, billed as "Round One of THE GREAT GAME", and started reading.

Wow. FABULOUS FUCKING STUFF here. Should have started reading this a year ago.

So, thanks, Scott. Hugely. As always.

In other news, three weeks in and I'm still gainfully employed. Overtime tomorrow, too. I'm not wild about working Saturdays, but it's just a few hours with no dress code at $21 per... somehow, I'll manage.

Okay, that is all. Good weekend, everyone.

2 Comments:

At 5:18 PM , Anonymous Always Esteemed Scott said...

Wow. FABULOUS FUCKING STUFF here. Should have started reading this a year ago.

So, thanks, Scott. Hugely. As always.


This is me smiling :) I'm really glad you're liking it so far. As I think I've said before, it's probably Duncan's *second* best work, behind a series called A MAN OF HIS WORD. It's hard to find, but I'll keep my eyes open, and if I can find all five books, I'll send them your way.

In other news, three weeks in and I'm still gainfully employed. Overtime tomorrow, too. I'm not wild about working Saturdays, but it's just a few hours with no dress code at $21 per... somehow, I'll manage.


That's amazing. Yeah, overtime sucks, but with that kind of pay, that's got to make your life easier.

 
At 7:51 PM , Blogger The Bunnyman said...

>>As I think I've said before, it's probably Duncan's *second* best work, behind a series called A MAN OF HIS WORD. It's hard to find, but I'll keep my eyes open, and if I can find all five books, I'll send them your way.

I Googled A MAN OF HIS WORD and got an Amazon synopses of the series, and I gotta say, it sure as shit isn't anything I'd ever pick up on my own, at least, without reading something else by Duncan first. But I really am enjoying THE GREAT GAME so far. Thanks again.

>>That's amazing. Yeah, overtime sucks, but with that kind of pay, that's got to make your life easier.

Well, the '$21 per' is time and a half, of course. Still, it's the most money I've made to date in this life. OT does suck, but it wasn't mandatory, and in addition to the coin, I also racked up points with my new bosses, and, oddly, with my in-laws. So, overall, it seems to have worked out for me.

 

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