Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Road vs. Book of Eli

Which Post-Apocalyptic world would I live in?



1. Color of the world

THE ROAD
Grey, very grey. There's is no sun, or the sun doesn't come out, or it wants to come out but hasn't since the world turned grey. There still is a very big difference between day and nighttime, so there has gotta be a sun somewhere underneath the dark grey cover of clouds.

BOOK OF ELI
It's kinda grey, but also tends to be blueish and greenish and sometimes yellow. And there is a sun, if I recall, even a sun that you can see setting at some point, unless I'm remembering the fantastic sunset I saw after the film as being in the film. Either way, it's a much brighter grey, and you can see where you are going.

2. Topography
THE ROAD
The dirty grey world of The Road finds the man and the boy (pause) walking through the woods, then the forest, then a city, then the woods, then into a house in the woods, then back into the woods, then on top of a highway that comes out of the woods and leads back into the woods, then through the woods where trees explode, then through the woods with trees on fire, then through a city with broken windows and bows and arrows and then back into the woods and to the beach. And while it is nice to see a post-apocalyptic world having trees and shit* the lack of topographical variety is upsetting.

THE BOOK OF ELI
Oy, this post-apocalyptic dessert society is making me thirsty! There's so much dust in the air! You want to talk about "lack of topographical variety" (no homo) all there is a desert. Granted the movie takes place somewhere in the southwest because he does make it san fran on very little gas towards the end, but come on, I lived in Albuquerque, and two years ago, that place was damn near post-apocalyptic and that shit wasn't even close to as dusty as Gary Oldman's town. What is it with the the apocalypse and dust. I understand if you have a cataclysmic event, a nuclear holocaust, a huge war, a meteor crash, it kicks up a little dust air. But come on, Mila Kunis was born after the destruction, and she's at least 25, so you're telling me 25 years later, there's still that much dust in the air? I can't even imagine what it must have been like when the shit went down. You've survived the end of the earth, and now you can't breathe. Ain't that a bitch?
Actually, the opening scene, Denzel kills an animal in the forest. And in the end, you do see the pacific, so I guess there is some variety, but not much.

3. How the world ended.
The Road
Don't Know

Book of Eli
Don't know, but there was some type of war, then wars plural after and Denzel once talks about as the sun falling out of the sky.

4. Things you get to have otherwise known as possessions.
The Road
A gun, three bullets, a shopping cart, and not much else other than misery, hunger, and fear.

The Book of Eli
It's like Denzel had a shopping spree before "the sun fell out of the sky." He has a mini sword that is extremely sharp, two guns, a kuffia (you don't think people still wanna rock a little fashion and protest the mistreatment of Palestinians in the post-apocalyptic future?) and a goddamn ipod. Also, a bow and arrow, and a huge green jacket with many pockets to put these items in.

5. Diversity
The Road
In the world of The Road, we see two black men throughout the course of the film. One is Micheal K Williams, the other is the guy that shoots Viggo with the arrow. Viggo kills him and leaves Michael K on the side of the ocean with nothing, so it's very possible he winds up dying too. The implications are huge. Having killed two black men, we can only assume there are very few left, and the diversity of the world is in danger.

Book Of Eli
Nothing to worry about here, many blacks, Asians, even one of Gary Oldman's main henchmen is an Arab. And when Denzel kills people, he kill people of all races, thus preserving the future melting pot and making this a far less racist film.

6. Music
The Road
Apparently, shortly after the end of the world, there was a lot of chanting and banging coming from the hillside. Now, every time you walk around a tree Nick Cave is humming in the air.

Book of Eli
Al Green's "How Can You Mend A Broken Heart" seems to be the only song on Denzel's ipod.

7. The Kindness of Strangers
The Road
Not so kind! If you see another person it means they are going to kill you and eat you. Or chop off parts of you to eat while keeping you alive. Or chop off parts of you to eat while keeping you alive and raping you. There are very few people who show humanity's more generous side up until the end, and even that's a little questionable. It's a world where a father would kill his own son in an act of mercy before letting the bad men get to him, I wouldn't count on the kindness of strangers.

Book Of Eli
Yes, there are killers, and bad men, and evil-doers out there, but there's some good in the world. Gary Oldman is not a nice fellow, but he did build a town and rations out water and tries to keep a little bit of order. And even though they go to that house where the old man and lady eat people, it doesn't seem like they kill and eat the good guys, and I think there is an important distinction to be made there, you only eat people who tried and failed to kill you.

8. Hope
The Road
Not so much here. One family with a dog and some kids try and help the boy, but like I said, they could have eaten him after all.

Book of Eli
Yeah, a little too much hope. If you haven't seen it I won't even begin to tell you about all the hope in the air.


Conclusion:
Hmmmm, nice people from all ethnic backgrounds, ipods, Tom Waits as your local mechanic, and and a high diversification of topography, I"m going with the the world of the book of eli. Even if I have to brave the dust.


*When I was 12, Mike Jacobs said, "you know, some people think there's not enough trees in this world, but that's a bunch of bullshit."

2 Comments:

Blogger Amil Niazi said...

ADAM THIS IS THE GREATEST THING YOU HAVE WRITTEN.

2/3/10, 1:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, maybe, but the Road is a better movie all the same. Nice post.

11/14/11, 4:38 PM  

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