Thursday, April 5, 2012

Quick Blog Update & Brief Notes on Mozart's "The Magic Flute"

Papagena by Erin Kelso (aka Bluefooted on deviantArt)
 Why have I been so quiet on the blog? We've had a few rather stressful things come up, the major one right now being that we have to move before the end of the month and, due to various other emergencies (like cars insisting on retiring and furry kids needing surgery, we haven't yet found anywhere. (Eek!)
Papagena by Anne Smith
So I am splitting my time between doing a lot of driving, a lot of searching and spending a lot (a lot!) of time on the phone (my ear folds are hurting!). Any down time goes to "toss or pack" so I haven't had much time to blog. I have found, however, that Pinterest is REALLY easy to explore and play around with while being put on hold or when telling the 40th person the same information. Again.

So the Once Upon A Blog boards on Pinterest have expanded quite a bit over the past few days and there's plenty of luscious new fairy tale-like images to explore now. I've added some more tale-specific boards, expanded the ones already there, expanded the creature/folk boards and added two more fashion-focused boards, but with a twist. They are "Dressing the Seelie Court" and "Dressing the Unseelie Court" - a fun theme I haven't seen people do yet. (I've also added some "peoples of the world boards" - I'm so inspired to see the environments tales and variants come out of!) There are so many awesome fairy tale themed boards on Pinterest, including by readers of this blog and other fairy tale bloggers, I try not to replicate what others are doing too much and hopefully you'll discover some new and fun things there, as well as discover more fairy tale people too.

Papageno by Kurt Wenner
It's actually been good visual therapy for coping with the current argh! here so if you'd like a hit of delectable fairy tale visuals feel free to visit. You can find the Once Upon A Blog Boards HERE.

I'll do my best to keep blogging when I can (I have so much I want to blog on!) but I'm guessing posts will remain light to scarce over the next few days - at least until we secure a place to go. For some reason, trying to find a place is like a fulltime job with extra duties this time round.

Wish us luck and good fortune would you?

PS Heidi: I COMPLETELY relate to your wish for a Baba Yaga house-on-legs right now!

Papagena by Hans Reiser
PPS In case you didn't get the hint, one of the new boards is for The Magic Flute - a fairy tale opera story I can't quite believe hasn't been tackled by mainstream filmmakers (Lotte Reiniger and Kenneth Branagh being the exceptions - anyone seen the 2006 Branagh film set during WWI?).

So much good stuff in that tale. It's been called Mozart's Wizard Of Oz (re quest, fantasy and individual character trials) so you may find some interesting parallels if you're not already familiar with it.

Personally I think it could use a lush animation treatment.

A Very Different "Mirror Mirror" Review

Maharani Gayatri Devi - in a Bollywood piece
While "Mirror Mirror" is being received fairly well, I've seen more criticism than appreciation, the main feeling that there is an overall blandness to the retelling, despite the lush design.

Here is a completely different review by Tyler Cowen (and it's so short I will include it all, but be sure to go read the many comments made in response on the linked site):
Not often does Hollywood put out movies romanticizing tyrannicide and the assassination of foreign leaders of friendly countries, in this case India.  Julia Roberts is the wicked Queen, witch, and false pretender, but actually the stand-in for Indira Gandhi, with an uncanny resemblance of look and dress in the final scene (I wonder if anyone told her?).  This movie presents a romanticized and idealized version of how her assassination should have proceeded and should have been processed, namely in a triumphal manner with no reprisals but rather celebration and joyous union and love.  As the plot proceeds, you will find all sorts of markers of Sikh theology, including numerous references to daggers, hair, mirrors, water, immersions, submersions, bodily penetrations, transformations, the temple at Amritsar, dwarves who enlarge themselves, and the notion of woman as princess, among many others; director Tarsem Singh knows this material better than I do (read up on Sikh theology before you go, if you haven’t already).  The silly critics complained that the plot didn’t make sense, but from the half dozen or so reviews I read they didn’t even begin to understand the movie.
Without wishing to take sides on either the politics or the religion, I found this a daring and remarkable film.  The sad thing is that no one is paying attention.
You can read the article and the comments HERE.

Interestingly he's not the only one who's made the connection. This article HERE lays out the parallels step by step. The article is titled (It breaks the parallels down step by step and has images to boot.)

It may seem simplistic when put like this but if Director Tarsem Singh was indeed making such a statement then they may be a lot more to this movie than meets the eye.
Maharani Gayatri Devi

Indira Ghandi
Please note: I have not verified the facts as they're presented in either article. I'm just very interested in the idea that a fairly modern day Indian princess and ruler can be so closely compared to Snow White.

I'm not planning on discussing politics on my blog, nor can I make any sort of proper assessment of this parallel but it is an interesting one.

Though I don't know enough about Indira Ghandi or Gayatri Devi to make any sort of comment on their assessments, I know enough to understand how Mr. Cowen and the other blogger, whose name I can't confirm, have made the connection.

 After waning interest in seeing this film, my curiosity is once again piqued...