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Thread: All Narnia and no Space Trilogy? Really?

  1. #1
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    All Narnia and no Space Trilogy? Really?

    Hardcore Nerds like us should know the Space Trilogy is Lewis's real awesomeness.

    Maleldil own Aslan.

    Perhaps it's just cause people assume Narnia is more tmler to LOTR, but the assumption is false (How do I type in a way to simply I'm saying it like GOllum does?).
    Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, has several parallels with the Space Trilogy. Both Perelandra and The Return of the King include a decisive final struggle in a subterranean chamber, with the adversary falling into volcanic fire, and the hostility of the scientists in That Hideous Strength toward the natural world (specifically, the wanton destruction of trees and the manipulation of life) is similar to that of Tolkien's character Saruman. Like Tolkien's Beleriand cycle, Lewis' trilogy features beings who, while similar to the gods of pagan pantheons, are rather servants or angels of a single true God In That Hideous Strength, Lewis alludes several times to Tolkien's Atlantean civilization Numinor, saying “Those who would like to learn further about Numinor and the True West must (alas!) await the publication of much that still exists only in the MSS. of my friend, Professor J. R. R. Tolkien.”
    That's what Wikipidia mentions, but that's only scratching the surface. THS also uses the term "Middle Earth". Out of the Silent Planet spanw from the same conversaiton with Tolkien which lead ot Tolkien starting "The Lost Road" which resulted in Numenor.

    In OotSP I feel the Horssa are allot like Hobbits, and the Pfifltriggi sort of like Dwarves.

    The Space Tirlgoy is a very intelegent Philisphaly complex and intresting trio of stories. OotSP is the most relaistic dpeiction I've seen of a first contact with an extra terestial culture. THS is an intresting combination of a Dyspopic anti-New World Order poltical commentary and Aurthorian Legend. Perlandra is the most unique and difficult to descirbe, but it's in concept a commentary on Paradise Lost, and is pretty briliant, thou as a Christian I don't agree with Lewi's theolgoy at all.

  2. #2
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    Re: All Narnia and no Space Trilogy? Really?

    Narnia is basically a children's book series, very intentionally, whereas the Space Trilogy was written for an adult audience so comparing them swiftly falls to apples and oranges, in my opinion. I've usually heard it argued that "Til We Have Faces" is Lewis's true master work, but I'm not a personal fan of some elements of it (I found the way he chose to write the ending a little bit confusing, but it might've been due to my "3am trying to finish the book in one night haze"), so I would agree that (as an adult) my personal favorite would be his space trilogy, probably Perlandra.

    I think the most interesting aspect of Lewis' writing is how easily he seems to be influenced by his peers in the world of fiction and the space trilogy shows this more than his other series. In Lewis' non-fiction he has a very distinct personal voice (though after reading George MacDonald's sermons I find it a little less distinct. . .but even though he's obviously influenced by MacDonald, the tone throughout the majority of his non-fiction writing remains the same). In his novels I find multiple voices. For "Out of the Silent Planet" he draws a lot on his relationship with Tolkien. He attempts to create a society, a language, in some ways he tries to out Tolkien Tolkien by even making his lead character a professor in Tolkien's field rather than Lewis's.

    In the second book, we have what I consider mostly pure Lewis, but by "That Hideous Strength" Lewis is full out channeling Charles Williams, another Inkling (who notably Tolkien did not like all that much), who specialized in theological melodrama. . .very interesting melodrama, but still very different than what the series started out.

    Anyway, my point is, it is hard to look at the series as a unified work for me because the voices are so different. There is a unified story arc, but I think the books stand alone better than they stand side by side.
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  3. #3
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    Re: All Narnia and no Space Trilogy? Really?

    I'm not familiar with Charles Williams at all.

    The Hiddeous Strength talks so much about the other side of the Moon, I was dissapoitned we never got to see it.

    Out of the Silent Planet also draws on H.G. Wells a good deal.

  4. #4
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    Re: All Narnia and no Space Trilogy? Really?

    C.S. Lewis is a master poet of prose, and his greatest strength is clarity despite what voice he uses. Like Tolkien, Lewis is wonderful to read because of his word alchemy--he is in love with (or at war with) every word he uses in addition with the other elements of a good story. No dead idioms to decay these worlds! But Narnia is not a children’s book only. Lewis himself said, (and I’m paraphrasing [and probably poorly]) that he wrote for adults, having merely chiseled away the parts that children wouldn’t like. Narnia is cold water in the desert, and no age would scorn that. The Space Trilogy is strong beer and cold beef—most children and many adults would find it unpleasant, but it is good (and varied)strong beer, broccoli, and red beef! Each different--but good together. Till We Have Faces is fine, aged wine and tart fruit, the bread of Ezekiel (healthy—but coarse), and rare cheese—it is something new from something old, and not suited to the tastes of children. On any other day (when not overdue for lunch) I would compare these works to flowers, because of their beauty. But they are each flavors to be tasted for various reasons and appreciated best under varied circumstances.

    Why not the Space Trilogy? With the popularity of the Narnia books, these movies have a better chance for success, and I’ve heard (with my own ears at an event he spoke at) that Douglas Gresham would like to create a film out of all of Lewis’ work, though he mentioned the difficulty of filming a family-suitable version of Perelandra, a story where the protagonists are without clothing through most of the story.
    ...the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. --Gen. 6:1

  5. #5
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    Re: All Narnia and no Space Trilogy? Really?

    Shouldn't be concerned with making it family friendly.

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    Re: All Narnia and no Space Trilogy? Really?

    I do not mean sacrifice a “faithful translation” on the altar to a preconceived “Disneyesque” formula of “family friendliness.” It is a term I use for expediency, and one I paraphrase (if not quote) from a presentation given by Douglass Gresham.

    We should be concerned with the quality and faithful translation of a prose story with deep themes and symbolism into an audio/visual medium which emulates Lewis’ characteristic clarity void of vulgarity. A common problem of taking any book and conveying it through film is the vulgarity of film, and I use vulgarity to mean “base” and “common”. And, naturally, we would not want to see produced an unfaithful work whose sexuality overpowers (and hi-jacks the viewer’s senses to a misdirection beyond) the more dominant spiritual/literary themes.

    In other words, when I read Perelandra, I find Tinidril to represent the beauty and innocence of an un-fallen matriarch of feminine expression. To see a beautiful actress in a film portray her in all her naked glory—well-- I for one would admire (and with probably too much interest) all the wrong aspects of her femininity, and for quite unliterary reasons.
    ...the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. --Gen. 6:1

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