Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Book-to-Film: Brave New World by Aldous Huxley



From The Verge:

Classic dystopian novel Brave New World is coming to the SyFy channel, The Hollywood Reporter writes. A Brave New World series will be produced by Steven Spielberg's Amblin Television, and it's being written by Les Bohem, known for his work on Dante's Peak,Daylight, and the SyFy (then Sci-Fi Channel) miniseries Taken.
...based on how science fiction adaptations often end up, it's already pretty clear that Brave New World is going to end up either incredibly bland or truly, incredibly weird.
If you did not get an American public school education or somehow skipped that week of English class, here is how The Hollywood Reporter describes Brave New World:
[Brave New World] is set in a world without poverty, war or disease. Humans are given mind-altering drugs, free sex and rampant consumerism are the order of the day, and people no longer reproduce but are genetically engineered in "hatcheries." Those who won’t conform are forced onto "reservations," until one of the "savages" challenges the system, threatening the entire social order.
...The Wrap rightly notes that this "sounds like The Hunger Games and Divergent or any other recent young adult sci-fi novel." This is sort of correct — pretty much all dystopias owe something to either Brave New World or 1984 — but it's also the worst synopsis ever, because the best part of Brave New World is that it is both horrifically depressing and full of self-consciously absurdist riffs on early 20th-century technology and society. Here are some equally true factoids about Brave New World:
  • One of the world's most popular sports is elevator squash. Another is centrifugul bumblepuppy.
  • Zippers have destroyed society. They are also an appropriate gift for lovers.
  • Henry Ford is now God. All crosses have been replaced with the letter "T."
  • Nursery rhymes have been rewritten for a world in which "mother" and "father" are obscenities, all babies are decanted from bottles, and church has been replaced with orgies.
  • Reservations are not for nonconformists. They are futuristic Indian reservations that double as tourist traps.
  • Spoiler: the social order does just fine for itself.
The full article is much longer, so click on through if you're interested.  Personally, I am very intrigued about this whole idea, but I think the producers will have to make the characters more sympathetic in order to maintain interest in this story over a whole television series.  Sounds like things are very much in the early development stages, but I'll definitely be keeping my eye on this one, as it strikes my curiosity.  
What about you?  Are you interested in this adaptation?  Did you read Brave New World in high school like I did?  Did you enjoy it?  Do you agree with the parallels drawn between BNW and Hunger Games/Divergent series?  Tell me your thoughts!

2 comments:

  1. This book has been on my tbr list forever. I've day I'll get to it. The series sounds interesting.

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    Replies
    1. I'm definitely intrigued by the adaptation, but I'm also a little wary since that book has zero sympathetic characters. I'd still recommend reading it, just don't expect warm fuzzies.

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