Saturday, May 27, 2006

End, begin, all the same. Big change. Sometimes good. Sometimes bad.

Since SA challenged my childhood and drunk-in-college memories of The Dark Crystal's greatness, I watched it again this morning. I bought it when it came out on DVD a couple of years ago, but I couldn't remember if I'd watched it all the way through then or not. In truth, much of the movie is rather unmemorable, but at the same time it's loaded with iconic moments and images that have stayed with me since I was 7, and still stay with me between viewings.

The pacing is astonishingly slow (kids today would never sit still for it, and I'm not entirely sure how I did), the opening narration is pretentious, and some of the characters look and sound a little too much like Muppets to take seriously (especially the incredibly hammy Skeksis... Skeksises? Skeksi?).

But I stand by my love. It's beautiful to look at, has a gorgeous score, a positive message, and remains technically brilliant. I almost wrote "for its time," but it looks pretty damn good, and I don't think the DVD was retouched at all (take that, George Lucas!). I love me some good CGI, but there's still something remarkable to me about good puppetry, and about the fact that people had to actually build and give life to everything on that screen.

So yeah. I say without hesitation or the haze of nostalgia: The Dark Crystal still totally rocks.

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