Tag Archives: tomorrow when the war began

Tomorrow, When the War Began – TV adaptation

I finally got around to watching the six-part TV adaptation of John Marsden’s Tomorrow, When the War Began (first screened on ABC3). The original book was published in 1993 (one of seven in the first series, followed up with the somewhat superfluous and repetitive trilogy, the Ellie Chronicles), and was previously adapted as a film (which I talked about here) in 2010 (and because the first version of the film Red Dawn came out in 1984, I can’t suggest it too was based on the book. The similarities are rather remarkable though, so possibly Marsden was inspired…). The first book (and often its immediate sequels) have been studied in Australian schools for most of the past twenty years, and are staples of library shelves, having won multiple awards both in Australia and overseas. I’ve read them all. I’ve seen the film (which I actually quite like as an updated adaptation, although I’ve not found too many who agree with me!), and as I always thought it better suited to a TV series than a film, I was keen to see how the show looked.

r1511949_22430339

SPOILERS FOLLOW!

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under TV

Movies

Meant to put this in the previous post but forgot. Have been to the movies a couple of times in the last couple of weeks. Hubby and I went Gold Class the other week, and there weren’t many choices so we saw The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. I really enjoyed it – nerdy guy being the hero, Nick Cage being all brooding and sexy, and while the women weren’t absolutely central to the story, I liked their characters. I thought it was a lot of fun, a switch off your brain flick, really.

The other film I watched was Tomorrow When the War Began on Friday. I’ve been DYING to see this. When I first heard they were finally adapting this excellent novel for the screen, I was pretty nervous, because it’s such a challenging thing to do well. Then, the first preview I saw had a bloody BIKINI shot front and centre, and I thought that was a very bad sign, cos, yanno, no bikinis in the book, and I would have hated for the girls to be sexed up for effect. But then reviews started to filter out, which were pretty positive, and girliejones was coerced into watching it and RAVED about it, which sealed the deal (cos I trust her judgment). So I took my last opportunity to catch it with only the bub (no opportunities on the holidays, and then going back to work…) and went on Friday. And LOVED it. It was so well put together, with solid performances by the young Aussie cast. I was very impressed by the modernisation of the story (just little touches, but enough to make it real) and by the fact that the film makers have made this story completely plausible. I’ve read the book a heap of times (have taught it lots in school) and while I think Marsden wrote a great book, it was never completely realistic to me. Somehow the film managed to create a wholly plausible depiction, and it really worked. 

Only a couple of very minor complaints. I don’t think the portrayal of the character Robyn was true to the text – they kind of focussed on one aspect of her personality, but left out the mad netballer side (which was my favourite bit about her in the books!). Having said that, the actor was great, and had me in tears near the end. I could also have stood a little more development of Homer’s character as leader – Ellie is totally believable to me, but Homer needed a bit longer to get there I thought. 

And while I KNOW it’s straight from the book, it’s still interesting to see that all the girls had to convince their parents to let them go on the original camping trip, but none of the boys did… 🙂

There’s a fair bit of action and relationship building left out, as well as some minor plot points (the Hermit storyline, in particular), but the film makers have been very clever about what they’ve taken out (and none of it is missed, in the tight story telling), and I didn’t miss it. 

I’m so delighted with how good this adaptation is, because it means I now have a film text to use in the classroom with the novel – yay! And also? A really, really good movie – I laughed, and I cried, and I had goosebumps from the tension. Very cool. Oh, and the bikini scene from the previews? Totally made sense in the context of the film, and was literally about five seconds in duration!

Favourite quote from the film:
Ellie: Good book?
Corrie: Better than the movie.
Ellie: Yeah, books usually are. 

Heh. Clever and fun. I wish my local cinemas were doing smarter showing times of the film, because I don’t think this movie is getting the exposure it should – highly recommend catching it at the movies!

7 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized