People, this is a link to a trailer for one of those films that is guaranteed to give me a migraine.

For the link-phobic or trailer-haters, it’s a link to a trailer for a film of Atlas Shrugged. Part 1. Because at least Hollywood was thinking clearly enough to realize that a book that weighs in at 1200 pages (for reference, pretty much the same length as War and Peace) shouldn’t be fit into one two-hour film. I mean, thank heaven for that at least.

That said, I have a million-billion problems with this. There are many blog posts out there detailing how objectivism (Rand’s philosophy, set out most grandly in this book) is a fundamentally selfish, nasty philosophy, so we’ll skip that here because I am tired. But I will note that at least fivehundredthousand-billion of my problems with this whole project have to do with objectivism as a philosophy and my general sense that the last thing most people need to be told is that it’s okay to be even more self-serving.* That said, I do believe it’s a book people should read. It’s hugely influential, and one of those books where the ideas are so strong that everyone should wrestle with them and draw their own conclusions.

Anyway. The problem that’s worth bringing up here isn’t really Rand’s philosophy or my problems with it, but the fact that this is going to be a movie. Because turning this into a movie means either focusing solely on the murder mystery/plot-heavy part of it – thus MISSING THE ENTIRE FUCKING POINT OF THE BOOK – or trying somehow to get the philosophical stuff onto the screen in some sort of meaningful, intelligible, non-boring way. What I’m saying is that I don’t think it’s going to be possible to film this book without a severe case of Adaptation Decay, because so much of what makes the book worth reading and wrestling with is fundamentally unfilmable.

By which I mean “good luck, people.”

I assume the film will likely dumb everything down and include a few too many explosions. I’ll read the reviews anyway – maybe I’ll be surprised into deciding to go see it and thereby give myself the migraine I know it’ll give me.
*or hate women, or rape women because they don’t actually matter, or just generally enjoy and be proud of being an egotistical twatwaffle asshole, or…

ETA: this is apparently part one of a flipping trilogy. To quote a friend, “I guess this means part 3 will just be an asshole giving a speech.” 

He’s probably not wrong. Lovely.