Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells

Steam driven extraterrestrials

Rating 5 out of 10

It's amazing to read this book from 1898 because in many respects it has scenes which seems to be taken from the countless Mars attackers movies that was made by Hollywood in the last half of the 20.th century. One almost thinks that H. G. Wells was able to tap into the collective experiences of the American film makers more than 50 years after he had written his book. In this book the metropolis is not New York, but good old London, but when the Martians attack London we see the same traffic jammed roads, when people tries to excape the monsters. One thing which puzzled me a bit reading the book was that Wells always describes the workings of the Martians machines as exhausting steam and smoke. But then I thought about it, and it's obvious. Wells was living in an age where every mechanical action was steam driven so it was impossible for him to imagine mechanical action without steam and smoke.

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