Thursday, September 30, 2010

Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott

Knights and Ladies for Children

Rating 3 out of 10

This is an action packed account about Knights and Ladies. They fight all the time, but amazingly no one get killed. It seems mostly made for children.

Monday, September 27, 2010

The Redeemer by Jo Nesbø

Another Cool Scandinavian Crime Writer

Rating 6 out of 10

This is an entertaining book, but Nesbo's story also have human vitamins, it's not the typical Dan Brown junk food. Why is it that Scandinavians write so cool crime stories?

Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Power and the Glory by Graham Greene

Why all this Christianity?

Rating 4 out of 10

It seems like Greene is trying to express his view about what a decent Christian is in this book. In that respect "The Power and the Glory" is running the same errand as Dostoyevsky's "The Idiot". Anyway both books are quite boring. Judging this book against Greenes own high standard, it's not one of Greenes best books.

Monday, September 20, 2010

The Quiet Amarican by Graham Greene

Great when an author arrives before the fact!

Rating 5 out of 10

It's great when an authour arrives before the fact. This novel problematizes Western involvement with Indochina affairs, more specific American military involvement in Vietnam. This problem was to be a key issue for left wing people more than a decade later from when Greene wrote his book. In that respect "The Quiet American" is similar to Hanif Kureishis "The Black Album" which problematizes British Muslim radicalization in 1995, a decade before the 7 July 2005 London bombings. As said in the start, it's great when an authour arrives before the fact, because after the fact it's crowded with all the idiots!

Monday, September 13, 2010

The Beguiled by Don Siegel

Almost Porn!

Movie Review

Rating 4 out of 10

This movie is crazy. But of course The Clint is starring in this movie, and he is looking great, actually better with beard than shaven. This movie is so crazy that I think they should have gone the whole length and turned it in to some kind of porn movie. The Clint as porn star!

Our Man in Havana by Graham Greene

Not My Cup of Tea

Rating 4 out of 10

Well for once a Greene book didn't really appeal to me. I think this is meant to be a spy-comedy, but as usual I didn't laugh one single time! I think Greene had intended this to be a good humoured comment to a time which was very tense upon the cold war. Things like that just don't really appeal to me, sorry Greene!

Friday, September 10, 2010

The Heart of the Matter by Graham Greene

Sinking Down in the African Swamp!

Rating 7 out of 10

This is another masterly novel from Greene. The setting is some African country and one really gets the feeling of a swamp which the civilised people from England slowly, but surely, sinks down into. The main character of this novel seems to be the setting.

The Long Journey: The Cimbrians by Johannes V. Jensen

The Jolly Barbarians From the North

Rating 5 out of 10

The subject of this volume is the Migration Period in Europe around AD 300 to 700 when the Barbarians from the North approached the Roman Empire. Although Jensen recognize that the Northern cultures were far less developed than the Mediterranean cultures, still within their blue eyes was residing the Northern longing, which in due time would make North Europe superior to South Europe.

The Long Journey : Christopher Columbus by Johannes V. Jensen

The Culmination of the North European Strive And Longing For the Unknown

Rating 6 out of 10

This is proberly the best volume of Jensen's "The Long Journey". I think his recount of Columbus first voyage across the Atlantic is proberly among the best ever made. Especially memorable is the conflicts Columbus have with the ship's crew in the middle of the Atlantic. They think the Earth is flat and he tries to convince them that it's round. A heritical belief at the time (1492) considering Galileo Galilei's trial on suspicion of heresy in 1633, "for holding as true the false doctrine taught by some that the sun is the center of the world". Jensen does not fail to mention that Columbus had blue eyes and red hair and was tall. This fits well with his opinion of the superiority of the people from North Europe of which he sees Columbus as a descendant.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Hunger by Knut Hamsun

Maybe a Bit Overrated?

Rating 4 out of 10

So finally I came across this much praised book by Knut Hamsun. Well in my opinion it is a little bit overrated. I mean it's OK, but it's very repetitive in it's nature. It's the story about this crazy young man running around doing crazy things in Norway's capital, at that time called Christania. There is actually no development in the novel, we just witness these crazy excesses of the principal, things like saying weird things to coincidental people on the streets etc. I think Hamsun envisioned the book as a comedy depicting the craziness and idiosyncrasies of the young artist. People who liked this book should proceed with Sigurd Hoel's "Meeting at the Milestone". That's another good Norwegian book. I think you'll like it!

The Long Journey: Fire and Ice by Johannes V. Jensen

How Humanity Came About

Rating 5 out of 10

In this book Johannes V. Jensen embarks on a quite interesting quest: To describe the birth of humanity. The book starts in primeval times, with prehistoric creatures and hairy beings, which are later to evolve into more humanlike beings. Jensens tale is sometimes mythical in its nature. The initial scene is a primeval forest with vulcanos, later comes the ice age forcing human ingenuity. His tale is somewhat Scandinavia centric, and one senses that he sees the Scandinavians as the most impressive people. The blonde, blue eyed, white man's, superiority.

Manderlay by Lars von Trier

Art Cinema Justified

Movie Review

Rating 4 out of 10

It's amazing that Lars von Trier in his America triology actually have been able to rejuvenate/reinvent the movie language. In this movie we actually see images never seen before in history. In my opinion Lars von Trier's strength lies in the technique of movie making. I am not very impressed by his stories and direction. In that respect he seems ignorant and immature. But in the field of the image he is excellent. Still I really hope that he will one day go to Hollywood!

The End of the Affair by Graham Greene

Greene Was Always Forging The Unknown

Rating 4 out of 10

It's amazing that Graham Greene always wrote a book like it was his first. That is also the case in this book, Greene is venturing new territory. This book tells the story of an affair with a mentally disturbed married woman, who eventually dies.

The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins

150 Years Too Late!

Rating 2 out of 10

In this book Richard Dawkins is an advocate of evolutionary biology as opposed to creationism. The problem is that Dawkins' subject matter is hopelessly passé. I mean it's 150 years ago that Darwin published "On the Origin of Species" in 1859 and Christianity as a religion in the western world is, save for a few mentally disturbed people, pretty dead! Actually Dawkins appear to me to be a little stupid. Personally I suspect that religions are made in the image of man. And man can actually be something a bit more wonderous than Dawkins can probe with his scientific instruments. Dawkins is a hot house plant playing his own little intellectual game, quite ignorant and blind to the traits of the world developing right now.