The Dark Fields – Alan Glynn

« And if you had the possibility of becoming a perfect version of yourself ? »

Hi ! Today I would like to speak about The Dark Fields which is the first novel written by Alan Glynn and published in 2001. This book also inspired Neil Burger to realize his movie Limitless in 2011.  Oh, and it is again a thriller (maybe that one day I will choose an another kind of movie or book…! 😉 )

In this novel, we meet Eddy Spinola who was a man with many difficulties to succeed in his professionnal and love life. One day, he saw again his brother-in-law, Vernon Gant, who was also a former dealer. This meeting changed his life ; indeed, Vernon decided to give him an experimental drug called « MDT-48 » which guarantees huge intellectual and creative abilities. His perceptions, memory and thinking skills were unbelievable ! The effects of the MDT on the young man exceeded his expectations and led him to a new life ! But obviously, things are short course… Eddy’s dreams will not be still easy to realize.

« I learnt piano in three days, math became useful… and funny. I knew everything about everything. »

According to me, this novel is really fascinating and we want to discover what happen after every chapter. I saw the movie with Bradley Cooper and I liked it well, too. These two works are nice to read or to watch and I deeply advise them. 🙂

The Prestige – Christopher Nolan

« – Do you have anything to say ?

 – Abracadabra. »

You know that I really loooooooove stories with suspense and the psychological thriller, that’s why today I decided to speak about the movie « The Prestige«  directed by Christopher Nolan (and his brother, too). It was released in 2006 and inspired by Christopher Priest’s novel written in 1995. If you like magic, this movie is for you… But just a thing : in magic, the illusion is everywhere and nowhere at the same time.

« The sacrifice, Robert, here is the price of a good magic trick… But it is an unknown notion for you. »

London, at the beginning of the last century… Robert Angier and Alfred Borden are two magicians who are destined for a glorious future. However, a rivalry appears between both friends because of the fatal accident of Angier’s woman. Both enemies aim at destroying themselves by using the darkest secret of their art… This obsession will have dramatic consequences on their circle of acquaintances.

Every great magic trick have three parts or acts. The first part is called « The Pledge » : the magician shows you something ordinary : a deck of cards, a bird or a man. He shows you this object. Maybe he asks you to inspect it to see if it is real or normal, but of course…it probably isn’t. The second act is called « The Turn » : the magician turns the ordinary thing into extraordinary. And now you want the secret, but you don’t really try to find it. The final stage of the illusion, « The Prestige », is the part of the magic trick where the unforeseen occurs.

I’m not going to repeat I like this kind of movie but… The Prestige is… a real masterpiece ! The actors are just incredible and the illusion is… waouh, perfect ! I have nothing to say aside from that this is necessary to see it ! 😉

The Shawshank Redemption – Frank Darabont

Hi everybody! Today, I would like to speak about the film The Shawshank Redemption . This movie was directed by Frank Darabont in 1994 and it was inspired by Stephen King’s novella « Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption » published in 1982.

Andy Dufresne, a young banker, is unfairly sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of his wife and her lover. He is imprisoned to Shawshank, the most severe penitentiary of the State and proclaimed his innocence for a long time. During his detention, he met Red, an another prisoner imprisoned for several years, with whom he became very friendly. Both, they are going to try to restore the truth.

It should be noted that, in the beginning, this movie was a commercial failure but it is now considered as a cult movie ! It is considered as being « culturally, historically, and aesthetically important » !

This movie is beautiful and full of emotion. I think it is one of movies which is necessary to see! Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins are great !

« We sent you here for life, and it is exactly what we take you »

Into the Wild – Jon Krakauer

« I want a life more intense and richer. »

Once upon a time, a man who preferred to live his dream rather than to dream his life…

This true story is the story of Chris McCandless, which inspired Jon Krakauer in his book « Into the Wild » published in 1996. In this biografical novel, the author recounts the life of this young man who decided to leave the consumer society to return to the wild life. Moreover, this adventure inspired also the film director Sean Penn in 2007.

Chris has one dream: go in Alaska and live there. So, after having his university degree, he begins his trip with his old car and gives up everything : his family, his money, his comfort, his civilized life… He says about him he is a « leather tramp ». Chris travels the South of the United States before realizing his big dream : live alone in Alaska and in harmony with the nature. He decided to settle down in a abandoned bus and lives as he can : he hunts game, eats some roots etc…

But living in the wild is not always easy and Chris has to face many difficulties to survey in this hostile environment…

« I learnt that the main part in life, it is not to be strong, but to feel strong. »

I find this book so interesting and fascinating. It brings us in another universe. This book also makes us think about our role in the consumer society. Through Chris, the reader wonders, throughout the book, if he could have the courage to leave everything to live what we really wish…

Shutter Island – Martin Scorsese

Hello! Today I would like to speak about the psychological thriller Shutter Island. It was directed by Martin Scorsese in 2010 and this movie was adapted by Dennis Lehane’s novel which has the same name. I chose this thriller because it is definitly my favourite film (and because I love so much psychological thriller, too) !

So, I am going you to explain this mysterious story…

We are in 1954. Teddy Daniels and Chuck Aule leave Seattle to go to Shutter Island to investigate in a strange disappearance. Both investigators go then in a psychiatric hospital where are locked very dangerous criminals : Rachel Solando, one of the patients disappeared… But how this murderous woman was able to escape from her cell ? Teddy and Chuck have only one clue : a piece of paper found in the room with many figures and letters. But Teddy unterstands very fast that the etablishment and its staff hide something…

I find Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo so talented in their role ! They play perfectly and wonderfully, in my opinion of course ! This movie is a masterpiece : the plot is fascinating and full of suspense and surprises. The viewer is absorbed into the movie and follow the investigation until the end. To sum up, you musy absolutely watch this movie at least once (and why not twice to understand it very well) ! 😉

Harlan Coben – Fool Me Once

I’m going to speak about a detective novel of the American author Harlan Coben. This book was called Fool me once and it is the last book of the writer which was published in 2016. It is the first time I read Harlan Coben’s book, too.

In this suspence book, we meet Maya, which is the main character. She is a young mother but also a widow who lost her husband who was murdered. To watch her baby-sitter, she installs a security camera in her house…. until her husband, Joe, appears on the screen, a few days after his funeral….! Maya is then going to ask herself many questions and going back to her darkest past. Does she know absolutely everything ? And Joe ? Is he the one that she really knows ? It is into a history full of discoveries that the reader is absorbed…

In my opinion, it was a good story but this book didn’t really affect me… Despite this, I recommend it for those who like suspense books. Maybe the next Harlan Coben’s book I’ll read will be better and more fascinating, for me of course.

Slumdog Milionaire – Danny Boyle

Hello ! Today I’m going to speak about one of my favourite film which is Slumdog Milionaire. This movie was released in 2008 by Danny Boyle and it received numerous Oscars (eight exactly). This famous movie was adapted by the novel of the Indian writer Vikas Swarup which called Q & A (for Questions and Answers) in 2005.

This film tells the story of Jamal Malik, 18 years old and orphan from the slums of Bombay (or Mumbai). He achieved the last stage of the game « Who wants to be a Milionaire ? » to win 20 million Indian rupees. Following this, there are a lot of questions : How can a man from slums achieve it ? Will he win the last test ? There is many doubt and the police suspect a cheating. Desperate to prove his innoncence, the main character in the film tells the story of his life in the slums ; his adventures, his meetings, and his relation with Latika which is the girl he loved. We discover that each chapter of his story reveals the answer of one the game’s questions…

In his film, Danny Boyle wanted to show the extreme poverty, the injustice, the fear and the nastiness in the slums. But also the youth, the chance and the love.

That’s why I choose this film because I find it very original and touching. It show that anyone can be happy and especially lucky, even if we are poor.

The Fault In Our Stars – John Green

I’m going to speak about one of my favourite book which is The fault in our stars by John Green. This novel was PUBLISHED in 2012 and was also adapted in film.

In this book, we meet two teenagers, Hazel Grace and Augustus Waters, who are suffering from the cancer. They meet while they are in the same group of supports for the sick of the cancer and they become fast close with a lot of complicity. Hazel and Augustus like so much the same writer and they decided to go to Amsterdam to meet him. While this travel, they live their most beautiful love story, full of love, magic, laugh and power faced with the disease… But this magic fairy tale end when we hear that Augustus can’t survive for a very long time, and will die a few days late…

I think it is the saddest and the harrowing book I have ever read. In this book, we realize that the life can stop at any time and that it is very important to enjoy because one thing can detroy everything.

To finish, I would like to conclude with this quote, about the cigarette, which is in the book and that I find very revealing : “It’s a metaphor, see: You put the killing thing right between your teeth, but you don’t give it the power to do its killing.”

The Maze Runner – Wes Ball

I’m going to speak about a very famous movie which all the teenagers know : of course, The Maze Runner by Wes Ball or more know in french with the title Le Labyrinthe. This movie is adapted by the first volume of the science fiction novel by James Dashner which was published in 2012. The movie was published in 2014.

When Thomas regains consciousness, he is trapped with a group of the other boys in a huge labyrinth where the plan is modified every night. He has no more memory of the outside world, except for of strange dreams about a mysterious organization called W.C.K.D. By connecting some elements of his past, with indications which he discovers within the labyrinth, Thomas hopes to find a way to escape it…

Every month, a new amnesic young man appears in « the glad » which is surrounded with the labyrinth. The doors of the labyrinth open every in the morning and close every in the evening. The labyrinth has 8 different sections which change every day : the exploraiton of the labyrinth is very complicated ! The difficulty of the labyrinth is also made with the mysterious creatures which are inside because they attack every people…

I found this movie very fascinating with many new developments, especially at the end… The continuation is also excellent ! And I recommend them ! If you like the science fiction and the adventure, this movie is made for you…

1984 – George Orwell

I decided to speak about 1984 written by George Orwell which was written in 1949. It is George Orwell’s famous novel. I have choosen this book because it is a book for my « T.P.E ».

As the name of the book, the story takes place in 1984 and the world is devided in 3 parts : the « Oceania », the « Eurasia » and the « Estasia ». It is the war ! This dictatorship has a catch line : « The war is the peace, the freedom is the slavery, the ignorance is the strength ». The main character is Winston Smith ; he works on « the ministry of the truth » and he wants to discover the truth on this strange world because people are constantly watched by a television screen and of course by Big Brother, and they shouldn’t know the past… With Julia, a girl that he met during « the two minutes of the hatred », they are going to try to fight this dictatorship.

This book is a science fiction novel which criticizes the totalitarian society where the freedom of expression don’t exist anymore and all the thoughts are watched and big posters are placarded in streets (« Big Brother is watching you »).

HUNGER GAMES – Suzanne Collins

Hunger Games ist a book by Suzanne Collins. It is a trilogy and the first volume (that I read) came out in 2008. This book was also adapted to the cinema.

This story direct a tv show which is controlled by the Capitol where twenty-four candidates are taken at random and must necessarily participate. The only rule of the Hunger Games ? Survive absolutely ! The main character, Katniss Everdeen, who was already confronted with the death, decide to take the place of her sister in this sordid game… For Katniss, survive is like a second nature…

I liked a lot this first volume because we can’t stop reading it. It is very fascinating ! Usually I don’t like a lot the science fiction but Hunger Games denounces the dictatorship with a incredible way. I recommend it ! And I think that I will read the other volumes soon.

MISERY – Stephen King

I’m going to speak about Misery, a film based of a novel by Stephen King. The novel was published in 1987 and was adapted to the cinema in 1990.

In this film, a writter is welcomed after an accident by a fan. This fan lives in an isolated house. He notices very quickly that this fan is not normal and that she has mental disorders. Paul Sheldon, the writter, will go through hell with this woman who is called Anne Wilkes.

I liked so much this film because it is a psychological thriller. Stephen King is an author who knows frighten the reader and the viewer. In this novel, the description of the madness is very interresting.