Rolling over in her grave…?

Well, not quite — Ursula Le Guin is very much alive, and has thoroughly (and IMO deservedly) panned the film Earthsea which is loosely based on her novels Wizard of Earthsea, Tombs of Atuan, and The Farthest Shore

I stress loosely… I saw the first episode last night, and it’s entertaining enough, although I’m glad it’s been ages since I read the novels. The differences were obvious pretty immediately… they switched the hero’s “true name” and his social name from the books, added plotlines. I’m watching the second episode as we speak, and the changes only get more obvious and to some degree, more silly.

Ah well.

The Lord of the Rings films weren’t perfect, but they were at least relatively true to the spirit of the novels… I think Tolkien isn’t rolling over in his grave, and might even be pleasantly surprised at how well they translated. But this is one of those Hollywood rewrites, and the kindest thing I can say about their choices is that it’s nowhere near the perversion that Starship Troopers was.

There’s a good thread on this on rec.arts.sf.fandom which also supplied the link to Ms. Le Guin’s site.

Update, a few minutes later: Replaced the link with a better one to the same short essay on her site. Here’s a link to the film on the Sci-Fi channel’s web site though heck, they really don’t need the free advertising.

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