February 10, 2009 | Comments ()

By Dustin Rowles | Industry | February 10, 2009 |

Y’all know Tom Tykwer, right? Brother directed the holyshitunbelievablyawesome Run Lola Run, and amassed enough free-pass credits to get a Walkman at the Chuck E. Cheese ski-ball ticket counter. Granted, he’s also responsible for the middling Perfume: The Story of a Murderer and this weekend’s International, starring Clive Owen, which looks about as exciting as a meal at the Whole Foods Café. (It’s bland, people. Bland) But, he’s still got all those free passes, so he’s not a guy anybody is gonna write off anytime soon.

Indeed, he’s got two potentially high-profile projects in the works. He’s apparently working on adapting David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas for the Wachowksi Bros., and although I have little faith remaining in the Wachowskis, David Mitchell is awesome, and anything that brings more eyes to him is all right by me. Cloud Atlas also happens to be a collection of connected short-stories that you sci-fi nerds will appreciate.

The other project, which the Film School Rejects learned in an interview with Tykwer, is an adaptation of Dave Eggers’ What is the What?. I am loathe to write about this item because the Eggers haters always come out of the woodwork, which is a little painful for me to hear, because though I can understand the criticisms (see also Cody, Diablo), he’s still one of my favorite authors. That said, I couldn’t finish What is the What?, which is a fictional memoir based on the real life of one Darfur’s Lost Boys, Valentino Achek Deng . It was a brilliant book, unbelievably well written, and enlightening as hell. Unfortunately, it was also so goddamn bleak and depressing that I’d fall into a state of despair whenever I looked at the book. And, because it was written in the voice of Deng, Eggers’ sense of humor never revealed itself, so the whole thing was basically the literary equivalent of broccoli. It’s way good for you, but it’s not something you look forward to eating. Also, that poor broccoli — always getting its head eaten off.

In fact, as amazing as the novel is, and as good as Tykwer is, I don’t think I could even bring myself to see the eventual movie (unless I need to review it). It’s just too fucking much, people. I suspect it’ll be like Hotel Rwanda, a movie Mrs. Pajiba-hyphenate makes me watch for my own goddamn good.

That said: Eggers is one of the best novelists of our generation. Bring it, haters.

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Heartbreak

A Little Too Heartbreaking, In Fact / Dustin Rowles

Industry | February 10, 2009 | Comments ()

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