Monday, August 29, 2011

911 update and more

The 911 concert and aikido demo in Ben Lomond has been postponed. I will update the event when a new date is reached. So keep watching these pages for further info.

Just talking to people about the summer movies has brought forth more themes. It just hit me that Thor and Green Lantern offer the same theme in different directions.
In Thor a god is found lacking in humility and is stripped of much of his power and cast down to the earthly dimension as punishment for rash and destructive behavior and to learn how to deal with limitation. In Green Lantern a normal flawed human being has to deal with being given a power ring which elevates him to a god-like level: he can turn his thoughts into reality.

I think both directions are crucial and interesting. If one were to have great power one might never learn the importance of patience, compassion, and the ordinary side of things. Often times what makes a hero or heroine interesting is their life in their secret identity. In the comics Thor is cast down to earth, given a human persona with a physical defect, a lame leg. Thus he needs a cane. Eventually he finds a cane in a cave and finds when he taps it on the ground he is transformed into the god of thunder. And the cane becomes his enchanted hammer. It was probably my favorite Marvel comic. Thor had to deal with being in love with his nurse Jane(in the movie an astrophysicist) and the fact his father Odin did not approve of his son's choice.

Green Lantern explores what would happen if a limited human is given almost limitless power. I began to read this comic in the late '50's so it pre-dates my Marvel period. The film does a great job of exploring how one's humanity can be looked upon as a definite limitation but in the end might be one's biggest asset. Like Thor having to stand up to his father Hal Jordan must question the Guardians of Oa who are immortal and who created the Green Lantern Corps.

Whether it is an all-father or a group of immortal beings it is sometimes important to realize that the larger more universal perspective is not necessarily everything. That this must be balanced by one's more human side. So Thor must balance his godhood with his human feelings for Jane. While Green Lantern Hal Jordan must confront the Guardians about certain choices they have made and how they impact the universe at large.

I am surprised the Green Lantern movie was not more successful. It might have been too cartoon-like in its outer space sequences. Or maybe people decided to save their money for Harry Potter. I thought it was an excellent film and the best movie of the summer by far. If you missed it don't miss it on dvd. And for me Thor was right behind Green Lantern. I liked it better than the Iron Man movies. And I am looking forward to seeing the character in The Avengers movie next year.

AS you can tell both characters go through a lot and have to deal with a lot. So I thought you'd enjoy this youtube video of a Chet Baker standard "Everything Happens to Me". It's a later vocal. His vocal as well as playing style changed as he matured. I like this one because after the vocal and a beautiful piano section he plays unmuted. So this is my favorite version of this song.


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