October 17th, 2010 14:14 EST
The Legend of the Guardians
I`m usually the first to mention that the book is always better than the movie. It`s a rule, almost like gravity. I`m pleasantly forced to say almost because of my encounter this weekend with The Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga` Hoole.
The books, by Kathryn Lasky, were from my experience, much like Tolkien`s work on Middle Earth. There was so much in development of the owls` culture, and their ways of life that the storyline seemed to come after you were familiar with every aspect of the owls` lives. I found it hard to want continue reading when the first chapter was chock full of information about the celebration and ritual of an owlet`s first pellet.
Gratefully, the movie covered all of this in roughly five minutes. As soon as you meet the protagonist, Soren, it`s hard not to fall in love with his dreams of meeting the Guardians, the brave owl that fought for justice in the owl wars. It comes off as a nuisance to his brother, Kludd, but everyone else just smiles and nods as Soren recounts for the bazillionth time who did what in which war.
The adventure really begins when Soren and Kludd are kidnapped, and it becomes an animals` rendition of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, people are hypnotized to mining some material that will give a group that thinks they are superior the power they need to overthrow the good guys. Kludd is selected to become one of these dark soldiers, while Soren and a tiny elf owl named Gylphie escape and find the tree of the Guardians.
What made me laugh at this point is Geoffrey Rush, the grating voice of Captain Barbossa from the Pirates of the Caribbean, is one of the good guys, and Soren`s hero of the stories.
Together, the Guardians of Ga` Hoole and Soren must join to fight Metalbeak and his pure owl army. If my childhood wasn`t already overflowing with animal movies, this one would definitely be high ranking, and worth owning.
For those with young minds not chock full of popular media, this is a keeper.