What is it that makes a culture a culture? When people are forced to move away from their land of origin, away from where their ancestors established homes and lives and customs, what keeps a way of life alive? What is culture without a place? If a rabbi says a prayer outside of a synagogue, is God still listening?
As the latest Holocaust narrative to hit movie theatres, In Darkness comes at a time when the time period desperately needs a new approach. We’ve all read Night and The Diary of Anne Frank; the public is thirsty for new stories from this time period. Similar to the book The Druggist of Auschwitz, Darkness alters the classic Holocaust narrative. Not all Nazis are evil and mindless, nor are all Jews lambs being led to the slaughter.
We’re all tired of Bella and Edward. More than that, we’re all tired of teenagers whining about problems that affect mostly them. There are a lot of far-reaching problems that affect young people: class tension, global warming, racial tensions. And of course the problem that has always plagued families with young children: hunger. How will the family feed itself? And is there anything that the most helpless group within the family, the children, can do to ease this burden?
This is the question that reigns throughout The Hunger Games: What can the young people do to help solve the world’s problems? The world is run by people with much more money and power, Even the Games themselves, constructed to glorify the young people of Panem (the post-apocalyptic replacement for North America) is all a construction of the rich grown-ups. Two children/adolescents from districts surrounding the obscenely wealthy Capitol are selected randomly, showered with wealth, then expected to kill children from other districts whom they have never met for even more wealth and glory. While being broadcast on national television, of course. And this is what makes the difference-the magic of television means that every victory earned by the children is constructed in some way, every action leading up to it smelling artificial. It’s all a game.
“Harry Potter? That weird kid with the glasses? The one who waves that stick around, shouting random stuff? The one who easily wins against the Dark Lord so easily?”
“Weird kid with the glasses? Dude, he’s a wizard. Waving a stick, shouting random stuff? He’s using a wand and casting spells. Wins so easily? Are you kidding me? The Dark Lord was defeated after numerous sacrifices and deaths. Ha, what do you, a person who has never experienced the amazing magic, know about the world of Harry Potter?”
Honestly, I pity the folks who have not been enchanted by Ms. Rowling’s beautiful world of witchcraft and wizardry.
I know it’s been several months since the last film came out. And 5 years since the book was released. But the magic lives on, through the fans, through Pottermore, through the Facebook pages and through fanfiction.
The magic shall never die.
(Note: Anime and cartoons are two completely different things.)
Anime. Japanese animation, basically. You’d expect this to have an influence only in Japan, but that is not the case. Rather, anime has captured the interest of people all over the world. Or at least those people who give anime a chance to display it’s amazing aspects. I began watching anime about two years ago. At that time, however, I was not greatly captured by it, as my mind was too immature to comprehend the deep stories. Hence, I only managed to watch one anime: Death Note.
Unfortunately, I did not watch any other anime after that for a whole year. Then, I decided to give it another chance. I was 13 then and had just entered the brutal teenage life, hence anime proved to be a great distraction (along with other things). It was then that I realized that I had watched anime even as a kid. Remember those ‘cartoons’ on Cartoon Network? Pokemon? Digimon? Beyblade? Dragon Ball Z? Yeah, those were anime. And, admit it, you loved them. Continue Reading