TPAOL Question #20 - Johnny

by James Meek

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Linda Lee
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Unread postby Linda Lee » Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:57 pm

When I started reading the book, I saw Johnny as Samarin, then Balashov entered the picture and I saw possibilities in that part as well. GG mentioned him playing Mutz and I think he would be great in that part as well (except none of us would believe Anna letting him go!). I would cast him as Samarin, because there are so many different and challenging facets to his personality.
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Unread postby Liz » Tue Feb 20, 2007 9:00 pm

Maybe he could just play all of the roles—like Mike Myers does. :lol: But seriously….

Xaxis, I too, initially saw Johnny as the Samarin character. And I can see him as being able to show the different sides of Samarin, DITHOT. Plus, I agree with you, Endora, that Samarin is very Sandsian. But once I started reading about Matula, that was it for me. But now, after reading what everyone has written, I think it’s a toss-up for me.
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Unread postby nebraska » Tue Feb 20, 2007 10:36 pm

Liz wrote:I agree with you, Gemini, that he would choose to play Samarin. But I would like to see him as Matula. I could so see him playing that role while I was reading the book. He could pull off the smart alecky remarks and provide some comic relief. And he could probably make me find some sympathy for the man. I think if I could actually picture Matula so young and with red hair, then Johnny wouldn't work in that part. But I could never picture Matula that way.


Liz, Matula was my first thought, too. Obviously Samarin is the meaty complex role, at least on the surface, but I think Matula presents a real challenge, to find motivation, to make him human......

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Unread postby nebraska » Tue Feb 20, 2007 10:38 pm

Depputante wrote:I remember Gemini mentioned she considered Balashov, which I hadn't considered before she had mentioned it. Johnny would be great doing Balashov, but I don't see him going for the highly religious roles. Then there's the self mutilation, which Johnny would have enough emotion for, and the sacrificing oneself for the family where I think Johnny would be fabulous in.

However, that said, Samarin has the makings of a great self sacrifice for a cause that goes beyond families. If Johnny were to take the part, I figure they would remake the movie to include a little more family living far away for Samarin. Then I can see a George Jung type charachter on the horizon. I can see Johnny really throwing himself out there, so to speak, in order to show the passion that Samarin has for the revolution.

Yeah, even though he'd be good at Balashov, Samarin's my choice, and Orlando will be out of work, so Orli would fit in nicely as Balashov.


Eunoch?????????? :biglaugh:

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Unread postby nebraska » Tue Feb 20, 2007 10:46 pm

I think Johnny could do justice to any role in this book, from Samarin to Mutz to the albino.........there are lots of interesting characters in this book.........even the landlord, who none of us could even figure out what he was doing in this story........is there something there that Johnny could make something of?????? A small part but......weird!

Matula definitely catches my fancy. I think Johnny would make a fabulous Samarin, but that is too easy, too commercial......but Oh! How I would enjoy the journey to the White Garden with him!

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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Wed Feb 21, 2007 9:39 am

I had a thought about the landlord. Was he there to represent the bourgeois class or else people who stood by and did nothing while chaos swirled around them? At the end his house is confiscated and there is a comment about him being the lone representative of the upper class or something along those lines. (Sorry, don't have time to find it before I"m out the door to work...) Don't know...just a thought and we don't have a question on him so feel free to add your thoughts.
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Unread postby Linda Lee » Wed Feb 21, 2007 10:19 am

Diithot - here's the quote.
pg. 284
The Land Captain and his wife were made examples of as the only available representatives of the opressor class. their home was seized and they were thrown out.



It seems he was there to represent the upper class, and from his earlier behavior, allowing Matula and his wife to conduct a blatent affair in his own home, with no pretense, directly in front of him, perhaps he represented another type of castrate. He was stripped of any power he had before Bondarenko and the Reds showed up.
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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Wed Feb 21, 2007 10:22 am

Thanks, Linda Lee! :cool:
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Unread postby Charlene » Wed Feb 21, 2007 5:28 pm

OK, tongue in cheek here...he's always looking for a way to stretch his acting skills...let's let him play all three..I know he could do a better job than Eddie Murphy.

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Unread postby Charlene » Wed Feb 21, 2007 5:30 pm

Linda Lee wrote:Diithot - here's the quote.
pg. 284
The Land Captain and his wife were made examples of as the only available representatives of the opressor class. their home was seized and they were thrown out.



It seems he was there to represent the upper class, and from his earlier behavior, allowing Matula and his wife to conduct a blatent affair in his own home, with no pretense, directly in front of him, perhaps he represented another type of castrate. He was stripped of any power he had before Bondarenko and the Reds showed up.


Interesting point...I never until you mentioned it, thought that the Land Captain might be a castrate...and that plays into him sitting there and tolerating his wife's adultry...for he made the choice to end his relationship with her.

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Unread postby Linda Lee » Wed Feb 21, 2007 10:14 pm

Charlene , I'm sorry if I wasn't clear, I didn't mean that he was actually a castrate, but that Matula virtually castrated him.
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Unread postby nebraska » Wed Feb 21, 2007 10:35 pm

Linda Lee wrote:Charlene , I'm sorry if I wasn't clear, I didn't mean that he was actually a castrate, but that Matula virtually castrated him.


Either way, it is an interesting observation. I remember at the time I read that section, I wondered what was up with him ignoring/allowing that behavior in his home.........

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Unread postby Charlene » Thu Feb 22, 2007 12:05 am

nebraska wrote:
Linda Lee wrote:Charlene , I'm sorry if I wasn't clear, I didn't mean that he was actually a castrate, but that Matula virtually castrated him.


Either way, it is an interesting observation. I remember at the time I read that section, I wondered what was up with him ignoring/allowing that behavior in his home.........


Linda Lee, I understood what you wrote, but that started me thinking, and Nebraska...I had the same thoughts too...but didn't put two and two together, and Linda Lee made me think, perhaps that was the problem.

p.s. Linda Lee - I had a suite mate in college by that name, LOL.

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Unread postby Linda Lee » Thu Feb 22, 2007 1:49 am

Linda Lee, I understood what you wrote, but that started me thinking, and Nebraska...I had the same thoughts too...but didn't put two and two together, and Linda Lee made me think, perhaps that was the problem.

p.s. Linda Lee - I had a suite mate in college by that name, LOL



Sorry, I misunderstood. :blush:
The Land Captain's lack of response bothered me too.

Interesting coincidence that your suite mate in college and I share the same name.
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Unread postby Liz » Thu Feb 22, 2007 2:01 am

Charlene wrote:
nebraska wrote:
Linda Lee wrote:Charlene , I'm sorry if I wasn't clear, I didn't mean that he was actually a castrate, but that Matula virtually castrated him.


Either way, it is an interesting observation. I remember at the time I read that section, I wondered what was up with him ignoring/allowing that behavior in his home.........


Linda Lee, I understood what you wrote, but that started me thinking, and Nebraska...I had the same thoughts too...but didn't put two and two together, and Linda Lee made me think, perhaps that was the problem.

p.s. Linda Lee - I had a suite mate in college by that name, LOL.


I figured he knew, but let it go on because Matula had some sort of hold over him.
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.


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