TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

by Arturo Perez-Reverte

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TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Mon Aug 25, 2008 7:31 am

In Tidbit #28, the review written by Philip Coppens,

http://johnnydepp-zone.com/boards/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=41396

what did you think of the following statement?

By entering through the Ninth Gate, what does this make of Corso? Is he the devil, without knowing it, the girl one of his minions, sent to guide him back to hell? She does possess supernatural power, but it is clear that she never dictates anything to Corso.

Johnny Depp stated: you begin to like Corso towards the end, though he has turned out to be a cruel, cold man, willing to do anything to meet his goal. Throughout the book and movie, the reader or the viewer is largely ignorant of Corso’s role – and it seems Corso himself is no different. The reader and the character are too focused on everyone else, each of which seems more important than Corso… but in the end, only he will go through the gate… and the only person in the story who prepared and helped him for this was the mysterious Irene. The woodcuts in The Nine Gates made by Lucifer himself are signed LCF… Corso’s first name (in the book) is Lucas Corso… Initials: LC… F?


An added LIZ NOTE: You can discuss the ending now! :bounce:
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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso

Unread postby Parlez » Mon Aug 25, 2008 10:08 am

In my second reading of this extensive review I noticed this rather outstanding bit (3rd paragraph from the end): '...but in the end, the killings and crimes are Corso's,' Is this supposed to mean that (in the reviewer's assessment of the story anyway) Corso was the one who actually killed everyone - the Baroness, Fargas, etc..?? If so, I totally missed that!
Such an interpretation reminds me of The Secret Window...dual personalities, madness extraordinaire, the Dark Side in control even though the protangonist doesn't know it... :eyebrow:
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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso

Unread postby fansmom » Mon Aug 25, 2008 2:51 pm

Parlez wrote:In my second reading of this extensive review I noticed this rather outstanding bit (3rd paragraph from the end): '...but in the end, the killings and crimes are Corso's,' Is this supposed to mean that (in the reviewer's assessment of the story anyway) Corso was the one who actually killed everyone - the Baroness, Fargas, etc..?? If so, I totally missed that!
Such an interpretation reminds me of The Secret Window...dual personalities, madness extraordinaire, the Dark Side in control even though the protangonist doesn't know it... :eyebrow:
I think the reviewer either was confused or was confusing. IMHO, the differences between the book and the movie make a single of review of both very difficult.

If the "crimes are Corso's," either I missed something vital as well, or he's speaking metaphorically; the crimes are Corso's only because he was the catalyst.

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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso

Unread postby Angelina » Mon Aug 25, 2008 2:53 pm

Johnny Depp stated: ...The woodcuts in The Nine Gates made by Lucifer himself are signed LCF… Corso’s first name (in the book) is Lucas Corso… Initials: LC… F?

Wow! Thank you, DitHot! In discussions about The Ninth Gate on our forum we debated the theory about, Corso is the devil himself, who goes through the rite of an initiation during the film. We thought: in the scene in Balkan’s library, when Balkan said he guesses his book is false and something is wrong, Johnny smiles at him with the devilish smile and asks: the devil doesn’t appear? That Johnny’s smile made us to think: Balkan summoned the devil already, but didn’t recognize him – but he is standing before him right now, he just have to go through his initiation. And then this devil – Corso – starts his way.

But we weren’t sure, did Johnny play it really. But now, with these Johnny’s words, we have the proof, I think. Lucas Corso.. F – LCF – very interesting!
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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

Unread postby Liz » Mon Aug 25, 2008 3:53 pm

I want to point out that we are discussing the ending now. Just a bit ago, DITHOT and I decided that it was just too hard to talk about this review without getting into the ending. So go for it. This means that our discussion will end a day early, on Thursday (unless another question gets wiped out today :lol: ), when we will be discussing comparisons between the book and the movie, which you liked better, etc. So save your thoughts on that for Thursday.
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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso

Unread postby Liz » Mon Aug 25, 2008 4:02 pm

Parlez wrote:In my second reading of this extensive review I noticed this rather outstanding bit (3rd paragraph from the end): '...but in the end, the killings and crimes are Corso's,' Is this supposed to mean that (in the reviewer's assessment of the story anyway) Corso was the one who actually killed everyone - the Baroness, Fargas, etc..?? If so, I totally missed that!
Such an interpretation reminds me of The Secret Window...dual personalities, madness extraordinaire, the Dark Side in control even though the protangonist doesn't know it... :eyebrow:

I totally missed that too! :perplexed: And I find it even more unbelievable that he wouldn't remember that he was the devil. But if he is, in fact, the devil, it explains a few things....

If he is the devil, then Irene was just a fallen angel, his guardian angel, protecting him and leading him to the 9th gate so that he would take his rightful place as Lucifer. And that would explain why he had no shadow when he went through the gate. It also explains her remark about him knowing within himself what the answer is.

I still don't totally buy it, though. And I think that is because I see the devil a certain way, apparently not quite the same way as P-R sees him (in a number of instances that we've already discussed).

The free will issue bothers me too, because I don't know how he really had a choice--again, not how I see the devil. :eyebrow:
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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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso

Unread postby Liz » Mon Aug 25, 2008 4:08 pm

Angelina wrote:
Johnny Depp stated: ...The woodcuts in The Nine Gates made by Lucifer himself are signed LCF… Corso’s first name (in the book) is Lucas Corso… Initials: LC… F?

Wow! Thank you, DitHot! In discussions about The Ninth Gate on our forum we debated the theory about, Corso is the devil himself, who goes through the rite of an initiation during the film. We thought: in the scene in Balkan’s library, when Balkan said he guesses his book is false and something is wrong, Johnny smiles at him with the devilish smile and asks: the devil doesn’t appear? That Johnny’s smile made us to think: Balkan summoned the devil already, but didn’t recognize him – but he is standing before him right now, he just have to go through his initiation. And then this devil – Corso – starts his way.

But we weren’t sure, did Johnny play it really. But now, with these Johnny’s words, we have the proof, I think. Lucas Corso.. F – LCF – very interesting!

Thanks for sharing about your discussion of the movie (even though I said we would just be discussing the book here). I think it is relevant to Johnny's quote. And I wouldn't have known about your thoughts on that if you hadn't shared. You know, the thought just never entered my mind. I really thought that "The Girl" in both the book and the movie was the devil and that she was just claiming Corso's soul.
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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

Unread postby Parlez » Mon Aug 25, 2008 4:20 pm

My head is spinning with Angelina's interpretation of Corso as the already-summoned devil! :hypnotic: That angle doesn't hold up too well in the book (ie., would the devil really get so off track linking The Nine Doors with the Dumas material?) but for Polanski's movie it would be just about perfect. And sooo Polanski! That's why the film Corso would have no history or backstory; he would show up as a complete entity, as summoned. No shadow. All shadow. Whatever! And Green Eyes would be his guardian angel, protecting him from...what? Those who would mistake him for an ordinary mortal guy? OMG!!

Okay...so what does the 'F' stand for in the initials LCF??
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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

Unread postby Angelina » Mon Aug 25, 2008 4:35 pm

Liz
Thanks for sharing about your discussion of the movie (even though I said we would just be discussing the book here).

I’m very sorry, Liz, I didn’t want to break the order of a discussion. :blush: I just was delighted with the quote, because on our forum we haven’t a general opinion, is Corso the devil or not – many people rather would be agree with your opinion about the girl.

I think, it was very delicately to see it – Lucas Corso = LCF – in the book. I agree with Parlez, in the book this version almost is invisible. And I have to stop here till Thursday, when we will compare the book and the movie. :-)

Parlez
Okay...so what does the 'F' stand for in the initials LCF??

I think, it’s a very interesting question. The first thought - may be, a Fire? :eyebrow:
I don't think I have any enemies, really. The scariest enemy is within, allowing yourself to conform to what is expected of you~ Johnny Depp, PE junket in Japan

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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

Unread postby Liz » Mon Aug 25, 2008 4:55 pm

Angelina wrote:Liz
Thanks for sharing about your discussion of the movie (even though I said we would just be discussing the book here).

I’m very sorry, Liz, I didn’t want to break the order of a discussion. :blush: I just was delighted with the quote, because on our forum we haven’t a general opinion, is Corso the devil or not – many people rather would be agree with your opinion about the girl.

No worries, Angelina. I'm really glad you brought this point of view to the discussion because it was something I had not considered. And now I am. If that is how Johnny interpreted the book, then he made a point of indicating that to the audience with his eyes and smile. Or maybe Polanski directed him to do it. I think you guys are good to have picked up on that.

And now I'm thinking that we should go ahead and talk about the two different endings (movie and book) here--if you so wish. Just don't get into the rest of the movie. I'm easy today. :lol:
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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

Unread postby gemini » Mon Aug 25, 2008 7:01 pm

When I read this interview and Johnnys statement, I took it that it was only the movie being discussed and the book and movie differ quite a bit. I will save that for Thursday but just wanted to point out why this interview didn't change my opinion of the book.

Parlez , I think you make a very good point that Corso in the film or movie didn't kill anyone unless you consider that by passing along the information he was indirectly causing deaths. Corso at one point questions the deaths and the girl sort of dismissed them as some things just have to happen. " some castles must burn, Some men must hang."

Why I think she is the devil. Page 342-3 convinced me.
She tells Corso even the devil can adopt different guises. He asks about paying with his soul and she says, You paid long ago. Corso.
She says the devil is no more than Gods pain. Corso says when did it happen? She says I fought for a hundered days and a hundred nights without hope. I retreated surrounded by the others fallen from on high. When he says why me, she says, I win battles only on a scale of five thousand to one. And seducing an idiot has never been worth the trouble.

Corso believes her and even asks before the ending if she wants him to sign a pact. He at one point feels she has the wisdom of the ages.
She considers herself his protector..She must get him through his quest alive so he will be aware of all the facts and freely choose . She says "All I could do was protect you. Everyone has to walk certain paths alone. Haven't you heard of free will?"

I think in Johnnys statement, it is very telling when he says " the viewer is largely ignorant of Corso’s role – and it seems Corso himself is no different"
Corso is obsessed with the intrigue and following the scenario to the end. We follow his downfall. I even think that Corso is aware and may have been in on it, that the Ceniza brothers forged the page and Borja will not succeed.
Johnny is correct when he says "Corso towards the end, turned out to be a cruel, cold man". Look at the last line in the book.
He was laughing under his breath, like a cruel wolf, as he leaned over to light his cigarette. Books play that kind of trick, he thought, And everyone gets the devil he deserves.

Now let me add one silly thought I had...suppose the girl is not the devil and she was just possessed for while by the real devil, just long enough to seduce Corso to the dark side.
I know I read too much science fiction.... :grin:
Last edited by gemini on Tue Aug 26, 2008 4:41 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

Unread postby nebraska » Mon Aug 25, 2008 9:31 pm

All I really care about is that Wednesday I will have free license to watch the 9th Gate again!!!!!!!! :cloud9: Life is good.

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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

Unread postby Buster » Mon Aug 25, 2008 9:57 pm

On the last page...
"But there was no shadow at his feet."
Corso was never the devil, but at the end , he consigned himself to her.

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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Mon Aug 25, 2008 10:00 pm

I think we have as many opinions as we do readers! I read one opinion and am swayed then read the next one and get swayed in that direction. I'm too tired tonight to be very in my thoughts but I am definitely enjoying reading all the different theories! Well done, Noodlemantras! :cool:
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Wow! What a ride!

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Re: TCD Question #22 ~ Johnny on Corso & The Ending

Unread postby Liz » Mon Aug 25, 2008 10:08 pm

nebraska wrote:All I really care about is that Wednesday I will have free license to watch the 9th Gate again!!!!!!!! :cloud9: Life is good.

You might want to make that Tuesday. I'm thinking we could possibly lose another question.
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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