I personally like movie adaptations of books. Although most movie adaptations fail to capture the essence of the book, I think its forgivable because noone can really beat the scenes you can imagine in your head especially if your the kind of person who likes to read a lot. By now, the images you can conjure in your mind could probably be the next top-grossing 3D movie if only it can come to reality, right? Well, at least I think mine does. (lol)
As a teacher why do I like movie adaptations? Because it makes a good enrichment activity or a shared activity during Literacy day. Movie time in school is when kids can sit down in front of the screen in the classroom using a projector to simulate the "big screen" effect and the class, together with the head teacher's supervision, can prepare popcorn and drinks so that everybody can enjoy a nice movie. Hopefully after the movie, the audience can enjoy a short review and discussion of what they liked and did not like about the movie, how it compares with the book they read and what the kids want to read and watch next time.
During those days when I share these moments with my students, I truly believe that we can capture the essence of genuine love for literature. Because during those times we can appreciate how rich literature is and we thank the heavens for authors who were born to write books like these. But then I also wonder, when will we have books or something even better than these books in Filipino so that we can also re-create these kind of experiences for Filipino literature? I am staying hopeful.
The movie "Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole" is an adaptation based on the epic fantasy series written by Kathryn Lasky. There are about 15 books in this series which ended in 2008. For the movie adaptation, the first three books will be made into 3D-movies namely:
Guardians of Ga'Hoole Book 1: The Capture (2002)
Guardians of Ga'Hoole Book 2: The Journey (2003)
Guardians of Ga'Hoole Book 3: The Rescue (2004)
Kathryn Lansky - author of Guardians of Ga'Hoole
Kathryn Lasky is a multi-awarded author. She also received a Newberry honor for her book Sugaring Time. A Newberry honor is given to authors who have made significant contribution to American Literature for children. Here in the Philippines, our counterpart will be The Carlos Palanca Memorial Award for Literature for Short Story for Children in English and Filipino Language (Maikling Kathang Pambata).
For the movie, Zack Snyder has taken the story under his direction. Zack Snyder's credentials include movies such as Dawn of the Dead, 300 and Watchmen. Based on the trailer I watched, expect that the special effects of the movie Legend of the Guardian will be a little dark and maybe intimidating for very small children. Be careful that we don't let them think that there are good and bad owls in real life. Zack Snyder is also one of the founders of a production company called "Cruel and Unusual films". Snyder has made an impression on fight scenes where he slowed down the crucial points of the fight as seen in the movie 300.
Below is the plot of the movie according to Wikepedia
Soren (Jim Sturgess) is a young adventurous owl who loves hearing stories from his father Noctus (Hugo Weaving) about the legend of the Guardians of Ga'Hoole, a legendary alliance of owls that are sworn to protect the Kingdom of Ga'Hoole. His younger sister Eglantine (Adrienne de Faria) is enamoured by these stories, but his older brother Kludd (Ryan Kwanten) is jealous of the attention Soren receives. One night after accidentally pushing each other off of a tree branch, Soren and Kludd are captured and taken to The Pure Ones, lead by the evil Metalbeak (Joel Edgerton) and his mate Nyra (Helen Mirren).
After finding out that the Guardians of Ga'Hoole truly exist and that Metalbeak and Nyra are planning to lead an army of Pure Ones to fight against the Guardians due to their belief of Barn Owls being the purest of all owl races, with the help of the Pure Ones librarian Grimble (also Hugo Weaving), Soren escapes the Academy with Elf Owl Gylfie (Emily Barclay) and journeys onwards to the Great Ga'Hoole Tree, meeting and befriending Great Grey Owl Twilight (Anthony LaPaglia) and Burrowing Owl Digger (David Wenham) and reunite with Mrs. Plithiver (Miriam Margolyes) along the way.
Upon arriving at the Tree, Soren and his friends find themselves in training to help fight against the Pure Ones, with help from wise Whiskered Screech owl Ezylryb (Geoffrey Rush): Soren is devastated to realize that Kludd has been convinced to fight against him alongside Metalbeak and Nyra.
In my research about the book, I stumbled upon the official website of the movie hosted by Scholastic Bookstore. The website's name is http://scholastic.com/gahoole/
When you check out the sites' tab, teachers can download discussion guides prepared by Scholastic. There is also an on-line game and printable stuff that can be used as waiting activities for children such as scrambled words, matching games, and many more. There is also a detailed description of the author, Kathryn Lasky.
To get more information of how to get a copy of the Guardians of Ga'Hoole series here in the Philippines, you may contact the Philippines' Scholastic branch
Prestige Tower, F. Ortigas Jr. Road
Ortigas Center, Pasig City, Philippines
Watch the premier of the movie Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole and plan that movie date with your children. Have fun!
Watch the trailer of Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole