I think if a person steps back and recognizes that a book is a separate beast from the movie it spawns then they can appreciate both separate forms more. I think Ernest Cline thinks that too. Why else would he fully embed the film version of The Shining into the Ready Player One script he helped create. He knew–he had to know–that what Spielberg was trying to accomplish was an entirely different bit of storytelling than what he already created. He knew Spielberg would play to his strengths much in the same way his longtime friend and fellow filmmaker Stanley Kubrick did with all of his adaptations. He knew this because Ernest Cline is a thinker, and that is why I am convinced that the film version of Ready Player One is a giant easter egg. I’m still trying to crack it.
On the surface, RPO takes on the decayed smell of the easter egg nobody ever found. The acting falls terribly flat and the plot takes on a direction so distant from the book as to be nearly unrecognizable. Still, there are several solid scenes that remind me of Spielberg’s prowess, and moments throughout that convince me that I am in fact being punked. At one point the creator of the hunt, Halladay, drops the 4th wall and has a direct communication with the audience. That is the moment I knew the game was afoot. There were clues before, but that one sold it.
So, it isn’t a good movie but it is pretty and I’m pretty sure there’s more hidden in that script than I figured on first glance.
- Infrequent readers of the blog might suspect I hate my kids. Nope. I love my kids. They are, however, a handful. A big ole handful. Too big. Especially after a certain hour at which time they legitimately turn into gremlins, regardless of age.