Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Chapter 4

While reading this book as it is, I keep thinking of how it might be as a movie. Due to the nature of the visuals, this has to be moving paintings, not moving pictures. If this gets outsourced to a shop that sends back the usual flat faces one finds in animation, it will be terrible. It takes a lot to draw an expressive face. Matena's adaptation of Kaas is built around expressive faces. Even the shots of the man reading the letter add to the story.

While reading this short chapter, I listened to many Dutch language podcasts and watched today's nieuws. I keep trying to pound the language into my head. I understand more than in the past, but quite a bit goes by.

The story gets poignant in Chapter 4. We can see why the protagonist (Is his name Oscar? I saw a panel that makes me wonder.) gets taken in. He wants to be somebody. His skeptical wife makes some remarks I didn't quite understand. What seems to be good news isn't taken well. This is a man who was hired shortly after 1900 and rode out WWI. It seems he would have a lot to be proud of, but even during a depression, it's hard to stay at the bottom of the totem pole, especially after so long.

He visualizes saying, "Goodbye," to his friends at the bar. He wants his wife to share in his joy, but she is leery.

The chapter ends with him getting a telegram summoning him to the Hornstra company in Amsterdam. Although there is a promise to reimburse his expenses, it looks daunting.

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