Last book of 2016!
Title: High Rise
Author: J.G. Ballard
Genre: Science Fiction?
Rating: 4/5 stars Movie: 4/5 stars
Reading Challenges: Book to Movie
When a class war erupts inside a luxurious apartment block, modern elevators become violent battlegrounds and cocktail parties degenerate into marauding attacks on “enemy” floors. In this visionary tale, human society slips into violent reverse as once-peaceful residents, driven by primal urges, re-create a world ruled by the laws of the jungle.
Wow! I am still reeling from this slim volume. Ballard packs a seriously intensive punch in this story. At first everything thing in the high rise seems about right. But quickly things break down and then things get crazy. I was not expecting the intensity or pace of this one. Reminded me of a more adult version of Lord of the Flies. Ballard raises some very interesting questions about the nature of humanity and constructs of society. I would not recommend this book to everyone, but I very much enjoyed the journey.
The movie definitely changed some aspects of the books, but kept the spirit of the story. I think the changes made sense when it came to adapting a very strange book to the screen. The movie created a bit more plot to move along the storyline and character development. You get a little less introspection and narration, but make up for it with more screen time for some of the other characters. My favorite parts of the movie were the set dressing and overall look and the editing. The super imposing structure of the high rise is carried through to the interior sets. Very eye catching! I especially loved Laing's apartment juxtaposed with Wilder and Helen's apartment. Finally, the editing was fantastic. The movie starts with traditional-length scenes and slowly devolves into almost a montage-like pace. As the society in the high rise devolves we get more and more sharp cuts and fragments of scenes. Definitely an interesting movie! I can't believe that it only got two stars on Netflix.