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everettpantaloons

everettpantaloons

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Film Art: An Introduction
David Bordwell, Kristin Thompson
At the Mountains of Madness and Other Tales of Terror - H.P. Lovecraft At the Mountains of Madness is probably the slowest, most boring story I've ever read...well, besides The Sun Also Rises, of course. The first half feels like a geology textbook and the second feels like an architecture textbook.

H.P. Lovecraft never was too fond of dialogue, and all four stories in here feature very little dialogue, if any at all. His writings tend to play out as a narration. This is actually pretty effective though, especially in the title story, being that it makes it feel as if it were an actual log or written account of what happened. So it gives it a great deal of realism, which makes it all the more scary.

Or could make it all the more scary, I should say. H.P. Lovecraft is way too descriptive. I don't know if it's just me, but very rarely does descriptive text form an accurate image in my mind, and rather my mind just shuts off and pays little attention to the text. It's boring.

It does create quite the atmosphere though, which Lovecraft seems to be best at. Nothing in here really scared me because, well...nothing really happened. There was one part I will admit had my heart beating pretty fast but that's about it.

Reading At the Mountains of Madness nearly drove me mad. It's too long, clocking in as Lovecraft's second longest written work. Lovecraft is great in short bursts, which is why the three much shorter stories also included in here are a joy to read. But, over 100 pages of him describing things that I lose grasp of immediately is way too much.

It's also pretty damn annoying when instead of describing the things that would actually probably be worth describing, Lovecraft opts out for "it is beyond man's comprehension" instead.

The thing is also that you have to really get into Lovecraft. It helps to know a bit of the mythos behind his stories, as there a lot of reoccurring names and themes. A great deal is revealed in the title story regarding the mythos. So that's cool.

At the Mountains of Madness isn't a terrible novella, and I'm glad I read it. It's just a bit tiresome to get through.