Leonardo DiCaprio + Brave New World = *squeee*

Word on the Hollywood street has it that the first love of my little girl life, Leonardo DiCaprio, is teaming up with Ridley Scott to make a new film version of one of my favourite books ( …top 5 ever) Brave New World!

Yea, so now you understand my “*squeee*”

I mean c’mon…it’s Romeo, Jack, Luke, Amsterdam, Howard, Frank, Louis…*dreamy sigh*

Either way, I love Brave New World by Aldous Huxley… like a lot. I have this complete fascination with dystopian societies and utopian creations. So much so, when I heard (thanks Lauren!) about this film and that the delectable Leonardo DiCaprio was teaming up with Ridley Scott to make this, I shrieked…literally.

Every 11th grader in the United States, college bound, should have read this book and I can’t help but wish, hope and pray that this new Brave New World isn’t going to be the atrocity that was the made-for-television movie from 1998 starring Peter Gallagher.

Brave New World is too good for that and IMDB says it’s scheduled to be out in 2011. This is around the same time as the Deathly Hallows. Oh my goodness, two of my favourite things in one summer (I think?) that should be loveliness at its finest!

I wonder who Leonardo will play. Will he be the heathen? Or will he be the respected businessman?

What is it? Why do I love it? Why should you be excited about it too?

Image by Sasha H. Muradali. All Rights Reserved 2009.

This is actually the version I own 🙂

 

I’m not going to give you a summary because that woud spoil the fun. 🙂

The Basics:

First published in 1931, Brave New World is based in London in AD 2540 (632 A.F. in the book). It depicts the developments in society that have changed so drastically from what we know our world to be today. This is a classic science fiction novel that warns us about society’s lust to “move forward.” The tone of the story moves rapidly from a detached, matter-of-fact voice (Bernard) to one of humility (John, the “savage”.) It ends with the Controller explaining why none of John’s arguments against the current “civilization” are accurate or meriting.

Overall, the message of Huxley’s work is more than clear, but complex. With intermingling themes and upper-crusted language, this is one book you absolutely must read.

Key themes:

Quite simply society using technology, the inability of happiness and truth to work together, and the dangers of an all-powerful state, a New World Order, so to speak.

Symbolism:

A drug called “soma” is a symbol for instant gratification and pleasure. In the novel it is used to control the population of the World State. It also signifies the extreme influence of technology on society.

Motifs:

Sex, Shakespeare and disattachment.

Consumerism:

Brave New World isn’t just about a warning on what could happen to society, it is also a satire of society. Something that even in 1932 is just as relevant today. In the novel, the World State’s citizens appear cruel, shameless and at times…bizarre, for lack of a better term. It’s very obvious to the reader the world in the novel is one of extremes. [Have you read the pages of Perez Hilton recently?]

However, that being said – it digs into society’s economic values and wants, to satisfy needs (even creating new ones.)

Think about it – myself included, those of us on Twitter, for example, how many of us had a mini-freak out when it broke last week?

*Raise your hands, one at a time, please.*

The New World Order:

Just like 1984, Fahrenheit 451, Anthem and The Giver, Huxley’s novel is a clear illustration of dystopia and an all-powerful state controlling behavior and the actions of people in order for “it” to maintain its own power.

One of the main differences between Brave New World and the other novels is that the state uses technology by creating people and even killing them. It also controls them by soma, making them superficially happy – not by brute force. This is the reason the humans in the novel have a loss of “humanity:” they have no morality, there is a loss of dignity, values are extinct and they are, most of the time, emotionless.

Little Pink Book’s Rating: 5 of 5 stars

Other similar books we recommend:-

The Giver by Lois Lowry

Anthem by Ayn Rand

Time Machine by HG Wells

The Stranger by Albert Camus

1984 by George Orwell

Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Thanks to Peter for helping me compile a list 🙂

–

Sasha Muradali runs the ‘Little Pink Book’ . She holds a B.S. in Public Relations from the University of Florida (’07) and an M.A. in International Administration from the University of Miami(’08). She loves Twitter and all things social media, so you should find her @SashaHalima.

Copyright © 2009 Sasha H. Muradali. All Rights Reserved

Comments

  1. I heard about this a few weeks ago, it would be awesome if Leo does star in it!

  2. laurenfernandez says:

    I read this book for school in my honors 10th grade English – and loved it. The next year, we read 1984. Two books in my top 5, and I think Leo would be great in the film.

    And you're welcome for telling you about it! I heart Leo – my fave? The Man in the Iron Mask. So good.

  3. Rich Pulvino says:

    Hi Sasha,

    I'm also a huge fan of Brave New World and of Aldous Huxley's other writings, and I have to say I am very skeptical of this movie for two reasons.

    While DiCaprio is a fantastic actor, Ridley Scott has recently gone the way of the epic blockbuster, resulting in his movies losing the emotion and passion they once had in immaginative cult classics like Alien and Blade Runner, two of the greatest sci-fi movies of all-time.

    The other point that worries me is that Hollywood has a poor track record when it comes to adapting classic sci-fi/social commentary novels. War of the Worlds, The Time Machine, Slaughterhouse-Five and Catch-22 are perfect examples of this. Thank god they haven't tried to make 1984 a movie yet.

    Regardless of my cynacism towards Hollywood and science fiction, I can guarentee that I will still be going to see Brave New World in the theater. It's been a long time since Ridley Scott has done a sci-fi movie (and the ones he has directed are amazing), so hopefully he and DiCaprio can properly translate this literary masterpiece into a cinamatic classic. I'll keeping a close eye on the IMDB updates : )

  4. Well said, Rich! Me too!!!

  5. Rich Pulvino says:

    Hi Sasha,

    I'm also a huge fan of Brave New World and of Aldous Huxley's other writings, and I have to say I am very skeptical of this movie for two reasons.

    While DiCaprio is a fantastic actor, Ridley Scott has recently gone the way of the epic blockbuster, resulting in his movies losing the emotion and passion they once had in immaginative cult classics like Alien and Blade Runner, two of the greatest sci-fi movies of all-time.

    The other point that worries me is that Hollywood has a poor track record when it comes to adapting classic sci-fi/social commentary novels. War of the Worlds, The Time Machine, Slaughterhouse-Five and Catch-22 are perfect examples of this. Thank god they haven't tried to make 1984 a movie yet.

    Regardless of my cynacism towards Hollywood and science fiction, I can guarentee that I will still be going to see Brave New World in the theater. It's been a long time since Ridley Scott has done a sci-fi movie (and the ones he has directed are amazing), so hopefully he and DiCaprio can properly translate this literary masterpiece into a cinamatic classic. I'll keeping a close eye on the IMDB updates : )

  6. Well said, Rich! Me too!!!

  7. laurenfernandez says:

    I read this book for school in my honors 10th grade English – and loved it. The next year, we read 1984. Two books in my top 5, and I think Leo would be great in the film.

    And you're welcome for telling you about it! I heart Leo – my fave? The Man in the Iron Mask. So good.

  8. Rich Pulvino says:

    Hi Sasha,

    I'm also a huge fan of Brave New World and of Aldous Huxley's other writings, and I have to say I am very skeptical of this movie for two reasons.

    While DiCaprio is a fantastic actor, Ridley Scott has recently gone the way of the epic blockbuster, resulting in his movies losing the emotion and passion they once had in immaginative cult classics like Alien and Blade Runner, two of the greatest sci-fi movies of all-time.

    The other point that worries me is that Hollywood has a poor track record when it comes to adapting classic sci-fi/social commentary novels. War of the Worlds, The Time Machine, Slaughterhouse-Five and Catch-22 are perfect examples of this. Thank god they haven't tried to make 1984 a movie yet.

    Regardless of my cynacism towards Hollywood and science fiction, I can guarentee that I will still be going to see Brave New World in the theater. It's been a long time since Ridley Scott has done a sci-fi movie (and the ones he has directed are amazing), so hopefully he and DiCaprio can properly translate this literary masterpiece into a cinamatic classic. I'll keeping a close eye on the IMDB updates : )

  9. Well said, Rich! Me too!!!