Episode 031 - John Huston Focus:  1956's Moby Dick

 

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Dark Discussions heads to the high seas with one of the greatest yet dark adventure films of all time, John Huston’s 1956’s Moby Dick. The film starring Gregory Peck has a screenplay written by one of America’s greatest authors and was based on the novel written by yet another one of America’s greatest novelists. Ray Bradbury, the science fiction author, weaves an adaption faithful to Herman Melville’s original tale, taking dialogue straight from the source material and not only highlighting the novel’s strengths but bringing a foreboding supernatural sense to a doomed journey lead by a man set out for vengeance against a beast that may be more than just an animal.

The saga of Captain Ahab, a man who but a few years earlier lost not only part of his soul but also his leg during an encounter with the white whale, delves into the depths of such high concept themes as good versus evil, mental illness, the cult of personality, the class system, and man’s place in the universe and whether God exists. John Huston’s screen direction takes a mystical turn in regards to an animal that should not exist never mind the superstition that plays upon the minds of the sailors through such phenomena as St. Elmo’s fire and an animal that appears as a thinking and intelligent monster.

Co-hosts Eric and Philip discuss such topics as megalomania, monomania, anthropomorphism, sociopathology, personality cults, and mental illness as it applies to the two main antagonists, Moby Dick and Captain Ahab. Going through the film and analyzing its themes, Dark Discussions brings to the listeners a view filled with the main elements of any great thriller yet encompassing the plot points of a tale that draws upon Biblical, literary, and classical sources which are filled with existential theories. Once again, Dark Discussions welcomes you listener as we partake in our search of the White Whale!

Download and Play Episode 031 - John Huston Focus: 1956's Moby Dick (2011-11-18)

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