Thursday, July 16, 2009

The River Why

I just finished reading the novel by David James Duncan, The River Why. It was written nearly 30 years ago, yet still resonates in the literary world today. Just look at the hundreds of pages of reviews you will find on any popular online bookstore, and you see what I mean. I'll be honest, I don't read a lot of books, especially fiction, but when I came across a review online about how the critics are comparing it to Norman Maclean's A River Runs Through It, I just had to get my hands on a copy. I have yet to read Maclean's Novella, but I have seen the movie multiple times, and thoroughly enjoyed it. And when I read that a movie was in production for The River Why as of July 2008, I figured it was good timing for me to read the book to then see the motion picture. First of all, I just want to say that in my opinion, The River Why is probably the best novel I have ever read. Like I said before, I don't read very often, but this one has to top my list. It's a story about a young man named Gus, the Motzart of fly fishing, who leaves his parents once graduating high school to fulfill his dream of fishing his "Ideal Schedule". Along the way he becomes empty and numb by his quest of fishing and begins to search for things to fill his life, rather than just fish. It's a truly remarkable and hysterical story of a boy who becomes a man by the age of 20 living alone in a cabin in the fictional Tamanawis Valley along the Tamanawis River, who finds self-discovery, love, a passion and meaning for life and above all, God which he first refers to "Nameless" and finally "The Line of Light." If you have yet to read this book, I strongly encourage you to look for a copy and read it now. You will not regret it. There is a lot of fishing, and more fishing, but the book is not only for the fishermen/women at heart, but for anybody who wants to open their minds and hearts to the possibilities we as humans are capable of. For those of you who have read it, read it again. I can see myself picking it up again very soon.

Secondly, As for the movie which has yet to have a release date determined, some controversy revolves around it. As with any book turned screenplay, many hard-core River Why fans want it left to the readers imaginations and not how some Hollywood writer/producer/director will portray this literary masterpiece. Also, rumors say Duncan, the author filed a lawsuit against the producer Kristi Denton Cohen for copyright infringement by taking the story from the publisher, Sierra Club Books without Duncan's authorization. Throughout a series of court hearings, it is said Duncan settled out of court and was paid an undisclosed amount of money. With this being said, the film under this production company apparently still has the rights and is currently in post-production. The film was directed without any help or direction by Duncan himself. Though Duncan stated in an interview, he has already made arrangements with a well-known producer and director and plans on working side by side to be sure his story is told the way it should be. Either way, I am exited for the film(s) to hit the big screen. With the casting of the beautiful Amber Heard as "Eddy", Gus's love interest, I'm sure one look at her and the critics will forget about all this nonsense and watch with their tongues dangling on the floor.

"Scene with Eddy from The River Why"

For more info on the movie, Click Here!

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