March 2, 2012--Of all the movies in the world to refer to, this one gives away the ending to Moby Dick.
In a review of the new movie "Dr. Seuss' The Lorax" by Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times Film Critic, of all the movies to reference a change from the source material, he chose Moby Dick.
"Movies always have monkeyed around with their source material— a 1930 version of " Moby Dick" had Ahab kill the whale and return home to his girlfriend — but it's hard to remember one that actually apologized before the fact for what it was about to do."
He didn't choose the happy ending of Grisham's The Firm with Tom Cruise. He didn't choose some of the little things in the Lord of the Rings movies like Arwen, not the seriously bad changes in The Running Man movie, not even the horrible Supergirl movie, or probably hundreds of others. He chose Moby Dick.
This means that the basic plot is ubiquitous. Especially the ending is known to all, I remember guessing so horribly when my teacher in seventh grade asked me what happened to Ahab (I sheepishly and in full question-voice muttered, "He died?"). I basically got it right, didn't I?
The thing is that the reviewer's opening statement ruins two items if the reader had never experienced them before--the 1930 movie and the book, because the ending of the book has to be opposite. However, the reviewer probably also chose these because no one today will take the time to see a 1930 movie (you know what I mean--there is a specific audience that watches old 1930s movies and most of today's populace simply will not watch movies in black and white anymore) and no one, NO ONE, will read the book of Moby Dick anyway. So this was a safe choice because nobody needs spoiler warnings for Moby Dick.
And I see what the reviewer is driving at. The Lorax apparently comes right out and says it is going to be different than the original book. It probably has to, especially after the horrors that were the live-action Grinch Who Stole Christmas and The Cat in the Hat. See, now nobody can simply come out and say that it was just too different from the book version. Well, they told you it was gonna be different!
I have to hunt down that 1930 Moby Dick now. Let's go see if it is at Archive.org.