Monday, April 13, 2015

War Horse

This picture is of my friend's beautiful horse, Stormer.

I recent-ish-ly got to see the play War Horse with a friend and her family when the play came to Cape Town, and shortly thereafter I got to see the movie also.  The acting for both was great, and the story very moving, but the play was especially impressive to me.  Because it's a play, they use puppets instead of live horses, which did not sound especially thrilling to me (I was picturing the fuzzy little hand-kind of puppets :)), but these are not your average puppets, and what I was pleased about: they're made in South Africa!  (Instead of trying to describe them, I think I'll just attach a picture from the Facebook page of War Horse - click here to see more:

It takes 3 puppeteers to get each of these horses to come alive, but they are so
good at what they do - making Joey move as a life-like horse - that by the end
of the play you really forget they are even there!

The play was spectacular, and easy to get into, (inspite of my grim determination to survive a 'tear-jerker' without crying - I went thinking the horse died at the end, but he didn't! - and I did make it, just barely, if for no other reason than being terrified of losing my contacts again :)) the story and acting engaging - at times tragic and at times funny - and I loved the musical pieces, especially the soloist.  The only thing I had against the play and movie was the occasional language, which was totally unnecessary.

The story is of a boy, Albert, and his horse, Joey, and what happens when they are separated by World War I. (check out Wikipedia for a more detailed story outline here: There are slightly different plot twists between the movie and play (and the book, too, I've heard), and unfortunately the movie also has a few bad words, but is better than the play in that respect, I think, and the filming and scenery is amazing.

Anyway, to wrap this up, even with the beautiful story, ultimately you get the idea life is rather hopeless.  Horses are nice animals, but horses die.  So do people, as the War Horse story so poignantly reminds.  What is the point?  The point is that there's more to life than doing good and being happy and having peace - or maybe I should say more after life.  And it's just plain tragic watching even people just acting die hopeless, "Only remembered for what we (they) have done…"  Ultimately it's God who controls our safety, and so, so much more than that.