My Top Ten Movies (and what they say about/to me…)
by Jade Kerrion
Coming up with my top ten movies was easy (though I did cheat a bit by including trilogies.) I just had to pick the ones I saw over and over again, never tiring of them. Ranking them however would be too hard, so I’m not even going to try. So here, in alphabetical order:
Avengers: A host of dazzling characters, each unique and charged with depth of personality, combined with a brilliant script and equally brilliant editing. The dialogue is tight and witty, and there’s not a wasted scene or moment anywhere to be found in this tension-packed movie. What that says about/to me: Despite being something of a couch potato, I really am an adrenaline-junkie at heart, and that authors have to be dedicated to excellence, in writing and editing, in order to make their work truly shine.
Evita: Now, this musical, starring Antonio Banderas and Madonna, is an unusual contender. Frankly, I was surprised when it made the list, but Evita is indeed one of those movies that I will see time and time again. The story of Evita is interesting of course, but I think what grabs me is the parallel with Madonna’s rags-to-riches story. Madonna was insistent on playing Evita, and I think she truly did an outstanding job. What that says to me: You will never quite know what about your characters resonate with readers, but the more real you make them—with strengths, weaknesses, and an abundance of facets—the more likely your readers will connect with them.
Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children: This anime, a spin-off from the video game Final Fantasy VII, is an unusual contender in this list, considering I never played the video game. Still, I consider Final Fantasy: Advent Children an outstanding example of the beauty of anime. The art is stunning, and the action leaves you breathless. I think though, the main reason I love this movie is because of Cloud Strife. What that says about me: I have a tender spot for broken heroes with a tortured past and hopeless future, who somehow find it in themselves to keep fighting to safeguard the ones they love. Danyael, my muse and the protagonist of the Double Helix series, is one such man.
How to Train Your Dragon: This is one of two animated movies in my list. I never read the book, but the movie is another example of an excellent script (and as I’ve heard it said, significantly different from and better than the book.) In the book, Hiccup befriends a tiny Garden Dragon, about the size of a puppy. In the movie, Hiccup befriends the awe-inspiring Night Fury, the rarest and deadliest of all dragons. Hiccup’s internal voice is humorous and self-deprecating, but really, the entirety of the plot makes the movie shine. What that says to me: Unless your story tackles the biggest challenges, you’ll never have the best story you can have…
The Lord of the Rings (Trilogy): Yes, I know, it’s really three movies and absurdly long movies at that (especially if you’re viewing the expanded edition) but I do consider these movies a single unit. From the lyrical flow of The Fellowship of the Ring, to the raw glimpses of humanity in The Two Towers, and finally, driven to the edge of despair and victory in The Return of the Kind, the Lord of the Rings is a masterpiece and a monument to the vision and brilliance of the two men behind this amazing movie trilogy: J.R.R. Tolkien and Peter Jackson. What that says about me: If you ever want to know why the novels in my award-winning Double Helix series have trailing hooks into the next book, all I have to say is, “I learned from the best!”
Star Wars (The Original Trilogy): Star Wars will also have a soft spot in my heart despite being loaded with archetypal characters and predictable plots. Star Wars (A New Hope) redefined science fiction movies; imagine the delighted awe of the audience when the seemingly never-ending length of the Imperial Star Destroyer stretched across the scene. George Lucas was, however, was convinced that Star Wars was going to crash and burn. Apparently he didn’t even attend the movie’s launch. Star Wars however launched a franchise that was eventually purchased by Disney for $4 billion—not too shabby. What that says to me: Be true to your creative vision. You never know the many ways it could grow into $4 billion. Also, for all writers out there, Star Wars is the best example you will find of the Hero’s Journey, within each movie, and across the series.
Jade Kerrion unites cutting-edge science and bioethics with fast-paced action in her award-winning Double Helix series. Perfection Unleashed and its sequels, Perfect Betrayal and Perfect Weapon, have been described as “a breakout piece of science fiction” and drawn rave reviews for their originality and vision. Her novel, When the Silence Ends, is a Young Adult spinoff the Double Helix series. She is also the author of Earth-Sim, a whimsical and compelling view of Earth’s history through the eyes of the two students assigned to manage our planet.
What reviewers are saying: 5 Stars! “What a fantastic book by Jade Kerrion, it grabbed me from the very first page…Ms Kerrion’s writing is exciting and well paced to keep you wanting to know more…”
Jem Moran has a reputation to prove and a secret to protect. The prestigious world simulation program seems the answer to both her problems, but only if she can succeed in spite of her partner, Kir Davos, and the uncooperative human beings who populate her planet. From the Great Extinction to the Renaissance, from world wars to intergalactic treaties, Jem’s conflict with Kir will shape Earth’s history, and their opposing management styles will either save or doom our planet. Either way, you finally have someone to blame for the shape our world is in.
Genre - Young Adult, Science Fiction (G)
What Amazon reviewers are saying: 5 stars! “Wow! When the Silence Ends is captivating! I laughed, I cried, but overall I could not put it down… Forget Harry Potter and Twilight. Every young adult should read this book!”
When you choose your friends, you also choose your enemies.
Seventeen-year old Dee wants nothing more than to help her twin brother, Dum, break free from the trauma in their childhood and speak again, but the only person who can help Dum is the alpha empath, Danyael Sabre, whom the U.S. government considers a terrorist and traitor.
The search for Danyael will lead Dee and Dum from the sheltered protection of the Mutant Affairs Council and into the violent, gang-controlled heart of Anacostia. Ensnared by Danyael’s complicated network of friends and enemies, Dee makes her stand in a political and social war that she is ill equipped to fight. What can one human, armed only with her wits and pepper spray, do against the super-powered mutants who dominate the Genetic Revolution?
America, nevertheless, is ripe for transformation. Exhausted by decades of belligerence between humans and their genetic derivatives—the clones, in vitros, and mutants—society is on the verge of falling apart or growing up. Dee, with her sassy attitude and smart mouth, is the unwitting pebble that starts the avalanche of change. In her quest to help her brother become normal, Dee will finally learn what it means to be extraordinary.
When the Silence Ends is the Young Adult spinoff in the award-winning Double Helix series and can be read as a standalone novel.
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Genre - Young Adult, Science Fiction (PG)