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Captain Haddock: How about a movie?

#1 · Posted: 31 Oct 2018 16:31 · Edited by: Moderator
There have been several adaptations of Tintin to the silver screen, most often with the Captain as his sidekick.
The Captain has always been liked by most of the Tintin fans, while some even prefers him over the boy reporter. So why not a film of his own?

This is not a random idea, either.
A broken drunk captain kept captive on his own ship to a respected civilian living in a stately manor, his story of rejuvenation and new hope in his imperfect life (unlike Tintin) surely has a lot of potential.

With Tintin playing second-fiddle, we could experience the different and quite contrasting ideas of the Captain during their adventures.
And looking at the Tintiniverse through the point of view of, well, not Tintin, is surely viable and will shake things up a bit.

So what do the others think? Are you willing to see the Captain take the driving wheel?
#2 · Posted: 1 Nov 2018 00:54
Are you suggesting a film based on the books but seen from Haddock's point of view?

The problem is that, as I see it, much of the action is split between him and Tintin anyway. For much of the time they are joined to the hip, but when they separate the story can be hard to follow if you see it from the view of one but not the other: in "Destination Moon" for instance, the scene of Tintin being shot by one of the parachutists is best seen rather than just described - as he does to Haddock and Baxter in the hospital.

A film based on an original adventure in which he features without Tintin might work. The problem is that I have noticed that when a third party writes a story based on another writer's characters, he does not always get the essence of those characters. I have a friend who loved the original James Bond novels by Ian Fleming but dismisses those written by other writers.

A Haddock story would probably look at his early life and how he became a sailor and an alcoholic. There tends to be a lot of such prequels such as the young Indiana Jones, the young Darth Vader, the young James Bond or the young Endeavour Morse.

Personally, I do not find such a concept very satisfactory. If the writer includes in the prequel references to the original series - Haddock's relationship with Chester for instance and the origin of their greeting ritual - then maybe it would work, but some of these prequels tend to be just cash-ins with little or no connection.
#3 · Posted: 1 Nov 2018 16:19
I agree that pastiches never match the originals and I also agree that a movie about the Captain's past should not be made (and the less we discuss it, the better.)

No, what I am talking about is the actual subplot of the Captain's life as we see in the books (where Tintin is essential, by the way). The turn of fate and fortune (thanks to Tintin), the consequences of his past life (with little innovative flashbacks of his heydays and subsequent downfall) and his ultimate faith on the man who gave him a new lease on life is what I am talking about. His life of ups and downs, hope and despair,friendship and betrayal most certainly would enable us to see the Tintiniverse in a more mature and different light and the fun part is that it was always there in the comics.

Spielberg tried to do something of the sort in his movie. That is what I am talking about, but in a much grander scale with the Captain's life as a whole rather than bits and pieces of it sprinkled throughout the books. And of course, we can put in some bashi-bazouks to up the humour quoitent. It is quite risky but I believe it would be worth taking it, I guess.
#4 · Posted: 2 Nov 2018 12:46
You say:
a movie about the Captain's past should not be made (and the less we discuss it, the better.)

But then say:
the consequences of his past life (with little innovative flashbacks of his heydays and subsequent downfall)

These seem to be highly contradictory aims, impossible to reconcile.

I really don't think you could create a credible narrative based on what we see of the Captain in the books. He serves a purpose within the structure of the books we have, but there isn't any hint of an exterior or interior life beyond that.

It's not like Hergé set him up as some kind of enigma, always teasing about events in his past, talking of his old days at sea, or his time in the Navy or suchlike; he rarely if ever calls on past experience to reconcile a situation, or solve a problem.

Anything that was put together would have to be created out of whole cloth, and that doesn't appeal, to be honest.

I'll pass!

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