Looking forward to Mortal Engines!


tom attacks the shrike drawing

You may have read a book called Mortal Engines.

You may have thought that book and its three sequels were pretty awesome.

Someone else read those books and thought they were pretty awesome.

Their name?

Peter Jackson.

You can see where this is going right? Yes, Peter Jackson is making his own version of Phillip Reeve's novel about giant mechanical cities that roam a desolate waste land, looking for prey.

That's the backdrop to the adventure any way. Mortal Engines is the story of two oddly star crossed teenagers, Tom and Hester, who find themselves in great peril when they are both cast from the giant Traction City of London and the undead Stalker called Shrike is sent to find and kill them both.

Sounds straight forward a story? You'd think so but chuck in mysteries around an ancient weapon called the Medusa, some political games and some down right dirty tricks from the Mayor of London and the dashing but diabolical Thaddeus Valentine and the Mortal Engines movie is going to be one hell of a ride along.



Those this movie is a Peter Jackson led production, it is actually been directed by Jackson's protege, Christian Rivers. Rivers won an Oscar for his work on King Kong and was in line to direct a remake of the war classic The Dambusters so it's awesome to see the faith Peter has for him by letting him sit in the director's chair.

Some big names have been cast to play key roles.

Avatar's Stephen Lang and Lord of the Rings alumni Hugo Weaving are the name characters whilst Hera Hilmar has nabbed the key lead role of Hester Ness, Katherine Valentine is played by actress Leila George and the Anti-traction agent Anna Fang is played by South Korean singer-actress Jihae. It's an interesting side note to note that the Anna Fang character was partly based on Han Solo.

The thing we love the most about the novel, and what we are greatly looking forward to seeing in the movie is the concept of Municipal Darwinism.

The traction cities are the municipal part of the concept (or conceit as we see it). They are organized communities that follow their own laws and customs. For instance the city of London follows an Elizabethan hierarchy of structure. In General, the larger 'predator cities' look to consume smaller cities for their resources. Physical resources are used for fuel or re-utilised within the city.

Humans living on the captured cities can be enslaved or used as a source of protein and eaten.

That's right, eaten.

The main theory of Municipal Darwinism is a predator and prey cycle; if the bigger city or town is faster than the smaller, the smaller town will caught and then be eaten.

Can't wait for that to be shown on the big screen!

We also think the assassin monster known as Shrike is going to be a pretty key character. He's the face of evil in the book. Or is he? There's some mystery about this character?

The Stalkers of Mortal Engines are a kind of 'universal soldier' combatant that can be programmed for warfare and assassination. Stalkers and their variations play various parts in each of Philip Reeve's Quartet of Mortal Engines, Predator's Gold, Infernal Devices and A Darkling Plain.

Who is Shrike? Who is his true master and is he in control of his own destiny? We can only imagine he will be designed to be as scary as some of the dark beasts found in Lord of the Rings, such as the Mouth of Sauron

Cant. Hardly. Wait.

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