Sunday, October 16, 2005
Tonight, for the third time, I watched the movie Merlin – with Sam Neill playing Merlin and Isabella Rossellini playing Nimue. Bittersweet: it’s a good script and serious acting, and I cried when Merlin and Nimue finally got together in the end (always to me at least, a sign of a “good” film).
But the take on the Arthurian legends is pure god-tripe. Morgan Le Fay is bad; The Lady of the Lake is physically weak; and Guinivere is morally weak. End of story about the women. The men are (as always in patriarchal society) the shining stars, here.
I’ve been spoiled by Marion Bradley Zimmer’s The Mists of Avalon. In Zimmer’s book, Morgan is the central character. It’s been a while since I’ve read the book, but in my memory, Morgan is strong, complex, compassionate, good, and Goddess centered. Avalon is a magic island where the last of the goddess religion resides. Morgan is a priestess there. The book stands out like a shining star among books I’ve read over a lifetime.
If you haven’t read Mists of Avalon, please do. I promise – you won’t be disappointed. You can get copies at Amazon.com for under $2.00, plus S&H. And I just discovered that Zimmer has written sequels to Mists! Oh, goodie, goodie!!! I ordered them, and when they arrive I’ll be in Goddess Heaven!