Apart from the scene where the boy’s love magically brings the space angel back to life, “E.T.: The Extraterrestrial” is a perfectly realistic portrayal of what would happen if small children found and adopted a lost alien. They would feed it candy and beer for three days, and then it would fucking die.
I read Stephen King’s “Under The Dome”, and it was one of the worst books I’ve ever been unable to put down. Finished it in about three days.
It’s got all the things King has ever been bad at: hamhanded social commentary, beyond-clunky pop-culture references, attempts at slang that read like a guidance counselor attempting to be a “groovy cat” with his “young-adult peeps” down at the “community center, yo”.
So why couldn’t I stop reading it? I guess because of the things King is still good at: ratcheting up tension and describing horrific violence in a very entertaining way.
The only thing I got out of it was some metatextual nonsense that I’m almost sure King never intended. At the end, we find out that the small town of Chester’s Mill and all its people have been sealed inside an impenetrable force field to tear each other apart for the amusement of some extraterrestrial child-gods. Like ants under a magnifying glass, a simile King employs about eight more times than is actually necessary to get the point across. More than that, though, I was watching these fictional ants scurry, and the book was my magnifying glass. Am I culpable in some graduate-school-y way for the suffering of these characters? Am I like the audience watching “Funny Games”, only more entertained?
I used to have to write whole papers about this kind of stuff. Now I like being able to stop after a couple half-assed paragraphs.