Pobby and Dingan. (and the scariest movie I’ve ever seen)
While I’m crawling my way through Kazuo Ishiguro’s The Unconsoled (which will certainly get a post of its own, when I finish it – in this lifetime or the next 😛 ) I’ll write about this tiny book I read last Sunday on a park bench – when it was still warm enough to read on park benches.
Pobby and Dingan – about 100 pages, takes only a couple of hours to read, tops. And it’s about a little girl and her family, living in a small Australian town, where the main industry is opal mining. This little girl has two imaginary friends – Pobby and Dingan – and, because she talks to them all the time and people like her, they start treating Pobby and Dingan as if they are real creatures. All is cute and quirky until one day her father takes P&D to the mines with him and forgets them there. The little girl somehow knows they’re no longer in the house and, despite everyone’s efforts to look for them she starts feeling sick. As her condition worsens, her (previously cynical and skeptical) older brother starts going around town, trying to convince people to look for these imaginary creatures, while he goes to the mines, to see if they’re not there. What he finds in the mines is an opal, an opal like his father had never found, an opal that would cost a fortune and help their family out a lot. But he brings the opal to his sister as proof that he found Pobby and Dingan’s dead bodies in the mine (you see, Pobby had an opal in the bellybutton) and he exchanges the treasure for a funeral for the two. The end. (almost the end – in fact, despite all his efforts, his sister still dies a couple of days after her friends’ funeral)
It’s all about the power of imagination in this book – but in the movie (as mentioned in the title, the scariest I’ve seen – but I should add that I’m really not into horrors so I haven’t seen Blair Witch Project and the likes) it’s all real. Or, at least, it’s made after a real story. It’s a Romanian movie, called Elevator and it’s showing only tonight at 6 pm and 8 pm at Eurocinema (go see it 😉 ). It’s about a boy and a girl, both 18, who get stuck in an elevator, in an abandoned factory on the outskirts of some town. No cell signal, no food, no passers by – just them and their desperate (and ill fated) attempts to get out. The movie’s quite good and really sticks with you, but what creeped me out (and I might be a bit oversensitive, I do feel a sort of twinge in my stomach whenever I get into some elevators) is that a similar thing actually happened in a London HQ of some corporation: the building was shut down, renovations had started on the outside and, by the time they reached the interior, they found the bodies of two 18 year olds, a boy and a girl. Apparently autopsy showed she had lived 3 weeks in that elevator and he had survived her 2 more weeks by eating pieces of her. It’s all very gruesome 5 o’clock news stuff, but at the same time it’s tragic – both how they died and the fact that no one knew their names and no one claimed their bodies.