Monday, June 30, 2008

A-A-A talk Fatherland

Akbar: I am reading Fatherland. In so many ways the Nazi Germany is similar to Saudi Arabia. For example Saudis require all nationals to get pre-marital medical check up, which is also mentioned in Fatherland.

Anthony: I’d have thought most totalitarian regimes have that kind of behaviour in common. Anyhow, what do you think of the story?

Akbar: It’s good. Better than the movie. But the ending was, well, hmm.. shrug.

Anthony: Yes, the ending was thoroughly disappointing.

Amar: Yeah, it's a total copout. If I remember correctly, it is that they succeed in giving the information to the Americans, who are stunned by the horror of what happened and stop becoming friends with the Germans. A better novel, more chilling and probably more believable, would have been to give the information to the Americans, then realise the Americans have known it all along, and that they don't really care — it makes sense to be friends with the Germans, and raking up past just gets in the way.

Or have I got the ending wrong?

If I have it right, I think it was probably the Publishers who made him change the ending to appeal to Americans — I can't believe such a good writer would pick such a crappy ending.

Akbar: The book leaves it ambiguous as to what happens — it implies without saying the information gets across — it doesn't deal with what happens afterwards.

It's the movie which shows the information reaching the Americans at the last moment, and stopping the American rapprochement with the Germans.

Amar: I still think the better ending would be the throwing of cold water on the fire of hope.