The Dark is Rising posterAlthough I was initially primed to go to the theater and see it right away (I’m a real fanboy for fantasy-action-sf movies), I did not go see the movie The Seeker: The Dark is Rising this past weekend, and after reading all the bad reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, I’m glad I didn’t. Evidently very loosely and sloppily based on Susan Cooper’s famous book, the movie takes great liberties with Cooper’s characters and plot. Will, the protagonist, is now American instead of British, and 14 in the movie instead of 11 when he discovers that he has magical powers. I suppose the filmmakers made those changes so he wouldn’t be so similar to another 11-year-old British boy with the initials H.P. who discovers he has magic powers. Evidently Cooper is not happy with the changes.

In Jeannette Catsoulis’s brief review in the New York Times, she wrote:

Based on “The Dark Is Rising” series of books by Susan Cooper (who has claimed “enormous” differences between her work and the screenplay), “The Seeker” feels passé and lacks a charismatic lead. Too bad Daniel Radcliffe is an only child.

If there’s such a thing as justice, all we who are fans of Cooper’s books should be pleased that the film made only about $3.5 million in its opening weekend. And sorry, because those books deserve to have a good movie made of them.