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The Golden Compass (2007)

 





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The Golden Compass (2007)

In writer/director Chris Weitz's fantasy film filled with incredible Visual Effects (it was the winner of the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects), adapted from the first novel (Northern Lights) of Phillip Pullman's 1995 His Dark Materials trilogy - it told of an epic quest undertaken by a 12 year-old orphan to rescue her kidnapped best friend in a parallel world:

  • the main character of brave, justice-seeking 12 year-old orphan Lyra Belacqua (Dakota Blue Richards), a student who was being raised at the Jordan College boarding school at Oxford
  • Lyra was compelled to enter into an alternate parallel universe and journey to the North, to follow her adventurous, explorer 'uncle' Lord Asriel (Daniel Craig) and learn of the kidnapped fate of other poor and orphaned children who had been captured by government thugs known as Gobblers; in particular, Lyra was determined to rescue kidnapped best friend Roger Parslow (Ben Walker)
    [Note: Gobblers were later revealed to be headed by an organization called the General Oblation Board - or G-O-B - led by the wealthy and evil villainess Mrs. Coulter (Nicole Kidman)); the Gobblers were supported by the ruling powers known as the Magisterium that sought to dominate all the worlds in the universe.]
  • the film's concept: each person has an accompanying daemon or soul (in the form of an animal), especially Lyra's form and shape-changing one known as Pantalaimon (or "Pan") (a bird, an ermine or ferret, a wood mouse, a moth, and a striped cat) (voice of Freddie Highmore), and Mrs. Coulter's orange-haired monkey; Stelmaria (voice of Kristin Scott Thomas) was a snow leopard daemon for Lyra's uncle Lord Asriel - [Note: The Magisterium was an evil authority that was attempting to separate the paired-up daemons, thus eliminating free-will.]
  • Lyra's secretive possession of an alethiometer (or Golden Compass) - the dazzling, sole-remaining 'truth-telling device' artifact with spinning dials and strange pictorial symbols around its edges; all other compasses were destroyed or confiscated by the Magisterium
  • the monumental single-combat, vicious fight-to-the-death between two bears known as Panserbjorne (while over 100 other bears looked on): a giant, armored warrior Ice-Bear named Iorek Byrnison (voice of Ian McKellen) from the kingdom of Svalbard (Iorek was the rightful-heir to the throne, but exiled in shame), and the Bear-King - King Ragnard Sturlusson (voice of Ian McShane); the two had fought earlier when King Ragnard usurped Iorek's throne, but now, Iorek triumphed over King Ragnard and became king
  • also the terrifying scene of Lyra being threatened with having her daemon "Pan" separated from her in an intercision machine (a silver guillotine that could sever the link between a human and their dæmon) within Bolvangar, an authoritarian Magisterium experimental research station in the North
  • the ending confession of Mrs. Coulter that Lyra was her daughter (she was forced to give her up because she was not married), and Asriel was her father
  • in the conclusion, Lyra succeeded in blowing up and destroying Bolvanger, and rescuing the remaining kidnapped children

Mrs. Coulter with Young Orphan Lyra

The Daemon/Soul of Mrs. Coulter - an Orange-Haired Monkey

Lyra's Daemon: Pan - as a Ferret

The Golden Compass
(Alethiometer)


Fight to Death Between Ice-Bear and Bear-King

The Threat of Lyra Losing Her Daemon Pan By an Intercision Machine

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