"Happy birthday mate".
I clapped Selby on the back and Kamilla gave him a hug. It was Saturday October 29th, Selby's birthday.
"This is so cool bro". Selby had just opened my card which had a book voucher enclosed in it.
"You guys still coming to the cinema tonight?" he asked.
"Of course, we wouldn't miss it for the world" Kamilla replied excitedly.
"Jack and Emma joining us?" I asked.
"Yeah bud and so is Mel. This time may I sit with you guys though? I sat with Jack and Emma last time."
The film we were going to see this time was Tianna Entrancing's The Conquest, which was the sequel to The Hypnotist. As usual, I bought a film guide and the three of us looked down it. The actors were exactly the same as before but there were three new names this time.
Mr Mesmerising...Peter Hawkins
Mrs Mesmerising...Mel Kristin
Eric Enchanting...Jack Thorne
When the usual advertisements and trailers were finally over, we settled down to watch the film. It was absolutely amazing. Just as in The Hypnotist, the thoughts of the character were expressed in monologue form. I watched Arthur musing that Harriet rarely considered the fact that he wanted her to be his proprius. I was genuinely touched that he would have offered to be her proprius if that had been possible.
The exchange between Elizabeth and Harriet reminded me of the exchange between Rosalie and Bella in Eclipse. In The Hypnotist, I had only seen Elizabeth once in passing when she criticised Andrew for controlling everyone and then kissed him. Now, Kylie Hour had a slightly more prominent role, just as Rosalie was more actively shown in Eclipse than in Twilight or New Moon.
I watched as Elizabeth determined on Harriet's advice to break up with Andrew. The scene changed, and I saw Harriet walking to Arthur's house, Mesmerising Mansion. I saw a guy about Arthur's age slightly ahead of her. When the new captivator introduced himself as Arthur's best friend Eric, I felt someone nudge me. I turned.
"That guy" whispered Selby. "I reckon he's acted in something else. I can't quite place it though."
I looked hard at Eric, who was now registering complete amazement that his friend was dating a non capivator. Suddenly I remembered where I had seen him before.
"He was in that trailer we saw last year, the trailer of Devastatingly Magnificent" I hissed. "He straightened his hair and dyed it black in order to act Charlie's cousin Rick".
"Wow" breathed Kamilla.
I put a finger to my lips and we all turned back to the screen. Henry had arrived and pulled Harriet away from Eric just as she was about to kiss him. Once more, Carl shone in this role. I found myself able to empathise when he struggled not to show his own love for Harriet to Eric, and was almost relieved when Shaun and Simon arrived and stopped Henry from unintentionally hypnotising Harriet. Henry's monologue as he left was very powerful.
I watched as Harriet told her boyfriend Arthur what had happened and he promised to have a word with Henry. The scene where Henry asked Ryan to hypnotise him to help him gain better control over his feelings for Harriet was deeply suspenseful. I watched, transfixed as Ryan reluctantly did as Henry asked.
Then my eyes widened in horror as I saw Henry having an involuntary seizure of pain on Ryan's bed because he had been hypnotised to resist Harriet. The acting was so powerful, I found myself automatically leaning forwards to watch as Ryan brought Harriet in and instructed her to soothe Henry by massaging his shoulders.
I watched as Harriet, following Ryan's instructions put Henry into a hypnotic sleep to end his pain. I had almost forgotten that Elizabeth had ended her relationship with Andrew, so the scene where Andrew confronted Harriet came as a shock. I had to admit that Ian Benn was brilliant in this sinister yet fascinating role.
Just as in The Hypnotist, Andrew came across as charismatic and fascinating as well as frightening. The suspense was terrible as Andrew's indigo eyes fixed on Harriet's brown ones. I sat at the edge of my seat, too absorbed in the fim to watch what Selby or Kamilla were doing. Even I was relieved when an angry Henry stood in the doorway and ordered Andrew to leave Harriet alone.
I chanced a glance at Kamilla and was amused to see that she, just like Harriet in the film, appeared fascinated when Henry admitted he could make people fall asleep by saying their surname younger than thirteen. I turned my face back to the screen, and watched as Henry declared himself the strongest captivator in the household and determined to take charge himself.
I suddenly noticed that Carl was now performing Henry in a charismatic way. I realised this was natural as Harriet's sudden captivation by Henry could otherwise not be explained. I found the conversation between Andrew and Henry where Henry asked Andrew's advice on how to deal with the new situation interesting.
Like Henry, I was suddenly sorry for Andrew, having seen a different side of him. The film went on. The romantic scene between Harriet and Arthur was reminsicent of scenes between Bella Swann and Edward Cullen in New Moon. I watched in sympathy as Arthur confessed he never saw their movie scenes when he hypnotised her into believing them to be kissing in romantic settings.
I saw Harriet ask Arthur to end it. I listened as the couple argued about Arthur's desire for Harriet to become his proprius. I saw Arthur reasoning with her that Michael was one of the worst types of captivators who had no real affection for Anna and that he Arthur loved Harriet and would never be like Michael. I found myself understanding Arthur and siding with him.
I had to admit, Sam's acting really helped me to put myself in Arthur's shoes as I watched. The scene changed, and I heard muffled laughter from the audience at the way Harriet seemed attracted to Henry and Arthur had to keep kissing her to unhypnotise her. I watched in sympathy as Henry uninentionally made hypnotic suggestions to Shaun and Simon and they stopped speaking to him.
Watching Harriet cuddling up to Arthur, I remembered Kamilla cuddling up to me. I squeezed Kamilla's hand and she smiled at me. I had to admit the scene where Arthur confessed to Harriet that he was closest to Andrew was very realistic. This did not surprise me as it did Harriet because I could see that Arthur and Andrew were very alike in personality.
The scene where Harriet met Arthur's parents and then Michael and Anna came to dinner was very involving. I was moved by Henry and Harriet's horror when Michael hypnotised Jack and their parents did not care about it. However, I also understood why Arthur did not make obvious his discomfort around Michael as Michael would pick up on it. I thought this movie was more involving even than The Hypnotist, but then The Conquest was a more suspenseful novel.
I watched the exchange between Andrew and Arthur with interest and was glad that Andrew fully supported Arthur's desire to make Harriet his proprius. I found I could understand why a guy with low self esteem and fear of loss who felt passionate love might want to bind a girl to him the way Arthur wanted to with Harriet. I now became irritated at how judgemental and self righteous Henry appeared and thought he should relax and imagine things from Arthur's viewpoint.
I watched as Arthur starting putting into motion his plan to make Harriet his proprius. Like Arthur, I was myself thrown when Harriet realised what was happening and accepted it. The film ended with Harriet becoming Arthur's non hypnotised enamoured slave and Henry's vow to reverse the process by stealing Harriet from Arthur if her will was still bound to his in a month's time.