Never Judge A Book By Its Film Adaption

Have you ever watched a movie that put you off reading the book? Did you not want to watch a film because you thought it would ruin the book? Here are a few of my personal opinions on whether to read or watch.

Book Is Better

Harry Potter by JK Rowling– Although these films were very well done there was still so much missing that had been in the books. Due to time limitations and a lack of relevance to the primary plot line, many loveable characters and events were cut from the movies. Personally, I prefer all the plot points that pull together at the end of the books.

Eragon by Christopher Paolini- This had to be the worst film adaption I had ever seen. It could be due to the fact that i loved the book and had such high expectations for the film, but after talking to people who hadn’t read the book the general consensus was that it was just a terrible movie. Poor acting and an unfortunate take on the storyline were what ruined it for me the most.

Tomorrow, When The War Began by John Marsden- I was really glad that they made this movie with an Australian cast. Overall the film was well done (for an Aussie movie) but there were still major plot points that were left out.

Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold- As this book is set over many years i can understand how it would be hard (not to mention expensive) to portray this on screen. The movie manly focused on the main characters’s experience in ‘heaven’ rather than the family she left behind, which was a major part of the book.

On Par

Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen- The manners and pageantry of the book are best shown in the BBC mini series starring Colin Firth & Jennifer Ehle. I’m pretty sure when anyone reads the novel they imagine these actors as Elizabeth and Darcy.

Game Of Thrones by George RR Martin- I am so glad they decided to make this into a TV series as they are able to cover more of the original storyline in detail, rather that cramming it all into a 2 hour slot. Also being presented by a company such as HBO ensures that the raw material in the plot will not be dimmed down or censored.

Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins- I thought the film was as good as the book as they stuck to the original storyline, following the main character. They mage up for the fact that you can’t show all the background information written in the book as an image by showing events outside of the primary narrative.

True Blood (aka Sookie Stackhouse Series) by Charlaine Harris- I loved the books for the quirkiness and southern charm mixed in with the vampire. The TV show had all this and more. I enjoyed the little twists that were added to the show to make it fresh for fans of the book.

Stick With The Movie

Lord Of The Rings by JRR Tolkien- I have attempted to read these books but alas I failed, getting lost in Tolkien’s longwinded descriptions of the surroundings. I have heard from people who have read the books say that you could skip a chapter and the characters would still be in the same place. So for those who lake the patience for Tolkien’s writing, I say watch the movies. They have all been done brilliantly and (from what I can gather) capture the essence of the story.

Twilight by Stephanie Meyer- I am not saying everyone should see this movie but it is perfect for book-movie comparison. The fact that the script writers of the film had to add a background story to the film shows how shallow the original writing was.

Book Adaptions

A new twist this century is to see games and films adapted to books. The most popular of these that I sell at our bookstore is the Assassins Creed and Halo series. There has also been book adaptions for the latest Dark Knight and Resident Evil movies, although I don’t think  these are as popular as the comic books. But my favourite would have to be the Nikki Heat novel from the TV series Castle. But rather than an adaption of the actual series, they are the novels written by the character Richard Castle and have him named as the author. If you love this TV series then you should try the books as they have the same witty humour and suspense that the cast portray on screen.

Posted on November 2, 2012, in About Books and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I just want to second the motion that Eargon was a horrible movie and as a result I am allergic to even looking at the cover of the book, and The Lovely Bones movie made me very, very upset, and not in a good way as in emotionally overwhelmed by such a moving story but as in mad because I had wasted hours of my life. But now thanks to your post I may overcome my prejudice and check out both books.

    Great post!

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