Monday, February 6, 2012

Books vs. Movies: My Expert Review

Ever since I got my fancy-schmancy Kindle Fire for my birthday (thanks Remy!), I've actually been reading books.

Amazing, I know.

In just the first month I think I read more books than I have in the last 5 years combined.

Sad, I know.

I've read a few books that were made into movies.  The first one I read was Water for Elephants.  I saw the movie first when it came out and I enjoyed it.  When I read the book I was actually shocked at how closely the movie seemed to follow it. 

(Of course I have a terrible memory when it comes to movies, so it was entirely likely I forgot the whole movie anyway by the time I read the book.)

I really couldn't think of anything major that I remember missing in the movie.  I was impressed.  So the other night I re-watched the movie and yeah, it was pretty dang close.

(Of course I have a terrible memory when it comes to books, so it was entirely likely I forgot the whole book anyway by the time I re-watched the movie.)

The book of course has more detail, and I much prefer the book over the movie, but still, I was impressed it was as close to the book as it was.

Then I read The Help.  Awesome book.  I really enjoyed it.

Then I watched The Help.  Not that awesome of a movie.  I didn't really enjoy it.

If you haven't read the book, you need to!  Seriously.  Every few chapters it rotates through the perspectives of different characters.  There's Skeeter, Aibileen and Minny -it's pretty neat.  And the movie just can't capture their perspectives like the book.

I was really disappointed in the movie.  It had it's entertaining parts, and it can be fun to see how they portray certain characters.  But the movie just didn't capture, in my opintion, how deep Hilly's control of the group was, and Celia...oh Celia is so much more involved in the book.  So much of her character was cut out.  Though the parts they did include were actually really good I thought.  The amount of effort it took Skeeter to get Aibileen to talk initially...and then Minny...and then the others...the movie just didn't get into that enough for me. 

Oh and don't even get me started on the Stuart thing.  Holy crap they should have just left him out of the whole movie if that's all he was going to be in it!  They cut out a HUGE part of his character and the love story between him and Skeeter.

Same with Celia Foote's husband.  He wasn't a huge part in the book, but they didn't do the part he did have any justice.

And Skeeter's mom?  She wasn't dying from the beginning of the book!

And the whole thing with Skeeter and Ms. Stein?  Oh geez!  They didn't explain anything that led up to that first time you see Skeeter on the phone with her.  And then they're acting like they're BFF's or something.  It was just weird to me.

To me the whole movie felt rushed.  I understand you can't put every part of a book in a movie, but still.  I've been trying to separate it from the book and think if I would feel any differently about it, but that's hard.  I think that even if I hadn't read the book some of the scenes would make me say "wait a minute, where did that come from?" or "why is that even in here?"  I don't even feel like it should be nominated for best picture.  The movie was fine, but could have been SO much better!  I'm curious to see deleted scenes.  I wonder if any of them had any of the little details I felt like were missing.

Anyhow, that's just my take on the whole thing.  Sorry if you loved the movie.  And if you did love the movie I'm curious to know if you've read the book as well.

So I've read The Hunger Games trilogy and as excited as I am to see the movies, I'm scared they're going to turn out like The Help, or dare I say...Twilight.  I don't want the movies to ruin the whole thing! 

To be fair I know there are a lot of die hard Harry Potter fans out there who probably felt the same way about those movies vs. books.  However, due to my aforementioned memory retainment issues, I couldn't remember the details of the books that were left out.  Or major events for that matter (and throw the fact that it's a whole SERIES of books in there, you just nailed the last nail in the memory coffin).  My point being that those movies were still really good and you could follow them even if you had never read the books.  The Help left me confused.  And I don't want the Hunger Games to make me feel the same way.

Any other movies out there that are from books I should read?