I know I’m not supposed to be posting today, but I wanted to share the article I wrote for the Upper Bucks Free Press (the newspaper I write for) for the September issue! The online version was just published. To see the online version of the newspaper, click HERE (see page 16).
I hope you enjoy the article!
Book Vs. Movie – Which One Is Better?
“The book was SO much better than the movie” is a statement I hear a lot. It got me wondering, is the book always better? To me, the answer is an obvious yes, but I’m a book person.
For example, I LOVED the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books (Jeff Kinney), but I hated the movie. I think that Gregory’s self-centered character is much better as cartoon in a book than in the movie. In the movie Rowley wasn’t nearly as goofy as he should have been.
They also took one of my all-time favorite books, The Lightning Thief from the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series (Rick Riordan), and made it into an okay movie. I mean, they took out Clarisse, one of my favorite characters, and they even took out Ares, the god of war (how do you take out the god of war from a story about Greek mythology with fighting in it?!?). The fight between Percy and Ares has got to be my all-time favorite fight scenes from any book and it wasn’t in the movie. Of course, the movie wasn’t horrible. It was pretty good and, I think, for someone who hadn’t read the book, it was probably great. There is lots of action, great special effects, and cool monsters.
But still I wondered what other people think. So, I took matters into my own hands. I decided to post a poll on my blog (ThisKidReviewsBooks.com), where I asked my followers which they thought was normally better – the book or the movie.
96 out of the 117 people who responded said that the book was either always better or mostly better than the movie. This didn’t surprise me. I run a book blog after all so they probably think a lot like me. What I really liked about the poll was reading why they chose the answer they did. Most people said that in a movie, you don’t really connect with the characters as well as in a book, making it hard to sympathize with the character in the movie or really know what they are thinking. I think that’s true. If a book is well written, you know exactly who the character is and what they are thinking.
Another interesting response from the poll was that 15 people said that which you like more depends on what you saw/read first; movie or book. They said that the version of the story you experience first is usually the one you really like. Personally, I think this is true too. If you read the book first, and love it, the movie won’t really come close to matching it and differences in the stories (if there are any) will bother you. I think the same thing goes for seeing the movie first.
I learned a lot from the comments people left on the poll. Some people felt that the movie is just one person’s interpretation of the book and they’re completely different art forms. Because of this, you can’t really compare them, but you can enjoy both as long as you keep this in mind.
Another group of people said that movies provide a visual experience that books just cannot provide. I can definitely see this point. From the book, I would have never imagined Medusa as completely frightening as she appeared in The Lightning Thief movie. Some people also said that movies give life to the setting of the story by being able to actually see it.
I don’t know about you, but I think I will always prefer the book. Then again, I will never give up on experiencing the movie.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to grab my popcorn and mosey on down to the movie theatre to see the newest Percy Jackson movie, The Sea of Monsters. I am hoping to see Clarisse in this one!
P.S. I saw Percy Jackson #2 – Sea of Monsters, the other week – It was MUCH better than the first movie! Clarisse was there! 😀