This blog is somewhat in response to reading this article.
So, I went on a date once to see “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.” Now, I had seen the first two HP films up to this point and thought, what’s the craze? With the 3rd HP (fyi, I’m just lazy today and don’t feel like typing Harry Potter’s name 40 times in this blog, if I get to that many) I was intrigued from a preview I had seen when I was visiting my brother in Vegas and we went and saw Shrek 2 (still an awesome movie). So, I didn’t really like HP1 but HP2 sparked my interested in the series (though most people seemed to hate it most out of the first 3). I loved HP3, I thought it had awesome special effects with the Hippogriff and Dementors, the story was much more intriguing with HP’s life being constantly in danger when it was really a rat’s (hmmm?), and Hermoine looked a lot better than she did in the first two films, especially when she punched that snot-nosed, self-absorbed Draco Malfoy (come on, I cheered at that wishing I could’ve done it myself). But what ruined the movie for me was afterwards my date told me how horrible of a film it was. To her, they had mutilated the book. I asked her, so what did they leave out. “So many important things, like how Harry’s dad and friends had created the map!” Who cares? The goal of a film that is based off a book is to put the story on the screen so that non-readers can understand what happened.
The next day, I went with Kimmy to Barnes and Noble, because for some reason we both had a lot to talk about there and since I was only in Ventura for a few days it was always nice to hang out with my ‘sister’. Kimmy told me (again) how good HP was and that I should give it a try if I like the movie. So, I bought HP 1-3. On Sunday, I didn’t have anything to do so I was up until 11 reading the first book. By Wednesday I had #2 read. And the following Wednesday I had finished #3. After I finished #3 I thought, no big deal. I didn’t feel lost in the movie. The book is more informative but I don’t want a movie to tell me the story, I want it to show me the story. In order to do that some of a book’s information is lost. Oh well. Deal with it. The screenwriter and director were not writing a book, they were showing a movie. Despite what you think, it’s ok to have some information lost if you’re not willing to sit in the theater. Can you imagine how long HP5 would be if every page is given a scene? You’d spend all day at the theater.
I read “The Count of Monte Cristo” once. It was an awesome book. They did an adaptation of that book not too long ago, 2000-2002 area I believe. I loved the movie. But I don’t compare it to the book. Why? It’d ruin the movie. I loved “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.” Why? It was well-done. Reviews: Horrible when compared to the comic it’s made from. Well, don’t do that. Duh! It’s a good movie if you don’t compare it.
When I get published (because some people just say it’s inevitable that I will be non-self-published) I hope that one day there’s a movie adaptation. Do I expect everything from my story to be in the movie? Nope. Is there s information that’s important to the book that’ll get lost in adaptation? Absolutely. But I don’t care. Shoot, J.K. Rowling said of the HP movies that she loves them. So, really, adapting a good book into a good movie is difficult. Things like Lord of the Rings (LotR) and To Kill a Mockingbird were well done. But at the same time, look how long LotR is. I seriously have a short-attention span to the point where I was actually diagnosed with Adult ADHD once by my physician. Don’t know if I’d get that diagnosis again. Mary wants to sit through a trilogy marathon of the LotR extended editions. Was it not long enough? Seriously, I’d rather watch a season of the Big Bang Theory. At least I won’t get lost being interrupted by my 3-year old ever 20-25 minutes. I went to the bathroom during Return of the King and was confused at what was happening. Oh well, my loss. I should have looked at this site that helps with that problem.
Seriously though, if you read a book then see the movie, don’t compare it on the same level. Compare it if you want, but compare it on a more level playing field. Meaning, don’t worry about what was left out. Worry about what you thought this character looked like or how this actor did in a role you liked reading. That’s how you compare a book to a movie. Not “They left out so much.” The following comment should be, “Do you still want to be sitting in the theater?” Just some thoughts. 🙂