Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Express Yourself: Book Before Movie?

Today I'm participating in the Express Yourself Meme, hosted by Dani and Jackie.




The goal of this week's meme is to discuss the last book we read. There's actually an interesting story with that one. The last book I read was this one:





It had been on my to-read list on Goodreads for a ridiculous amount of time. It was "the next book I'm going to read" for weeks. Then, one Thursday, a group of friends came to town and informed me they wanted to see the Fault in Our Stars movie the next day.



Panicked, I opened my Kindle and started reading.




There was only one problem. We had friends in town. So no reading time. There was another problem... I hate seeing a movie after I've read the book (and vice versa), especially if it's recent. If I know what's happening next, I get restless and bored. It only works if months have passed and I've mostly forgotten where it's going.




The bad news is, I only made it through half of the book. The good news is, I only made it through half of the book. So the last half of the movie was a complete surprise.




And, yes, to answer your inevitable question...I later read the last half of the book. Even though I (mostly) knew what would happen. But if you're faced with this choice:




Take the book option. It's a much more intense experience. Maybe wait a while and catch the movie on DVD after the book has slipped your mind a little.

How do you feel about book adaptations? Can you enjoy a book after you've seen the movie?

Was there a great book you read this month? Participate in the meme by adding your name below.


50 comments:

  1. Most movie adaptations fall short, in part because they change thing and also because they just don't have time for everything. The LOTR trilogy was one of the few where the movie was better.
    I can watch a movie and then read the book and still enjoy it. Although after seeing The Relic, I read the book by Preston and Child and it ruined the movie. The book was ten times better - the movie slaughtered it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I adore big screen and small screen book adaptations, and I love to read the book first too, I don't mind, I love the spoilers, I'm the spy and we live on too much information :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I don't mind reading the book after the movie as movies usually do tend to fall short.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I usually get annoyed with movie adaptations of books, especially if they are my favourite books, because there are very few times I think the changes that have been made are for the sake of the conversion from page to screen, they just seem to be the adapter wanting to, in the most extreme cases, take a book as 'inspiration' and then just run with their own story. I've seen that more and more, both for TV and film - you just have to look at some of the ITV's Marple to see how much screenwriters think they can change the original story.

    HOWEVER - there is one movie that I think did much, much better than the book, which is Haunted, based on a James Herbert novel. I adore the movie, period spooky goings on in a country house, I hate the book. I did see the movie before I read the book, in fact the movie was why I read the book, but the story on the page was no where near as good as the story on the screen.

    ReplyDelete
  5. As much as I love movies most never live up to the books. I tend to like both for different reasons. I have no issue reading the book then seeing the movie and visa versa...

    I'm also one of the odd people who reads the end of a book first and then I enjoy it better... I know strange...:-)

    ReplyDelete
  6. I have a habit of reading ahead or talking to people and knowing what's going to happen, anyway. I don't mind spoilers.

    I much prefer to watch a movie first. I can very much enjoy a book after I've seen the movie, but rarely can I enjoy a movie once I've read a book. 99% of the time, the book is just leaps and bounds better and much more detailed. The movie and TV adaptations always leave me cold if I've read the book first.

    A couple exceptions (where the movies and books were both good, but the movies were better) are The Perks of Being a Wallflower and Sleeping With the Enemy. And while the books are still better, they did a great job with the Harry Potter movies.

    I'm having a really tough time with A Game of Thrones because the show's deviations are not making better or equal story and every season, the show gets worse. :-/ But I can't stop watching ...

    ReplyDelete
  7. @Alex -- I actually watched LOTR before reading it and I thought the movie was AWFUL. If I ever publish and they want to make a movie out of my book, Peter Jackson will not be allowed anywhere near it.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Great post. For me it either I watch the movie or read the book. I can't do both..lol
    effortlesslady.blogspot.ca

    ReplyDelete
  9. I always want to read the book before seeing the movie, which is why I haven't watched a lot of popular movies yet. Though, I read TFiOS last year, but still don't plan on seeing the movie until I feel like crying, haha.

    ReplyDelete
  10. My son and I were just talking about how we need to read this book yesterday. It has been on my Goodreads TBR for years. I am always torn about which is better, reading first or watching. I like to imagine what the characters would look like myself and I like to know the real story before seeing a movie, so I'm going to go with reading first, then watching.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I do it both ways. If I like a movie a lot, I'll probably seek out the book. And if I like a book, I'll go to see its adaptation. I don't mind changes per se, understanding the different needs and capabilities of each medium. I make the comparisons on a case-by-case basis.

    ReplyDelete
  12. all that commentary and no review? how was it? it's been on my tbr list for a while too! and i've heard mixed reviews...

    i like judging a movie after reading a book (Hunger Games has done a good job so far)
    And i love knowing what should happen in Game of Thrones - I've been reading ahead and it's taken some strange turns, but kept to the story line for the most part...

    reading it first is probably best, then you know what they leave out (Hobbit is quite good too!)

    btw - BBF is available today =) thanks for commenting all over, but i read you wanted to get it from Michael's post. thanks!!!

    ReplyDelete
  13. I'm usually disappointed by movies after having read the book. I hate it when they leave out major events or characters.

    I'm reading Sue Monk Kidd's 'The Invention of Wings' right now. If it becomes a movie, I won't go see it! Ha!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I'd much rather read the book than see the movie. The book is usually way better.

    I do enjoy seeing who portrays the characters in the book when they do a movie. It's pretty interesting. Kind of brings the book to a different visual, but I still would rather read the book.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

    ReplyDelete
  15. I always read a book and if I love it I will see the moovie!!!
    Great post doll!!!
    Ciao bellissima!!!
    http://expressyourselfbypaolalauretano.blogspot.it

    ReplyDelete
  16. More often than not, I read the book first, then see the movie....

    In most cases the books are SOOOO much better. But every now and then the movie will capture the magic of the books... I just wish it happened more often.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Some movie adaptations are okay, but none are ever as good as the book in my eyes.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Since the movie is usually a little different from the books, I can usually enjoy both fine. I would rather read the book first though.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Ok I am a weird gal as i read the last page of the book first and that motivates and excites me to read the book and find out how it got to that point. It doesn't ruin it for me but enhances it. Often I find books are better so I watch the movie first so i am not disappointed in the film. I found "To Kill A Mockingbird" both the book and the film excellent

    ReplyDelete
  20. I don't like to watch the movie before reading the book, but I really enjoy watching it afterwards to see how they adapted it.

    http://bellapummarola.blogspot.it/

    ReplyDelete
  21. I usually prefer the books to movies, although sometimes I will see the movie after reading a story.

    YvonneVentresca.com

    ReplyDelete
  22. I have trouble with watching movies after I've read the book and vice versa just like you. I finished The Fault in Our Stars a few weeks ago though... hopefully far enough away that I'll enjoy the movie when I watch it on video. No way I'm watching that one in public ;)

    ReplyDelete
  23. If I watch the movie adaptation before reading the book, I almost always prefer it. I just like whatever version of the story I'm introduced first, even if the other option is better.

    ReplyDelete
  24. If I see the movie after reading the book, I'm impossible. I complain about what got left out, what got changed, and what is just different. But if I see the movie first, it adds to the mental movie playing in my head while I read. It's almost as if the scenes that got left out actually happened. I can imagine the actors and the scenes as they might have been had that scene been in the movie.

    Although, it's better if time has passed between either reading the book or seeing the movie. So I forget a little.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I'm so behind in reading. I'm hoping to finish a book I've been reading for awhile before the month changes. Again.

    ReplyDelete
  26. I haven't seen the movie yet and I'm going to take your advice and wait for the dvd.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Hi Stephanie,
    I just ordered that book. Haven't seen the movie yet.
    I flip around. Often times I read the book first but once in awhile I'll see a movie and then decide to read the book. And when I do that I have a picture of the hero/heroine from the movie.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Really I prefer the book and sometimes I see the movie because is different when make a movie they adapt some parts

    Or maybe is because I love read!

    ReplyDelete
  29. I am like you and prefer the book to a movie. Once I have read the book, I am rarely happy with the onscreen version--my mental images and the details that the author can include via a book usually prevail.

    Also, I will often not watch a movie once I have read the book in fear of frustration. Even though War Horse was changed quite a bit for the screen, I thought Spielberg did well in retelling a wonderful children's book.

    ReplyDelete
  30. I had the exact same problem! My boyfriend I and decided to read TFIOS together-well mainly I just made him read it so we could see the movie. We planned on a day to see the movie together and two days before the date, I was only a quarter of the way through! So basically, instead of studying for my finals, I read the book and finished it within a couple hours before we went to see it! Good book and movie although I didn't cry as much as people said I would.
    xo Olivia

    ReplyDelete
  31. it's a terrible paradox, that's for sure. Though if I have to movie-then-book. Always after a reading a book and then the movie I always shout at the film for messing things up.

    ReplyDelete
  32. It took me 10 years to finish reading David Copperfield. The first line intrigued me but I couldn't get past the first chapter every time I picked up the book to read. Then, in 1999 (or thereabouts) I saw the TV movie with Maggie Smith. I fell in love with the story and the characters. Now that I had an idea of what the setting is and how the characters are like and how they spoke, I could finally read the book all the way through. It's one of my favorite stories.

    The View from the Top of the Ladder

    ReplyDelete
  33. It's always so difficult to compare a book and a movie because it's quite different. I often do both but as I forget easily it's usually ok lol.

    ReplyDelete
  34. I think it was brilliant that you read 1/2. I too prefer the books, and yes like to wait to a spell to see the movie. I get so made when i watch a movie and then discover it is based on a book after the fact. I rarely read those.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Really, I think writers should see movies right after reading books and the other way around. Especially those who want to learn how to write screenplays.

    ReplyDelete
  36. You have a beautiful blog .........

    well it is difficult for me to read a book after a movie ,I get bored :)

    ReplyDelete
  37. Stephanie,

    I usually read the book and don't worry about seeing the movie because movie versions can be disappointing. But I enjoyed the book and movie versions of 'The Help' equally. That was a surprise. They were both excellent in their own right. As you can tell, it's been a while since I went to the cinema to see a movie! Well, I did see Frozen with my children but that probably doesn't count!

    ReplyDelete
  38. i prefer books!
    www.mrsnoone.it
    kiss

    ReplyDelete
  39. This has also been on my TBR forever. I just don't want to cry!!! I think books are almost always better then the movie or show version.

    ReplyDelete
  40. I agree! In my experience, the book always is better. I think it's because you get internal thoughts and emotions you can't see on the screen.

    ReplyDelete
  41. I always read the book first. I don't think it's ruined any movies for me, knowing how they will end. Mostly, if the movie is ruined, it just because it wasn't a very good movie to start with. I insist that my boys read the books before they see any movies. What to watch Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings? Better read those books. It also allows for some great discussions between us, talking about how the book and the movie differ and why.

    ReplyDelete
  42. I much prefer reading the book- always better. I tend to read, or reread, before seeing a movie. "How much will Hollywood screw up this time?" Though I've heard that The Fault in Our Stars is one of the superior adaptations. I haven't read it or seen it.

    ReplyDelete
  43. I HAVE to do book before movie, I can't do the other way around :)

    ReplyDelete
  44. Once or twice, I've liked a movie more than I liked the book.

    Love,
    Janie

    ReplyDelete
  45. Once or twice, I've liked a movie more than I liked the book.

    Love,
    Janie

    ReplyDelete
  46. I can't think of a book I've read after seeing the movie. It's always been the other way around.

    And I always end up liking the book better.

    ReplyDelete
  47. I didn't blog hop...but I do know that books are ALWAYS better than the movie. It's like they don't even try very hard putting together the movie. There are times when I wonder if we have any real talent left in Hollywood.

    Being behind on my reading is the story of my life.

    ReplyDelete
  48. I usually prefer to watch the movie before the book. This way I might actually like the movie as in the other case I am always so very disappointed with it.

    As for the LOTR discussion - I watched the first movie before I read the book. I loved it and that's what made me go to the first bookstore I saw and buy it. Took me 3 days to read all 1086 pages. Loved it. And I was surprised how much of the books was actually left out(even from the extended DVD editions). All by itself all 3 movies are great for me but compared to the book... they just don't stood a chance.
    And one quote I love very much: “People don't read any more. It's a sad state of affairs. Reading's the only thing that allows you to use your imagination. When you watch films it's someone else's vision, isn't it?"

    [Interview in The Independent, 15 October 2005]”
    ― Lemmy Kilmister

    ReplyDelete
  49. I usually prefer to watch the movie before the book. This way I might actually like the movie as in the other case I am always so very disappointed with it.

    As for the LOTR discussion - I watched the first movie before I read the book. I loved it and that's what made me go to the first bookstore I saw and buy it. Took me 3 days to read all 1086 pages. Loved it. And I was surprised how much of the books was actually left out(even from the extended DVD editions). All by itself all 3 movies are great for me but compared to the book... they just don't stood a chance.
    And one quote I love very much: “People don't read any more. It's a sad state of affairs. Reading's the only thing that allows you to use your imagination. When you watch films it's someone else's vision, isn't it?"

    [Interview in The Independent, 15 October 2005]”
    ― Lemmy Kilmister

    ReplyDelete