Monday, August 1, 2011

Novel Films Blogfest 10

I've been having such fun with Life is Good lately! In striving to visit all the A-Z Challenge participants by the end of the summer, I've met some wonderful new people and have found great new blogs to follow. That hasn't (as you've probably noticed) left me much time for writing.  I decided to shake things up and jumped into this blog-hop. These community events tend to motivate me, and what can I say, I do like a good party ;-) For the next three days many of us (42 at last count) are going to be writing about the connection between books and movies.

I'm always, always disappointed when a book I've enjoyed is made into a movie. They start by casting the wrong lead. I know it's wrong because I've been "looking" at that character the whole book, and he/she doesn't look like that! Then they change the plot, sometimes completely destroying the story I so enjoyed. I understand a bit about the Hollywood scene, after all, I read tabloid headlines in the check-out line ;-) but sometimes it baffles me what they get away with.

In my opinion, the worst offender in the book butchering category is “The Horse Whisperer”. I loved the book by Nicholas Evans.  It had shifting points of view, a unique story, and the easy writing style all combined to please me.  I grieved with Grace. I understood Annie's feelings. The subtle undercurrents of attraction to someone inappropriate, the drive to “fix” whatever problem comes her way. The worry about her only child.

Don't get me wrong, The Horse Whisper wasn't a bad movie. If I hadn't read the book, I probably would have really enjoyed it. But how on earth can you get away with letting the main character live, when in the book, he dies? That's not a minor change. That turns the story upside down and forever alters its impact. And in my opinion, not for the better.

What's the worst offender in this category, in your opinion? Whose book got butchered the most?  Please chime in!  Tomorrow I'll be talking about the best movie adaptation. (And it's NOT “Adaptation”, I guarantee you that ;-) I'd love to have you come back and chime in with your opinion. AND you could even use the button in the side-bar and hop aboard this party train. After all, it's only three days.  Madeleine of Scribble and Edit is waiting!


Arlee Bird said...

Glad to see you join in this blog event. I know I couldn't resist. Never saw or read The Horse Whisperer. I'm just doing the blogfest on Monday since Tuesday I let my Monday post have more time and on Wednesday I'll be hosting Shannon. I look forward to hearing about your best adaptations (oh, and I loved Adaptation the movie, but I didn't read the book).

Tossing It Out

Brian Miller said...

i hear you..i was a little disappointed that they changed the end to my sisters keeper...

Luanne G. Smith said...

I couldn't believe they did that to the Horse Whisperer. I'm sure it was to make it more palatable to a wider audience, but not cool.

Lisa Potts said...

Sounds like The Horse Whisperer committed the same sin as My Sister's Keeper. A totally different person died at the end of the movie than died at the end of the book. Awful.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm a big Preston & Child fan, and the movie version of the Relic wasn't just bad, they omitted the main character, Pendergast. How do you take out the lead????