Something I’ve always told my kids about books-to-movies . . . READ THE BOOK FIRST! Usually the book is richer in detail and nuance than a movie can capture. One exception I’ve found, mainly because I try to avoid books-to-movies since I don’t want a good book ruined, was The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Loved the books, loved the movies. My niece Madison would say the same thing about the Harry Potter books and movies. So good adaptations can happen.
But I was worried when I heard that one of my favorite books, Life of Pi by Yann Martel, would float from the pages to the screen. The story has layers I hoped wouldn’t be lost. Haven’t read the novel? Here is the blurb from the back of the book.
“Pi Patel is a God-loving boy and the son of a zookeeper, has a fervent love of stories and practices not only his native Hinduism, but also Christianity and Islam. When Pi is sixteen, his family and their zoo animals emigrate from India to North America aboard a Japanese cargo ship. Alas, the boat sinks-and Pi finds himself in a lifeboat, his only companions a hyena, an orangutan, a wounded zebra, and a 450-pound Bengal tiger. Soon the tiger has dispatched all but Pi. Can Pi and the tiger find their way to land? Can Pi’s fear, knowledge, and cunning keep him alive until they do?”
I’ve read the book 2 or 3 times and the ending still makes me wonder.
The movie comes out November 21st. The first trailer has just been released and I think it will be visually stunning. Could Ang Lee do anything less? The opening sequence mentions finding courage when everything you have is lost. Maybe the subtleties will be there after all. Take a peek.
I’ll be reading the book again before November. Join me?
And what about the books-to-movies you’ve read and watched-good or not so much?