Thursday, September 10, 2009

Which Came First?

Since I haven't been at work for a week and have no idea what's going on, I'm going to wander off topic. I do that sometimes. Don't be frightened.

I assume, since you are reading this, that you are a reader. As in books.

Me, I read all the time. If I'm not on this dang 'puter or out in the shop or at work, I'm reading. I also like to watch movies. To me, a good movie is almost as good as a good book.

But which one do you like first? The movie or the book?

Personally, I like to see the movie first. They always change things in the movie. They leave out details. They alter timelines. It's understandable. You only have two hours or so to impart this story in a movie. You are only going to sit so long to watch this before you have to go to the bathroom or go home to beat the kids. (grin)

But you can take days, even weeks to read a book if you wish. Just slip in a bookmark and the action will be right there waiting for you when you come back.

When I have read the book before I have seen the movie I am always just a little disappointed. Okay, sometimes I'm alot disappointed. Read "Battlefield Earth" which I think is a pretty good book then go see the abortion they produced as a movie. But get it free somewhere. If you pay money to watch it, you are going to be pissed off.

Watching the movie first gives me an idea of whether or not I want to know more. And if the story grabs me enough then I will read the book.

Unfortunately, it rarely works out like that. With me, the books almost always come first. I read "The Davinci Code" years before the movie. The movie was good, but the book had so much more flavor to it. I'm pretty sure I'm going to be ambivalent about "Angels and Demons" when I see it.

I read the "Harry Potter" books before the movies came out. Actually, I think I was about halfway through when the first one came to the theaters. They did a fair job, as did the makers of "Lord of the Rings" which I would have bet couldn't be done. But then I was reading Tolkien back before movies existed. Well, almost.

Even though I like seeing the movie first doesn't stop me from reading the books. A good movie made from a good book is a tribute to the author and the story. It helps you give color and detail to the pictures in your head.

A book made from a movie however, is usually worthless. It's like reading the script. Blah. Nobody ever does those right.

So which do you like?

A- I like to see the movie first.
B- I like to read the book first.
C- I think Rev should stick to writing about prison stuff. He makes more sense there.

Let me know.


  1. Better to see the movie first; the book is ALWAYS better. I realize movies have time restraints and have to cut out a lot of good scenes.

    Examples: Summer of '42; Seabiscuit.
    And so many others.

  2. Movie then book always.
    The ONLY good book to movie conversion is Hunt for Red October. Every other movie has completely butchered the book.

    FYI, the HBO series TrueBlood, the screenwriters should be burned at the stake for absolutely destroying what is a great set of story lines int eh books.

  3. Since I don't really read fiction or go to the movies much, I vote for "none of the above"

  4. I saw "The Green Mile" before reading the book.
    The movie left a lot of questions.
    Then again, "The Shawshank Redemption" was better than the short story, "Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption."
    Except in the book, Red really was Irish.
    Thus making Morgan Freeman's line, "I think it's because I'm Irish." when asked why they call him Red, more sarcastic.
    It was really funny in the movie.
    But very ironic to see in the short story some time later.
    Usually book before movie, but skipping the book after seeing the movie is shorting yourself.
    If you do decide to read the book before seeing the movie, it's sometimes better to slip the movie completely.
    I.e. Sphere.

    (Dear Rev, this comment brought to you via the Wii!!)

  5. A- I like to see the movie first.
    ...but that rarely seems to happen.

  6. Movie before book. It gives me faces to put to names. NEVER see a Stephen King AFTER reading the book. Not possible to put that much screwed up "mind crap" in a movie. Even The Shining would have been crappy after reading the book.

  7. Donna- The book is always better. I think I have a bigger screen in my head.

    Anon- That is true in some ways. Almost every movie out there is a book conversion one way or another. Although Hunt for Red October is totally awesome. Almost all of Tom Clancy's movies are good. I haven't read the Sookie Stackhouse books, but I have seen True Blood. I like the series. My daughter has read them and complains all the time.

    Joe- Yeah, but you blog, so it's okay.

    Vinnie- One day you are going to have to show me how you blog from the wii.

    Tango- Amen!

    Amy- You are my little oddball, aren't you? (grin)

    Peggy Sue- The book always has more detail. Especially Stephen King. He should come work for the DOC. He's that twisted.

  8. Yes, Rev, I wii-ll.
    In the meantime, Steven Kings "The Fog" was a pretty good book, but left a lot to be desired from the ending.
    The movie, however, tied it all up nicely.
    So nicely, in fact, that Steven King said if he had written an ending, that's exactally what he would've wanted it to be.

    Not in many stores.
    "Blockbuster Exclusive" in this area.
    But if you get a chance, maybe Project Free TV still has it on the site... check it out.

  9. I say if you see the movie, toss the book- since the book will always be better. If you see the movie first it screws up the book. If you read the book first , well the movie will never compare so it will be good entertainment!