Opinions

The movie versus the book

The age-old debate

Spencer Olsen reads a book before show time at Cineplex in Eau Claire Market in Calgary on Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Olsen loves romantic comedies. (Photo by Aly Khan/SAIT)

Spencer Olsen reads a book before show time at Cineplex in Eau Claire Market in Calgary on Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Olsen loves romantic comedies. (Photo by Aly Khan/SAIT)

Books versus movies, it’s a debate that has been going on forever. Which is better?

I am in favour of the book side. I often find the movies seldom live up to the books that came before them.

Why is it so hard for Hollywood to stick to a story? Why can they not seem to cast the right people for the roles?

These are burning questions I ask myself every time I watch films based on books.

A perfect example of this is Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief.

The books in that series are amazing. They blew me away the first time I read them. So when I heard about the movie, I was very excited. That was, until I actually watched it.

Not only did the filmmakers leave out very important characters, they also changed crucial details to the plot. It was like I was no longer even watching anything remotely close to what I read.

Another great example of this is Eragon. Even the cast couldn’t save this movie.

The film had none of the excitement of the book. One element of the movie that bugs me to this day is how they changed the character, Arya’s heritage.

In the books, she’s an elf, which is a major plot point. Yet in the film, they make her a regular human, which in turn destroys a lot of the story.

Hollywood turned what could have been a fantastic movie into yet another ripoff adventure film.

When speaking to other SAIT students, it’s apparent that others feel the same as I do.

Noor Hannan, a first-year journalism student, prefers books to movies because the movie characters never live up to how she imagined them while reading the book.

Noor used Twilight as an example. Kristen Stewart was not at all who she imagined for Bella.

Shaun Fisk, a first-year journalism student, is in agreement, he prefers the books because there is more to the characters and to the story itself. In the movies, a lot of character development and storylines are missing.

Other examples of great books being made into terrible movies include The Golden Compass, The DaVinci Code, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and I Am Legend.

These all could have been truly fantastic films, had Hollywood not butchered the source material.

Although some students choose to see things differently.

Journalism student Jessie Foster thinks of them as different entities. He doesn’t think of them as the same.

“I like watching the movies to spot the differences from the books.

“If movies were verbatim, it would not be as much fun to watch them.”

I get it. People in Hollywood cannot put everything into a movie. They will never fit an 800-page book into one film. My biggest question is, why do things change when they don’t need to?

Books will always be better because they let your imagination go wild.

Movies can bring whole worlds to life before our eyes. They make characters real, but books let you live everything.

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