The release of The Hunger Games movie trailer got me thinking about great novels and their movie counterparts. When you’ve read a great novel and it becomes a movie, which do you end up enjoying more? It seems logical that a writer would answer “book,” right? Well, not always.
I saw the movie The Outsiders long before I read S.E. Hinton’s amazing novel. This is sort of odd since the novel was published in 1967 and Francis Ford Coppola released his movie in 1982. Nonetheless, I loved that movie. I really cared about the characters. When I read the novel, years later, I still had Matt Dillon, Ralph Macchio, Patrick Swayze, Emilio Estevez and the rest of the cast in my head. I think this enhanced the reading experience for me. In the end, though, I preferred the movie.
On the other hand, I didn’t love the movie version of To Kill a Mockingbird. You might be gasping at this (the way you might have gawked at my liking The Outsiders movie a wee bit more than the book). I know, I know—everyone loves Gregory Peck as Atticus in To Kill a Mockingbird. But because I adore the novel, I had Scout, Jem, and Atticus etched in my head before I popped the movie into the DVD player. Even the great Gregory Peck couldn’t mess with my preconceived notions. Sorry, Mr. Peck. *shrugs*
Generally, I am disappointed by the movie version of a novel I love. Not so for the Harry Potter movies. I was mad about Harry and the Potter books, and thrilled with the movies. I do, however, try to put a chunk of time between reading a novel and seeing the movie version. I still haven’t seen The Help, a novel I adored (ADORED).
How about you? Does your love of a novel influence your opinion of the movie version, for better or for worse? Any thoughts on why?
For those of you who have read The Hunger Games: Are you anxious to see the movie or a bit leery? In case you're not sure, here’s the movie trailer: http://trailers.apple.com/trailers/lions_gate/thehungergames/