And–the reverse of last week’s question. Name one book that you hope never, ever, ever gets made into a movie (no matter how good that movie might be).
Any novel that’s very internal ought to be shied away from—any examples of books I hope will never be made into a movie have, unfortunately, already been filmed; Atonement, The Lovely Bones, Jane Eyre (that review’s going up tomorrow), just to name a few. Film is a visual medium, which makes it extremely difficult to get the internal narratives across clearly.
And now for something a little different—a video rant about “literary fiction” and “genre fiction” (both literally meaningless labels). Emo!Ten, our cardboard cut-out of the Tenth Doctor (he survived a near collision between Sasha, the small Honda Civic, and a MARTA bus; his sadness attracts disaster), looms over my shoulder, Demora Pasha’s fan is really loud, and our window of dramatic lighting, well, lights dramatically.
It is November 11th, known here in the U.S. as Veteran’s Day, formerly Armistice Day to remember the end of WWI but expanded to honor all veterans who have fought for their country, so …
Do you read war stories? Fictional ones? Histories?
I tend to find myself dealing with fictional wars. Epic fantasy tends to concern itself with wars, and recently, the fantastical wars I’ve encountered have been about the human cost of war–it’s dealt with in The Lord of the Rings, The Way of Kings, and The Sundering. In fact, I can’t remember any fantasy that glamorizes war off the top of my head, although I’m sure I’ve encountered it.
When it comes to historical fiction, I tend, when reading about wars, to find myself reading about wars pre-1900–the American Revolution, the French Revolution, and the Crusades. I just haven’t found myself drawn to books about modern warfare, although I’ve read Atonement, which is partially set during World War II, and I’m sure there’s a few on my list. But perhaps this is my fantasy rearing popping up–I’m more familiar with pre-1900 warfare.
Even though it’s usually a mistake (grin) … do movies made out of books make you want to read the original?
I fail to understand how it’s a mistake–isn’t it the assumption that the book is better than the film among readers, no matter if the story can be told better in a different medium? (Legally Blonde is such an example; I’ve heard that the original book is just poor, the film is fun, and I adore the musical.)
And yes, watching a film based on a book makes me want to read the book. I like seeing how people adapt things for the screen and how you translate a story to a different medium. For instance, Atonement focuses so much on the inner life of its characters that it’s very difficult to translate it well; you lose that by the sheer nature of a visual medium. Sometimes, the preview for the film is the first I’ve heard of the existence of the book, and so it serves as a book trailer for me.
based on Atonement by Ian McEwan
The release of the film version of Atonement is what motivated me to pick up the novel in the first place. When I returned on campus Saturday evening, I was summoned to my dorm lobby to watch Atonement. The timing couldn’t have been better.
by Ian McEwan
I picked up the recommendation for Atonement from Nancy Pearl’s Book Lust, and I also wanted to read it because the film adaptation was quite successful. It took a few days for me to get over the utter disappointment of The Historian and start on this novel. It soon turned out I couldn’t read it before bed, because I would keep reading it until midnight. I fully intended to go to sleep at 10 o’clock last night, but Atonement thought otherwise. I was quite delighted with this turn of events–it cleaned out the bad taste of The Historian beautifully.