Reading the Movie

Or I’ll do it in my blog.


I take great pride in my bookshelf. A mix of guilty pleasures, classic literature, pop culture and hidden literary treasures. I don’t claim to know everything and anything about any author or novel but I do understand the significance of literature. I particularly understand (and I strongly hope many others understand) that the MOVIE IS NOT THE SAME AS THE BOOK.

Whilst many producers have brought our favourite novels to life on the big screen, they do have a bit of creative license to alter and modify the story. Even if the author writes the script (I.e. Melina Marchetta’s ‘Looking for Alibrandi’) there are still elements of difference drawing a line between the movie and book. I don’t even know why I even need to clarify this as it seems like commonsense! But while I’m at it, let us look at the movie and novel ‘Atonment’. ‘Atonement’ the movie is a tragically romantic movie about a couple seperated during WWII. Their seperation was caused by the nosey sibling who couldn’t mind her own business and was keen to jump to conclusions. Whilst this sister is in the book too, the two are not the same! The book follows the story of the sibling as she attempts to atone for splitting the couple. ‘Atonement’ the book is actually about atonement – not tragic love! How about ‘Pride and Prejudice’? Whilst we all want Mr Darcy, this novel is not a romance as the movies lead us to believe. It’s a social commentary of society, families and how silly we become in order to fall in love. It mocks love. ‘Harry Potter’? The nerdy Hermione turned into a sex goddess in the space of a movie when in actual fact there is no beauty transformation in the books. Logic, people! She may be a witch but she’s still human! Grand transformations don’t occur overnight when you’re living in a boarding school with no personal income for plastic surgery!

Evidently it’s quite clear that you can’t exactly “read” the movie. A recent argument with a friend regarding a Mary Shelley classic made me realise that people are quite silly indeed. It came to a sudden halt when I realised that my (no longer) beloved friend was arguing and providing evidence from a movie. A movie based on a novel they had NEVER READ! NEVER READ! NEVER.

How can you claim to know a story without having read it? How could you embarass yourself in an argument? How can you claim that you’re “above” such literature?! Sorry but it stands that Shelley is above you in all aspects as not only did she write a successful novel, it is still being studied across schools all over the world! After so many years!

….and they had the nerve to claim they’re above it.


I rapidly put her in her place.

Now if I was in a fantasy world, I will take inspiration from Mary Shelley and write a little short story about using her limbs and electricity to bring to life a monster. I shall call it the monster of literature. The monster who can gather her followers and read movies on another planet away from me and my fellow literature fanatics.


Rule for Humanity: Don’t judge a novel by its movie.