Long rant. Sorry. Didn’t mean to.
DAY TWENTYEIGHT. Confession: I had nightmares of real-life friends committing suicide during the few weeks that I was reading Jeffrey Eugenides’ The Virgin Suicides. No drama, just them doing their normal day-to-day activities with slashed #wrists. It wasn’t really creepy, mind you, it was more of funny really, but still weird.
This morning, on my desk
I’m not saying that The Virgin Suicides was so disturbing it brought me nightmares, nope. I reckon it’s really just how it is with books. Compared to watching films, reading books allows you to imagine the story yourself and create your own pictures in your head, and it just so happened that my imaginations involved my real life friends. Er.
Now movie-fying a novel is something else. Sometimes, we really have to stop comparing a book to its movie version (and vice versa) if we don’t want to disappoint ourselves.
Exhibit A: I remember reading Nicholas Sparks’ A Walk To Remember long before there were news of a film version. My high school self cried over the pages of Jamie Sullivan’s life, and I remember it well because I didn’t read a lot in high school (save for the Sweet Valley High and Love Stories phase we all had to go through) and AWTR was the first book I ever really shed tears over. The only other book I couldn’t put down in high school was Catcher in the Rye, but that’s a different story. Watching AWTR’s movie version was a disappointment, I remember clearly, because I kept comparing it to the book, and I didn’t like how the movie ended with Jamie’s death. To me, the book had a create-your-own-ending thing going on, and in my ending, Jamie survived cancer and lived a full life with Landon. In the movie, she died.
Exhibit B: It’s just like how I didn’t enjoy watching Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince the first time around. I’m not saying I didn’t enjoy these movies. It’s just that comparisons between the book and the movie are inevitable and they can make or break the movie altogether.
Now there are movies, on the other hand, that are better than their book version.