Theaters are filled to maximum capacity with avid book lovers. A cloud of anxiety and wonder hangs over the heads of the occupants in the theater as they wait in heavy anticipation for the movie to start. Many who fill those seats understand that this movie can have one of two outcomes: a wonderful ending or a disastrous one.
The adaptation of books into movies has grown increasingly popular within the filmmaking community these past few years. It seems that Hollywood’s originality for motion pictures has been at an all time low recently, considering all the remakes and book-to-movie adaptations which have been released this past year alone.
No matter how popular it has become to produce these adaptations, very few have hit the mark. It is true that the value and quality of a movie are largely based on personal opinion, but a general consensus on these types of movies seems to be established by the massive amount of feedback that they receive. These movies face stigma due to the societal idea that books are always better than movies. Books should not be remade into movies, at least until an adaptation can actually stand on its own and prove the stigma wrong.
Books allow for in-depth explanations and descriptions of items, characters and even specific actions. Movies are purely based upon what is shown on the screen, which is enticing to the viewer.
A movie adaptation which fits into the role of a book being better than a movie, at least by popular opinion, would be the movie “The Host.” The book of the same name, written by Stephenie Meyer, is by no means an absolutely wonderful novel— many readers have qualms with the characters and their development. The book does seem to be lacking in many respects, but somehow the movie adaptation has it beat in that aspect. The movie adaptation is missing some key items and scenes which were featured in the book.
To the lovers of these books, the idea of taking out important or memorable scenes or aspects from the book is considered criminal. But, for a piece of literature such as “The Host,” which has 809 pages to fit into 125 minutes of screen time, it becomes a necessary evil to exclude these items. More often than not, it ends up hurting the movie by causing those who love the book to feel repulsed.
There are times when this necessary evil may not be as vital as many moviegoers or filmmakers think. Hollywood is largely based on business and popularity, so many of these best sellers have tons of interested fans.
The more fans there are of a certain book, the more profit a movie adaptation of said book can make due to the influx of book lovers who come to watch the movie, alongside regular moviegoers. Many filmmakers understand this and prioritize how quickly the product is made over the quality of the movie and its actors.
The movie adaptation of a book is too constricting to its storyline and its original basis in the imagination of the readers.
Books and movies are both forms of entertainment, but are still completely different from one another. Books allow for in-depth explanations and descriptions of items, characters and even specific actions. Movies are purely based upon what is shown on the screen, which is enticing to the viewer.
Not only do movies have to focus on creating a good storyline, but they must accurately portray a great visual as well. Books create a storyline that entices the reader to continue reading the novel, but the visuals can vary based on the reader. Books lead someone down a path for a vision, but ultimately allow that vision to be portrayed differently within the minds of the readers.
For this reason, books and movies should not be combined, at least not yet. The movie adaptation of a book is too constricting to its storyline and its original basis in the imagination of the readers. This ultimately leads to some unimpressed book lovers who dislike the visual of the piece of literature that they loved.
Until a proper way to create a movie adaptation of a book is found, so that both book lovers and film fanatics can enjoy, the filmmaking industry should keep away from this desire for profit or popularity, and focus on achieving quality rather than quantity.
Photo by Kayla Florenco