Archive for the ‘Books to Screen reviews’ Category

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After reading this book I Thought I would post my movie review on it. This one was 2.5 hours long. To begin lets talk about what I liked about the movie

1) I loved how they handled the Arena. It was done well and almost as well as I imagined it to be in the book. The salt water lake I thought would be a bit bigger than depicted in the movie but still done very well over all.

2) The victory tour was done well with stops in the right places at the right times. The seeds of rebellion clearly showing and beginning to form and katniss is losing control.

3) I thought the Acting was done quite well. The cast they put together portrayed the characters effectively and really helped bring to life everything that was going on.

4) The other victors matched the descriptions in the book effectively and I really enjoyed how they came to life on the screen.

What I Didn’t I like about this movie

1) I really felt like the story was rushed. 2 much was being packed into to little time on the screen. I really felt that the victory tour deserved more screen time instead of being rushed by.  The victory tour is a key component to build up the rebellion that is forming. The arena portion of the story I felt was rushed as well. The training was non existent and did not help build up the story effectively leading into the arena.

2) I felt that some key elements were left out of the story that should have been in the movie and could have easily been put in without issues. First of all when Katniss was coming back from hunting she was stuck outside the fence finding that it had been electrified when it is normally not turned on. This is because the new head peacekeeper turned it on permanently. This is how she found out about the fence being turned on at all times. She had to climb a tree and jump over the fence hurting her ankle in the process and having to cover up why she was hurt so as not to draw suspicion.

3) Before going into the arena Cinna her fashion guru had taken a moment to show katniss a watch he had with a mocking jay within it and as a hint to the arena lay out. The ride up into the arena was delayed with Katniss wondering why. This delay was important I Felt to the build up of the beating to death of Cinna.

4) Katniss after running into the woods meets up with 2 refugees from another district heading for district 13. This helped build up the rebellion aspect of the story well and should of been in the movie as I felt it was important to the story.

5) Gale had used Katniss’s Cabin in the woods to protect refugees. This would of been a nice touch in the movie but was no there.

6) No mention of supply shortage due to growing rebellion. Another key element that should of been in the movie

Overall this movie did an ok job of adapting the book. I really felt however that it could have easily been split into 2 movies and would have done a much better job adapting the story to the big screen. It just did not do overly well for a movie adaptation. While I never expect the movie to be as good as the book I feel there is much room for improvement.

The thing with the hunger games is unlike Enders game it should easily adaptable, this movie however did not do so well in that way.
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The Giver Movie

Posted: August 25, 2014 in Books to Screen reviews

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The Giver movie based on the book by Lois lowry

I have not read this book and did not even know it existed till the movie came out. I admit,  a bit of a sad statement considering it is a prize-winning story. I was lucky enough to get a free movie pass so me and my wife went to see this movie tonight.

Sometimes it is nice to see the movie first before reading the book so that you can go into it without any preconceived notions of what the movie should be. I had no idea what this story was or even what it was about aside from the few snippets you get from watching the movie trailer. It looked interesting so I went to watch it because it was free.

This is the story of a perfect society. Everyone is equal, and thus no one can see any differences. In a world of equals there is no war, famine, disease, anger, resentment, or any other kind of emotions. All the world is black and white and in perfect harmony.

The world has been divided into communities organized into complete perfection. Everyone has the same home, same clothes and is assigned a career which they all  carry out with perfection. Those who are old and feeble, sick and afflicted are sent to the place of release, which as it turns out is death.

The world that has been created is protected by the barrier of memory which remains up till the giver has crossed the boundary.

Jonas our main character has been selected to be the new receiver of memories, a role that is supposed to guide and direct the Elders in the decision making by holding onto and having stored within his mind the memories of the world. The Giver is training him and giving him these memories so that he can replace him when the time comes.

I have to say that I love this story. There is so much about this story that speaks to the human heart and mind. It is, in the simplest form a philosophical story exploring who we are as individuals and people. It explorers the mind, heart and soul of what it is to be human.

I love the symbolism between the adults who want to control the world and the baby who just needs love and attention. Not having read the books I cannot say how this movie measures up the to the book, but I can say that I felt that the movie did a really good job bringing across these issues to the viewer.

I love the contrast between the black and white freedomless and emotionless world and the color emotion and freedom filled world that our main character Jonas explore as he shifts between the two worlds that he is coming to know exist.

I must say that I really loved this movie. The plot and story behind it is fascinating. I once said that I love a really good story, but what I love more than a good story is one that speaks to the human heart and condition. A story that explores what it is to be human. And this is one of those stories.

I can’t give this movie a rating based on the book as I have not read it yet but I can say that this is a really good movie and I am glad that I went to see it. So I won’t be giving you a rating but will say it is worth seeing and I can’t wait to see just how much better the book is compared to the movie. After all I have never seen a movie that was better than its book.

Divergent The Movie

Posted: August 9, 2014 in Books to Screen reviews

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Well I just finished watching Divergent the movie. Based off of the book by Veronica Roth.

Most movie adaptations of books fail to hit the mark or really do the book justice. Hollywood just can’t do visually what the written word can do. That begs the question then how did the movie adaptation do for this book.

As far as story line goes the movie did, I felt anyway, a pretty good job on following the story line of the book. Unlike so many hollywood adaptation there really was not much in the way of divergence from the main story line. From the choosing day to initiation and testing to discovering the plot to take over the government the story line was followed effectively throughout the movie. Events of the story happening along the same timelines as the book. key events were added in where the needed to be with not much in the way of variation

Characters in the movie were also well done. They had the look and feel that I really thought that they should. The characters were as I imagined them in the book. Personality, development and so forth.

The movie I also felt did a good job of world building. Setting up the world and explaining the society that these characters lived within. I felt that they did a good job in bringing the world Veronica Roth imagined to life in terms of settings, factions, training and testing and all the important key elements that help make this story a good one.

While certainly not the best adaptation of a book it is a far cry from the worst out there. I can certainly say that this is one adaptation that does a half decent job of bringing the book to life on the big screen. I am glad that I read the book before seeing the movie. Some movies I wish I had read the book first, this was one where I was glad I did, as it really helps to do a reasonable comparison.

Overall hollywood did a good job and I look forward to the next movie. For a book adaptation I would give this a 7/10. The only downside being that you just can’t get as much inside scoop on the characters. But that is just the limitation of screen. It can be difficult to get inside their minds and understand what they are thinking in a visual medium.