You Can’t Sit With Us: Book to Movie Adaptations and Their Respective Fans

When I was younger, I hated books.  I didn’t understand the concept of spending hours upon hours reading a 300+ page book when I could simply watch a 2 hour movie version of it. I also didn’t understand how people could get so excited over books that were going to be turned into movies ex. The Harry Potter Series and The Lord of the Rings trilogy. The trailers for both of these movies seemed interesting enough, but nothing to get that excited over. I felt out of the loop. It was almost as if these people were a part of some secret club that could only be joined if you read. So that’s exactly what I did. I started reading.

That was five years ago, which brings me to today. I was aimlessly scrolling through my twitter feed, as I usually do when I’m in a reading slump, when I saw this.

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Please excuse the awkward sentence structure of this tweet.

As a fan of The Mortal Instruments series, I got frustrated when I saw this person, who hadn’t read the book, tell me she really want to watch the City of Bones movie. I feel like a child who has to share her secret hideaway to a person who won’t appreciate the little details or hidden quirks. This is for any popular book to movie adaptation. In my head, all I can think is, “I’ve been waiting years for this movie to come out, get in line! No, you can not go to the midnight showing. Stop!” Or when a person tries to convince me the movie is better than the book, I can’t help but cringe and bathe in books for the rest of the day hoping I will be cleansed of such indecent thoughts.

Yes, my attitude towards people who do not read the book before watching the movie is borderline pretentious, if not fully pretentious, but I can’t help it. These books are like my babies and it’s my duty to protect them from bad movie adaptations, bandwagon fans, and ugly movie cover editions. I also feel the need to help people realize how much they’re missing out by not reading the books.

And after going through much of my childhood not reading, I now understand why people were so skeptical about going to movies with me when I had not read the books. I wouldn’t have understood all of their inside jokes and nit picky details, which brings me to my next point.

Some books are just not meant to be turned into movies. It seems like every book is being turned into a blockbuster film these days. And at first I thought, “No way! They’re going to make this into a movie. I wonder how they’re going portray this character, get this super power to come across clearly, and add in her inner dialogue.” But after watching several disappointing book to movie adaptions, I realized they were never going to add in those “small” details- not for this movie or any movie for that matter.

Tell me how you feel in the comments. Am I the only who feels shafted by people who don’t read the book before watching the movie? And what do you think of all of these books being turned into movies?

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6 thoughts on “You Can’t Sit With Us: Book to Movie Adaptations and Their Respective Fans

  1. auddge says:

    HEY NOW! Just because I started reading A Song of Ice and Fire after I watched the first season of Game of Thrones doesn’t make me a bandwagon fan. (Ok, it does, but I don’t appreciate people pointing it out).

  2. nevillegirl says:

    Awesome blog! I found you from Thomas’ shout-out. 🙂

    I do think some books were just not meant to be movies – or maybe just not by that director. I think Peter Jackson handled the Lord of the Rings films extremely well. They weren’t perfect but they were very nearly so. If only he’d directed the Harry Potter films, because those were a mess. It probably doesn’t help that they went through four directors (and four composers, but I’m going off-topic). There wasn’t much continuity or explanation.
    And that is why I’m worried about Catching Fire, because Gary Ross did a great job with The Hunger Games but now there’s a new guy. (But the same composer! Whee! *nerd*)

    • Laurarue says:

      Thanks so much for commenting! And I had no idea Harry Potter had so many directors. Looking back, there was a lack of stylistic continuity, but I was overall impressed with the book to movie adaptations (considering no movie could’ve done the books complete justice). And NO WAY! A new guy is directing Catching Fire. 😦 I had no idea. Hopefully it’ll be just as good as The Hunger Games movie. *fingers crossed*

  3. Thomas says:

    “Or when a person tries to convince me the movie is better than the book, I can’t help but cringe and bathe in books for the rest of the day hoping I will be cleansed of such indecent thoughts.” … Laura, this actually made me laugh. Maybe because I could hear you saying it in my head, but… you are a spectacular person.

    I somewhat agree with you, somewhat disagree with you. While it can be frustrating to see people frolic over book-to-movie adaptations when they haven’t read the book, I think the silver lining is that if they watch the movie and are intrigued, they’ll end up reading the books too. That’s sort of what happened in your case, right? For example, with The Hunger Games (and the movie adaptation for THG was pretty darn good, in my opinion) several of my friends watched the movie without reading the books, then they went on to read the entire trilogy. Woo!

    Basically, the book form of entertainment will always have my heart. But if it takes a visual stimulus, like a movie, to get people more interested in books… then by all means, go for it.

    • Laurarue says:

      I actually almost deleted that line thinking “Is this too extreme? What would Thomas do… hmm just dance” *puts it in anyways*. And I read THG before the movie came out, but I do agree the movie adaptation was pretty spot on. *sigh* I suppose if it gets people to read that’s a good thing… FOR THE GREATER GOOD.

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