Category «Movie Adaptions»

Movie Mondays: Twilight

Movie Mondays: On Mondays, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: Twilight by Stephanie Meyer | Movie: Twilight (2008)

Which did I read/see first? the BOOK

Book Cover | Movie Poster

The Book:

Series: Twilight Saga
Genre: Teen, Vampires, Romance

Thoughts:

I actually enjoyed Twilight. Mind you, I was about 15 when I read it (read: target audience) and I hadn’t read too many books at that point. This was also just before it got really big too so not so many annoying fangirls. I thought the story was cute and I enjoyed the “paranormal” aspect of it. I have since read extremely better books, but when I initially read it, I did like it.

As I wrote in my series review of the series, I liked Edward as a romantic read and tolerated Bella. I thought the plot was a good blend of suspense, romance and action and while the writing is nothing superb, it was easy to read.

Conclusion:

I enjoyed it though, definitely not for everyone. Teens will probably get the most out of it so that would be who I recommend it to.

Rating: 4/5
Series Review: Full series review here!.

Similar Reads: Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Darkside by Beth Fantaskey (Jessica Series, #1) and My Love Lies Bleeding by Alyxandra Harvey (Drake Chronicles, #1)

The Movie:

I was one of those book fans who didn’t like the casting choices for the movie. I thought the Cullen family was cast perfectly as well as the rest of the supporting cast. I liked Taylor Lautner as Jacob (it allowed me to understand visually why Bella was always torn between Edward and Jacob :P). However, I don’t like Robert Pattinson or Kristen Stewart.

I will keep this rant short but they weren’t who I pictured for the leads in my head when I read the book. Robert isn’t my vision of Edward. Actually, I wanted Steven Strait (The Covenant, 2006 & Magic City, 2012-) to be Edward (I understand that some people wanted him for Jacob, but I think he is a better Edward. I think what fueled this idea in my head was the role he plays in The Covenant was very similar to Edward’s. As for Kristen, she looked the part but I could never stand her acting. Did you ever watch the movie Catch that Kid(2004)? Well, Kristen was in it and I couldn’t stand her in that. My friends and I like to play a game when we watch the movies called “what expression is Kristen trying to do now?” Most of the time the answer is constipation.

But, to the actually movie. As far as book to movie adaptions, this nearly copies the book word for word. There are a few pieces of artistic licence but for the most part, it follows the book. I remember seeing it for the first time and thinking it was amazing and then going to rewatch it (yes, I saw it twice in theatres) and laughing hysterically throughout it. The acting isn’t great, the graphics are a little hokey but the budget wasn’t that fantastic for it so I can let it go.

So, which is better: the book or the movie?

In this case, the winner is the book . The book is a touch less cheesy than the movie. Though I give props to the movie for sticking to the book’s story.

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for Twilight (from Goodreads):
Isabella Swan’s move to Forks, a small, perpetually rainy town in Washington, could have been the most boring move she ever made. But once she meets the mysterious and alluring Edward Cullen, Isabella’s life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn. Up until now, Edward has managed to keep his vampire identity a secret in the small community he lives in, but now nobody is safe, especially Isabella, the person Edward holds most dear. The lovers find themselves balanced precariously on the point of a knife-between desire and danger. Deeply romantic and extraordinarily suspenseful, Twilight captures the struggle between defying our instincts and satisfying our desires. This is a love story with bite

Trailer:

Movie Mondays: The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Movie Mondays: On Mondays, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky | Movie: The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012)

Which did I read/see first? the BOOK

Book Cover Movie Poster

The Book:

Title: The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Genre: Young Adult, Coming of Age, Humourous, High School, Bullying

Thoughts:

This is one of my all time favourite books. I read it in a few hours and I laughed so hard during it. Charlie is hilarious and it was one of the first books I can ever remember laughing through.

I also like it because it is relatable and realistic. And even though it was written years ago, it definitely applies to today’s teens as it deals with topics of bullying, coming out and finding yourself.

It should be noted that the book is written as a series of letters from Charlie as he describes his life and daily events to a friend. This format isn’t for everyone but it’s a nice change from other novels.

Conclusion:

This novel definitely isn’t for everyone and if you don’t enjoy books dealing with growing up, I would stay away from this. I think people in high school or in college would enjoy this more than a 30 year old but to each their own. But overall, if you want to try something new definitely read this!

Rating: 5/5
Similar Reads: Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green

The Movie:

It should be noted that the movie was written, directed and produced by Stephen Chbosky so I went in with high expectations and was not disappointed.

While it didn’t follow the book exactly, you definitely got the main messages and feelings from the book in the movie. I laughed and I cried and I left the movie with that “feel-good” feeling great movies have. The cast was great as well. I especially loved Ezra Miller’s Patrick. He nailed my favourite character perfectly. But I have to give props to the rest of the cast as well.

Overall, fans of the book will not be disappointed and if you liked the movie, you will love the book.

So, which is better: the book or the movie?

In this case, the winner is a TIE . Both are great in their own way and the message and feelings of the novel can be found in the movie. You can’t go wrong here!

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for The Perks of Being a Wallflower (from Goodreads):
Charlie is a freshman.

And while he’s not the biggest geek in the school, he is by no means popular. Shy, introspective, intelligent beyond his years yet socially awkward, he is a wallflower, caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it.

Charlie is attempting to navigate his way through uncharted territory: the world of first dates and mix tapes, family dramas and new friends; the world of sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, when all one requires is that perfect song on that perfect drive to feel infinite. But he can’t stay on the sideline forever. Standing on the fringes of life offers a unique perspective. But there comes a time to see what it looks like from the dance floor.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a deeply affecting coming-of-age story that will spirit you back to those wild and poignant roller-coaster days known as growing up.

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Movie Mondays: The Hunger Games

Movie Mondays: On Mondays, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins | Movie: The Hunger Games (2012)

Which did I read/see first? BOOK

Book Cover | Movie Poster

The Book:

Series: The Hunger Games Trilogy
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Competition, Romance, Action

Thoughts:

You can see my review of the series here but I will briefly review the first book, The Hunger Games here.

I read this book in a day. It was very hard to put down and it was (and still is) unlike anything I had ever read. I loved the characters, I loved the world and I loved the story. I like nitty-gritty (often violent) action movies and novels so I really went in with high expectations and I was not disappointed.

I’m not sure what else I can say without spoiling it, but it was a great book and one that I will definitely reread in the future.

Conclusion:

A great start to a series and one of the best dystopian novels I have read.

Series Review: Full series review here!.
Rating: 5/5

Similar Reads: Divergent by Veronica Roth (Divergent Trilogy, #1) and Delirium by Lauren Oliver (Delirium Trilogy, #1)

The Movie:

I followed this movie’s progress as soon as I finished the novels. I read everything about casting, filming locations, etc. I think it’s a given that I had a lot of expectations going into this movie.

First, the casting. It was perfect in my opinion. Jennifer Lawrence (who has become one of my favourite actresses) does a fantastic job as Katniss. I say this because the trailer scene where Katniss volunteers as tribute made me cry in the theatre despite the fact that I had seen it a million times in the trailer (I also credit Willow Shields as Primrose for that as well). I liked Josh Hutcherson as Peeta and Liam Hemsworth as Gale. Woody Harrelson as Haymitch and Elizabeth Banks as Effie Trinket were exactly as I pictured them in appearance and in acting. Lenny Kravitz rocked my socks and I adore Stanley Tucci so overall it was perfection.

The director and co. did a fantastic job of bringing the world to life. Suzanne Collins has a very thorough description of the settings in her novels so I had the world set up in my mind and the movie was pretty spot-on. The costumes were great and the Capitol was everything I thought and hoped it would be.

My only complaint about this movie was the camera work. I get that they were going for that grittier, realistic feel with the shaky camera (and to get the rating they want) but it made me a little sick to my stomach at the start. It definitely got better as the movie went on though.

Overall, a solid movie adaption that follows pretty close to the story (just a few tiny details here and there were missing or changed), has great acting and a solid set.

So, which is better: the book or the movie?

In this case, the winner is a tie . This one is a tough one for me. The book was fantastic and definitely should be read but the movie did a great job capturing the characters and the story. Fans of the book will not be disappointed in this movie adaption 🙂

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for The Hunger Games (from Goodreads):
Could you survive on your own, in the wild, with everyone out to make sure you don’t live to see the morning?

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister’s place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before—and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender.

If she is to win, she will have to start making choices that will weigh survival against humanity and life against love.(

Trailer:

Movie Mondays: Beastly

Movie Mondays: On Mondays, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: Beastly by Alex Flinn | Movie: Beastly (2011)

Which did I read/see first? The Book

Book Cover                Movie Poster

The Book:

Series: The Kendra Chronicles (Beastly, Bewitching, Towering)

The books all involve Kendra, a witch, but are not really linked in any other way other than being fairy tale adaptions

Genre: Tween, Romance, Fairy Tale Retellings, Magic

Thoughts:

I read this book because the movie was coming out. The plot intrigued me so I decided to read it before I saw the movie (I don’t like books to be spoiled before I read them, I find it makes it harder to finish them).

This book literally takes the story of Beauty and the Beast and plops it down in modern day New York–only this time the perspective is from the view point of the “Beast”. An interesting twist I think and one that works for this book. Again, Kyle is a spoiled kid that you immediately don’t like but begin to like as you see his transformation. I will say that by the end, he had won me over completely.

I really liked this book. I like the relationship he develops with Lindy and how they support each other. Very romantic and fairy tale like!

Conclusion:

I think I was a little too old to read this book, but I really enjoyed it. I appreciate how Alex Flinn sets it up and for the most part it delivers on what it is expected to do.

Rating: 3/5

Similar Reads: A Kiss in Time by Alex Flinn and Devoured by Amanda Marrone

The Movie:

I believe that I saw this quite a bit after reading the novel but I still remembered the major details. I enjoyed the movie but it’s nothing fantastic.

Like most book adaptions, some artistic licence has been used in terms of casting and costumes. In the book, Kyle is actually a hairy beast–just like the Disney movie. Here they have made him scarred which works because I would imagine it would be awkward to have your live-action lead as a hairy beast (especially when you are banking on his good looks to draw the ladies). It still gets the point (that Kyle uses and only cares about his appearance) across which works.

What didn’t work for me was Vanessa Hudgens as Lindy. She was not what I pictured as Lindy and I think it was the wrong choice (I don’t care much for her acting and I kept waiting for her to break out into a HSM song :P). What I liked and admired about the Lindy in the novel was lost in the movie so that was disappointing.

The best part of the movie was Neil Patrick Harris–I love that man and he honestly stole the show with his performance!

So, which is better: the book or the movie?

In this case, the winner is the book . I think the main message of the book was lost in the movie adaption and I enjoyed the characters more in the novel.

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for Beastly (from Goodreads):
I am a beast.

A beast. Not quite wolf or bear, gorilla or dog but a horrible new creature who walks upright–a creature with fangs and claws and hair springing from every pore. I am a monster.

You think I’m talking fairy tales? No way. The place is New York City. The time is now. It’s no deformity, no disease. And I’ll stay this way forever–ruined–unless I can break the spell.

Yes, the spell, the one the witch in my English class cast on me. Why did she turn me into a beast who hides by day and prowls by night? I’ll tell you. I’ll tell you how I used to be Kyle Kingsbury, the guy you wished you were, with money, perfect looks, and the perfect life. And then, I’ll tell you how I became perfectly . . . beastly

Trailer:

Movie Mondays: Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

Movie Mondays: On Mondays, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith | Movie: Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (2012)

Which did I read/see first? The Book

Book Cover                                       Movie Poster

The Book:

Series: No, it is a stand-alone novel
Genre: Historical, Parody, Action, Vampires

Thoughts:

This book had been on my to-read list ever since I read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith (I’m going to refer to it as PPZ hence forth). I absolutely adored that book! It was so well done and I loved how he weaved in Zombies as the cause of the events that transpired in the original book. Needless to say, I was excited to see how he would make an American President a vampire hunter.

Now, I think it is important to state that I am Canadian. I have very little knowledge of past American Presidents or American History. I know the gist of everything but I don’t know all the details–especially with respect to the Civil War and I think that served to my disadvantage with this book.

When I read PPZ, I had just finished the Jane Austen novel so the events of the book were pretty fresh in my mind. I could see why things were happening as they were. However, with ALVH I had difficulty seeing the connections. This book was a lot more focused on the history and Abe’s thought process than the vampire hunting. I was expecting more action and I didn’t get that so I was a little disappointed. I think I skimmed the last few chapters just to finish it.

Conclusion:

Readers should be prepared to read how vampires effected the American Civil War instead of reading an action packed Blade-esque vampire hunter story.

Rating: 2.5/5
Similar Reads: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith

The Movie:

I had read the book last summer in anticipation of the movie so I think the movie trailers had distorted my expectations of the novel. Unfortunately, it’s been about a year since I read the novel and I have just finished watching the movie this past weekend so I can’t remember how accurate it is to the novel (sorry!).

The movie was everything I thought it would be: an over-the-top production of Abe Lincoln as a vampire hunter (why would I expect anything else in all honesty?). Because of this, it won’t be everyone’s cup of tea. There is a lot of slow motion action scenes, lots of blood and some bad-ass axe skills. It’s not like a Blade movie by any means, but it had a lot more action than the novel.

So, which is better: the book or the movie?

In this case, the winner is the movie. It lived up to my expectations–which weren’t that high mind you, but it was what I thought it was going to be.

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (from Goodreads):
Indiana, 1818. Moonlight falls through the dense woods that surround a one-room cabin, where a nine-year-old Abraham Lincoln kneels at his suffering mother’s bedside. She’s been stricken with something the old-timers call “Milk Sickness.”

“My baby boy…” she whispers before dying.

Only later will the grieving Abe learn that his mother’s fatal affliction was actually the work of a vampire.

When the truth becomes known to young Lincoln, he writes in his journal, “henceforth my life shall be one of rigorous study and devotion. I shall become a master of mind and body. And this mastery shall have but one purpose…” Gifted with his legendary height, strength, and skill with an ax, Abe sets out on a path of vengeance that will lead him all the way to the White House.

While Abraham Lincoln is widely lauded for saving a Union and freeing millions of slaves, his valiant fight against the forces of the undead has remained in the shadows for hundreds of years. That is, until Seth Grahame-Smith stumbled upon The Secret Journal of Abraham Lincoln, and became the first living person to lay eyes on it in more than 140 years.

Using the journal as his guide and writing in the grand biographical style of Doris Kearns Goodwin and David McCullough, Seth has reconstructed the true life story of our greatest president for the first time-all while revealing the hidden history behind the Civil War and uncovering the role vampires played in the birth, growth, and near-death of our nation.

Trailer: