This is one of my least favorite arguments to have. I hate to compare films to their novelistic counterparts. The movie is never as good as the book. I don’t care what movie you think makes the exception–It’s never as good. It’s almost an insult to think it could be. They are two different art forms, appealing to two separate senses that trigger different paths of emotion. And the bottom line is, there are two kinds of people in the world, and one half prefers one to the other.
Okay, now that that’s off my chest…
Water for Elephants is on the top shelf of my mental bookcase. Meaning, it’s one of my favorite books that I’ve ever read. It’s actually on the top shelf of my real bookshelf too, now that I think about it. But that’s because of it’s genre and my cataloguing.
The book is a clever, eclectic, verbal illustration of an unlikely love story told through the slits of the big top… something we haven’t really thought about, really, since Dumbo. It’s so endearing that you can’t bear the thought they might not be real. But, author Sara Gruen rewards your loyalty to a sincere story with a ending billowing with hope and nostalgia.
So, when the movie comes out, how can they possibly match what my mind has created?
The answer is they don’t… Especially when they place Reese Witherspoon as the young Marlena (Reese is not young anymore). I was willing to give it a chance because Edward Cullen as Jacob felt good. But, I put off seeing it… until last night.
I got Mike to watch it with me… Which isn’t that big of a feat, because what most people don’t know about him… he loves chick flicks. We settled in, popcorn and everything (our first official movie night since getting hitched) to see how it was.
Loved. Guys, I loved it. First off, Reese looked a mature young woman. She was perfect. I loved Pattinson, loved Christophe Waltz and really do think they (the producers, etc.) used their best abilities to create something that completely stands alone. Evidence – Mike loved it too. He’s definitely never read the book.
I hope you guys would read the book first… But that then, you’ll see the flick. It’s sweet, sad, funny and hopeful. Inspiring, even. The book is a MUST-read, and the movie is absolutely worth it. Enjoy!