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‘A Walk In the Woods’ Movie Review

19 Jun

Image via Movie Poster Shop

It’s been a while since I read a book that had been turned into a movie and it was a nice break. It let me say to my husband on Saturday, “I have to watch this movie!” I enjoyed A Walk In the Woods a lot as an audiobook and I was curious how it would be turned into a movie so it was a delight to see this and see how things developed.

Things I Thought Were Awesome

Nick Nolte. I had an idea in my heads of what Katz would look and act like, much of it derived from the narrator of the audiobook. Nolte didn’t hit it exactly, but he was pretty darn close! I enjoyed his portrayal and how he struggled with the hiking but became so much better as the film went on. When he wanted to give up, he let Bill talk him out of it. That was a lot of growth from when he got off the plane.

Changes That Didn’t Really Bother Me

Katz’s drinking. I’m glad this still got brought up. I thought with the direction the film was going that it would be cut since it was at the end of the book. It was one of Katz’s biggest demons and another big moment of growth for his character.

Running into bears. This was a bit much for me. The two did run into some kind of creature (I suspect a bobcat) but the encounter was nowhere near as exciting as the one in the film. It seemed a bit too convenient that the bears were scared off by the men in their tents. Honestly, that wouldn’t always work.

Cover image via Goodreads

Things That Were Taken Out and I’m Still Wondering Why

Nature facts. Toward the end, Bill goes off about the American Chestnut but it’s the first time he’s talked about nature or the trail at all for their entire trip. The book had Bill giving facts about the trail’s history and the landscape they’re walking through the whole time. Why take it out at the beginning and leave only the Chestnut?

Things That Changed Too Much

Not stopping in Tennessee. When Katz brought up fast forwarding the trip, I was ready for it. The Smokey’s were the worst part of the trip for both of them. I was really surprised when Bill kept going and they didn’t skip ahead to Virginia. That was a bit too much for me.

Not taking a break and coming back to it. I didn’t like the pace of hiking the trail in the book, but this was weird. Instead of taking the summer apart and Bill hiking parts of the trail by himself, they stopped completely in Virginia. In my mind, they weren’t as close to ‘finishing it’ as they came in the book. They had all of New England that wasn’t touched. Either way, the book and movie fell short of what I was hoping for in the story, but the movie even more so.

This was what I was looking for in a fun read about hiking and being outside. I’ve been couped up inside with school projects and I’d love to get out like Katz and Bill. Reader, have you seen the A Walk in the Woods movie? What did you think?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

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‘The Spectacular Now’ Movie Review

17 Apr

Image via Movie Poster Shop

I’ve been watching a lot of movies based on books lately! It’s been a good way for me to relax while school has been crazy. I watch them in two or three chunks which drives my husband crazy and ensures I get to watch them alone! I hadn’t heard of this book until I saw the trailer for The Spectacular Now so I had to watch the movie right away!

Things I Thought Were Awesome

The narration as a college essay. I was wondering how the writers would get Sutter’s strong voice to influence the story but using a college essay at the beginning and end was a great way to get his personality across and emphasize how he changed. Kudos!

Sutter’s dad. This wasn’t awesome in a way that means ‘cool’ but in a way that means ‘well done, writers.’ I hated Mr. Keely even more in the movie than I did in the book and he was pretty terrible in both. How little he cares about seeing his son after so many years is really depressing and seeing him go back to the bar instead of home to see Sutter was infuriating. I understood Sutter’s anger better and why Aimee was more worried about Sutter than herself after the car accident.

Changes That Didn’t Really Bother Me

Simplifying his relationship with Holly. The opening when Sutter sets a fire in Holly’s house set the tone well for how combative the two would be and helped the reader understand why Holly is so reluctant to give Sutter his dad’s information. I think implying they didn’t have a lot in common and the obvious age gap between them was enough and I’m glad they took it out.

Cover image via Goodreads

Things That Were Taken Out and I’m Still Wondering Why

Aimee’s drinking. The amount Aimee drank and the problems she started running into with drinking were a major message in the book. I felt this was a bit glossed over in favor of Sutter’s drinking problems in the film. Book Aimee is drinking to excess and getting sick from it while movie Aimee is having a few drinks to have fun but seems to be encouraging Sutter more than anything else. I think the change in Aimee was a big part of the book ending. With the ending change (see below), it makes a bit more sense the way the movie went.

Things That Changed Too Much

The ending. I didn’t like it. (Major spoilers for the rest of this paragraph.) In the book, Sutter had Aimee leave because it was best for her. He didn’t have his own things sorted out but knew she was in a good place and was set up to succeed in life. He recognized that he was a boost she needed to reach her goals. In the movie, he just abandons her and she almost stays for him but at the last minute, she goes anyway. I thought this was really against the book’s idea of pushing her out of the nest. Especially when he shows up in Philly to see her! That really rubbed me the wrong way. Book Sutter realized she needed him for a time and that time was over. Movie Sutter wanted to fix his own mistake and get back with her. I didn’t like the change, it made me lose some respect for Sutter.

Cassidy and Krystal. Small, but a Hollywood change I didn’t like. Cassidy and Krystal were fat! It was in the book, multiple times in Cassidy’s case. But in the movie, because Hollywood and women, they’re rail thin. I would have loved a curvaceous Cassidy and I was really hoping it would happen, but no dice. Drats.

This was a fun book and a good movie. Except for the ending, I thought the two were rather comparable. Reader, have you seen The Spectacular Now movie? What did you think?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

‘The Circle’ Movie Review

16 Apr

Movie poster via Book My Show

FINALLY! I had The Circle on my TBR before the movie was announced but when it came out, I tried to read the book so I could see the movie in theaters and compare them but life (and book clubs) happened and I’m only just now reading and watching. I’m so behind the times. At least I’m trying to catch up!

Things I Thought Were Awesome

Mercer. I know Ellar Coltrane doesn’t look a thing like the Mercer described in the book, but I almost liked him better. Mae seemed really superficial when she started making fun of how Mercer looked so having an attractive guy play him made more sense to me. He still came off as ‘outdoors-y’ and hands-on without an out for teasing him on vanity reasons.

Chasing Mercer. This scene was hard to read and understand in the book but seeing it played out made me really appreciate how he felt chased. It’s easy to see why, after getting death threats from strangers, he wanted to hide and being chased made him flee like an animal.

Changes That Didn’t Really Bother Me

Taking out Francis. He didn’t add much to the story in my mind. He did give us a baseline for Mae’s ideas of privacy at the beginning of the book and how they changed by the end. But really, he just made me sad most of the time. Better not to have a sad character.

Reducing the feedback systems. There was so much as far as the surveys, PartiRank, influencer scores, ah! It was too much, and that was the point of it all, but it was still overwhelming to read and would have been overwhelming to see in the movie. Better off without it.

Taking out the fish tank. That was a heavy-handed metaphor if I’ve ever read one. It added nothing to the plot and only served to show the three founders as aquatic creatures and see, in a very disturbing feeding practice, how a society can destroy itself.

Cover image via Goodreads

Things That Were Taken Out and I’m Still Wondering Why

Mae’s relationship with Ty/Kalden. I felt this was pretty integral to their teamwork at the end (which I’ll get to later). Without the relationship between them, I felt there wasn’t much for the trust they shared to be based on. I would have argued for the relationship to be left in, especially with Francis being taken out.

Transparency. Mae’s transparency was a big deal, but the number of other people going transparent was really glossed over. There was the one senator, but that didn’t scrape the surface of the number of people in the book who became transparent. I wish it was shown that Mae wasn’t such an anomaly.

Things That Changed Too Much

Warning: all of these are spoilers for the book and the movie. You’ve been warned.

Annie. I thought the way Annie’s story ended in the book was appropriate. There had to be a victim who’d been swept up in the Circle and it was Annie. She was necessary to show the evil in a system like the Circle and without her collapse, the ending seemed almost happy. As much as I hate to say it, Annie needed to end up in that coma.

Ty at the end. I don’t get this one. Why would he want to share Stenton and Eamon’s secrets but not bring down the company? It didn’t make sense to me what he was trying to accomplish. He’d already said that the reason he created TruYou had been twisted and he wasn’t happy with it. Why would he be happy with the Circle’s path and want it to continue? I feel like there’s a deleted scene here that makes this all make sense and makes Mae look like the bad one.

Eamon at the end. I didn’t like him ending up the bad guy after all. I pinned him as the guy who genuinely thought he was doing something for the good of the world and seeing him entrenched in secrets and getting ready to face legal battles ruined his character for me. I wish they’d left him out of it, maybe thrown Stenton under the bus alone. Or, you know, kept the ending from the book. Just saying.

Spoilers over!

Overall, it was a fair representation of the book though, of course, a lot was cut out for time. It was such a long book, I knew a lot had to go. Reader, have you seen The Circle movie? What did you think?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

‘The Glass Castle’ Movie Review

19 Mar

Movie Poster via IMDb

OK, I’ll be the first to admit that I read this book a looooong time ago. I know it was 2015 because I remember reading it at a conference in Chicago. I told myself I’d see the movie when it came out but I’m terrible at seeing movies in a timely fashion. I was on my way home from California when I started watching it on the in-plane entertainment app. We landed before I could finish it so I wrapped it up over the weekend. I don’t have a great memory of the book, so please comment with more if you can.

Things I Thought Were Awesome

Woody Harrelson. I feel like he gets a bad reputation for being a bad actor, but I don’t agree. He’s very good at playing a drunk or a drug addict! Rex seems like a role made for him and he did a great job with it. The emotional highs and lows were believable and I felt like Woody might have really experienced those emotions.

If you only watch one part of this movie, watch the credits. There are interviews with the Walls kids and video clips of Rose Mary and Rex from the time they were living homeless in New York. It was amazing to see Rex and how well Harrelson embodied him. The interviews were great because the kids shared their memories of getting a star and it mirrored that scene in the movie so well.

Changes That Didn’t Really Bother Me

More of the movie concentrated on Jeannette’s time in the present, with David, than I remember from the book. It was fine by me, interesting enough, but I felt like it was just to give Brie Larson more screen time. I wanted to be with the Walls family in Welsh or traveling across the country in a van more, but the writers found a way to keep it interesting and I liked it well enough.

Cover image via Goodreads

Things That Were Taken Out and I’m Still Wondering Why

Not taken out, but shortened. Her time in college! I was amazed that Jeannette went through school with no family support the way she did. That was the most empowering part of her story for me because it overlapped with my life. I was really amazed by her strength there.

Things That Changed Too Much

Rose Mary’s problems. It was clear in the book that both of Jeannette’s parents contributed to her challenging upbringing. While Rex had problems with drinking, Rose Mary would hide food from her children and couldn’t hold a job. Her issues were really downplayed in the movie to focus on Rex and I think it took away from the book as a whole.

I’d have a lot more to say if it hadn’t been so long between when I read the book and seeing the film. I liked the movie but I’m sure there were parts left out that I would have liked to see. Reader, have you seen The Glass Castle movie? What did you think?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

‘The Door In the Floor’ Movie Review (Based on John Irving’s ‘A Widow for One Year’)

15 Mar

Poster image via Amazon

I’m making more of an effort to see the movies based on the books I read soon after I finish them. I’d say this one was a pretty solid success as I finished the book less than a month ago and it took a while to find time with how busy I’ve been! It took me a bit to realize the movie had a different title from the book. I gathered from reading the plot description that the movie only covered the first half of the book which surprised me a bit. I was pleasantly surprised by what resulted.

Things I Thought Were Awesome

The dialogue. It was so true to the book that it was almost comical at times. I wasn’t expecting so many lines directly from the book to make their way out of the actor’s mouths but it was really great how true to the book they were able to keep.

Seeing Ted in action. It was a bit hard to understand how Ted could be so attractive to so many women, but seeing him played out made it a bit easier to understand. He was charming and Jeff Bridges did a great job of bringing him to life and making him believable.

Changes That Didn’t Really Bother Me

Focusing on only the first third of the novel. I thought this would bother me a lot, but it didn’t. The movie set up the relationships between the characters that carried them on their ways through the last half of the book. Marion, Ruth, Ted, and Eddie are the backbone of the book and it was great to see them established so strongly.

Cover image via Goodreads

The time period. The summer in question in the book was in the early 1950s. The movie moved it to the release date, 2005. It seemed a bit incongruous when Ted was typing away at a typewriter and we’re supposed to believe it’s 2005. I’m not sure why they’d change it because the story is universal and except when it was said what year it was and when Timmy’s show was an Air Jordan instead of a high-top, I never would have questioned it.

Things That Were Taken Out and I’m Still Wondering Why

The picture Marion left for Eddie. That made an impact on me in the book. She leaves the picture of Tommy and Timmy at Exeter and says it’s for Eddie but Ted takes it from him. She left it for Eddie because it was after looking at it that they were together for the first time. It had nothing to do with her sons, it was about their relationship.

Honestly, I can’t think of anything else. The movie kept really close to the book! Well, if you’re only considering the first third that is.

Things That Changed Too Much

The ending. I’m not talking about the last 2/3 of the book missing, I’m talking about how it was wrapped up. It’s stated in the film, and implied in the reading, that a door in the floor represents death. With Ted crawling into the door at the end, it’s implied that he’s committed suicide. I hated this. There’s no way Ted (book or movie) would abandon Ruth by leaving her. Ruth is the one thing he stays focused on and is devoted to. I was really mad at the end when I saw that, it’s not like him.

Marion’s plan. In the book, she planned it perfectly. Ted got back too late to see her again before she drove away. It bothered me that Ted got to see her and knew she was leaving in the movie. Him acting like he didn’t know she was leaving confused me when he talked to Eddie. He’d seen her driving away!

I loved it right up until the end and then I got mad. At least there were extras with an Irving interview that cheered me right up. Reader, have you seen The Door in the Floor movie? What did you think?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Books as Movies or TV Shows: A Debate

15 Feb

My posts this week have really focused on books being turned into movies and TV shows. Books being made into TV shows is a more recent phenomenon that I’m getting on board with. Obviously, Game of Thrones has been wildly successful. I’m also a fan of other series such as Z and The Man in the High Castle on Amazon and I’ve heard good things about The Handmaid’s Tale and the BBC adaptations of the Cormoran Strike novels. Since the way we’re watching TV is changing, the way books are turned into a visual medium is changing, too.

Someone correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was the first book to be turned into two movies. This was followed by Breaking Dawn and Mockingjay and I’m sure many others. It seems obvious that the reason for this was to give more of the book’s content time to come to the screen, an effort to keep more of what readers loved and turn it into more for movie-only fans to love. It doesn’t hurt that it’s a nice cash-grab for the studio as well!

TV shows are taking that even further. Instead of one of George R.R. Martin’s massive books being squeezed into one 120-minute movie or even two, we get ten episodes, 600 minutes, in the first season. Some series have had to go beyond what’s in the novel (The Man in the High Castle is a prime example) because fans are asking for more content than the book provided. Now, instead of cutting material, the problem is adding it.

Either way, we’re never going to get a page-for-page, line-for-line adaptation of a book to a movie or TV show. Someone will look different, speak differently, or be cut because books cannot realistically be turned directly into a visual scene. Some are better than others, to be sure, but none are perfect.

If I head a favorite book was going to be made visual, I’m not sure what I’d prefer. Is it better to have some things cut, maintain the main plot line, and see a movie that’s over in 120 minutes and I can pass my judgment at that time? Or should I hope for a season of 15 45-minute episodes that will add unnecessary characters and change the main plot to something that takes the main character well into season two to solve? Which is better? Is either one?

I’m personally a fan of the TV adaptations. I’m a big TV binger so I enjoy getting to see my favorite books as bite-sized-yet-bingable chunks to enjoy in my PJs while eating ice cream on my couch. (You are welcome for the visual.) I’m excited at the idea of a Lord of the Rings TV show. I hope I can stream it.

What do you prefer? Is there a ‘best’ way to see your favorite books come to life? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

The 5 Stages of Finding Out Your Favorite Book is Becoming a Movie

13 Feb

I’m sure this has happened to us all at some point. You hear the amazing news that a book you LOVED is being made into a movie. This happened to me with Ready Player One and A Darker Shade of Magic I’m sure many of you experience it with Harry Potter. I feel there are some universal stages, like the stages of grief, that all readers go through upon receiving the news of a film adaptation.

Stage One: Denial
I believe my initial reaction to every movie adaptation announcement has either been, “What?!” or “No way!” Clearly, my first reaction is denial. Despite rave reviews of the book, I’m shocked someone in Hollywood agreed with me that a certain title was absolutely amazing and totally worthy of being seen by the millions of non-readers who will see the film.

Stage Two: Excitement
I believe my second reaction to finding out about each movie has been, “Heck yes!” or “I’m so pumped.” The idea of getting to see something that lives in your head on a 40-foot screen with surround-sound is an adrenaline rush waiting to happen. The satisfaction of hearing a good review of the movie from a friend who refused to read the book is the best. Being able to appreciate red herrings and see the small details that get you to the ending you know is coming makes you feel like Agatha Christie. And all of this is really going to happen because the book is being made into a movie!

Stage Three: Nervousness
But then, doubt starts to set in. What if they get rid of your favorite scene? The one that would be visually beautiful if done correctly but might blow the entire budget? What if the adorkable best friend is cast as some Hollywood hottie who is totally wrong for the character? What if the writers add a love triangle to build tension that is completely unnecessary to the amazing story that’s already been created. What if it’s nothing like the amazing book? What if the movie flops and all your friends wonder why you liked such a stupid story?

Stage Four: Anger
Why did they have to make your favorite book into a movie? There’s no way the (insert number of pages here) pages of amazing plot can be compacted into a 90-minute movie! There’s no way they’ll get Natalie Portman/Shailene Woodley/Sophie Turner to pull off the female lead and it’s impossible Leonardo DiCaprio/Chris [Pratt/Pine/Hemsworth/Evans] will get the male character’s personality right. This movie is going to be terrible! Why would your favorite author let this happen? (S)He is just chasing the next easy paycheck, you thought (s)he was better than that!

Stage Five: Acceptance
Okay, the casting is set and it’s not as bad as you thought. It’s not the director you would have picked, but (s)he has made some decent films in the past, some you even liked, and you can put your faith in him/her. Plus, the teaser trailer was way better than you expected and it looks like they didn’t completely cut your favorite scene. It’s going to be a bit different, but you’re okay with that. A movie is a different creative mind’s interpretation of something you loved. They’re not going to imagine it the same way you did.

Have you been through these stages? Any others you would add? I posted yesterday about some movie/TV adaptations I’m still excited about. We’ll see how long it takes me to accept them.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

2018 Book to Screen Adaptations I’m Excited For

12 Feb

Each year, I get excited about seeing some books I’ve enjoyed coming to the big screen. Sometimes, I’m nervous. Other times, giddy. There are a huge number of books coming to theatres and the small screen this year. Below are the ones I’m excited for.

Love, Simon (book titled Simon vs. the Homosapien Agenda) by Becky Albertalli. I haven’t read this one yet, but I’m really excited to see what the screen does with a very well-received book. I’m hoping to do an audiobook of it quite soon.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. Oh. My. Gosh! I’ve been looking forward to this one since I finished the book, forced my husband to read it, and nerded out over the amazing storyline with him. It’s been three years and I’m finally close to seeing it on-screen!

The Girl in the Spider’s Web by David Lagercrantz. Another one I have yet to read that’s been languishing on my shelf. I loved the three books Larson wrote and I’m hoping Lagercrantz did well adapting Lisbeth and Mikael for his plots. I need to listen to or read this one soon!

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. It’s a push saying this is based on a book, but my excitement is no joke! You all know what a Potterhead I am and this is feeding my love and playing into my 1920s obsession.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Annie Barrows and Mary Ann Shaffer. This is one of the first books I read because I found it on Goodreads so it has a sentimental place in my heart. It was a cute story and I’m excited to see what’s done with the WWII setting.

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. This will be awesome. Some of Bradbury’s ideas actually came to be. Others were a bit off base and off the wall. It will be interesting to see what the scriptwriters decided to do with the crazy world Bradbury created.

Ashes in the Snow (book titled Between Shades of Grey) by Ruta Sepetys. This is another one I haven’t read yet but have sitting on my shelf. I’ve heard amazing things about this author so I better get around to read it soon so I can enjoy the movie!

Altered Carbon by Richard K. Morgan. Confession time: I didn’t know this was a book first. I already watched the first episode and I’m liking it so far! I’m not sure I’ll go back and read the book, but I plan to watch the series through to the end.

C.B. Strike (based on the Cormoran Strike novels- The Cuckoo’s Calling, The Silkworm, and Career of Evil) by Robert Galbraith AKA J.K. Rowling. I’ve loved the first three books so far and I’m excited to see what the series looks like as a TV show. I hope the plots aren’t too rushed and can be spread out over a few episodes if not a season each.

The Miniaturist by Jesse Burton. This book wasn’t a favorite of mine, but I think seeing it on the TV screen and getting a visual of Amsterdam in that time period would be amazing. I’d love to see the town Nella explores and the great sugar stores Johannes has.

I guess I have a lot of watching to do! Any other movies or TV shows you all are excited for, readers? Are you waiting for any of these?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

‘The Color Purple’ Movie Review

8 Feb

Movie Poster via Amazon

I was well aware of the movie version of this book. I’m aware of the play as well so I’ll have to keep an eye open and see if it’s being put on anywhere near me. You can read my book review of The Color Purple and I recommend the movie as well!

Things I Thought Were Awesome

Whoopi Goldberg. I didn’t know she was in this and I loved her! It seems like this might have been her first major role and I think she killed it. Celie’s a character that could easily come off as slow or unresponsive but Goldberg played her wonderfully. I got a better sense of the character from her. The young actress was incredible, too. I would have loved to see the two act together.

Harpo. I didn’t understand his characterization in the book, but the way he came across in the movie was great. He was always well-intentioned, even when he fought with Sofia but he was a bumbling idiot a lot of the time as well.

Changes That Didn’t Really Bother Me

Fewer time jumps. The book took place over a long period of time but because of aging the actresses, the movie concentrated a lot on Celie’s marriage to Mister and the year or so on either side of that and then on a time about 12-20 years later. I liked having a more set time period because I struggled knowing how much time had passed and how old children were and how long Shug had been with Mister.

Mister’s work ethic. There was a big point in the book about him being lazy and doing nothing around the house. The movie made it clear he wasn’t good in the home, but it showed him working the fields a lot and putting in the effort to earn a living. I found this a little contradictory but it wasn’t too distracting.

Cover image via Goodreads

Things That Were Taken Out and I’m Still Wondering Why

Sofia’s imprisonment. She comes back with an injured eye but it’s never really explained what happened to her or where she was. It almost seems like the injury happened when she was living with her sisters. I think her injury should have been taken out or it should have been clearer that she’d been in jail.

Mister’s redemption. He really redeemed himself by the end of the book but at the end of the movie, you were just glad he was gone. He might have been a better man when he had to be by himself, but we see him as a lonely drunk who manages to clean his porch, not a man who’s turned his life around.

Things That Changed Too Much

Not thinking Nettie was dead. To me, this was the largest emotional blow and not having it in the movie made the movie a little easier to take. It was alluded to, that there was a letter that went to Mister’s house, but we never hear that Nettie’s ship sank and she’s presumed dead. I wish that had made it in the final cut.

Shug and Celie’s relationship. This was such a big point in the book! The women share a kiss in the movie, but there’s almost nothing about Shug and Celie loving each other and how Shug running off with a younger man breaks Celie’s heart. I wish something more about that had been in because it said a lot about Shug’s character that the movie missed.

I was crying toward the end of the movie and (of course!) that’s when the maintenance guy showed up. I bet I looked silly. Reader, have you seen The Color Purple movie? What did you think?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

‘Our Souls at Night’ Movie Review

11 Dec

Movie poster via IMDb.

A friend from my book club alerted me that there was a made-for-Netflix movie version of the book we were reading for discussion, Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf. I had a flight home from Texas after Thanksgiving and my husband and I downloaded it and streamed it for the last part of our flight. It ended up being a relaxing way to end the trip.

Things I Thought Were Awesome

Redford and Fonda. I was told later that Redford approached Fonda about making this movie together, reminiscent of when they did Barefoot in the Park together fifty years earlier. I thought the casting was good and I was glad to see two well-known and respected actors take on the roles.

Addie. I wasn’t a big fan of her in the book but the movie made her very sympathetic. She seemed less pushy on-screen and I enjoyed seeing her vulnerable when the book made her seem unbreakable emotionally.

Changes That Didn’t Really Bother Me

Jamie at Ruth’s funeral. The book made a point of not having Jamie at Ruth’s funeral. This seemed odd to me because he was old enough to understand death and you’d think he’d notice Ruth not being around anymore. I understand they were protecting him for even more loss during a hard part of his life, but I thought it was a bit too much.

Cover image via Goodreads

Things That Were Taken Out and I’m Still Wondering Why

Louis gardening. This is honestly the only thing I can think of that was taken out of the movie. It meant that the mice were out as well but the train replacement was good, in my book. I think the gardening could have been nice visually, though.

Things That Changed Too Much

Gene’s drinking problem. This one made me mad. Yes, Gene was a bad father but taking it to the point that he’s leaving Jamie home alone for hours while he goes out drinking was too much. It made Addie’s motivation to leave Holt strong, but it didn’t make as much sense considering her plotline with Louis. It really got to me.

Gene and Beverly’s relationship. This is really an extension of the one above. With Jamie losing his mother, Addie had very different motivation to want to move in with him. Rather than being injured and almost forced to go, she is 100% making the decision to leave. I felt the whole end of the story was different with these changes.

It was a slow movie, probably not the best for watching on a plane to keep you awake, but also a nice way to wind down at the end of a long vacation. Reader, have you seen the Our Souls at Night movie? What did you think?

Until next time, write on.

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