YES, THE TRAIN HATH FINALLY ARRIVED AND MY ‘LETTUCE DISCUSS’ POSTS ARE HERE!! Let’s all have a doughnut to celebrate! Today we shall be discussing whether watching the film before reading the book can be acceptable, in my opinion.
(By the way, if you hadn’t noticed yet, I love food, hence my blog name Booked to Perfection (like cooked to perfection heheh I am pun king) and of course the name of my new discussion posts, Lettuce Discuss because I LIKE LETTUCE OK?? Plants and I have a very close relationship.)
Now lettuce start this post before it flees the country or eats all of the lettuce in my fridge.
So, my question: is watching the film before reading the book punishable by death?
Most bookish humans would say “yes, you traitor” and throw me off a mountain. Buuuuut, is it really betrayal? Does it actually matter which you do first? Why do most people think that it does matter??
I want to start off by saying that, personally, I’m not against watching the film first because, well, I do a lot.
(DON’T HURT ME, I HAVE MY REASONING LISTED BELOW.)
Here are just a few of the books that I read after watching the films:
- The Book Thief
- The Chronicles of Narnia
- How to Train Your Dragon
- Bridge to Terabithia
- Harry Potter
- A Little Princess
- The Boy in the Dress
I don’t think I disliked a single book on this list, so… does watching the film first really make any difference to the way you see the book? Here are a list of reasons why I think watching the film first can be acceptable.
films are a lot easier to advertise than books
For me this means that I’m more likely to discover the film before the book because films are allll over the place: on transport, on TV, on social media, in magazines… but books are advertised less in public and more in the sphere of book lovers, so won’t necessarily be seen around and about as much as films.
Obviously discovering the film first doesn’t happen with every single book I read, but it does happen a lot. Sometimes watching the film first can be purely accidental if you found it before you found the book; for me this is especially true when I watched films as a child and didn’t even know how to read yet, so I didn’t have much choice, I just stared for hours on end at the meaningless words. I wasted so many of my smol years desperately wanting to know what those weird jumbled up letters really meant… *sniffs*
going into books blind is difficult for me
MY CURIOSITY IS OVERWHELMING PLEASE SEND HELP.
If I know what roughly happens in the book because I’ve seen the film, then I can read it with no surprises because I am NOT a fan of surprises, people. I DO NOT LIKE. If there are any surprises, I’d have already experienced them watching the film in which they wouldn’t have hit me as hard, because we all know books are better when it comes to surprises.
And yes, some of you will probably think that films just spoil the surprises, maybe by changing a few lil details, or by ruining the entire plot of the book altogether.
But, as I said before, I don’t mind spoilers (well… to an extent) because in a film they’re not explained in much detail so I might not even fully understand the ‘surprise’ until I read the book and I’m not completely smacked in the face with shock. Watching the film first also means that, when I do read the book, I don’t have to skip ahead or look up any spoilers online because yes, I’M THAT PERSON. I have skipping ahead syndrome. Cry for me.
watching a bad film is better than reading a bad book
Films aren’t as precious to me as books are because I am a smol pineapple who loves to read books. I still love films, especially the Disney kind, but books are more important to me, which is why I don’t like reading books that I don’t like; and reviewing bad books is DIFFICULT, peeps. Basically when I watch a bad film, it isn’t a big deal for me. But I hate hate hate reading bad books!! From the film I can get a good inclination of whether the book will be good or not and whether I should read it.
Of course, as most bookworms know, this isn’t always true because films can just be horrible and not give books any justice (*cough* Percy Jackson), but what we have to remember is that the film and the book shouldn’t be identical in every single way, because they’re separate pieces of art and should be treated that way. Books and films are completely different things, so why compare them so much?? Doing something different and exciting, as well as roughly keeping to the plot and the characters is what I like to see in a film. I think the reason so many bookworms don’t like film adaptations is because of their expectations from the book, but if you watch the film first, you can enjoy it without high standards you’d have reading the book first.
That, my cheese pasties, is why I think watching the film first can be acceptable. I’m not saying I always watch the film first, because most of the books I read are more underrated so don’t have films adaptations. But I do enjoy watching films, and believe that they’re a great way to advertise books, so if there’s a film of the book, I’m more likely to read it.
Of course, I completely understand why a lot of people disagree with watching the film first, mainly for the bad acting, especially with kids in YA adapted films, who can completely ruin a book whether you watch the film first or not. I know that some plot changes and cut scenes can also give you a negative opinion of books.
But, let’s be real here, books will always always hold a special place in my heart, as well as every other bookworm’s, due to their beauty and detail and lovable characters and twisting plots and the chance they give to let one’s imagination run wild and explore new worlds… I guess films can’t really give to you what books can because you can’t imagine for yourself, but neither can you argue that films don’t have their own beauty. This post is getting really flimsy, I’m sorry.
Thank you all for reading! I really hope you like this post, and if not, please feel free to give me some tips in the comments, as well as chat with me about all things books and films. Do you agree with me? What are your favourite film adaptations? Lettuce discuss.