Post waking-at-five-fifteen-a.m.-suffering-through-baking-hot-Sunday-flea-market, I have few thoughts, much less ORIGINAL thoughts, but I did want to point out the books-into-movies thread on Jen's blog, and the question posed on BookMoot: would YOU use the movie version of The Dark is Rising as part of a 'books-into-movies' series at your school? Would you read the book and suggest kids go see 'Will's Excellent Adventure,' (which is Camille's amusing and all too apt title)? Go, go, talk amongst yourselves.
I MUST find a bath and a bed.
OK, beat me over the head with the chunkiest large-print edition you can find, but I'm probably the only person who found "The Dark is Rising" a tedious slog. Make Will American? Sure, why not. Add a love interest? Please! Do whatever you want. Anything but chapter after chapter of "Somehow Will knew ...." What irked me about this book was that there seemed to be no discovery, no problem-solving. Events just unfolded as Will and the annoyed reader watched.
Hee! Probably NOT the ONLY person. It did not move along, fleet of foot, in all chapters, but for most people it was a satisfying enough read that it feels like sacrilege to redo it in this haphazard fashion.
You'll note the Bourne movies are much like the Bourne books. There seems to be a culture of applying rules of adaptation more loosely to children's lit, as if they don't pay attention or care or notice - being "just kids" after all. So while your point is definitely taken, Margaret, I protest more the idea that you can create a movie with a character named Will and slap a title on it designed to tie it into a well-loved fantasy series. Using the title to draw in a ready-marketable audience is a low thing to do.
It's not just YA that they do it to - it's anything fantasy or sci-fi as well. Actually? It's probably just all over the place, but it only hits the radar when it's a popular book. When the book is a tool of marketing the movie, it's a problem. Or something.
Yeah, in this context my complaint about HP7 leaving out too much detail seems pretty silly, doesn't it? At least the movie was true to the book, barring a few small changes (and the aforementioned omissions). I think it's a travesty to take a beloved children's book and substantially change it for the sake of a movie, I really do. I'm not such a big Dark is Rising, but I do have my fingers crossed for The Golden Compass. And the BBC production of Ballet Shoes.
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