Monday, January 28, 2013

To See or Not to See

I have always tried to live by the rule: read the book before seeing the movie. The Hunger Games – check.Water for Elephants – check. The Twilight Saga – check, check, check, and check. I believe to the very fabric of my core, it is better to read the book first.

However, as life gets more demanding, I seem to have less time to read. It also seems that more movies are based on books than ever before. I can’t keep up—and I’ve started make regular exceptions to my rule. 

As February approaches, I find myself in another book to film dilemma. There are two movies I really want to see, Warm Bodies and Beautiful Creatures. Confession time, I started to read Beautiful Creatures but set it down when life got in the way. The book is still on the top of my TBR pile, to remind me I intend to pick it back up.

And despite the controversial remarks by the author of Warm Bodies, the concept appeals to me one thousand percent. Zombie romance? Heck yah!

But with deadlines, work, family, and general life, it’s doubtful I will get them read in the next month. So do I miss out on potentially awesome movies, until I read the book? Or do I see them anyway? If the movie is just meh, I may never get to the book.

Sometimes, the movie can inspire a viewer to read the original source material. When I saw The Perks of Being a Wallflower, I stopped at the bookstore on the way home to get the book. It was that good.

As I wallow in my indecision, I’m interested to hear what you think. About seeing movies based on books and/or these two February releases in particular?  Should I go see or should I wait until I read? Thoughts?


Melissa Landers said...

I'm still shocked that PITCH PERFECT is a book. Who knew?

Anyway, my policy on books is read what I want when I want. Same goes for movies. With so many juicy new releases, I don't have time to read them all.

Pintip said...

Legally Blonde was also a book before a movie! I have the same rule as you, but I like Melissa's advice above. I say go for it! Besides, the rule doesn't apply if you don't know about the books. Maybe you can just pretend that you never knew about the books? Lol. Good luck with your decision, and happy reading/watching!

Lorie Langdon said...

Agreed! If the concept of the movie really appeals to you then, by all means, go see it!
I've never read The Lord of the Rings trilogy, but the movies are some of my favorites of all time! I would've hated to miss out because I couldn't slog through those monstrous books in time. =)

CareyCorp said...

You guys rock. I really like Pintips no book awareness no foul philosophy. It's impossible to keep Beautiful Creatures & Warm I come.

Jennifer McAndrews said...

Late to this but must confess I had no idea Warm Bodies was/is a book and I'm really looking forward to the movie. Now knowing it's a book, doesn't change my mind. Still want to see it; don't know if I'd ever read the book.
The only rule I have on movie/book combos is I need to have a sufficient time gap in between, say, six months at least. That gives me time to come to either media 'fresh'. So far so good. (but I'm with Lorie -- still haven't got through LoTR!)

Kim (YA Asylum) said...

I'm in the same position as you are... all these movies are coming out and they look lovely/interesting but I haven't read the book yet. I always prefer to read the book first. At the same time, reading the book first just sets you up to be disappointed with aspects of the movie you would have never thought about if you hadn't read the book.

I think as far as Warm Bodies goes, I'll see the movie before I read the book (if I read the book). Same with Beautiful Creatures -- I also started to read it and then put it down and never picked it back up again. I haven't seen Perks of a Wallflower yet. For that one, I decided to read the book before seeing the movie. Needless to say... I haven't done either things yet. Oops....

Kimberly said...

I'll be the one to go the other direction. I can't see the movie unless I've read the book. I still won't watch the rest of the Harry Potter movies because I've only read the first four books. LOL.
I'm in the same boat with BEAUTIFUL CREATURES. I want to see the movie, but I think I'll wait until I've read the book.
I have the rule with my kids, too (for the most part). I think I do that more because kids are fundamentally lazy with reading if there is the opportunity to see the movie instead. My oldest three read all the Hunger Games books, but I did allow my youngest two to see the movie as well. Just gives more to talk about after seeing the movie and reading the books. Compare/contrast... ;-)