When my friends rave about the latest movie they’ve seen, 70% of the time, I respond by saying, “I haven’t seen the movie, but I read the book…and it was FABULOUS!”
The movie, Eat, Pray, Love caught my eye because I love Julia Roberts, and am tempted to watch the movie despite not being very fond of Elizabeth Gilbert’s book. (But can I tell you about how jealous I am that Gilbert gets to have a superstar like Julia Roberts play her in the movie?!?)
The thing is that I typically love books more than movies because I feel like my imagination is much more vibrant than what directors and producers put up on the screen. Lord of the Rings is the perfect example. Now, I’m not one to argue with the expertise with the likes of Peter Jackson, but the way I envisioned the Fellowship returning the ring was a lot more dramatic. It’s easy to say that it had to be more dramatic in my mind because the scene in the book took up one measly paragraph, but there’s just something about being able to create something in your mind while you’re reading a book.
And is it me, or is the talent in Hollywood a little bland when it comes to them playing your favorite characters from books? Now, I love Kal Penn for his activism, but he just didn’t do Jhumpa Lahiri’s Gogol Ganguli any justice. He had the chance to be a three dimensional character struggling between two cultures, but instead he was a scowling kid who turned out to be, quite frankly, a little annoying. How can I relate to a character like that?
But then again, this is why I’m toying with watching Julia Roberts in Eat Pray Love. Maybe she can give hope to the lost art of translating what’s on the page to something meaningful on the screen.