Book vs. Film: No Country for Old Men Essay

2968 WordsNov 30, 201212 Pages
If you're anything like me, you find books that spawned films and films adapted from books weirdly irresistible. Almost literally irresistible, in fact–I frequently wind up half-reluctantly checking out films that look awful based on books that were awful (Dreamcatcher immediately leaps to mind for some strange reason), and muddling through books that aren't very interesting which prompted films that weren't very interesting. (Earlier this year, I bullied myself about halfway through the book version of Fierce People before finally accepting that I just didn't care, and giving up.) There's just something about the questions "What will that look like onscreen?" and "What insights did the movie version have to leave out?" that overwhelm my common sense, artistic tastes, and overbookedness, and send me off to the library or bookstore or theater for the flip side of whatever I've just read or seen. Why? Simple curiosity, and an ongoing fascination with the relationship between books and film. Alternately, if you're nothing like me, then you probably won't find this latest running A.V. Club column particularly interesting. I'm setting out to semi-regularly compare the films I see with the books that spawned them – current releases and older material alike. While this column will inevitably at points devolve into "The movie added this scene and left out that scene," the purpose isn't just to list all the changes; I'd like, in part, to get into how they compare as experiences, and whether it's worth it for fans (or ravening non-fans, for that matter) of one version to seek out the other. On some level, I accept that a film and a book are different creatures, that a perfect adaptation is impossible, and that both versions should stand on their own merits. Which is a good tack to take in a review. At the same time, who watches a movie based on a book without wondering

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