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How did the movie stack up to the book?

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Jesse I'll admit I watched and loved the movie long before I knew it was based on a book. When my psychology teacher gave me the book I read it in two days. This is one of my favorite novels.

The movie was rich, funny, and real. However after reading the book there was some things missing. Specifically around Laura. I wish they would have gone more in depth after Laura and Rob got back together. In the book you really get to appreciate Laura more as a great person when reading her and Rob's conversations.


Dave West I agree with Jesse. The film is excellent, however not only does it miss a few things out, it is also set in the US. This means that a lot of the music references (eg. to artists like Richard Thompson) are different. There is an excellent bit with Bruce Springsteen in the film though.


Scott I love both of them. I never expect a book and movie to be alike. They are different media with different demands on the viewer or reader. I try to take them on their own merits.

Although sometimes they are remarkably close.


Dimitra hello everyone! I liked the book more, cause I felt the narration was more substantial, gave more about the characters and the facts and, I agree with Jesse here, I actually saw Laura's part. I mean in the book Laura is a complete, remarkable in my opinion character, strong and independent, and as a woman, I identified a lot with her! :)


David Kirk I liked the book more as well. Laura was much stronger than in the movie.


Terry Blevins I'm with Scott. They are both excellent in their own ways. Hornby is simply funny as shit. Where the movie may lose a bit of Hornby, it makes up with a dash of Jack Black and Todd Louiso.


Erin W I think transporting the movie to Chicago was a great move, because it lets the movie be a little bit separate from the book. They're both excellent.

Laura definitely has less to do in the book, but I think the actress who plays her in the movie does a LOT with limited material. She's so good. And John Cusack is perfect as Rob.


message 8: by Jen (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jen The book was excellent - the film missed out on much and for me, this was due primarily to it being americanised. Why this was done is beyond me - I do wish Hollywood would leave well enough alone - should have been set in London. This (and the Dragon Tattoo books/US film amongst others) have taught me never to watch a Hollywood film of a non-american book - they just can't get it quite right.


Jesse Jen - I would go so far and say no movie can do a good book justice, not just any "americanized"

With that in mind I think the film was excellent, Chicago was the best location besides London of course. Both Black and Cusack were great choices for Rob and Barry.


Pedestrian I thought the movie lost a lot of the book's charm and humour simply by being translated from British culture into American.


message 11: by Kate (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kate Loved the movie, loved the book more. I'm trying to think of an instance when I liked the movie more than the book........
Can't think of any!


Paulfozz I saw the film first and I really enjoyed it a lot but I have to admit with some guilt that I actually found the book a bit of a let-down, it just didn't have that 'spark' somehow. At some point I'll read it again though, I think I should give it another try. Too many books and not enough time though!


Michael I saw the film first and have watched it a few times. Loved it but enjoyed the book more.


message 14: by Geevee (last edited Jun 16, 2012 03:21PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Geevee Enjoyed the film a lot but the book with it's British setting really reminded me of a small record shop (not CD) I worked in on Saturdays. Favourite piece in film was the playing of Suspect Device and mention of Stiff Little Fingers :)


message 15: by Kurt (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kurt Lutter The book was so much better than the movie. The film is highly flawed and as others have mentioned here, a lot of depth is lost. The most annoying thing about the movie is they way they depicted the first person narrations. I hate it when directors want the actor to look at the camera when they speak. Just bad cinema.


message 16: by Tima (new) - rated it 4 stars

Tima I think the book was great but I also really enjoyed the movie.

I think the movie was adapted for the more spastic American audience (IE: Jack Black being cast...) and that's how it ends of losing more of its depth. I am a sucker for John Cusack though. *swoon* I like that the main character looks at the screen while he's doing his narrative because that's how the book is written. Or, at least to me, that's the feeling the book gives off while he's narrating in the book. Like he's speaking directly to the audience, to the reader.

The book was wonderful, I can read it over and over without getting bored. I love the dark humour, the depth, the characters are all splendidly written. Nick Hornby is a magnificent author - making you invested in all of his antihero characters, even when you try to hate them.


Scott I love Cusack too; he is rarely in a film I don't like.

Agreed about the narration. It suited this film.


message 18: by John (new) - rated it 5 stars

John i think the film was done in a real good way and did capture the book's spirit and vibe in a positive manner, though i think it would have made it far better if it were to be set in england, say camden maybe, but all in all a good take on a classic book, i don't think anyone would have been suited far better than john cusack and the rest of the cast they just fit into it perfect


Stefan I actually liked both. I read the book afterwards which allowed me to be surprised at a few things that were not quite the same as in the movie. It's thusfar the only film where I actually liked Jack Black.


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