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Old 12-12-2018, 11:35 PM   #166
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I avoid movies when I think I'm likely to read the book. I don't want the movie to spoil any surprises. I do like watching a movie after I've read the book. Sometimes I am disappointed but usually that's because it wasn't a very good movie. I judge them each as they are.

If I was concerned with being disappointed I'd much rather be disappointed in the movie than the book. Mostly I'm not bothered if they're different.

My current book, Edna Ferber's "Showboat" is one I've never read before even though I've seen both movies many times. The book and the two movies I've seen of it do have a lot of elements in common but there are a LOT of differences, well beyond just leaving things out. I'm kind of glad of that because it makes the book fresher for me.

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Old 12-13-2018, 07:48 AM   #167
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Originally Posted by OregonJim View Post
Why?
It's axiomatic. That said, books are far more important to me than film and I want my experience of the book to be unadulterated by the interpretation of a large group of people.

Also, there's something to be said for experiencing the content in the order it was produced. If it were a novelization of a film, I'd just as soon see the film first.

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If you read the book first, then the movie will nearly always be a disappointment. It can even incite anger and other negative emotion as you are forced to critique its accuracy, consciously or unconsciously. If you watch the movie first, then you have no preconceived notion about how it should be performed. Reading the book later will either validate or correct it, while avoiding the disappointment.
I find this to be rather absurd. Any reasonable person understands that the film version of a book has to involve significant cuts and changes and the choices made are interesting in themselves, if you've read the book first. Anger? It's a movie! Anger seems misplaced, to put it mildly.

The bottom line is that whichever you choose, the first will be a spoiler for the second. I prefer my books unspoiled, thank you very much, and can look to enjoy a film for performance, set direction, scenery, costumes and so forth that are in addition to and in support of the story being told.
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Old 12-13-2018, 10:28 AM   #168
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It's axiomatic. That said, books are far more important to me than film and I want my experience of the book to be unadulterated by the interpretation of a large group of people.

I find this to be rather absurd. Any reasonable person understands that the film version of a book has to involve significant cuts and changes and the choices made are interesting in themselves, if you've read the book first. Anger? It's a movie! Anger seems misplaced, to put it mildly.

The bottom line is that whichever you choose, the first will be a spoiler for the second. I prefer my books unspoiled, thank you very much, and can look to enjoy a film for performance, set direction, scenery, costumes and so forth that are in addition to and in support of the story being told.
I too would rather read the book before I see the movie. I even read Star Wars before the movie was released. I remember watching the movie and thinking "this seems familiar somehow". Then I remembered I had read the book.
I always see a movie knowing it is going to be different than the book. Sometimes it is better than the book. More often it is worse to me.
Occasionally I will read a book after I see the movie. Usually because I did not know about the book. Years ago I saw the movie In Harm's Way and that made me want to read the book Harm's Way by James Bassett.
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Old 12-13-2018, 01:34 PM   #169
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I prefer my books unspoiled, thank you very much...
Same.

I'm a visual reader, and by reading the book first, my vision of it is free of outside influence. For me, that is the magic of reading, and I don't want my experience shaped and limited by someone else's artistic vision of the story, which is what happens if I watch the movie first.

It can be downright uncomfortable for me at times to read after watching, especially if I've seen the movie within the past few years. My brain makes those images in a seamless flow, but if I've already seen someone else's interpretation, and it conflicts with description in the book (and it always will - out of necessity, the movie will never be an exact copy) my brain gets pulled between what I saw in the movie and the words in the book.
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Old 12-13-2018, 02:25 PM   #170
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Definitely book first. When beginning a movie (at home), I'll abort the viewing if I see the words "based on a book by..." in the opening credits. I may end up watching it, but only after a thorough vetting of the book/author to determine it's something I probably wouldn't read (and yes, I often watch movies whose literary equivalent probably wouldn't interest me).

I've never been mad at a movie for ruining a good book. Mainly because a movie CAN'T ruin a book. They're two different things. Sure, some adaptations are good and some aren't, but the worst possible film-adaptation of a book I loved wouldn't make me "angry." Disappointed, sure. But no bad movie has the ability to go back in time and ruin my earlier experience with the book.
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Old 12-13-2018, 02:42 PM   #171
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Originally Posted by CWatkinsNash View Post
Same.

I'm a visual reader, and by reading the book first, my vision of it is free of outside influence. For me, that is the magic of reading, and I don't want my experience shaped and limited by someone else's artistic vision of the story, which is what happens if I watch the movie first.
Does not the same thing happen either way? If you read the book first, then invariably the characters and scenes in the movie do not match what your imagination created while reading the book, leading to instant disappointment.

When I read the book after watching the movie, yes, initially my expectations are colored by the movie. However, the book is so much richer in detail that, within a chapter or two, my own imagination takes over and the movie is soon forgotten - particularly if some time has elapsed between the two events (watching and reading).

Having said that, I rarely practice this in either form. I prefer simply to read (or listen to) the book. The few times that I've seen a movie after reading the book have ended in disappointment. The few times I've picked up a book after seeing the movie have not.
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Old 12-13-2018, 02:47 PM   #172
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Originally Posted by DiapDealer View Post
I've never been mad at a movie for ruining a good book. Mainly because a movie CAN'T ruin a book. They're two different things. Sure, some adaptations are good and some aren't, but the worst possible film-adaptation of a book I loved wouldn't make me "angry." Disappointed, sure. But no bad movie has the ability to go back in time and ruin my earlier experience with the book.
My use of the word "anger" should have been put in a better context. I was referring to being angry with the director or producer for butchering a fine book, the way a sports fan gets "angry" when his team fouls up a play. Perhaps extreme disappointment is a better expression of what I meant.
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Old 12-13-2018, 03:04 PM   #173
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Does not the same thing happen either way? If you read the book first, then invariably the characters and scenes in the movie do not match what your imagination created while reading the book, leading to instant disappointment.
I can't answer for the rest, but that doesn't happen for me. I'm not expecting the movie to be what I imagined when I read the book. It's an adaptation of the original--it can't match it. I'm usually just hoping the movie will be a pleasant digestif after having already enjoyed the main course. *shrug*
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Old 12-13-2018, 03:08 PM   #174
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My use of the word "anger" should have been put in a better context. I was referring to being angry with the director or producer for butchering a fine book, the way a sports fan gets "angry" when his team fouls up a play. Perhaps extreme disappointment is a better expression of what I meant.
That's still not something I can really relate to. As I mentioned, it's impossible for a director/producer to "butcher a fine book." The fine book is still right there in all its glory waiting to he enjoyed by all comers. But only if they don't watch the bad, spoilery movie first.

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Old 12-13-2018, 03:36 PM   #175
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That's still not something I can really relate to. As I mentioned, It's impossible for a director/producer to "butcher a fine book." The fine book is still right there in all its glory waiting to he enjoyed by all comers. But only if they don't watch the bad, spoilery movie first.
I'll agree to disagree. I understand your points and those of others, I just don't share them. I guess it would be pretty boring if we always agreed.
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Old 12-13-2018, 04:54 PM   #176
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There's no reason you should agree. We all come at this in our own way and that's as it should be.

I see books and movies as essentially different things. I don't like to see the movie first because I want to approach the book as a fresh experience. I do re-read books but not till years later. I often read books years after I saw the movie, as well. That's not quite the same thing.

I watched Gregory Peck's "A Gentleman's Agreement" many times over about a 40 year period before I found it it came from a book. I read the book, not having seen the movie for several years, and liked it. Then I turned around and watched the movie again.

Books are important. Movies are fun. Books matter. Movies entertain. Sometimes a movie can be a profound experience but that's rare. It's not so rare with books.

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Old 12-13-2018, 05:05 PM   #177
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...

Books are important. Movies are fun. Books matter. Movies entertain. Sometimes a movie can be a profound experience but that's rare. It's not so rare with books.

Barry
Interesting view.

I would say for me, I react to them similarly. Some books are fun, some movies are fun. Some books matter, some movies matter. ...

I would say that I can get more of a reaction from a movie than a book.
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Old 12-13-2018, 05:10 PM   #178
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Does not the same thing happen either way? If you read the book first, then invariably the characters and scenes in the movie do not match what your imagination created while reading the book, leading to instant disappointment.
Nope. I don't expect the movie to match in the first place. Rather, I expect an interpretation of the work. Kind of like... a cover song. The source material may be the same, but everyone involved in the production changes it to some degree. Sometimes the changes are subtle, sometimes they're huge, but they're always there. There's no disappointment, unless the movie is just bad, but that would be disappointing regardless of the book being a factor.

By reading the book first, I get to enjoy both my vision of it and the filmmaker's vision of it as two separate things.
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Old 12-13-2018, 05:28 PM   #179
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Book, movie, who cares? Whichever one comes to my attention first is the one I experience first. Usually that means the book, simply by virtue of it being the source material, but if I see a movie (which is rare these days) and then find out it is based on a book and decide to read it, that's fine too.

I think the more popular and beloved a book is, the harder it is to make a movie that satisfies its fans. An adaptation of a lesser-known work seems to have a better shot at movie success.
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