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There is only one bad thing about going to the movies. It’s not the ticket prices, crowded theaters, extensive trailers – I could watch an hour of these – parking or driving there, or talking during the show. None of those. The only bad part of going to the movies is walking out and hearing someone say; “Well it wasn’t as good as the book”. You know what it never is, and it’s not the movie’s fault.
It’s yours. There is an implicit risk that people don’t seem to understand. When you begin to read a book there is a slight chance that book will become so popular that Hollywood will derive a movie from it and when you go to see it you will be ultimately disappointed.* It always happens, even with bad movies. The Da Vinci Code book sold more than sixty million copies but the move garnered only a 25% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. I’d suspect that part of this rating was due to reviewers knowing what else was in the book but wasn’t included in the movie.**
Let’s not blame the movie makers for this either, it’s your fault. It took you sixteen hours to read the book, if they made a movie that included everything you wouldn’t even want to watch it. They don’t make adult books short enough that would accommodate an appropriate movie length. What you’re looking for is a different medium, called television.
The only books that make appropriate movie lengths are written by Dr. Seuss
Only two remedies exists for this problem - though many will find the first displeasing – stop reading these books. The current vein of books-to-Hollywood seems to mining outsiders as heroes (Twilight, Harry Potter, The Girl Who). If you find yourself on that literary path, take caution because that road ends on a studio lot in California. If ceasing to read seems too bitter there is a sweet part as well, watch the movie before reading the book and it will make both better. For as bad and deplorable a book to movie becomes, a movie to book transition swings in the opposite way. After getting exposed to a story through the visual medium the move to the book must be akin to hallucinogen drugs that allow the user to taste the color red.
The first three paragraphs discuss some plot points but is spoiler-free. The bullet points are more general thoughts.
Thanksgiving weekend we loaded up the family, a cousin, and headed to the theater to see Disney's new movie, Frozen. The movie tells the story of two princesses, Anna and Elsa, one of which has magical powers she must keep secret from her sister after an accident in their youth. Having to keep her power a secret, their relationship cools to the point that the sisters don't see each other until the day Elsa is to be appointed queen.
The coronation day arrives for Elsa and she's able to keep her magical powers secret until her sister declares that she is going to marry someone she just met. Hearing this, Elsa can't control herself and buries their port city Arendelle in snow, running away from the city and her only family, Anna.
Elsa escapes to a high mountain where she builds an ice castle where she'll live alone, but live with her powers known. Anna knows she must bring her sister back to Arendelle, at least to unfreeze it, and departs the city looking for her. On her quest she shortly adds Sven the reindeer, Kristoff the mountain man, and Olaf the talking snowman to her expedition. They arrive, are unable to convince Elsa and Anna suffers an injury that only an act of true love can heal.
That's a spoiler-free summary of what happens, there's more that occurs after Anna's injury but things become delicately arranged like a snowflake. Here are some other thoughts and criticisms.