STUDENT VS. STUDENT: Piedmont students debate movies based on books

by Njoki Coleman, contributing writer

More and more feature films are being adapted from novels, such as “The Great Gatsby,” “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,”  and the newly cast “50 Shades of Grey.” Adapting novels into feature films is something that I don’t just support, but encourage if the author is highly involved in the process.

The adaption of a novel into a film is the only way of truly understanding the author’s vision.  With the author’s input through the production, the world of the novel is brought to life in the way the author imagined it.

No two readers have the same interpretation of a scene or character when reading a novel, which is one of the reasons reading is worthwhile. It gives the reader a chance to use their imagination.  The adaptation of the novel gives the audience a concrete definition of the author’s vision.

I don’t want you to think you should solely depend on the feature film and not read the novel. In the many adaptations of novels into feature films, some details from the novel don’t make it into the feature film, because it’s hard to make a 500-page novel into an under two-hour feature film.

Overall, the feature film adaption of a novel gives the reader clarity of the author’s mental picture.  It’s truly a privilege for an author’s words to be brought to life on the silver screen.

by Sarah Brown, contributing writer

How many times have we seen movies that have come from already popular novels?  Examples include the Twilight, Harry Potter, and Percy Jackson series where Hollywood has attempted to create the same world over and over again. What good is this doing for the people consuming this media?

The movies that are made are not always true to the book. In some way or another, the director changes some aspect of the novel to fit what the people of society would most like to hear, thus changing the story in a little way. This not only causes die-hard fans to shake in their boots, but it also misleads the people who haven’t read the book and are forming opinions on the movie itself.

In addition to the fact that there are already mountains of products such as backpacks, notebooks, T-shirts and posters that bear the name and characters of the book, people who are tired of Hollywood being lazy. You could say that it’s a good way to bring in more money, but it is also causing people to think that Hollywood cannot come up with a story that hasn’t been told already.

While some movies remain faithful to their books, such as “Stardust,” “Psycho” and “Million Dollar Baby,” most of the films stray from the original work and cause the established fan base to cringe and give unsuspecting onlookers a story different from the original.