I Watched it Before I Read it

Like, most readers I know, I prefer to read a book before I see a movie or TV show adaptation, but every once in a while I see the movie first. Usually, it’s because I didn’t realize that whatever I’d seen was based on a book until afterward. So, coming clean: here are a few that I did backwards:The Shining by Stephen King:Image result for the shining movieImage result for the shining bookI saw the movie long before I read the book. I love the movie: it’s good, over the top fun, and Jack Nicholson gave that role everything he had. The book is very different, and I didn’t like it, to be honest. I might have enjoyed it if I had read it before seeing the movie, but Stephen King is real hit-or-miss for me, so it might not have made a difference.The Disaster Artist:Image result for the disaster artist movieImage result for the disaster artist book
The book was on my to be read list for so long that I just kind of forgot about it. I saw the movie, starring James and Dave Franco, and was fascinated. The book is even more engrossing. The biggest difference for me is that Dave Franco portrayed his character as being a very likable, boy-next-door kind of guy. That character, Greg, comes across as a selfish freeloader in the book, which is interesting to me, since Greg helped write it. I recommend both the book and the movie. They’re both fantastic.Whip It:Image result for whip it book Image result for whip it movieThe movie is a blast to watch, full of fun, sassy women. I didn’t realize that it was based on a book until after watching it. I didn’t like the book at all. The main character, Bliss, is such a jerk! I couldn’t connect to her character at all. The movie is much better, in my opinion.Killing Eve:Image result for killing eve bookImage result for killing eveThis show is phenomenal. About a female MI5 officer who realizes the trained assassin everyone is looking for is female long before anyone else does. She enters into a game of cat and mouse with the assassin: but who’s the cat and who’s the mouse? Sandra Oh acted it brilliantly (I believe she won an award for it) and I”m dying to read the books the show is based on. I haven’t gotten to them yet, but I’m hoping to soon.Cirque Du Freak:Image result for cirque du freak movie Image result for cirque du freak  bookI have no idea what about the movie made me want to read the book. It was just sort of “meh” for me. Unfortunately, I felt the same about the book. You win some, you lose some.Catch Me if You Can:Image result for catch me if you can movie Image result for catch me if you can bookI’ve seen this movie so many times! I love how it showcases Leonardo D’Carprio’s ability to portray so many different characters so flawlessly, and Christopher Walken just flat-out rocks. The book is similar to the movie in many ways, with the notable exception of the relationship between Frank and his dad. That was very different in the movie. One thing I do wish they’d put in the movie that they didn’t is that Frank managed to teach at BYU in Utah for a while. I think that’s hilarious since I grew up in Utah. I like both the book and the movie and I suggest you check them both out.And the entire reason I got thinking about the movies I’ve seen first is…The Dirt:Image result for the dirt bookRelated imageI just saw this (sort of: I looked away from a lot of it because. It was incredibly interesting and I’m curious about the book, which I have yet to read. I’m honestly amazed that all the band members are still living, considering the things they did to themselves. Anyway, full disclosure: the movie is pretty harsh and abrasive. Fascinating, but harsh.What are some books that you’ve read after seeing their cinematic adaptations? Thoughts?

15 thoughts on “I Watched it Before I Read it

  1. I have yet to read Catch Me If You Can. I’ve seen the movie adaptation of Me Before You before reading the book. I’m not into romance novels but I really enjoyed the movie so I borrowed the book from a friend. I love the movie and the book both.

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  2. A great list there! I admit that I haven’t read a lot of them but have seen some of the films. I will keep an eye out for Killing Eve as that sounds great. Adaptation is such an interesting subject. The thing I find the most interesting is when the characters feel very different between the books and films. I do try to read the books first if I know there is a film releasing. Like you, sometimes I just don’t realise the book exists until I see the film. Whatever people say, there isnt a right or wrong way round to do it 😉 Sometimes, like with The Hunger Games for example, I saw the first film then immediately read all the books before the other films came out.

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    1. When you read the Hunger Games (after seeing the first movie), did you picture the book characters looking like the actors?
      I’m always curious about how visual versions affect our perception of books.
      I read the Sherlock Holmes stories long before the BBC version came out but I liked it so much that now when I picture Sherlock Holmes, Benedict Cumberbatch’s version is what I picture. 😂


      1. It is strange because I pictured Katniss the same but a lot of the other characters differently. I don’t think I can help but picture Benedict Cumberbatch either. Love Sherlock!


  3. I have many in this category but the two that stand out the most to me are Gone With the Wind and Forrest Gump. I saw the movie before reading the books, the former because I couldn’t read that kind of book because I was too young and the latter I had no idea there was a book.

    I absolutely love both the book and the movie for GWtW but the movie eeks out on top for me only because it is a very early childhood memory that reminds me of my grandma.

    Forrest Gump, the movie is spectacular and one that I watch over and over again. The book, unfortunately, does not do it for me. The character names are about the only thing similar. The book was interesting, but you really have to look at it as a completely different story.

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