The Movie Waffler Compare and Contrast a Film Adaptation With the Original Book | The Movie Waffler

Compare and Contrast a Film Adaptation With the Original Book

Compare and Contrast a Film Adaptation With the Original Book
The plot of a book may differ from the film adaptation. A detailed study is made through a comparison of the adaptation with the original book.

"It was better in the book!" Why can't film adaptations be compared to books? Films based on books have been made since the beginning of cinema's history. The works already have a fan base that will definitely watch the movie, so such projects are potentially commercially successful. However, most likely, these people will write angry comments later.

Why Many Don't Like Film Adaptations?

When reading a book, visual images are formed that often do not coincide with the director's vision. A viewer automatically equates the novel and the film, so the comparison suggests itself.

Still, the director cannot guess what associations and images arise in the reader's head. Moreover, a film adaptation interprets a work, and everyone's perception is different. Opinions differ, and that's okay.

Why Shouldn't You Compare Books and Movies?

It's important to remember that film adaptations are not intended to be a simplified version of the book. They are a new interpretation, a different way of telling the same story. The script is crafted anew, and the director has the creative freedom to alter the plot and details to suit the medium of film.

Adapting a work is quite a difficult task. Many images cannot be transferred to the screen due to the industry's restricted capabilities. Here, animation comes to the rescue, but it works according to the same laws of cinema: the script cannot incorporate all the details of the book.

It is impossible to make an exact film version of the novel, if only because of the volume of the original work. Somebody can read a book leisurely in a few days, but the movie lasts a couple of hours. Due to the format of the work, it is easier for the writer to reveal the thoughts and feelings of the characters, but difficult work falls on the shoulders of the director.

You're not comparing a photograph to a painting, are you? The photo has more details and a clearer image. But in the gallery, no one will say, "It was better in the photograph!". The statistics prove it. If you don't believe it, check here to make sure. Literature and film are different art forms: they use various media to tell a story. Thus, one can argue for the quality of the movie and the book by comparing them. It's impossible to disengage from a book you've read completely, but you shouldn't just criticize the directors.


Often, the film crew edits the plot to suit their own needs. It shows the movie the way they see and feel it. Therefore, the idea of the book often varies from the audience's.

The plot line of the film coincides with the novel. Still, if you read and then watch the adaptation, it will be obvious that the movie contains the events of several books in the series, despite the fact that it is named after the first part. The actors may be completely different from their literary "doubles"; they do not correspond to the author's description.

Only the main scenes that change the plot are included in the film. When comparing the book and the movie, you will find many little things that were not given any attention in the last one. But despite this, you cannot say that the film turned out better or worse.

Film Adaptations

The term “film adaptation” suggests the intricate process of transforming a literary text into a script that serves as the foundation for a film or TV series. However, beneath this seemingly straightforward definition lies a complex and demanding task. Despite the presence of a pre-existing plot, characters, and key events, the process of making adaptations is often as challenging, if not more so, than creating an original film. On a global scale, the adaptations can be broadly categorized into three types:

  • Direct film adaptation: This type is almost completely identical to the book, and even the smallest details are taken into account when shooting such films.
  • Interpretation: The film is based on the book but does not require full compliance with it.
  • General film adaptation: The film is based on the book, but significant additions are allowed that may change the original meaning.

In all cases, the difficulties begin from the very beginning: with writing the script. At first glance, this should be the easiest part because there is a ready-made plot, written characters, and main events.

Moreover, one must understand that the task of the film crew is not to surpass the original but to take the hero and the story and tell it through the screen language. Difficulties occur not only during the filming of adaptations but even after their publication. After reading the book, people who watch the movie tend to compare one with the other. Often, these comparisons disappoint them.

For instance, a book may depict the main character as a tall, blond man with blue eyes. In the movie, however, the character may be portrayed differently, perhaps as a dwarf with glasses. It's important to remember that comparing books and their film adaptations is fruitless. Both mediums require immense yet distinct creative efforts.


Trying to compare the book and the film adaptation, to say which is better or worse, is at least irrational. Reading or watching a movie is a personal choice for each person. A film will never be able to evoke in the viewer the emotions and feelings that have been experienced while reading the book. However, the book also fails to recreate the atmosphere of the movie. It isn't reasonable to mix these two completely different types of art. You will simply come to failure when comparing literature and the film industry. Read good books and watch exciting movies. This is the only way to save yourself from meaningless thoughts.