Wednesday, February 17, 2016

What do you mean when you say an adaptation is "not making justice" to a book?

I ran out of pictures, okay?

I feel like a million of books are turned into a movie or a TV show: Harry Potter, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Hunger Games, Divergent, The Mortal Instruments... (though they should make a movie or a TV show for The Infernal Devices too -just saying-), and I'm sure I forgot a lot of books.

We, readers, love to see our favorite books taking life by being made into a movie or a TV show, it makes us feel overwhelmed and happy.

Sometimes we also qualify some books as "perfect for a movie".

That means not just that movie/TV shows production rely on books, but also that readers think a lot about their favorite books appearing on the big screen.

But, sometimes when a book appears on the big screen, we claim that it "doesn't do justice".

But what do you mean by "doesn't do justice"?

Sometimes people don't like the acting. They find it cheesy, or the actors are not well-chosen, or they don't act well.

Some other people find the acting is the SAME adaptation very well-done.

Sometimes the adaptation can be so different from the book that readers are disappointed by it.

BUT let's not forget that some people actually like the fact that it's different, they say it's a way of seeing another facet of the story.

For example, some people didn't like the Insurgent movie, I personally think they made quite a good job. It's completely different from the book, but it's still good as a movie.

Sometimes in an adaptation, some scenes are deleted/added, and sometimes these scenes are readers favorites, which leads to people claiming (again) that the adaptation is "not making justice" to the book.

Which means that an adaptation "not making justice" depends on whether the person likes it or not, whether this person feels that productions changes in the story is a good thing FOR THEM or not.

See? Each person has her own opinion on the adaptation of a book, just as each person has her own opinion on the actual book.

And we should respect each other opinion, just as we expect other people to respect our own opinion.

We should also never be ashamed to tell our opinions even if it's different from others, because each one is different from the other and each one should accept that.

How do you define an adaptation as "not making justice" to a book? What are some of the book-to-movie/book-to-TV-show adaptation you disliked and why?


  1. I think you define an adaptation as "not making/doing justice" to a book by your own opinion! I think I'm pretty judgmental, but I can also see the other perspective when judging something - the only thing separating is my personal preference! Right now, the first book-t-movie/book-to-TV adaptation that I'm disagreeing with right now is between the two for The Mortal Instruments. I feel like the movie casting for City Of Bones was more suited (more similar to) to the book series than the casting for Shadowhunters, mostly in Clary and Jace. Lily played Clary in more of an artistic, SMALL, minimal way. Totally Clary. Kat is taller and wears heels pretty often. She also wears an extensive amount of eye makeup. Plus in the TV show, Jace (Dominic) is a little on the stocky side. Jamie was more tall and slender, more angelic. GAH. But I like the casting for Alec, Simon, and Izzy! Oh well. Sorry I unleashed all my ranting on you! ;)

    1. That's okay, I actually really want to hear people's opinion!
      I also think each one has his own opinion and shouldn't be afraid to talk about it :)
      I haven't watched the TV show yet (I have to read all the books first), but one of my friends did and she agrees with you about the Jace from the TV show, she says she doesn't like the way the actor made the role...idk actually, I have to see it to make my own judgement!

  2. For me, I define "not doing justice to the book" being if the movie/TV show adaption strays away from what the books were about. Does that make sense? I know that for me, that's why I can't stand the Shadowhunters TV show, but I LOVED Harry Potter.
    Additionally, for me, doing justice to the book involves respecting the book and as such making a dignified adaption. This includes writing good lines, hiring good actors, etc.
    I might be too rigid with what I believe does justice to books, but it's certainly a very opinion-based definition, and I love how subjective this topic is! Great discussion, Maha! :)

    1. Thanks, I really appreciate it :D
      I haven't seen the Shadowhunters TV show yet, but I heard mixed reviews about it, and I think I'll start it after finishing the books :)
      I also LOVED Harry Potter, basically one of my fave movies EVER.

    2. Yep haha - I think you'll be very taken aback - there have been HUGE changes to the characters! :) It's kind of like a whole new series entirely!

  3. I think for most people, not 'doing justice' to the book means it's not as good as the book. So I think it does come down to personal opinion! I personally don't mind if a film/TV show is different to the book, because I can recognise that it does need to be changed for the screen. I don't mind if the film/show is different to my favourite book - for me to love it, it just has to be a good show! :D

    Lovely discussion, Maha! ♥
    Denise | The Bibliolater

  4. I think for me, it's not so much about how different or similar an adaptation is to a book, it's more about if it's a good movie or book on its own. I do like when an adaptation is similar to a book, but if the adaptation is different, but it's a good movie/tv show, then I'm ok with that.

    Great discussion!

    Sofia @ Bookish Wanderess

    1. That's the case for me too, I try to see the movie like I've never read the book :D
      And thank you!


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