Thursday, December 9, 2010

Welcome to the Theater's Reader

I love to read.  Ever since I was a young little thing I was an avid reader.  The first book I ever read was at three years old – an Easy Reader called Jack the Waiter that my brother had taught me how to read by teaching me the word list in the back of it, and then having me read the ten page book to him.  My earliest memory of being in a library was at seven years old searching the shelves for my favorite book series, Nate the Great.  The first novel I read was around that time, too.  It was called Shoebag, which is now sadly out of print (but I got me a used copy off eBay, so it’s all good).

I love watching movies, especially good movies, but I take the occasional guilty pleasure in watching a bad movie over again.  There is no movie I will refuse to watch (yet).

Hollywood loves making movies.  Hollywood apparently loves reading books, too, because about 70% (or more) of the movies that it turns out are adaptations of books - official stats taken from the most reliable source I know, my... um... pants.  But Hollywood also, for the most part, has little respect for the books they adapt.  No book genre or category is safe from Hollywood’s grubby mitts: novels, children’s picture books, graphic novels, even unpublished stuff gets rewritten, reformatted, stretched, cut, and re-imagined for the silver screen, often to the point of no recognition.  Not all adaptions are butchery, but there are very few that I think give the books the respect that they deserve.

That’s where I intend to come in.  I will take a good look at both the book and the movies that are based on them and see how they size up to each other.  I hope I can bring humor into it, since humor is what the kids are into nowadays, and give you a glimpse of the book and the movie without spoiling, since my ultimate goal is to get you folks to read.

Feel free to suggest a book/movie for me to review.  Any book/movie genre is welcome.  Obscure and bad books and movies possibly more so than good ones, since they will probably get more comedic value, but don’t shy away from the good ones, either.   Series are great as well, but they may require more than one post.  If you do suggest something, keep these “rules” (more of guidelines, really) in mind:

1) The movie must be an adaption of the book to the point of the story is so similar it could not be anything but an adaption of the book.  i.e. I will not review Oh Brother, Where Art Thou? and call it an adaption of The Odyssey, because the movie is only loosely based on the Greek epic poem.  I may, however, review Troy as an adaption of the Iliad - I'll have to read/watch them again to be sure, though. ;)

2) The movie must be on DVD.  This is both because it’s a lot easier and cheaper for me to rent a movie, and to give me some time to review and reread and really analyze both.  I think clearer when given time.

3) Although I mention graphic novels in my post, I’m not too much of a comic reader.  This doesn’t mean that I will never review a comic book and its movie, but those will not be a regular part of this blog.

4) Try to keep it to one tier.  Book -> movie.  A few might be book -> movie + remake, and that’s ok.  Just keep it away from something like book -> video game -> movie or short story -> play -> novel -> graphic novel -> TV series -> video game -> renovelization -> interpretive dance -> movie + remake, ok?

I will try to post a review at least twice a month (15th and 30th is the plan), and promise to put up at least one a month.   I have a full time job and go to school officially full time (three classes),so for the time being - well, starting in January, anyway - I'm a busy woman.

Note: I will not, at least at this time, review Twilight or Harry Potter.  Those two are reviewed into the ground already.  Again, this doesn’t mean I will never review them (and believe me I have tons to say for both), but for now I’d like to leave them both alone.
Another note: When commenting: I plan on being an elementary school teacher, and would love for my students to be able to read or contribute to my reviews.  Try to keep your comments appropriate for people of all ages.  I will not use harsh language in these reviews.  If you must let out your inner flamer, please e-mail me your abusive comments and keep the comments on the blog clean.  Thanks!

I hope you all enjoy my project.  I've never really done this before, but I watch a lot of interwebz stuff, so I should be good, right?

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