I think I’ve witnessed one very personal reason for me to enjoy and love adaptations of books: they really do open up the beauty of the story to other audiences.
My younger sister, Biel, isn’t a reader. She did not pick up the hobby nor the habit–her interests and talents are of a more aural and visual nature. That would usually mean that the more “involved” books like the classics are pretty much not going to “happen” for her.
Over the holidays however, we watched the 2009 Emma miniseries as my older sister hasn’t watched it yet. It was late in the night and we were all in one room, so there was little else for her to do ;) Biel watched with us, and at the end of the miniseries she was all, “Wow. This is the first time I’ve actually watched stuff like this and understood it!”
The next day we proceeded to watch Jane Eyre, as my cousin hasn’t watched it (although she realized that she had, but we continued with it) and she also joined us then, even though there were plenty of other things to do, with relatives there and all. She wasn’t able to stay the whole time, but afterward she asked about some of the details she missed out on.
I was having a Jane Eyre discussion with my younger sister!
So, people, don’t be too hard on adaptations. I realize they don’t stick 100% to the book and omg this is a disgrace! but if the spirit of the book is kept, and it is not too mangled about, that’s fine. It’s exposure to the wonderful story that it is. :)
Disclaimer: I do not profess to be unfeeling, however, if someone insults a book I love in favor of the adaptation. For shame! D:
I’d been meaning to put into words my thoughts on one article I saw on Digg a week or so back — on facts about the Online Computer Library Center top 1000. According to it,
[They] compiled a list of the top 1,000 titles owned by member libraries—the intellectual works judged to be the most worthy based on the “purchase vote” of libraries around the globe.
It’s an interesting list of interesting (and sometimes bizarre!) facts about books that are found in most libraries. It’s US-centric, but hey it’s still interesting. I suggest you read the article to get all the trivia, but the ones that were most interesting to me were:
- William Shakespeare had the most work in the top 1,000 with 37 works which isn’t surprising; John Grisham was third with 13 works; and Stephen King didn’t place at all. The Stephen King work to get nearest to the top thousand is The Gunslinger. (Which is the first King book I’ve read…and I’ve never read any other save the DT series.)
- Highest-ranking written work by women were Wuthering Heights (E. Brontë), Jane Eyre (C. Brontë), and Pride and Prejudice (J. Austen). They are separated from each other by exactly one gap each (at 28, 30, and 32, respectively). I didn’t like the first, but the other two are my top two books of all time.
- Jesus is the most written-about person in the World Category (I assume that’s what they mean by “WorldCat”; correct me if I’m wrong).
- Comics in the library! Garfield is 15th.
It makes me wonder, really, how Philippine libraries would fare. I’ve never been to a library (that I could call a library) in a long time.
My older sister and I have just finished watching BBC One’s Jane Eyre. The novel by Charlotte Brontë has always been one of my favorites, and Rochester and Jane’s story has always reduced me to tears whenever I go back to the book. I was excited when I found out BBC had done a miniseries for it — I adored BBC’s six-part Pride and Prejudice, and to date, I have only been able to watch one other adaptation of Jane Eyre — 1996′s Jane Eyre starring William Hurt and Charlotte Gainsbourg (which was alright, but rather lacking).
So I looked forward to this miniseries rather avidly. Ruth Wilson, while not pretty, seemed to be a bit more “colorful” than how I’d always envisioned Jane (strong brows, and overall a vibrant face); and Toby Stephens was bordering on pretty, which definitely wasn’t Rochester! But hey, it was BBC, I was sure it was going to be alright.
And it was, overall. The start was a little rocky — I couldn’t decide whether or not it was too slow or too rushed. Looking back at it, I think it was just right — it captured the feel and the mood of the book rather well. Like the flurry of activity and bright and vibrant scenes that’s in Pride and Prejudice — which fit the tone of the book — with Jane Eyre you have an a melancholy, reflective, and rather morose tone.
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