The Art of Fiction and Films from Books

I have now finished reading ‘The Art of Fiction’ by David Lodge. I enjoyed this immensely and it turned out to be a fine complement to ‘102 Ways to Write a Novel’  by Alex Quick that I was also reading. ‘The Art of Fiction’ treated a number of the same topics, but in a much more expansive fashion, going into considerably greater depth. Each section was illustrated by passages from classic and modern texts. This allowed consolidation of the information provided by both books in an enjoyable way, each offering slightly differing explanations.

Now that I have finished both of those books I am going to concentrate a little more on ‘The Guermantes Way’ by Marcel Proust, before perhaps starting something new. Maybe when I move on to the next book in Proust’s ‘A la recherche du temps perdu’ which is ‘Sodom and Gomorrah’ I will also start something a little lighter.

So those are my current reading plans, and frankly I have little else planned for the weekend, and the next week, except the usual boring stuff like food shopping.

I did watch a film that I really enjoyed the other night. It was ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower’ with Emma Watson. I had been eager to see this since reading the book by Stephen Chbosky and first hearing that a film was in the pipeline. Then it appears that I completely missed its release and only by chance saw that it was on Sky Box Office the other day. I have to say that I enjoyed it immensely, having really liked the book. I always approach the film versions of books that I have enjoyed with a little trepidation, but on this occasion I wasn’t disappointed. Perhaps the fact that the screenplay was written by the author and that the film was also directed by him may have helped.

Are there film versions of books that you have particularly liked? Conversely are there ones that you have disliked or that you felt bore no relation to the books? I really enjoyed the Jason Bourne films and as a result read the Robert Ludlum Jason Bourne books. I liked the books but felt that they were so different from the films that naming the films after the books was just a little disingenuous.

Let me know your views on film versions of books.

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10 thoughts on “The Art of Fiction and Films from Books

  1. I also really enjoyed the Perks of Being a Wallflower film. It is interesting having an author write and direct the adaptation of their novel.

    It feels like more and more movies today are based on novels, which is interesting. I guess it is a good source for narratives that is just waiting for film makers.

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    • You are right about the number of movies being based on novels and I think this is a good thing. I have no problem with films being based on novels, I would just like there to be some resemblance between a novel and a film of the same name. I have the same issue with remakes of classic films. For example the ‘Italian Job’ from 2003 which I didn’t think was such a bad film, but what was the need to call it ‘The Italian Job’, it was not really a remake of the 1969 film, but a film in it’s own right. Thanks for commenting and I am glad that you enjoyed the Perks of Being a Wallflower too..

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  2. I loved the Lord of the Rings books, and then the movies came out and I loved those, too. Good thing they had enough money to make them six hours long. If only they had included Tom Bombadil.

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    • There are not that many and as films seem to mostly be remakes of older films not there are less and less. I did really like ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower’ though. Good book and good film.

      ‘Gone with the Wind’ was very good, I agree.

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