It’s the age old question asked by any film or print fan around the planet. I know how many times I’ve been asked, ‘why would you read that, they made a movie?’ Obviously it’s because the book is always better.
But is it really?
For popular high school senior Samantha Kingston, February 12—”Cupid Day”—should be one big party, a day of valentines and roses and the privileges that come with being at the top of the social pyramid. And it is…until she dies in a terrible accident that night.
However, she still wakes up the next morning. In fact, Sam lives the last day of her life seven times, until she realizes that by making even the slightest changes, she may hold more power than she ever imagined.
Named to numerous state reading lists, this novel was also recognized as a Best Book of the Year by Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, The Daily Beast, NPR, and Publishers Weekly. It has been optioned for film by Fox 2000 Pictures.
I read Before I Fall in 2012, so frankly my memory of every detail was limited. I remember the basic plot and major moments, and I remember that I wasn’t really impressed. The whole book was underwhelming and I had a really hard time with the ending. Since my memories are 5 years old and not trustworthy enough, I won’t do an in depth comparison. Instead I’ll have to mostly talk about how my overall opinion of Before I Fall the movie differed from the read.
What I can tell you is that when I walked away from watching the movie I felt better about the story. The ending that I hated in the book, I appreciated in the movie. I’m not sure if that’s because I’m 5 years older than I was, or if the movie just made the ending more profound. Possibly, it’s both. I also think that Zoey Deutch did a great job playing Sam. I feel like they hit on all the most important scenes, and that’s was imperative, because you have see how awful they were but also why Sam still loves them in the end. That’s a hard line to follow, and the cast and script did a great job.
To be fair, it is possible I’m not remembering everything, like I said above, but sometimes I think putting some time between the read and the watch is the best thing to do. Movies are bound to be different from the book, and anything that makes those differences not so glaring is a good thing. For the sake of perspective.
I think it’s pretty obvious that I have to give the award to Before I Fall, the movie. When I put the book down, I was disappointed. When I finished the movie I wasn’t. It really is that simple.
I doubt I’ll watch it again, but I enjoyed it while it was on. I do know I won’t read it again.
Have any of you watched the movie or read the book? What did you think?