Will You Ever Read the Book if the Movie Sucked?

Posted March 13, 2017 by Zeee in Discussions16 Comments

Let’s talk about anything bookish!

Happy Monday, Wormies! I know I didn’t have a discussion last week because I was too sick to even think about writing a post. Too sick, that I even fell asleep at the 25-minute mark while watching Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (this is a spoiler movie review, btw)!

Which brings me to my discussion today. Will you ever READ the book if the movie you saw based on the book SUCKED? Or will you read the book first no matter what?

This thought crossed my mind when I saw Before I Fall a couple of weeks ago. Those where advance screening tickets that I won from The Ripped Bodice and I was mildly excited about the movie. I had never read the book, but I have seen it mentioned here and there. I also through the trailer looked very interesting. But I guess that was where the interested ended. I didn’t like the movie at all. I thought it was a tame mean girls movie trying to mean something more profound than what it really is. Spoiled girls bullying someone different fro them. But then, the reasons for the bullying were revealed and I was just… baaahh… ultimately just felt meh. I wasn’t moved at all. I didn’t even root for Sam.

So now, after seeing the movie, I am not interested in reading the book at all. I know that books are always better, but the movie didn’t even make me want to read the book. In this case, the movie didn’t intrigue me enough to read the book.

This also happened when I saw the pilot for Delirium, based on another Lauren Oliver book. The Delirium series wasn’t picked up, but they streamed episode 1 a couple of years ago starring Emma Roberts and the movie was another meh for me. I think this pilot was negatively reviewed by even the fans of the series, so maybe my not liking it has merit?

However, I also saw If I Stay a couple of years ago and LOVED it. I was bawling in the theater and I thoroughly fell in love with the characters, the story, and basically everything about the movie. I also rooted for Mia. I felt her pain. I enjoyed the movie so much, I purchased the audiobook copy of the book. And I haven’t even listened to it yet.

Now, I have heard a lot of good things about If I Stay but I also heard that the book is different from the movie. I know that the books are always better but there seems to be something holding me back from reading this book. Have you read it? Should I read it?

The third example that I am giving right now is when you didn’t like the book but you still watch the movie. Ergo, enjoying the movie but not the book? Case in point: Divergent. I read the first book before seeing the movie and I thought the book was meh. I liked the movie well enough, but I also wasn’t blown away by it. I’m not even interested in reading the rest of the books in the series and it seems they are not interested in releasing part 2 of Allegiant.

Now, what I’m saying is this. I guess, it depends on what you feel at the moment? Because I have definitely read books where I enjoyed the movie version (e.g. Jurassic Park, Harry Potter series), but the movies that didn’t really capture my attention. They have been left unread.

Now my question is this. Will you ever read a book when you’ve seen the movie and thought it was meh? Or didn’t like it? Will you still read a book even if the movie wasn’t great? Or are you one of those who will read the book first before going to see the movie?

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16 responses to “Will You Ever Read the Book if the Movie Sucked?

  1. I don’t do this often. I INTEND to all the time, but I rarely follow through with reading a book after the movie. Also, for some movies, I don’t know if I’d want to read the book. As terrible as this sounds (as a reader), books don’t exactly hit me as emotionally as movies/shows do. I saw If I Stay and LOVED it. I cried like a baby. Watched it with my mother, cried like a baby again. I don’t know if the book would do that for me. I don’t think I’ve ever cried because of a book? So, I don’t know if I’d be willing to remove the magic of that haha. Other times, the books are SO similar that I get bored. But you’re asking if I’d do it if the movie sucked, so probably. Depends on why the movie sucked. Was it the acting? Was it the general storyline? Was it the dialogue? The cinematography? I’d probably decide just based on a case-by-case thing haha Whoa. That was long >.<
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  2. I still haven’t watched The Perks of Being a Wallflower because I want to read the book first. But then, I absolutely LOVE Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist movie, and have been avoiding the book – what if I don’t like it as much and it ruins the movie for me??

    • I know how you feel, Kelly. I feel the same way with If I Stay because my friend who read it said that the book is different from the movie, with a different focus. So… I’m pretty nervous about reading it, which is exactly why I still haven’t read it!

  3. I agree that if I watch a movie and am underwhelmed, I’m unlikely to run out and read the book. If it’s a GREAT movie, I might be inspired to pick up the book, though. As far as If I Stay goes, I actually liked the movie better (I was only so-so about the book, but I thought the movie was fantastic)—but I know lots of people loved the book, so don’t take my word for it!
    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction recently posted…My Haphazard Reading Habits. Let’s Discuss!My Profile

    • Funny, you are actually not the first person who said that to me. Maybe that is why I was a little bit hesitant about reading the book, and I still haven’t! The movie destroyed me, though!

  4. I haven’t seen any movies that were based on books that I didn’t like. Usually I watch the movie first. There are so many movies that I’ve seen but haven’t read the books for yet. Examples: The Mortal Instruments, The Maze Runner, The Fault in Our Stars, Blood and Chocolate, Gone Girl…

    There are also some that I saw the movie first, then read the book, like Divergent, the Twilight series, and Vampire Academy. Of those, the only one that I thought had a better movie than book was Divergent.

    Some books I have read recently are being turned into movies, and I’ll have to see how the movie compares. It’ll be something new for me to see the movies after reading the books.

    • I love The Maze Runner but I wasn’t able to get into the book. I actually liked TFiOS book better than the movie, but the movie was good too!

      It seems that there are a lot of books being adapted to movies or TV. I haven’t read LoTR or GoT but I love the movies/TV show.

  5. I normally end up not reading the book after watching the movie anyway; it’s VERY rare that I will want to actually go read the book after watching a show/movie about it (which is weird I guess?) I think for me it’s because my favorite part of experiencing a book is the twists and turns of a complicated plot, and if the movie did a decent job, I already know what’s going to happen. And honestly, if there’s a movie I didn’t like, I will absolutely NOT bother trying the book, sad as it is. I’m sad to hear about Before I Fall — the trailers look so interesting, and I was thinking about trying first the book and then the movie. But it’s not really something I would typically read so I’m not sure if I’d like it or not.
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    • Yeah, Before I Fall isn’t something that I really read but I do enjoy watching movies in that genre…but the movie fell flat.

      I see your point about not wanting to read a book after watching the movie…but I have enjoyed books that I read even after watching the movie 🙂

  6. Oh I like this question! I know you had said that Before I Fall was meh- I saw it myself and I kind of felt the same, it didn’t have the emotional complexity of the book AT ALL. Like, it had the same basic plot but was missing a LOT of substance- the thing that made the book so good! And Delirium… oh sweet lord, that was the worst thing I ever watched. EVER. I cringed. I don’t think I made it through 20 minutes. And I LOVED the Delirium books. That was… so NOT the books, and just BAD. I liked the If I Stay books better than the movie too, if that helps 😉

    Honestly, I think if I see a movie and hate it, I WOULD be less likely to give the book a chance! Just because… why would I want to put myself through that again? I have seen a few movies that I didn’t realize were books, and didn’t love them so won’t read the book probably. But that is why I try SUPER hard to always read the book first, so I don’t accidentally miss out on a great book because of a crappy movie 😉 This post is so thought provoking, I love it!
    Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight recently posted…Some Books I’ll Get to This Spring (And Some I Really Won’t)My Profile

    • Thanks, Shannon! I probably have missed a few books that would have been better read first. Another movie that I just thought about right now was the Vampire Academy movie… it was SUPER HORRIBLE I didn’t even finish it! I think I turned it off after like 20 minutes or someting… ughh

      HOWEVER, I am probably not going to read LOTR and GoT just because high fantasy is not really my reading genre. 🙁 I know.. sacrilege! But that’s me! 🙂

  7. I try to read the book before I see the movie, but that doesn’t always happen. Concerning watching the movie first, I think it depends on the movie, assuming I haven’t read the book yet, and what book it is based on. If the movie is based on a classic, I’m more lenient and assume that I will give the book a try because of all the reputation attached to classics. I’m not sure how I feel about reading a book after thinking the movie was “meh.” I like to think I would give the book a chance, but I don’t know that I would. As I think about what a sucky movie that Eragon is, I’m glad I read the book first.
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    • Oh that’s another movie that I thought was okay, but again it didn’t blow me away. I tried to read the book, though but I just couldn’t get to it! I read The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones first before watching the movie and the movie was soooo dang horrible, I didn’t even want to finish reading the series!

  8. Good question! I know we’re supposed to read the book before seeing the movie because movies have the reputation of ruining the story. To be honest, this is probably why I don’t follow this rule and I rarely ever read the book before or after I see the movie. In my eyes, they are two separate entities, so I guess I would read the book if the movie sucked. But it’d have to be an amazing plot to begin with to even snag my attention.

    • True… there have only been a few movies where I read the books seeing it. I think it makes me less disappointed because the books is infinitely better than the movie! However, for those books that I read first before seeing the movie? Meeehhhh I almost ALWAYS get disappointed!