Title: The Giver, Book vs Movie
The transfer of the story of a novel or a book to a feature film is referred to as film adaptation. Film adaptations have been a ubiquitous practice from the earliest days of cinema and in 19th century Europe. However, not all; the film adaptations are worth it, but some exceptions always exist. As long as the movie has a tight script, and it captures the book spirit, viewers desire to watch it again and again. The same goes for adaptation of "The Giver", is a young adult dystopian novel by Lois Lowry published in 1993 to the film directed by Phillip Noyce in 2014. The film was also nominated for the” People’s choice award” for being the favorite dramatic film. The story of both the book and film spins around a boy named Jonas, living in a society made up of traditions and is able to acquire a designation that gives him authority and distinguishes him from the society (Lowry). This adaptation is an excellent example when the movie version is better than the book owing to the details added that update the dystopian story, yet it shares many similarities as well.
One of the major changes that can be noticed in the movie is the maturation of characters. Jonas, Asher, Fiona and other young characters in the movie are grownups that add more meaning to the story and the role of characters (Noyce). For instance, Jonas’ sister is also grownup and her reveries her bike at a suitable age. In the movie, the aged characters add more detail to the role played by them and add a hint of romance. Jonas' aged character also suits well to the roles and responsibilities he is designated to perform, while in the book he is just 12 that does not justify the sexual fascination he has for Fiona. This attraction plays a compelling component of the story. The mature Jonas is also able to share his experiences with the others and struggles to hold in his memoirs. He teaches his sister to dance and also kisses Fiona. Furthermore, he tries to explicate love, and he takes Fiona sledding by metal trays in a hilly area. His mature character is noticed by the adults that later put him into danger.
Another important change that complements meaning the movie is when the Giver explains the meaning of love to Jonas. In order to explain love, in the book the Giver shares his favorite memory with Jonas, which is a window into a family rejoicing a happy and warm Christmas. While in the movie, it is the words spoken by The Giver that explains love to Jonas and he truly acknowledges love as he gets nearer to "uncertain" baby Gabriel (Noyce). He also intimidates to leave the Giver after his experiences war for the first time in the movie. He wanted to leave after his mentors gave him the war memory but he realized that he has no option but to return back. He also gets time to deal with the mental burden he had to carry. In order to keep the film movie’s pace fluid and engaging, he also spends less time with the Giver that adds more meaning to the story.
Along with the protagonist, other characters of the movie also show some changes in their acts and the role they played. Speaking of the other characters, the role of the Chief Elder is also increased in the film since she got more screen time in the film. Fiona is also given a more prominent place in the film and her career also transforms. As the story of book progresses, Jonas has his first stimulations related to Fiona, whom he declares his friend. However, in the movie, he kisses her and shares most of his experiences with her. All these things also change Fiona in many different ways in the film. He helps Jonas to escape, being a nursery worker and to be targeted for the freedom against her choice by the elders. One more addition to the movie that makes a positive change is that the Giver preserves the recollection of music in his books. In the book, once he transfers the memories he is not able to access any of his memory, while the movie depicts that he still remembers some of the details even after sharing them with Jonas. Many of the memories has also slightly changed.
Other details that update the dystopian tale, "The Giver" can be noticed in the small acts. In the movie, the third act is intensified. The protagonist decides to take baby Gabriel that results in a heightened chase on a motorcycle from the nursery. More exhilaration is added to the scene as Jonas jumps from a cliff and his pal Asher drops him into a lake with a waterfall. Instead of making Jonas escape on a bicycle, the moviemakers use a motorcycle-type vehicle to add on more thrill. This doesn’t align with the philosophical nature of the book but increases the thrill to the ending. In addition, the Chief Elder orders Jonas's childhood friend, Asher to chase him, and kill him.
The movie and book share many similarities as the plot and the main story remains the same. For instance, in the ceremony in both the book and the movie, Jonas is the last one to be awarded the honor of being the Receiver of memory (Lowry). He was also feeling apprehensive wondering what assignment he will be getting in both the ceremonies of film and the book. The people of the community in both cases were the same since they did not understand love or hate or any other emotion. Jonas also does not know the ways to understand of feeling his emotions as well, he asks his father "Father do you love me?” (Lowry). His mother’s words "Jonas precision of language" also indicate their inability to understand real feelings and emotions. Likewise, Jonas refers to the apple in both the novel and the movie he took from recreation one day. He picked apple because he notices that it change in an incredible way he remains unable to describe. In both the pieces of art, the term “Release’ is referred to assassinate the one that is being released. Gabe's restlessness disrupts Jonas at night and he shares memory with Gabe.
One more similarity that has been noticed in the movie and the book is that Jonas relates to the time of his life when he experienced fears by referring to the plane flying. The movie keeps the spirit of the book alive as the community laws and structure remains the same as of the book. They cannot leave their homes at a specific time and have their individual family units. Medication is needed every morning so as to avoid stirrings, and share many stupid requirements such as age before being released, the size of neonates and much more. This can be absorbed from the dialogue of the book, "He's a sweet little male with a lovely disposition. But he isn't growing as fast as he should, and he doesn't sleep soundly. We have him in the extra care section for supplementary training, but the committee's beginning to talk about releasing him. “(Lowry). The Giver’s daughter is shown as an unsuccessful receiver of recollections in both the book and the film. Moreover, the act where Rosemary is playing the piano is not there in the book. Jonas also wants the Giver to preserve his memory of the music but it seems as if the scene of the piano is added to extend the screen time of Taylor Swift. The ending of the story is a little ambiguous in the book and the readers' deduce as their own understanding (Lowry). However, the movie makes ending more clear and
To sum up the discussion, this essay has uncovered a number of similarities and differences in the movie. As the book has converted into something visual, there was a need for some changes to add more details. It can be inferred that the changes made in the movie add more details to the dystopian tale. The changes range from the maturation of characters to the scenes while the meaning, the society, and themes are preserved as observed in the similarities. Both the book and film are wonderful in their own genres and what the readers of books expect from the movie depend on the age of the reader. A broad spectrum of readers read the book that may range from ages 10-12 to age 80. Each one of them take a different meaning from the book and will have different prospects regarding the movie. The youngest people will have a pleasant experience and they will consider it an adventure story and will expect the same from the movie. The elderly person who thought deeply about issues discussed in the book will be looking for the similar things in the film also. Overall, it is a successful adaptation and Noyce has remained faithful to the novel.
BIBLIOGRAPHY Lowry, Lois. The Giver. Houghton Mifflin, 1993.
The Giver. Dir. Phillip Noyce. Perf. Brenton Thwaites, Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep. 2014.
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