Books on film: the backlog

Last weekend, I watched a film adaptation of a book, and it did not involve a boy wizard. I was at home and in the PVR was Francis Ford Coppola’s The Rainmaker, based on the novel of the same name by John Grisham.

When I was growing up, I read a lot of books. Some of them were novels whose adaptations were recently released in theatres. I wasn’t that much of a film buff, and I was at an age when going to a movie theatre by yourself literally singled you out. Since I didn’t have anyone to go with me, I went for the next best thing, which was the novel on which the film is based. That’s how I got started with the work of John Grisham. And at the time I read it, I thought his Rainmaker was a change of pace simply because it was narrated in the first person.

As time went on, there became an inverse relationship between the speed of my internet access and the amount of books I read: as the former increased, the latter decreased. It’s kind of sad, really, as I feel I’m really missing out on new books to read. I still have magazines and web articles to go through, but finding the time to escape into a good novel is really hard to come by these days.

And it’s not just The Rainmaker; there are so many films adapted from novels that I have yet to watch. A couple are already in the PVR: The Chamber (another from Grisham) and Timeline (Michael Crichton). There are others that are relatively recent, and so might not be making the rounds on TV just yet. These are books going back to my childhood, including the three released so far in The Chronicles of Narnia, and even Ramona and Beezus. One (or three, depending on who you talk to) notable exception to the trend was The Lord of the Rings; I watched all three films within a week of their theatrical release.

I don’t know why I wait so long to watch these films, or watch movies generally, and yet I’m always keen whenever the Vancouver International Film Festival happens every year. It’s an interesting dichotomy, to be sure. And hopefully I can get around to watching those films in my PVR, but first, it’s time to catch up on some reading.


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