Monday, December 24, 2007
Cahiers ou Cinema?
I like to spend my lunch hour drinking with NCOs, people with further education, religious scholars, that sort of thing. Conversation ranges widely, with owl etiquette and myself as frequent reference points.
Recently the Spirit of Radio 4 descended upon us and led to a discussion of whether the original book is always better than the film adaptation, with particular reference to Trainspotting.
I thought a more interesting question was why call either version Trainspotting unless you wanted to introduce the wrapped-sandwich community to skag, turps, fast music and Scottish culture, but as usual I was wrong.
Our conclusion, after scant consideration of little evidence, was that the book is always better. At which point we thought about it a bit more, and reached the following more comprehensive assessment.
The book is better than the film, with the following exceptions:
1. Films of Stephen King novels are better than the books, unless the films have the words "Stephen King's" in the title;
2. The same goes for Philip K Dick and in fact almost any piece of science fiction (see the Solaris debate I had with myself);
3. Our Man in Havana; and
4. Hardcore porn (that was my idea).
Unlike Radio 4 we are open to informed dissent, so fire away all you Christmas objectors.