UnThreaded | Threaded | Whole Thread (5) | Ignore Thread Prev | Next
Author: jh21045 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 63117  
Subject: Re: About a Boy Date: 5/23/2002 12:25 AM
Post New | Post Reply | Reply Later | Create Poll . Report this Post | Recommend it!
Recommendations: 1
Red, your review of this movie is terrific. It's lucid, has clarity, and is right. I really enjoyed reading it.

By coincidence, I just saw the movie this evening. I think it's possible the movie is better written than the book. Hornby is listed as one of the executive producers, which is nice: one imagines the changes made in the plot had his sign-off. In every case I can think of, those changes made the story better, tighter, more coherent.


SPOILERS













The book has a series of scenes after Fiona returns from the hospital, where poor Marcus is desperately trying to elevate her mood. He chooses a comedy for them to rent: Groundhog Day. Then becomes dismayed when halfway thru it Bill Murray starts trying to kill himself, over and over. Fiona is laughing her @$$ off, but Marcus can't stand it and he rips the tape out of the VCR. This scene, and others like it, did not make it into the movie. Those scenes were very much in Marcus' head, and they might have been tough to transfer to film: heck, maybe they didn't want to get permission to use scenes from another movie. Instead they compressed it by showing Marcus' fear of opening his door at home, which worked really well.

More important was the decision to re-work the third act. In the book the crisis centers around Marcus' girlfriend running away and Marcus going with her - I think he's afraid she'll do something stupid, perhaps hurt himself. In the movie, the crisis is strictly around Marcus, and I think that works better. Keeps the story tighter. The book is strangely unfocused, which the movie is not.

By the way, I was halfway expecting Grant to get Marcus to perform that rap song (Shake Your Ass) instead of Killing Me Softly. What happened instead was much better, with Will sharing in Marcus' situation and supporting him. I loved the ending too, the next Christmas. I believe the neat little thing with the Amnesty International guy was also not in the book - a nice touch. The change in Marcus and his body language was very noticeable.

Really a well-done little movie.

For fans of Hornby, I think High Fidelity is a better book than About a Boy. My roommate really liked "About", so maybe I'm wrong. But watching this movie makes me think Hornby needed some more time and editing to finalize the story. And with the movie, he got it.
Post New | Post Reply | Reply Later | Create Poll . Report this Post | Recommend it!
Print the post  
UnThreaded | Threaded | Whole Thread (5) | Ignore Thread Prev | Next

Announcements

Hollywood Stock Exchange Game
Trade those actors and movies on the HSX board.
What was Your Dumbest Investment?
Share it with us -- and learn from others' stories of flubs.
When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Community Home
Speak Your Mind, Start Your Blog, Rate Your Stocks

Community Team Fools - who are those TMF's?
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and "#1 Media Company to Work For" (BusinessInsider 2011)! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.
Advertisement