Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Book vs Movie: "If I Stay"

I finally, finally got to watch If I Stay over the weekend...I know, what the heck took me so long?? Well I didn't manage to see it in the theater like I wanted and I knew my sister, A, would definitely NOT watch it with me, so I kept putting it off. But I'm so glad I finally watched it. Next up, The Fault in Our Stars lol! Anyway, I haven't done a book vs movie in awhile so here we are. There will be spoilers for the book/movie, so if you are still waiting to read/see it, stop here!

So...I read the book way back in 2011, before all the hype started, and I loved it. It made me ugly cry, I loved the musicality of all the characters, and it just really touched my heart. The movie had a lot to live up to. And did it succeed? I think so. What do you think? Did it live up to all the expectations in your little fangirl hearts? ;)

Let's break it down a little for discussion, starting with the actors & characters. Chloe Grace Moretz was a decent Mia, almost perfect. I felt her emotions come pouring out of the screen, especially in the scenes when she finds out her parents and Teddy have died. (Oh, Teddy!) Jamie Blackley played emo rockstar to perfection. And her parents were okay-ish. I liked their look, but some of their lines (especially in the beginning) felt very forced and unnatural. Like they were trying way too hard to be cool hipster parents. The scene where the dad is sitting in the hallway listening to young Mia playing her cello though...that was a beautiful scene. Teddy too seemed really forced and maybe a little older than in the book? I loved book Teddy and his relationship with Mia, but that didn't really cross over well to the movie. Same with her BFF Kim. I remember her being a super strong supporting character in the book and I can't remember any of her scenes in the movie. Gramps was perfect, simply perfect.

That scene with Gramps when he tells her it's okay to let go, omg I cried. So hard. It was so much worse than reading it! And then I was even more upset, for a different reason, when they left out Adam's full speech at the end. I loved that part so much and it just captured the whole theme of the story so well, it was disappointing not to hear it. Not to mention, setting up the premise for the sequel, which *fingers crossed* I hope they make!!

The story as a whole moved well, the flashbacks worked on screen, the scene of Mia's greatest day was perfect. And the music. Let me just say that I had to Shazam one of Adam's songs ("I Want What You Have") right in the middle of watching the movie so I wouldn't forget about it. I found this mix on 8Tracks that has all of the band's songs from the movie plus Mia's cello performance and have been listening to it plus several others all week. For a story that circles around love and loss and music, it nailed the music part.

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