Tag Archives: debate

Book first or movie? What say you?

recent & upcoming ya books to movies

recent & upcoming ya books to movies

When someone mentions a book being turned into a movie, the response is usually a loud cheer or a frustrated groan.  Many great movies have come to life from books.  Yet books and movies are very different.  For some people, seeing characters come to life is a magical thing.  They enjoy it much more than having pictures in their own heads.  However, for others their imagination is plenty.  The idea of someone making a movie that changes their ideas, or doesn’t match up with their interpretation, is a frustrating thought.  Some films that come from books are right on, with the majority of the people being satisfied with their outcome.  Take such films as Harry Potter and Twilight; while some people are annoyed at particular aspects of the films, they have still gained cult followings of satisfied readers and viewers.

I experienced some debate surrounding this topic recently, after my high school class read and then watched the seventies version of The Great GatsbySeveral people had also seen the recent remake of the story, so we talked about that as well.  I found many people annoyed at particular details that they loved about the story, which the movies left out.  As well as the way particular characters acted in the movie but not in their interpretation of the book.  It is interesting how many people think that two different art forms need to exactly mirror each other for the movie to be “good.”  I imagine that if people had not read the book, or if there was no book, people would have been perfectly satisfied with the films.  They were well made, just not exactly like the book.

Throughout my life, people have always urged me to read books before seeing their corresponding movies.  However, sometimes I find this strategy doesn’t make either form of the story enjoyable.  There are exceptions to this, but overall I find it difficult to so closely compare two very different art forms.  Even when I do see the movies made from books, I try (not usually succeeding but I try) to enjoy them separately and enjoy the great qualities of each.  Everyone has their own opinions, of course.

What do you think? Should books and movies constantly be compared?  Or on the other hand, should the pictures in your head from books be kept separate from the images in the movie?  The library has some great films that have come from great books.  I suggest you check them out sometime.

You can either compare them, or enjoy them separately.  The choice is yours; you get to experience great pieces of art either way!

–Maddie, Northeast Teen Adviser


A Weekend of Debate

Earlier this month, I attended my first debate tournament. I’ve been doing debate since the beginning of high school. The kind of debate I do is policy, which is a form of speech competition in which teams of two debate whether or not a specific policy action should be enacted (Wikipedia definition). There is one topic all year, and all teams argue both the negative and affirmative sides. The topic for this year is whether or not the U.S should remove troops from Japan, North Korea, Kuwait, Turkey and Afghanistan, Iran and Iraq. My partner and I argued that we should take Private military contractors (PMCs/ mercenaries) out of Iraq.

For the tournament, we debated six times, four on Friday and two on Saturday. We only won once, but that is way more then we thought we would win (0)! It was really tiring. We were at the UW for almost 20 hours! We both thought that this would seem like an endless amount of time, but for me it went by faster than school. Each debate takes about an hour to an hour and a half, but I never lost interest in any of the debates we were in. I learned a lot from our first debate, and I know we got much better as a team. I am excited to go to the next tournament and maybe increase my winnings!

A couple of good resources for debate, whether writing a paper or going to a tournament like this one, are:

Opposing Viewpoints in Context Database (library card required for sign in)
Opposing Viewpoints series

Ethan, Teen Advisory Group
Northeast Branch