Monday, January 05, 2015

From Page To Screen (79) The Giver


This week on From Page to Screen I'll be tackling The Giver by Lois Lowry.

First let's discuss the book.
Here is a bit of back story in case some of you aren't familiar with the novel. The Giver is a young adult dystopic novel written by Lois Lowry. The book was originally published in 1993 by Houghtin Mifflin. The Giver  follows the story of a boy named Jonas going through the twelfth and thirteenth years of his life. The society Jonas lives in has successfully eliminated all pain and strife by converting to Sameness.  After Jonas is selected to inherit the position of Receiver of Memory( the person who stores all the past memories of the time before Sameness) he learns the truth about his supposed "utopian" society and struggles with the weight of the meaning of it all. Since publication, The Giver has won a slew of awards and consistently remains a beloved book by many.

Let's take a look at some of the characters.

Jonas - Sensitive and intelligent, with strange powers of perception that he doesn’t understand, Jonas is chosen to be the new Receiver of Memory for his community when he turns twelve. After his training begins, Jonas’s universe widens dramatically. His new awareness of strong emotions, beautiful colors, and great suffering makes him extremely passionate about the world around him and the welfare of the people he loves, though on the whole he remains level-headed and thoughtful.

The Giver - The Giver has held the community’s collective memory for many years and uses his wisdom to help the Committee of Elders make important decisions, even though he is racked by the pain his memories give him and believes that perhaps those memories belong in the minds of everyone in the community.

Fiona - Jonas friend who works as a caretaker in the house of old.

Gabriel - A baby brought home by Jonas's father each night hoping to spare him from being "released" by the powers that be. During the day Gabriel is sweet and adorable but has trouble sleeping at night unless Jonas puts him to sleep with some memories. He and Jonas become very close.

Now let's discuss the film.
In case some of you aren't familiar with the film, here is a bit of back story. The Giver is a 2014 Young Adult fiction film directed by Phillip Noyce. It was released August 15, 2014 by The Weinstein Company.The Giver cost $25 million to create and went on to make $67 million worldwide. Although the film received rather poor critical reception, it was still considered to be a success since it at least doubled it's initial budget.


Major Differences Between The Book & Film
BookFilm
Jonas feels stirrings of romance for his classmate Fiona.
Fiona and Jonas become romantically linked.
Fiona works in the house of old.
Fiona works with the newborns.
Asher, Fiona and Jonas are 12.
Asher, Fiona and Jonas are 18. 
It is hinted that those born with pale eyes have the ability to become receivers.
All receivers share an identical birthmark on their wrists. 
The Chief Elder is seen mainly during the ceremony of 12. 
The Chief Elder is the main villain and is threatened by Jonas.
Jonas takes Gabriel from his father and flees with him on his bike.
Jonas breaks into the nurturing center and must convince Fiona to spare Gabriel. He flees with him on a motorcycle.
Jonas is not pursued after taking Gabriel.
Jonas is chased by security agents and a drone powered by his friend Asher.

Well, that about wraps up this weeks From Page To Screen. Which however do I like? This week, the book takes the cake. While I like the aging up of Jonas and the way the film is shot, the acting by many of the young leads was just subpar and overall I don't think the film did the book justice.

Still not convinced? Check out the trailer below!
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Have a recommendation for an upcoming From Page To Screen, let me know in the comments below!

Have you read the book or watched the Film? 
Which did you like better? Why? 
What is your favorite quote or scene from The Giver?

Leave your answers in the comments below, I love to read your responses. Like what you see? Please share!

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