I watched the 2015 movie last year and finally got around to the book, originally published in 1874, this month. Often, I don’t really know which one will come out as the winner until I start typing, but that wasn’t the case with this one. The list is a formality.
The Story/Plot Bathsheba inherits a farm and all the staff that comes with it. The spirited, independent woman is courted by three very different men. Although the movie told some of the chapters out of order, for the most part it was the same story. The two changes that stood out the most were the tragic story of Fanny and the change in Farmer Boldwood and neither was better or worse, just different. Thumbs Up – tie
The Visual The movie was gorgeous and really brought England in the late 19th century to life. The big advantage here is that even when the book was slow moving, the movie made it beautiful to watch. Thumbs Up – movie
Characters vs. Actors I loved, loved , loved the cast. Carey Mulligan gave Bathsheba the sparkle and wink that I was missing in the book. Sure all the men were in love with her, but until I saw Carey onscreen I felt it was more about her successful station in life as opposed to anything to do with her personally. And Matthias Shoenaerts as Gabriel Oak was perfection and everything I envisioned from the book for this loyal heart. Michael Sheen as Farmer Boldwood was the biggest departure from the novel. I’m not sure which one is better. In one Boldwood is obsessed with Bathsheba and in the other it comes off more as intensity. In the movie he seemed more of an acceptable choice so that was nice. As for Tom Sturridge as Troy, who cares, he’s a jackass in both. Thumbs Up – movie
The Ending The result of their fates was the same, but the storytelling cleaned it up a bit for the movie. Thumbs Up – movie
And the winner is…the MOVIE by a long shot. Watch the trailer and see what you think and then vote in the poll.
Other book vs. movie polls you can vote on: (The Little Prince) (Charlie St. Cloud) (Far From the Madding Crowd) (The Girl on the Train) (Tuck Everlasting) (Northanger Abbey) (Me Before You) (And Then There Were None) (Still Alice) (The Blind Side) (The Fault in Our Stars) (The Hound of the Baskervilles) (Gone Girl) (Jack Reacher) (Ender’s Game) (Carrie, the original) (Under the Tuscan Sun) (The Secret Life of Bees) (The Shining, the original)