Just Another Adaptation

So, I just got home from the mall where the boyfriend and I watched the movie adaptation of The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. I’ve been waiting for ages, even though I’ve already prepared myself not to expect too much. I mean, let’s face it, I haven’t seen any movie adaptation that is actually better than the book itself.

As my former Culture professor once said, “If a story can be perfectly translated into a movie, then it’s not a good story.”

Well, he has a point. Even a book has the tendency to be one-sided, especially those that are narrated in first-person point of view. How much more for a movie where you have to balance the script and the actions in order to keep the audience interested?

Keeping this in mind, I cut the movie some slack and decided to just enjoy every moment of it. I was worried at first, what if it turns out that bad? Like, worse than Twilight kind of bad. I saw one friend’s feedback, he was advising people to spare themselves from watching the movie because it was Twilight-ish. I refused to get affected though, thinking, perhaps he didn’t get to read the book.

It wasn’t bad. I wasn’t great either. I mean, it’s no Harry Potter despite some similarities in the story line. But I’m not a movie critic, I’m just an ordinary person who loves books and movies.

Obviously, there were details that were changed and/or omitted. I have taken the liberty to enumerate some, being the geek that I am:

1. Valentine was blond. (It’s funny that something so trivial would be number one on my list.)

2. Simon accidentally turned into a rat when he consumed a drink made by faeries, that was why the vampires got hold of him. He bit one vampire in his attempt to escape, and this is also the reason why he eventually turned into a vampire.

3. Speaking of vampires, where was the Vampire General? I forgot his name, I think it was Gabriel. (Or something else that’s Hispanic-sounding.)

4. They were able to escape the vampires by stealing a vampire motorbike powered by demons. It would’ve been cool if they showed it in the movie.

5. As far as I could remember, the entire fight scene and confrontation with Valentine did not happen in the Institute. Jace and Clary were attacked while in the Institute and Jace was kidnapped. He was brought to Valentine’s hideout but Clary was able to find him, unfortunately though, that’s where they found out that they are siblings. (Of course they are not really siblings, but Cassandra Clare thought a bit of dramatic flair would be nice.)

Other thoughts:

It would’ve been better if the concept of Nephilim/ Shadowhunter was explained clearly, as well as the Valentine-Luke-Jocelyn story. Like, what was Luke’s role in their lives? Why did Hodge choose to betray his students? What about the Lightwoods? If I didn’t read the book before, perhaps I wouldn’t have understood the story behind it.

Another thing— the sense of humor that I loved when I was still reading the books were not really shown in the film. The dialogues of Simon, Jace, and Magnus in the books were entertaining and endearing. I kind of missed that in the movie.

In terms of casting, I think they chose well. For one, Jocelyn (Lena Headey) and Clary (Lily Collins) really looked like mother and daughter. Even Alec (Kevin Zegers) and Isabelle (Jemima West) really looked like siblings, and yes Isabelle was indeed hot. Jamie Campbell-Bower could really be Jace, except that I think he’s too thin now. What happened to him? I can still remember him in Sweeney Todd, New Moon, Eclipse, and even Deathly Hallows, and he didn’t look that bony.

Oh, and I have a crush on Godfrey Gao (Magnus Bane). Those who know me well would understand. Teehee.

Anyway, despite the inconsistencies and such, I have no ill words to say about TMI: City of Bones. Perhaps it’s because I read all the books, so in my mind, the story that was playing while watching the movie is the one from the book. Since I knew the story, I didn’t have a hard time comprehending what was going on.

Is it possible that I, once again, am living inside my own bubble?

To those who haven’t read the book but watched the movie, did you get bored? Were you able to understand the story?

To those who read the book and watched the movie, were you satisfied? Or are we on the same page? I can’t be the only one here!

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