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Topic: Stardust - See the movie or read the book first?

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Subject: Stardust - See the movie or read the book first?
Date Posted: 8/13/2007 1:30 PM ET
Member Since: 11/11/2005
Posts: 5,238
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OK, I know that you all are going to automatically say "Read the book first!" because the book is always better than the movie, but let me explain.

I've just started dipping my toe in to the fantasy reading world.   My previous exposure has been the usual - HP & LOTR.   My fellow Twin Cities fantasy readers all recommended Neil Gaiman's books (he is a somewhat local author and favorite of many).  So I got my first Neil Gaiman about a month ago - Stardust.

I haven't had the chance to read the book yet - and now of course the movie is playing in the theaters.   And big fantasy epics like this are usually better seen in a movie theater with surround sound than later with a DVD at home on my 27" TV.  So I would like to see it before it leaves the theaters - but I don't really have much time to read the book first because of other book priorities.

Contrary to popular opinion, I'm not the type who feels they HAVE to read the book first.  I can go either way.  But I've heard that Stardust is a rather complicated story, so I'm slightly worried that I won't understand it as well if I haven't read the book first.

Has anyone read the book AND seen the movie already?   What is your opinion?

Date Posted: 8/15/2007 7:07 AM ET
Member Since: 4/23/2005
Posts: 378
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I haven't seen the movie yet but I've heard that it's good.  Now, I am of the opposite opinion about reading the book first.  I have often found that I would have enjoyed a movie much more if I hadn't read the book until after the movie.  The book is almost always better than the movie, except for Shawshank Redemption, one of my favorite movies of all  time, but that doesn't count because it was a short story.  LOL. 

Date Posted: 8/15/2007 9:10 PM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2007
Posts: 15
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I read the book but barely remember it. Just saw the movie (along with several who had never read it) and we all really enjoyed it. I suspect that it doesn't exactly follow the book, but it's plotted well for the screen and everything is set up and explained. Unlike, say, the Harry Potter movies which just pick some exciting book scenes and throw them together.

Go see it! You'll probably enjoy it!


Date Posted: 8/16/2007 10:58 AM ET
Member Since: 11/8/2006
Posts: 871
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Just saw the movie with my kids.  Great special effects and enjoyable story.  I am a Michelle Pfeifer fan so that helps, too. 

Gaiman does books on tape that he reads himself that I would also recommend. Try the short, "Coraline." 

My suggestion.  See the movie first, on big screen.  The book will only later add to this fun story, besides, if you read it first you will more likely think what is missing, less a problem if you see the film first.

If you decide not to read the story, I will take it.  :-)

Date Posted: 8/21/2007 8:55 AM ET
Member Since: 4/10/2007
Posts: 6
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Gaiman contributed a lot to the movie and you can tell. The movie's story line, while not as in depth as the book, tells the story succinctly and in the same spirit as it was originally written. You'll be fine either way you go but I would suggest seeing the movie while it is still in theaters and not letting it slip to DVD.

Date Posted: 8/21/2007 8:59 AM ET
Member Since: 5/17/2005
Posts: 76
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I love both the book and the movie. The movie does have some major differences (such as the much extended scenes in the pirate ship and the battle at the end), so whichever you see/read first won't truly "spoil" some parts of the book/movie.

And I actually liked the ending of the movie better than the book. This is a movie that I'll definitely be buying as soon as it comes out. I may even go back and see it in the theatre again!