This week’s Movie Monday belongs to one of the best adaptations of a book to movie I’ve ever seen and have always loved.
Quick story on my history with this book, first of all: I went to a private Christian school and we weren’t allowed to read this book as part of our curriculum because of the language and the subject matter. So, I took it upon myself to buy and read this book when I was in 8th grade. We were on a road trip to Louisiana, and of course I needed reading material. I read the book quickly, finishing it with tears in my eyes and with a new respect for a book I’d always heart about but never actually read. The brilliance of this book is that it’s told from a child’s perspective, so it gets away with saying some of the things it does and puts things in such simple terms that it’s impossible not to agree and see the powerful message the story holds. Harper Lee is a folk hero to most for her depiction of the era and how people of color were treated and how standing up for what you believe in is never wrong. There are so many strong and powerful thematic elements to this book, that you’d think a movie would never do it justice. When I told my dad that I had read the book, he told me there was a movie, and I scoffed but he encouraged me to see it.
Believing that there was no way the movie could even touch the book, I watched it, but was amazed at how well Gregory Peck played Atticus Finch and how well Scout was depicted, and just how well the movie as a whole was done. Sure, it’s not perfect, movie adaptations never are. However, given the current political and personal climate in our world today, the messages of this book and movie still hold up and has lessons to teach us.
I’m sure some disagree with me and don’t think the movie was all that great, but given the technology at the time, and the fact that a movie studio even decided to make it at the time they did, it’s pretty astounding.
I tried to read Go Set A Watchman but I didn’t like the Atticus that was portrayed, nor the way Scout looked at her father, basically, I wanted another To Kill A Mockingbird, but that isn’t what that book is. Harper Lee was an amazing writer, and her story has meant so much to many people, that I think we can just cherish Mockingbird and celebrate it as the wonderful piece of literature it is, and for the amazing movie it spawned.
Hope you all enjoyed!