Why Books are Better Than Movies

Time to nerd it up with top reasons as to why books are better than movies. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love my cinematic adventures, but I’d rather pick up a book any day rather than watch a movie. So, my friends, here are 5 reasons why I think books are better than movies.

1. Detail.

I know that not everyone is blessed with the ability to visualize with words, so for those of you that can’t do that while reading, then I have a couple suggestions for you. One: use your imagination, it didn’t leave you when you turned into an adult. Two: pick up a book that’s actually interesting and not a required book for class. Example: pick up something like the Maximum Ride series by James Patterson (simple read, easy to visualize).

Anyway, it’s much more fun to read the detail and to visualize rather than to see it on screen. Some authors get a little too deatiled, granted, and I wish to skim a whole page dedicated to describing a freaking tree, but I’m talking generals here. Houses are my favorite to read about, I can create my own furniture and maze to the house, whereas on screen it’s already given to us.

It’s also nice reading other types of detail, such as (don’t mind my girly moment) kissing. Or even the more explicit side of making love. Granted, a lot of sexually excited people with raging hormones enjoy the sex on screen more, but let me give you a snippet of how it can be described over text:

“Her body.

Perfection. Golden. Beautiful.

And all mine.

Grasping her hands our sweat stays connected. Our eyes never leaving each other, our souls never part. My skin on hers, rubbing against it, and yet wearing her like a fitted masterpiece made just for me. Even under me, above me, next to me…she is pure of any sin. Her love never dulls, never falters. And in this moment, these special and pleasing moments, I know even flying can never feel as blissful as I am with her. I swear in one moment I feel nothing but eternal, like I am finally one of those stars I gaze at so longingly.

With her, with Hayden, I am the source of immortality itself.”

See? You get the emotions and the thoughts even with scenes such as sex, and words can do such beautiful things. Oh, and yes, that’s a snippet of my own story 🙂 No, it’s not all about sex, get your minds out of the gutter!

2. Characters

I’m going to say it blunt: some actors/actresses just suck. They just plain suck.

Now with that in mind, reading enables us to envision our characters however we please. Sure, the author can give us some restraints such as the hair color and the build of the body, but we get to envision the most important part: the face. We choose their facial structure, how it moves when they talk, and just every other glorious thing we can imagine ourselves. When we read the dialogue, our characters never act it badly or give too much exaggeration, we have the choice to give that dialect their own voice.

I’m going to slam Twilight here for a moment. Don’t get me wrong, I personally really enjoy the novel series, but I just really despise who they picked as Bella and Edward, especially Bella. Sure, she’s pretty, and I know Bella is supposed to be awkward, but to remind you: this girl does actually smile. She ruined Bella’s character for me, to be honest. Granted, this isn’t close to being the only person they casted wrong character-wise, I’m just giving an example that everyone can relate to.

Also, some stories we get to get into the mind of our characters and their thought processes. We don’t get that on screen.

So, characters in head=stunning and perfection. Characters on screen=mainly so-so

3. Plot

An hour or two to configure a whole plot? Screw that, make it 700 plus pages long, baby!

Okay, I’m kind of exaggerating a little. But anyway, books have more time to build up the plot, and they don’t have to worry about time constraint. Therefore, you can get further into the story and more developed with the characters and the situation. It’s much more sad, for example, in the book Hunger Games to see Rue die than it was in the movie. Why? The book had time to build Katniss’ and Rue’s relationship, while the movie had to shove in too much detail in such a short time. In books you catch a lot more of the plot that movies can leave out.

4. Brain=happy

I know we all need those times to relax and watch a movie, and I get that, I do that too. But it does make our brains happier when we read rather than when we just watch a screen with pretty pictures moving on it. It builds our vocabulary, our grammar, our imagination, and of course keeps our brain in constant motion.

Books also get us critically thinking a lot more, whereas movies don’t offer that same deeper content. Sure, movies like Inception’s end gets us thinking: “Is he dreaming or not?!!! AHHH!!!” But I mean thinking on an even deeper level than that, and books get us to that point. How come books and not movies? Well, this is where detail comes into play again. In books we can get pointed out to weird ticks a character may have, such as tugging their wristbands while nervous, but on the big screen we’re usually too busy staring at their face. So, in books, when we constantly get pointed to that situation, we start to think on a deeper level about all this. “Why do they have that tick? Is it something serious or is it just something to brush off?” That’s, of course, a minor example. Books also offer more symbols and analogies than movies, I don’t think you really see the whole, “my horse is as white as the innocence of the dove” thing on the big screen. Things like this get you thinking a lot more. So, thinking=happy brain.

5. Books can’t screw up visuals

Hands up, has anyone watched the Scifi channel? Here, let me give you a fun little peek at what visual affects these guys have:

Granted, I don’t know if someone would have the guts to write a book about this, but I’m just giving an example. Of course this is a very slanted example of bad affects, but I just want you to get my main drift 🙂

In books, we read the detail and the imagery as to what things will look like. I’m pretty sure reading the description, “A piranha as big as the building I was leaning against jumped at me through the water, teeth baring and its eyes full of disdain and vengeance” is much better than seeing it on screen. As for a better example, let us take The Hunger Games once again. The description in the book of their chariot ride was much more in depth and fascinating, where their whole bodies were engulfed in flame and not just their backs. See? They can screw up the visual affects. Oh, same with the mutts. They’re supposed to be bigger and look like the fallen tributes, but that didn’t work out so hot, did it?

Okay, so those are my reasons why books are better than movies. I’m sure there are a bunch more reasons why, but those are the main ones! What are your opinions on the matter?

Keep on reading!

-Sara R.


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