March 25, 2012

I won't tell you who wins

“No spoilers!” said my son Boy in Black as he handed me a ticket, “There are people in the theater who haven’t read the books.”

We were in line to see The Hunger Games, standing in a clump that included three of my kids, four of my nieces, and a big bucket of popcorn. When we go to the movies, we usually take up an entire row of seats.

We’d all read the book, of course, but I’d been forbidden to talk about it for weeks. That’s how it usually works. I read fast, so I’m often the first one to read a book, and then everyone in the family screams “No spoilers! Don’t say anything!” every time I even mention the book. It drives me crazy because I’m someone who likes to talk about books. I figured that now the movie was out, I could finally talk about The Hunger Games books, but my kids thought otherwise.

“I haven’t had time to read the second and third book,” said my daughter. “So don’t say ANYTHING. Remember how you ruined Harry Potter for me?” She switched her voice to a lower register, “I can’t believe that they killed off Dumbledore.”

“You ruined Harry Potter for me too,” Blonde Niece said. “I still remember that. You made a joke about being dead serious.

“Oh, come on,” I said in defense. “You can’t expect me to not to talk about books! It’s what I do for a living.”

“How is that an excuse?” asked Boy in Black. “You don’t see me going around accidentally giving out physics formulas.” He gave me a crooked grin. “I don’t go spoiling physics for people.”

 Right. Because that’s exactly the same thing.


rented life said...

My husband refuses to spoil things for me as I reach a point in the book where I have a ton of questions. "Do you really want me to tell you that?" he asks, knowing full well he never will. (Though he did explain the sponsers because I felt it was a little unclear...or I was reading too fast.

How did you like the movie? I thought it was ok, but having JUST read the book certain differences stuck out to me all too much. Effie was exactly how I pictured her though.

jo(e) said...

Eh the movie is never as good as the book. The book was way better. I did think they made a good attempt to be faithful to the book whenever they could.

Janice said...

Tell them to read faster! Show no mercy: there's no excuse not to devour books at a decent pace and not force the rest of us to muzzle ourselves all the time.

I'm pleased that Eldest is as voracious a reader of such books as I am. At least we can mull over all the fun parts as we go through the stories (and I could comfort her when *SPOILER ALERT FOR LAST HARRY POTTER MOVIE*


Hedwig died - that was more difficult on her than Dumbleore's death). She's ahead of me for many, actually, but I have so many online friends who spoil me for pretty much every fandom and I don't mind one iota.

Melissa Sarno said...

I love Boy In Black's response. That made me laugh. I enjoyed the film but maybe because I had very low expectations (like you say, it's never as good as the book!)

Anonymous said...

I agree, Effie was spot-on exactly what I pictured.

jo(e) said...

Janice: Oh, pretty much everyone in my family reads fast. The bigger problem is that we're usually sharing one copy.

I do agree with everyone who said that Effie was exactly what I pictured. Rue wasn't what I pictured -- I thought the actress was too smiley.

Tie-Dye Brother-in-law said...

Spoiler alert

E = mc^2

jo(e) said...

Tie-Dye Brother-in-law: Damn! I thought it was going to be the speed of sound, not the speed of light. Now you've ruined it for me.

Lilian said...


you always crack me up and I'm going to have to make my physicist husband read your post.

In any case, the comment section is almost as funny as the post, as usual, thanks, tie-die brother-in-law!

P.S. and thanks for spoiling Harry Potter for me ;) kidding!

(I do intend to read it one day, though) & I skipped Janice's comment (last part). I will also try to read The Hunger Games, obviously.

dance said...

Yes, book better, but I enjoyed the movie. I thought they made really good decisions about what to leave out to simplify the story for the constraints of film. But having just re-read the books, it was tough not to layer all that onto the movie. I wasn't sure it would make sense to people who hadn't read it.

(HATED the casting of Gale. Could not prevent myself from laughing at him almost every time he showed up on screen)

jo(e) said...

Dance: I really think they were counting on an audience who had read the book. The scene where he throws her the bread from the bakery, for instance. It's hard to see how that flashback would have made any sense to anyone who hadn't read the book. For me, any emotional impact the movie had came from the depth of the book and not the movie itself.

Ink said...

I hadn't read the book first (though I've been scolded by numerous people and have promised to at least read the second one) and the flashback made NO sense. I couldn't decide if he was helping her (because she looked kind of hungry) or tormenting her (equating her with the pigs)?

jo(e) said...

Ink: Yeah, that's exactly what I mean. I was sitting next to my husband, who hadn't read the book, and I kept whispering explanations of everything. (For the record, he was helping her by throwing her the bread -- she was starving.)

Rev.Dulce said...

I loved the books and has a history person couldn't help but see the similiarities between Ancient Rome and the Hunger Games. I read all three in a couple of days and gave the first one to my daughter. She is usually too busy to read but she was immediately hooked. We saw the movie together because one of my friends was in the movie playing Seneca Crane. For a movie, it did stay pretty close but will editing to make it not have the "R" rating. The one that didn't look the way I expected was Hammish. Not enough of a drunk I gues. All in all, I think the example for young women was much better than Twilight.

Magpie said...

Boy in Black wins.

Wait, was that a spoiler?

jo(e) said...

Magpie: That made me laugh aloud.

But it's not a spoiler. Boy in Black always wins.

Ink said...

Thank you!

Your husband was lucky to have you explaining.

My husband and I would look at each other in confusion, then shrug. ;)

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

So wait, did you LIKE the movie?

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Or aren't you allowed to say?

jo(e) said...

I liked the movie, but mostly, the depth came from what I had read in the book. The book is way better.

Arizaphale said...

My daughter and I have not yet read the books and this caused her some consternation as we sat waiting for the movie to start. "But I don't know the ending!" she whispered,"I've never been to a big book movie where I didn't know the ending before..."

Relax and enjoy, my child! I didn't know the ending to 'Star Wars' back in 1977 either :-)

For the record we were both blown away by the movie and are off to purchase all three books!