An allegory for the human journey of belonging, Divergent by Veronica Roth has resounded among young readers since its publication in 2011. And now, a mere three years later, its film incarnation attempts to do the same, taking the tale of a young woman's dangerous quest to find herself—and hopefully not get killed!—and debuting it for mass consumption on cinema screens worldwide.
As the opening sequence of Divergent unfolds, a sweeping aerial of the cityscape of a familiar Chicago immediately reveals a futuristic version of the Great Wall skirting it, and instantly uninitiates know that something is up. Welcome to a dystopian future. Get ready for some cheese ball acting.
But, gem #1. Acting is not cheese ball; it is surprisingy human, engaging. Shailene Woodley (The Spectacular Now, The Descendants) leads the cast as its hard-hitting heroine (cue the Hunger Games and J-Law comparisons) in a manner that puts an accessible face to a harsh reality.
It's finally time to take that much-deserved vacation! Summer is here! :)
To celebrate, we're giving away a few items that can accompany you on your trips: Fodor's luggage tags, and Lonely Planet's It's A Beautiful World postcards! To enter is simple: simply tweet your dream destination with the tag #fullybookedsummer. Please tweet at most three (3) times! :)
Deadline for entries is on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 at 12:00 nn. Winners will be chosen at random and informed on the same day.
Thanks for all the great feedback from last week's part 1 blog! Without further ado, here's part 2:
6. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle
OK, OK, I know what you're thinking. 'More Murakami?!' But this second book in the selection is with good reason. It's the story Toru Okada, who recently joined the unemployed masses. With lots of time on his hands Toru embarks on a series of odd adventures that never would have happened if he was stuck in an office chair. It starts with the loss of his job and it just keeps getting worse. But as he deals with loss, he finds what he's looking for in something unexpected that fills the hole in his daily life.
"What's this game?"
"Lord of the Rings."
"This one's about the difficulty."
"Why card games?"
"What's your favorite card?"
"What's better, the book or the movie?"
"The action. You can see it visually. It's easier for most people."
"I recently finished some Umberto Eco. I'm finishing The Unbearable Lightness of Being [by Milan Kundera]. It's really deep, profound. A lot of metaphors. The books I've been reading are the literary 'winners'. I wasn't a big reader before, but my friend has been getting me to read them."
"Have you been enjoying yourself?"
"Is she a girl?"
"I'm reading Spider Man, Deadpool and some Avengers. Comics take me to a place where my imagination just runs wild. The one thing I like with comics today is that they make the worlds so big, the universe is so big. What's also great about comics these days is that they make the heroes super, but also human."
"This is my toy camera. I'm into fashion photography. Di kasi ako magaling mag-drawing, so nag-photography ako. A book that I enjoyed... For One More Day by Mitch Albom."
Nobody likes a movie tie-in. I've handled the Fully Booked social media pages enough to feel the rejection that movie tie-ins get when they're posted, promoted, and denied. In the comments, some people talk about how excited they are for the film, while others express their disapproval for the book's cover.
Why are tie-ins hated so much?, I wonder. Is it because we don't like the movie artwork? Is it because of the preconceived notion that adaptations are inferior to the novel? Maybe a little, but I think we've had enough good adaptations (and an open enough mind), for this not to be the case.
"My favorite poem is 'A Lover's Past'. I simply can relate to it. I've been reading Lang Leav since before this book was even released. I pre-ordered it!"
Ladies and gents, it's time for The Oscars 2014!
So, in anticipation for film's biggest day of the year, we your friends at the Fully Booked team have huddled around to deliberate and debate about our favorite movie adaptations. Understanding that books and movies are very different art forms, we realized that this process of choosing the 'best' could get very convoluted. And so, we have kept the criteria ultra-simple, asking ourselves 'Which of these adaptations is just an enjoyable movie, period?' Instead of claiming the title of 'best', we have simply gone with our own 'favorites', and we'd like to hear about your favorites, too!
Here's what we came up with: