Sunday, September 20, 2015

I Saw the Movie First: True Grit

Occasionally you will now be seeing my new discussion posts about seeing the movie before reading the book.  Like many readers I prefer to read the book first and often like the book much better than the movie. Sometimes though you can't wait to see a movie and either don't find out until after the movie there was a book or just didn't get the time to read the book first.
It has been a really long time since I have done one of these posts, and I honestly meant to have them a lot more often this year.  Anyway, today I am going to compare my movie viewing experience and book reading experience of True Grit.
My mom was a big John Wayne fan while I was growing up, and as I grew I became a huge fan as well (I even had a life size standup in my bedroom). Of course, you can't be a John Wayne fan without having seen True Grit.  When they remade the movie back in 2010 I found out that it was based on a book and knew at some point I would have to read it too. As a little disclaimer, I never saw the remake of the movie, I like the original version and don't really want to change that view.
This is a good, old fashioned western movie. It has just about all you could want in a western, outlaws, gun slingers, law men, horses, adventure and a good strong female character. If anything upon watching this movie, I think Mattie is the one with real grit. This is one movie I really enjoy watching again and again. The banter between the characters, and even the tough affection really made for a great movie.
I finally got a chance to read the book by Charles Portis this year as it fit right into my Reading Across the States Challenge. I must say I was a little nervous reading this book, the movie was so great and I wasn't sure if the book would be as good or even drastically different (as the books and movies often are). I am glad I took the plunge, I greatly enjoyed the book. I like how it was told as a memory of Mattie's when she is much older. You can see my full review of the book HERE.
There were actually only a few major differences between the book and movie and they were pretty much all at then end. They were not huge variations but just slight differences. Also in the book, Mattie has a lot of religious and political view points interjected throughout the telling that are not in the movie (which honestly weren't really needed and seemed like tangent ramblings of an old lady in the book telling). It is honestly a little hard for me to say which version is better, I do love a good John Wayne movie though so maybe it takes my preference for that alone. I would suggest either to anyone who likes a good classic western.
Oh and you know that classic line from the movie "Fill your hands you son of a bitch", that wasn't in the book, you only view that classic moment from the hillside in the book.


  1. Sometimes movies and Books are equally great. Not often, but sometimes.

    1. It is a very rare thing that I truly enjoy both the book and movie and I am beyond happy that this was one of those!