Thursday, December 20, 2012

Book v. Movie: Eragon

NOTE: There will be Spoilers involved (otherwise how would I be able to compare the two?)

So for this month's (first - since I missed November) Book versus Movie Discussion I picked the Eragon, it has been sitting in my TBR Pile for a while just waiting for me to read it. So we will start with a review of the book by Christopher Paolini.
Synopsis: "When young Eragon finds a polished blue stone in the forest, he thinks it is the lucky discovery of a poor farm boy; perhaps it will buy his adopted family meat for the winter. But when the stone brings a dragon hatchling, Eragon realizes he has stumbled upon a legacy nearly as old as the Empire itself. Overnight his simple life is shattered, and he is thrust into a perilous new world of inescapable destiny, magical forces, and powerful people. With only an ancient sword and the instruction of an old,mysterious, hermit storyteller for guidance, Eragon and the fledgling dragon must navigate the dangerous terrain and dark enemies of an Empire ruled by a Emperor whose evil and power knows no bounds. Can Eragon take up the mantle of the legendary Dragon Riders? The fate of the Empire may rest in his hands…."

My Review: I was really looking forward to reading this book after seeing the movie a few years ago. Unfortunately it kind of fell flat for me. I don't know if it was the fact that there was so much world building or if I was just expecting something different and more filled with action like the movie. I found the characters not nearly as endearing as I expected either, although I do love Solomnbum (sp?) and Angela. My hope is that the next book in the series has a little more excitement and action as opposed to so much world building and history.         
My Rating: I had a hard time getting through this one, and am almost dreading the next three books! It has some great ideas and great characters but it just fell a little flat for me. I give it a rating of Two Paws.
And Now the Movie version
 Synopsis: "The Kingdom of Alagaesia is ruled by the evil King Galbatorix, a former dragon rider that betrayed his mates and his people in his quest for power. When the orphan farm boy Eragon finds a blue stone sent by Princess Arya, he sooner realizes that it is a dragon egg. When the dragon Saphira is born, Eragon meets his mentor Brom, and becomes the dragon rider foreseen in an ancient prophecy that would set his people free from the tyrant Galbatorix. Eragon meets the rebels Varden and together they fight against the evil sorcerer Durza and the army of Galbatorix in a journey for freedom."
My Review: I have to admit, the first time I saw the movie I rather enjoyed it. But after watching the movie a second time, I notices that it really wasn't made all that well. It was dark, and there could have been a whole lot more done with the settings. The Varden hide out just wasn't done justice I don't think.  But the story moved along quickly, and of course as seems to be the trend with YA books turned movie the romance was turned up instead of the adventure. I really liked Brom and Sapphira. I wasn't as terrified of Galbatorix as I should have been, he is the bad guy, but I guess Durza really took the bad guy role as the minion.
My Rating: I think the settings could have used help but the progression of the movie was great. I give it a rating of Two Paws and  Stump Wag.
And now we need to compare the book and movie . . .
I felt like these were two totally different stories with the same characters.  In the movie Sapphira seemed so much wiser and ancient, while in the book she seemed a little immature and arrogant.  Also Brom was a lot older in the book than the movie it seemed.  The movie was really lacking the character I fell in love with in the movie and that was the shifter cat Solembum (sp) and Angela took such a minor role, same with the dwarves and the Varden. They all played such a huge roll in the book but were either barely present in the movie or not at all. 
There were also so many branch off adventures in the book, I guess to squeeze in all that world building and education of Eragon that wasn't there in the movie.  I really didn't miss it while watching the movie, I think it was too drawn out in the book anyway.
The ending was so different too, the fight sequence and the killing of Durza was so different I don't think I can even compare them.  The book focused on all the Varden in the fight and how they were all needed (and how there were possibly some traitors) and in the movie it focused on how Eragon and Sapphira had to save everyone and the rest of the Varden seemed so insignificant even though they had been fighting this battle for years.
I think this time I may have preferred the movie, just because of how drawn out the book was, but that being said I did like the imagery that the book created better than the sets of the movie.
So have any of you read the book? Seen the movie? Which did you prefer?

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