You know how they always say "the book was much better?" Well, in most cases I disagree as I am a visual person and crave the actual scenes being brought to life in a movie to really portray a story. Call it me not having much of an imagination. I'm not a big reader either. I don't read that many books/novels to be honest with you. The only books that have ever truly fascinated me enough to keep reading them were the Twilight series (don't judge me) and anything from Nicholas Sparks. So, in this instance, with 'Dear John', I have to say the book was better. In different ways.
I thought the movie was great, if you're reviewing it as a separate entity. I JUST finished reading the book last night so my memory of the actual book and its brilliant romance was very fresh in my mind. Maybe I should've waited a couple of days? Nah... I had every intention of seeing the movie today - I even bought my tickets through Fandango last night just to be sure the theater didn't sell out. This was the first movie I'd ever see alone. It was a little odd being in there without my husband as we typically see movies together, however he was out-of-town and I didn't want to wait until he returned. I already had to wait for one movie last Fall WAY past when I really, really wanted to, so I didn't want to wait for another movie. (See my story on waiting a WEEK for 'The Twilight Saga: New Moon here)
I grabbed some popcorn and Diet Coke and went into the theater. The theater wasn't packed at all - very odd.
I'm not going to spoil anything for those of you that haven't seen the movie yet, or who are still reading the book... but I have to say, I was very disappointed that the movie had so many HUGE differences than that of the book. Now I know that a movie based on a novel/book is always going to be a little different - it has to be in order to grab the audience and to convey cinematic appeal. Reading a book or novel can evoke certain emotions and reactions that may not equal to the movie version, and vice versa. However, in this case, and especially being a movie from one of my only favorite authors, I thought the screenplay was butchered. Simple as that.
Yes, I did read 'Message in a Bottle', 'A Walk to Remember', 'The Notebook', and 'Nights in Rodanthe' and saw ALL of these books on the big screen. ALL of these particular Nicholas Sparks books/movies were done equal justice, in my opinion, of course. I felt the movie from each of these novels were equally as good and as beautiful as the books. I didn't feel the same way about 'Dear John'.
Don't get me wrong, I felt the movie itself was wonderful. Again though, reviewing it as a separate entity. I thought the chemistry between the lead roles, Channing Tatum's "John" and Amanda Seyfried's "Savannah" was spot-on. I felt they really conveyed the romance of their characters quite well. I don't really think that anyone else could have played John & Savannah better. I thought that the acting of "John's" father, Richard Jenkins was absolutely brilliant. The movie itself was beautiful. The scenery was gorgeous. The story was fluid. But, I honestly didn't think it did the book any justice. I felt too many parts were skewed and twisted. There were major differences. Again, I'm not going to spoil it for you or even tell you exactly what I mean.
You want to know what really chapped my a** more than anything about 'Dear John'? I wouldn't really call this a spoiler, as hello.... it's a love story... Not once in the movie did John or Savannah say "I LOVE YOU". Seriously. Never once.
Would I see it? 110% YES. It was a great movie. And, seeing Channing Tatum shirtless isn't half-bad. He is simply divine. Like I said before, their chemistry was captivating. But, do yourself a favor and read the book too, if you haven't already. It's very much worth it and a great read.
On a side note, the soundtrack was outstanding. I really, really loved the mixture and tone to this soundtrack. Here's one song from the soundtrack that is playing over and over and over again on my iPhone: "This Is The Thing" by Fink
Agree with me? Completely disagree? Let me know! Leave me a comment and tell me what you thought. I'd love to hear it!