Monday, January 18, 2010

The Lovely Bones

I went with a friend to see "The Lovely Bones" over the weekend.

I read the book in college, and really the only word for how it left me feeling is "haunted." I thought about it for weeks afterwards and throughout the past eight years I have thumbed through it several times, re-reading certain sections. Sebold is so matter-of-fact about the circumstances of the main character's (Susie Salmon) death, but also manages to convey a charming (and a little creepy) fantasy about the after-life.

I went into the movie with a cynical attitude, honestly. I really didn't think there was any way possible it could live up to the book, but I was surprised - the movie left me feeling very much the same way that the book did. Every actor in the movie insinuated themselves into my memories of the characters in the book.

Granted, there were a few changes - the movie really fleshes out the evil-ness of George Harvey, focusing heavily on his former victims (even adding Holly as one of them), the absence of Franny and Susie's grandfather in heaven, and the missing discussion of the significance of the icicles (which was a big part of the satisfaction at Harvey's demise at the end). But all in all, I think Peter Jackson did a fabulous job in bringing one of the best books I've ever read to life on screen.

I left with a sad ache in the pit of my stomach. And a chill.

Go see it. Tell me what you think.