Thursday, March 1, 2012

BOOK VS MOVIE: Lolita


When visions collide, one of two things can happen. Either it can become poetry or it can become a mess, especially if it's on a touchy subject.

In regards with Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov and Stanley Kubrick are complete opposites. Nabokov is poetic with his words while Kubrick is blunt with his vision. Despite their very distinct differences, they both manage to weave together a tale of a consuming obsession.

The way Nabokov writes this story is with lyrical musings by its narrator. Indeed the words are beautiful, but I have a notion Nabokov tended to get a little carried away with his writing.

And when Kubrick had the right mind to turn Lolita into a film, he faced a number of obstacles. Re-working the heavily obscene material into something the censors would approve of was next to impossible. And yet he manages to succeed somewhat.

Indeed there are the expected tweaks found too commonly in among Kubrick's adaptations, but it still captures how demented the human mind can become. Both the novel and the film have their own charms but since they are on different spectrums, it's hard to say which is better. The film is easier to understand yet the novel has more atmosphere to it. See? Hard to choose.

What's worth checking out?: I'd go with both.

5 comments:

  1. Have you seen Adrian Lyne's 1997 version with Jeremy Irons, Frank Langella, Dominique Swain, and Melanie Griffith? I thought that was a really good film.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I've read the book and watched both the versions. I don't think the films do justice to the book. The book is so much more demented and brilliant.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I haven't read the book, but I've seen both film versions. I actually felt Lyne's version was better, but that was partially because he didn't have some of the restrictions that Kubrick had. Quilty, for instance, was far more effectively creepy in Lyne's film.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I love what SK did with the novel,the film is a cinematic triumph in every aspect,especially the dark humor SK put in and Peter Sellers' performance.The 1997 version is also quite good and definitely worth a watch.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Nice match up. I'd also been interested to know if you've seen Lyne's version. I've heard it sticks to the book more closely. You could show a lot... more in movies in 1997 than in 1962.

    ReplyDelete

Comments are appreciated. More so if they are appropriate.