Over the years, I’ve enjoyed many great literary film adaptations; but I’m biased toward books. No matter how wonderful the film, I’m likely to say “The book was better”. Saying this is usually less a result of my critical skills and more a result of the fact that I’m simply a book person.
The monthly meme question for The Classics Club for December touches on this topic:
What is your favorite memory of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol? Have you ever read it? If not, will you? Why should others read it rather than relying on the film adaptions?
A Christmas Carol falls into the category of stories I heard and saw first through film as a kid. I didn’t read Charles Dickens’ actual words until I was an adult. In the case of this story, I think the many film versions, from George C. Scott to The Muppets to Jim Carey, stand as a testament to the brilliance of Dickens’ words and ideas. Dickens’ incorporation of ghosts as a catalyst for Ebenezer Scrooge’s redemption has been a feast for the imaginations of filmmakers everywhere. I love seeing the incarnation of filmmakers’ imaginations on the screen (big or small), but in reading the story, I get to keep company with the imagination I enjoy the most: my own.