Monday, July 24, 2006

Memoirs, but not really

I watched the movie incarnation of Memoirs of a Geisha, and I was, of course, disappointed. When will I learn that I shouldn't watch movies made from books that I really like?
Unfortunately, I can't remove myself from the book for this review. The book was too beautiful and the movie tramped on that. The movie makes the geisha out to be prostitutes. The movie also misses key points and does not emphasize what it was to actually be a geisha. Golden researched everything about the book to make sure that he had the details right, and then stood by as they messed all of it up in the movie.
Zhang Zi yi was too old and so was Michelle Yeoh. The set was beautiful, and the contacts in Zhang's eyes made her breathtaking. The spring festival dance was horribly choreographed. It looked like Taylor Hicks did all of the dance steps. She truly looked like she was having a seizure.
I realize the restrictions in converting a book to a movie. There is not enough time to convey 200+pages into a 2 hour movie and some things have to drop. That was near impossible to do in this case. To take something completely foreign and try and bring the American audience up to speed in the little amount of time given, is very hard to do. This was simply too much book for one movie and it wasn't a movie you could serialize. I would rather have no movie than a bad one though.
My only hope is that someone sees the movie and picks up the book. That is the only good that could come of this atrocity.


Jody said...

thanks for the review. I won't pick that one up.

Carol said...

I haven't seen the movie or read the book. I guess if I plan to, I'll see the movie first.