Readers, I’d love your advice today. I’m in a quandary about which to look at first — a book or a movie.
Years ago, I acted as a volunteer usher at a local theater and saw a play called “The Woman In Black,” based on the book written by British author Susan Hill. This play was very, very scary and I will never forget this show. The play only uses two actors, who had the entire audience mesmerized under their terrifying spell. The stage lighting, sound effects and other elements of a theatrical performance only enhanced the fear.
This performance also had one supremely comic moment that night. At one point, Arthur Kipps walks upstage to check out a mysterious noise which turns out to be a rocking chair, rocking by itself. One audience member off to my right quavered, “Don’t go in there!” which had everyone within hearing distance erupting into nervous giggles (including yours truly). We were all unnerved anyway and it was a convenient way to release our own tension.
So this month, I have it in mind to read the Susan Hill book and to watch the movie starring Daniel Radcliffe and Cierán Hinds to see if they live up to the play I saw. But I’m not sure which to get first: the book or the movie. From the clips I’ve seen on YouTube of the movie, it looks like all the good elements are there: scary story, lots of atmosphere, not too much gore, deserted but gorgeous English mansion, and two actors whose work I like. Or would it be better to stroll through the book first since there may be some plot points or characters that were left out in the movie?
One thing’s for sure: When I’m reading the book or watching the movie, I’m definitely going to do both in broad daylight. 😉 Or keep somebody with me for company if I’m watching the video at night.
What are your opinions, blog readers? Book or movie first?