Tuesday, March 18, 2008

The Doc Halen book of the month club. Gone Baby Gone.

Doc complained about the movie version of Gone Baby Gone. I thought it was amazing, but he was irritated because he had read the book first, and he couldn't picture Casey Affleck as the star of the piece, Patrick Kenzie. It appears that Dennis Lehane, the author of Gone Baby Gone, has done a whole series of books featuring Patrick Kenzie and his private investigator partner Angie Gennaro, and Doc has read them all. Therefore, he has a picture in his head of the couple, and Casey Affleck wasn't one of them. So therefore he couldn't get into the movie. I had a similar problem with the book. Because I had just watched the movie, and I liked it so much, I had a difficult time caring what happened next in the novel. I kind of already knew. So that coloured my enjoyment a little, until the story threw in a few elements that were not in the film. But there wasn't much different.

One of the cops has a heart attack in the book that he doesn't have in the film (the cop played by John Ashton). Also, in the book the private investigators and the cops visit the drug dealer in prison, whereas in the movie, they visit him at his home. And in the book, two of that drug dealer's henchmen figure prominently. Aside from this, there is very little difference at all, and although I really enjoyed the book, for one of the first times ever I would recommend the movie over the novel. And yes, I was picturing Casey Affleck as Patrick Kenzie the whole time I read the book. And no, that didn't change my enjoyment. I like Casey Affleck. And I liked this book. But I still think the movie was almost perfect. It's a short list, comprising mostly the Godfather series, but movies that outshine good books are hard to come by, and this appears to be one.

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