But what else is new, right? If I had a Buffalo nickel for every film adaptation of a favorite book (or comic book, for that matter) that just pissed me off, I’d be one rich woman—or at least I’d own my own Winnebago. But this time, it was different; it was worse. It was worse because Bag of Bones is one of my all-time favorite books, and because I was anticipating it for so long.
This miniseries went through so many rumors and incarnations that I don’t even know what it was intended to be originally—a movie? A Hollywood feature film, as it deserved? Who knows. I do know that I was intensely disappointed with Pierce Bronsan as Mike Noonan, one of my favorite King heroes—perhaps one of my favorite heroes of all time. I didn’t like the casting decision when I first heard of it, and after seeing the movie I can vouch for the fact that he never did live up to the widower’s courage.
The entire cast was actually a huge disappointment, save for perhaps Anika Noni Rose as Sara Tidwell. She was pretty spectacular—just about how I imagined our movie’s ghost—and I couldn’t have asked for a better portrayal there. That said, from the kids to Mattie to pretty much every other character, I was simply disappointed. I also felt like the most stirring scenes in the movie were completely disjointed and unaffecting, which is just pitiful, since Mattie’s death is supposed to make you throw the book down and weep, not roll your eyes and wait for what’s next impatiently.
I’ve got to stop doing this to myself—I have to stop watching adaptations of my favorite novels. It’s almost as if I have to see them, being such a big fan and being so excited with the prospect of seeing my loves acted out on screen. But I will always know in the back of my mind that it won’t measure up, so why even bother? There are always exceptions—Shawshank Redemption, Stand by Me—but the general rule is disappointment.
As I eagerly await the news regarding Catching Fire, American Gods, and other adaptations from favorite books, I must remember this so as not to completely be disappointed yet again. And I certainly won’t be yammering to anyone who will listen about how “they need to make a Rose Madder movie!” Dear god, no. Please don’t do that to my absolute favorite book of all time!