Jack and the Beanstalk

Book vs. Movie

Jack and the Beanstalk    Jack the Giant Slayer

Fee, Fi, Fo, Fum!  I smell a totally different story than what I am used to.  From the short fairy tale of Jack and the Beanstalk, the only thing the movie stays true to is the main character’s name and the magic beans producing beanstalks (which grow into the sky joining the people on earth to the Gaint realm).  Everyone knows that in the classic story, Jack is with his mom and they need to sell their cow for money.  In exchange for the cow Jack gets beans that when planted, connect him to the palace of a giant, where he steals gold from the unsuspecting titan at least three times.  In Jack the Giant Slayer, Jack is living with his uncle and must sell their horse.  We get background information about why the beans are considered magical—indeed evil.  When the beanstalk grows, Jack is compelled to climb up (with some of the King’s men) to save the princess and face a whole army of giants instead of just one.  A side note: Fee, Fi, Fo and Fum are actually the names of four of the giants—which I thought was pretty cute.  What I also enjoyed with the onscreen rendition is that it plainly acknowledges at the end how the original tale does not match what happens in the film.  It is explained that from centuries of orally passing down the story, the details eventually changed and became the classic that everyone knows today.  I have to say that I really like the movie more than the book because Jack seems to be a better person by risking his life for someone else, whereas in the folktale he is just known as someone who steals gold for his own benefit.  I think it was a fun and gritty adventure, spiced with some humor but gruesome moments as well.  Did you like the film?

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