Persepolis

Book vs. Movie

Persepolis (book)Persepolis (movie)

Let me start off by saying that I thought the movie was based on the first book because that is the only part I read.  If you read it in French, however, Satrapi’s memoir is actually divided into FOUR instalments.  The English translated version of her book was only split in two.  Needless to say, I was a little surprised when I was watching more than what I was actually aware of, so please bear with me.  One other detail is that her story is in the form of a graphic novel, which makes it faster to read but no less emotional.  I mean, so much can be captured in the expressions of characters.  As they say: “a picture is worth a thousand words.”  The book starts off with Marjane living in Iran and she tells us how as a child, she truly enjoyed her life, like any kid who has all the comforts of home.  In the DVD, I realized that it started with perhaps the second book, where she is traveling to Paris and then looking back on her past growing up in a struggling country.  The first half of the film does a good job in covering most of the stuff that happens to Marjane but I did notice that some scenes were added or edited to make the story flow more smoothly in a shorter amount of time.  Now that I have watched it, I feel like picking up the second book and comparing it to the other half of the animated motion picture.  The animation in the movie is also something I quite enjoyed because there is definitely more freedom of expression in moving pictures than just static comic strips.  I really liked how the artists made some scenes of the film bleed out or fade from the screen—and then there is of course, the music.  All these elements make the DVD wonderful for the senses, yet the books certainly contain more detail in terms of plot and character development, as is usually the case.  My suggestion is to read and see it, then you can really appreciate the full story that Satrapi is trying to tell us.  Both are very well done.  Would you be inclined to agree with me?  What would have been interesting to see is if the movie would have been made with real people, instead of being animated.  It probably would have cost more.  What are your thoughts on this?  Would a feature film ruin the whole point?

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