“The Joy Luck Club”: Movie vs. Novel

If anybody asks me which one is the best: movie The Joy Luck Club or novel The Joy Luck Club? My answer will be the novel because the novel includes lot of details more than the movie. It helps us to get more detailed picture of the characters and situations.

 The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan is a fascinating novel that focuses on the life’s experience of four Chinese mothers and their four American daughters and conflicts between these mothers and daughters. Beside this theme, it also portrayed superstitious beliefs of China to demonstrate the real picture of China and also how it has affected the Chinese mothers’ life.

When I have watched the movie of The Joy Luck Club, I’ve found many differences between the novel and the movie. Hence, I haven’t enjoyed the movie that much. The novel provides deep feelings to the readers and helps readers to get mixed with the characters. In contrast, the movie is made only for recreation, so it hasn’t included many important scenes. For instance, the movie doesn’t show viewers the importance of a red candle which plays significant role in every Chinese girl’s life. That’s why; after watching the movie all viewers will have lots of questions such as why does Lindo have to make a plan for leaving her first husband? Why can’t she tell her mother-in-law directly that she wants divorce from Tyan-yu? Why does An-mei’s mom bring shame for family? What’s wrong if she is married for the second time? All these answers are inside this red candle, which the movie hasn’t demonstrated. However, when viewers will read this novel, they will certainly get all these answers. Hence, I think this movie has become unexciting and at the same time vague for omitting such important stories.

Moreover, the movie has changed some short stories of the novel and it also affects on our feeling and way of thinking. For example, in the novel, I’ve read that when Ying-ying has realized that her husband is doing monkey business with others she has aborted her baby to erase the last sign of her husband. On the contrary, the movie shows that she has killed her two-month-old son unconsciously by drowning him in the bath tub. Thus, when I’ve seen the movie, I haven’t felt that much bad as much I felt while reading the novel because the novel describes how she has punished herself for terminating her pregnancy.   

In conclusion, I believe that because of its vagueness, movie The Joy Luck Club can’t quench viewers thirst as well as novel The Joy Luck Club can.

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One Response to “The Joy Luck Club”: Movie vs. Novel

  1. dorjiom says:

    Hi friend,
    I too somehow felt like the way you felt about the movie. I too found that novel has profound explainantions compare to that of the movie. However, I enjoyed the movie. while reading novel, I always get confused with the characte but after watching the movie, i got clear images of each character. Movie cannot show every scene described iN the novel because it consumes lots of time that may make the audience boring. I think in the movie the reasons for why Lindo cannot ask directly to her mother in law for divorce is shown clearly. Moreover. I am bit confused about your last sentence. You mean to say “as much as”?

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