Book vs. Movie: Bird Box

Hello, my darling readers!
Today I bring you another horror-themed book vs. movie post. For last year’s Hallow Horror film marathon I watched Bird Box and ever since then I’ve been curious about the novel it’s based on. So, let’s find out about that!

The Plot (according to Goodreads):

Something is out there, something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse of it, and a person is driven to deadly violence. No one knows what it is or where it came from.

Five years after it began, a handful of scattered survivors remains, including Malorie and her two young children. Living in an abandoned house near the river, she has dreamed of fleeing to a place where they might be safe. Now that the boy and girl are four, it’s time to go, but the journey ahead will be terrifying: twenty miles downriver in a rowboat—blindfolded—with nothing to rely on but her wits and the children’s trained ears. One wrong choice and they will die. Something is following them all the while, but is it man, animal, or monster?

Interweaving past and present, Bird Box is a snapshot of a world unraveled that will have you racing to the final page.

Bird Box on Goodreads

Book vs. Movie:

As I watched the movie before checking out the novel, I’ll begin with some thoughts on that front. I’ll try to keep it short and concise but if you’d like to read the full-length film review, head over here.

I liked that the movie really committed to the “don’t look or you’ll die” theme. The only glimpses we get of the outside world are through blindfolds which is a nice change from all those horror movies that assault you with tons of special effects and monsters.

There were, however, several things that annoyed me about the film. For example, they just had to throw a completely unnecessary love story in there that made me roll my eyes. Furthermore, the movie feels much too long considering the amount of stuff that is going on – which is not much. We are left with many unanswered questions and I could have lived with that had the ending not been extremely unconvincing.

The movie started off strong, got mediocre in the middle and went completely down the drain at the end.

Now to the book. Thank goodness, this was much better than the adaptation. First of all, no love story! Josh Malerman gets bonus points for that. Moreover, things make more sense in the novel and I am inclined to believe Malorie’s journey and how the story ends. In the movie, this felt just too far-fetched. They had also added a couple of scenes that strained the boundaries of logic and brightened up the ending a bit.

The novel does a much better job of making you feel the horror and the apocalypse thing that is going on. Many scenes in the film felt like the regular blueprint of every zombie apocalypse flick but in the book, there are fewer clichés. Although Malerman doesn’t answer all the questions you might have, the book does give you a better idea and I felt more closure than from the movie.

I do, however, have one big question: WHY did they have to change the name of almost every character for the movie? I was a bit confused at first and then just irritated as to why that was necessary. Somebody, please enlighten me.

Turns out, the book is much better than the adaptation. Although it may not be my favorite horror novel, it comes with an interesting concept and is a pretty quick read. The movie, despite starting out really strong, soon becomes unconvincing and begins to disappear in plotholes.

Did you prefer the book or the movie? Let me know in the comments!

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3 thoughts on “Book vs. Movie: Bird Box

  1. Pingback: Wrapping it up for October! | The Punk Theory

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