Friday I went to go see Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, as you may recall. I was quite excited about seeing it as I had read one of the five books and watched the old BBC adaptation. The movie certainly started off very well with an entertaining opening sequence, but I was left quite dissapointed. Why? At first I couldn’t really articulate what it was about the movie that was lacking. There wasn’t anything specifically wrong with it, but then more and more things came to mind and I realized why I didn’t like it.
First of all, they got rid of a lot of entries from the Hitchhiker’s Guide. I consider the book to be, in a sense, the book’s main character. To leave out so many entries was akin to leaving out Arthur Dent, in my opinion. Additionally, to me it was the entries from the Guide that really made the book so fun for me. The story was pretty neat, but the hilarious entries were what I loved. Some of the entries I truly missed were (in summary):
-the entry about how the Babel fish disproves the existence of God
-the entry about the girl who had just figured out the key to happiness before the Earth was distroyed
-the entry about teenagers in the universe who would mess with Earth yokels as a prank
-the entry explaining the reasons for buying planets and why the earth-building planet had to be blown up
-the entry about Arthur screaming something which started an intergallactic war
and a few others.
While they would have added some length to the movie, it would have totalled to maybe an extra 15 minutes, if that! I was really dissapointed by that.
Also, perhaps it was just that we watched the movie in a crappy movie theatre, but I found it hard to sometimes hear what the characters were saying. This took away from the film since I had to be straining to hear what they were saying a majority of the time.
If I had to sum it up I would say that the book was overly complex – the genius of Douglas Adams and his cheeky humor. However, the movie was considerably less complex. The fans would have been done a better service had the movie done a much better job of potraying this complexity. Doubtless some people will be so fanatically dedicated to the series that they will find no fault with the movie. I, however, would probably give it a B- or worse. One thing is for sure, if they bring out the sequels, I will have to go by myself or with my brothers for my fiancee found the movie dreadful.