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V for Vendetta: a reviewI have had the fortune of viewing not only the V for Vendetta movie... but also finishing the graphic novel on the same day.
And I regret it.
Let me start off by saying that I enjoyed the movie. I watched it before reading the graphic novel. It was unique, fun, slightly uncomfortable at times due to the rampant Nazi imageries abounding, and interesting enough that 2 hours seemed to pass by without our realizing.
Then, I read the graphic novel. I was curious as to what were the changes made in the screenplay that had Alan Moore so angry enough to ask for his name being removed from the movie, a move that was arguably predestined given his similar distaste for LXG and Constantine. For those curious as well, Alan Moore is interviewed by MTV.com on his views on the movie: http://www.mtv.com/shared/movies/interviews/m/moore_alan_060315/
The graphic novel is vastly superior.
ALERT! POTENTIAL SPOILERS BELOW! ALERT!
Of all the scenes in the graphic novel, I believe that there were only two that were faithfully recreated in the movie: Evey's torture and the killing of the doctor from Larkhill.
Which, in effect, makes the two so different that I can't reconcile it in my mind that they're just two versions of each other.
Some of the changes I found to be essential to the novel but missing in the movie would include V's speech in the novel addressing mankind and the scene before he blows up the Old Bailey. I also loved how he killed the bishop with a poisoned wafer... an ironic and artful death. Book V was also more cryptic in his speech, whereas movie V sounded only poetic and playful. I also thought it was sad that the novel's ambigous morality with regards to V's actions were diminished in the movie. I mean, c'mon, with allusions to the Nazi party and the revelation of a manufactured disaster (with shades of conspiracy theories on 9/11), who would picture the movie's government as anything but evil.
In the novel, there was the possibility that the government was right... and V is no more than a cultured troublemaker.
On the other hand, I liked V's monologue introduction with the alliterative use of the letter V... which is unique to the movie.
For those still curious, here is a more detailed comparison: http://theferrett.livejournal.com/702174.html
I can't say I found the movie ghastly after seeing the way it deviated from the graphic novel. Taken on its own, it's a very good movie. Taken as an adaptation, I think it failed. I agree with Alan Moore's comments: if the Wachowskis wanted to make a statement about America, why not make a movie about America? Why the need to use V for Vendetta to pursue their own... well, agenda?
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