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Ready Player One: Book Vs. Movie

May 28, 2019

Ready Player One

So I thought of this idea when I was going to bed one night after watching Ready Player One for the 50th time. I love this movie with a passion, but I was one of “those people” that hadn’t actually read the book until after I saw the movie in theaters. For a variety of reasons, I’m glad I did it in this order – and actually, you know what – why don’t I just tell you why? 

The Movie

Ready Player One

So when I go to a movie, I like it to be right in my face. I like sitting in the first section of the theater. My reasoning? If I wanted to see it on a tiny screen halfway across the room, I’d wait for it to come out on DVD. Now that may seem silly to most (and I’m okay with that) but I really love to feel like I’m in the action. My new at the time boyfriend  found that out about me so when we went to this movie together we tried to get in the front section. There wasn’t a lot of options so we were actually right in the front row. 

Now that’s always not ideal, especially in the theater that we went to. Our faces were basically pressed up next to the screen. With all the action and things flying around, it was hard to make heads or tails out of it. When our brains finally started making sense of what was going on in front of us, I fell in love with the storyline. The futuristic aspects, yet with a massive 80s flare. The slight romantic undertones with the evil villain with an addition of a crazy competition. What more do you need?

What I loved about the movie – 

I loved the different keys and quests that they had to go on, and even though they weren’t wholly like the book – they made sense to the storyline.  The diversity in all of them really helped to keep people entertained. But I also loved the visuals of inside the oasis and the different type of action scenes there were. The reason I love Marvel movies so much is for the action so to be able to get that same thrill elsewhere is awesome. 

I know I already mentioned the visuals but I want to dive into that a little more. I think it was so amazing how they were able to show why everyone loved the oasis so much because their real lives weren’t what they dreamed of. The stacks themselves were something that you could imagine from a George Orwell book. So of course you’d want to be able to create your own world like you could do in the Oasis.

Ready Player One

Things I wish were in the movie – 

I know it might have been harder to add to the movie but I think the way he set up his own apartment in the book was interesting. I think they could have done a montage moment with his set up and protection. But then he wouldn’t have lived with his aunt and he wouldn’t have had them die so soon and motivate him to change his path to the egg. I think they also made the movie a little more PG than the book. Not that the book is gorey but I know that IOI was a little bit more intense in the book and that more people’s lives were lost. I’m okay with them making it more PG but I do wonder what it would have been like if they hadn’t.

The Book

Ready Player One

What I loved about the book – 

I am not usually a sci-fi reader but I honestly didn’t feel as if this book took me too far out of my comfort zone. Watching the movie first helped that because then I didn’t have to automatically try to visualize things, I had already seen what these characters looked like. I was mostly surprised at how much of a love story was in the book compared to the movie. The fact that Ogden Morrow had a bigger impact on the top five and I think his influence was a great addition to the book. Because I had seen the movie first, this part actually really surprised me. 

Things I wish were in the book – 

I don’t actually have a lot of complaints about the book. I think it’s a fun read and it made sense to me to make a movie about it. What I would have loved to see more would have to be descriptions about more places in the Oasis. I think we got a lot of information about where his school was and the general vibe, but I think when you’re building an entire new world, you need to give me a little more lay of the land. 

Ready Player One

Which order – 

This is going to possibly be an UNPOPULAR OPINION; but I think you should watch the movie before you read the book. First off, the movie is fun and you get a general idea of the book. Plus you can get a better visual ground when you’re reading the book. Second, you’re not disappointed by the movie changing things around and creating it’s own storyline but with the same ending. I think I was pleasantly surprised by the book because they were like completely different entities. 

Ready Player One

Which one I like best – 

So I’m going to do a little compare and contrast here. So what I loved more about the movie than the book is that I feel like the storyline is more concise. I know that intentional for movie purposes – not many movies can pull off that three hour seating like an Endgame can. What I love in a book – the multiple twists and turns – doesn’t always convey well on the silver screen. I think that it can get confusing to large audiences or overwhelming to the storyline. They didn’t have long red herring searches in the movie, but they also gave Wade a little bit of a different life.

So that’s the thing I liked most about the book – the life that Wade led. I think that it would have been time consuming to relay some of the things in the book, like his apartment set up. But that also would have been awesome as a book lover to be able to visualize. My opinion is that they may have made the movie a little more kid friendly with who died in the book and who lived. I do think that it was important for the storyline in the movie to not kill too many people close to Wade. I hope this doesn’t sound crass but he didn’t have a lot of time to mourn in between trying to save their world. 

Usually I’m pretty fair when deciding which I like better – the book or the movie. I’m not one of those people that always think the book is better, but also usually I can see merit in each piece as a separate story. In this case, I do like the book better. I think that it has a great storyline that helps to add depth to the different characters. I also think that the time frame makes more sense to me than how quick the movie went through it. 

How about you?

Did you like the book or the movie better? Have you read the book and haven’t seen the movie yet? Or vice versa? In thinking about this book I stumbled upon this awesome article and wanted to share it with you!


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