30 Day Book Challenge
Day 19 - Favorite book turned into a movie
Chocolat by Joanne Harris. Here me out: I love the book. I do. It’s classic Harris and everything I love about her. But I love the movie. The thing I love so much is that it’s not the Church condemning Vianne (which, yes, I realize is a central theme of the novel), I love that it’s a man (yes, we could argue that Pere Reynaud is also just a man, but he’s also a priest and therefore representing The Church) it’s just a Man twisting religious fervor around in his addled brain (I love the scene where he’s cutting up his wife’s dresses in the closet) and believing that he’s on a crusade, instead of a priest (the Church) vilifying everything they don’t understand (yes, from what I understand about Catholicism that’s “what they do”, but I still don’t like it).
I also love Pere Henri’s very simple, very Christian Easter message. Yes, it’s a message of tolerance and acceptance, one I’m led to believe doesn’t often come from the Catholics, but it jives with my own personal beliefs and with the beliefs of many Christian churches I know and therefore this movie gets one big, fat gold star in my book.
(And, not to criticize my beloved Harris too much, in the movie Vianne changes - she’s a dynamic character, whereas in the book she undergoes no personal growth; she just accepts things as they come and doesn’t do anything about it; yes, she helps out the village and helps people have the courage to stand on their own two feet, but she doesn’t get anything out of it. Vianne, in the novel, is no different at the end than she is at the beginning.)