The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
4 Points

The book is better than the movie

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/9/2016 Category: Education
Updated: 4 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 296 times Debate No: 92536
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
Votes (1)




Is the book better than the movie? This statement is an old classic, but I would like to view the modern side of the arguments. I will be Pro/For.


Hello, I will be taking the Con side of this debate, and I'll argue that the book isn't always better than the movie. The media of film demands that stories be compressed and commercialized into a two-hour motion picture, and I will admit, a lot of the time this form of adaptation doesn't work. But occasionally, it's exactly what a story needs. While Pro contends that the book is better than the movie apparently all the time, I will debate that there are several examples of films superior to the books they were adapted from.

The Color Purple (1985)
A Clockwork Orange (1971)
Carrie (1976)
Ben-Hur (1959)
The Godfather (1972)
Jaws (1975)

The original books for these iconic movies are relatively obscure. But the films all had great directors and skilled crews; talented people who saw the big-screen potential for otherwise mediocre novels, and turned them into the excellent movies listed above. I will deliver more information as to why these specific films are superior to their books later on in the debate. This ends my introduction in the first round. Thank you, Pro, and good luck in this debate!
Debate Round No. 1


Thank you, Con, for your gracious introduction. I in turn will argue that the book is indeed better than the movie - far better, in fact. Surely visions of imagination spun into minds are much better than just screens of color?

I will reveal information and opinions on why the book is better than the movie, and views and points on different angles of public thought. In the following rounds I will introduce these following topics: imagination and technology, educational reasons and simply the theory of fantasy and mere actors. Thank you, Con, for your patience. I wish you all the best.


Thank you, Pro. This round, Pro asked a rhetorical question:

"Surely visions of imagination spun into minds are much better than just screens of color?"

I understand what you're saying, Pro, but I request that you explain why imagination is better. Expound on your argument and give reasons as to why you think this; otherwise, it's only an opinion and won't convince anyone. Personally, I find "screens of color" a more pleasant medium to observe than words on a paper. Maybe I'm not a very imaginative person, but it's difficult for me to form images of characters or locations in my head, and even making the effort slows down my reading speed dramatically. With film, the people and places are right there on the screen, so rather than juggling hundreds of minute details in one's head such as setting, time of day, the characters' physical traits, the characters' hair colors, the characters' clothing, and so on, the viewer is allowed to pay attention to the plot.

"I will reveal information and opinions on why the book is better than the movie, and views and points on different angles of public thought. In the following rounds I will introduce these following topics: imagination and technology, educational reasons and simply the theory of fantasy and mere actors."

Pro is promising to deliver a lot later on in the debate. I will remind Pro that there is only one round left, so they will have to reveal all of this information in Round 3. I only wish you had posted your arguments this round, which would have given us more time to debate about it.

Pro has neglected to respond to my assertion in Round 1 that some movies are far better than the books they were adapted from. Nevertheless, I will take a few of my examples and explain why the film is superior.

A Clockwork Orange - The entire book is written in a futuristic "slang" invented by the author, combined with normal English. Here is an excerpt:

"But where I itty now, O my brothers, is all on my oddy knocky, where you cannot go. Tomorrow is all like sweet flowers and the turning young earth and the stars and the old Luna up there and your old droog Alex all on his oddy knocky seeking like a mate. And all that cal. A terrible grahzny vonny world, really, O my brothers. And so farewell from your little droog. And to all others in this story profound shooms of lipmusic brrrrrr. And they can kiss my sharries. But you, O my brothers, remember sometimes thy little Alex that was. Amen. And all that cal."

The whole novel is written in that fashion, and it can be quite hard to understand. But the film, directed by the brilliant Stanley Kubrick, not only had the benefit of visuals to make up for the author's rather sparse descriptions, but it toned down significantly on the slang. Also, because the book was written from the point of view of the protagonist, a psychotic criminal and rapist, many readers find it hard to become invested in the story or sympathize with the main character. The film allowed audiences to observe the main character's actions without having the author's preachy messages about good and evil shoved in their faces.

Jaws - In Peter Benchley's novel which inspired the 1975 massive blockbuster hit, it has been pointed by many critics that none of the human characters were particularly likable or interesting, and Spielberg himself confessed that he "wanted the shark to win" while reading it. The success of the movie shows the benefit of speed, good pacing, and skilled acting and directing.

I will now hand the debate back to Pro for our final round.

Debate Round No. 2


midnight123 forfeited this round.


Pro has forfeited the final round of this debate without delivering on the promises he made in rounds 1 and 2. He failed to present any evidence or argument for his claim, and failed to even acknowledge his opponent's arguments. I rest my case.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Janerover 3 months ago
I agree with Pro on how books are better due to the imagination. I do note Con's comment that this is however, an opinion.

My opinion is this. No movie can beat my soaring imagination, my visualisation of the characters, their quips and their individual personalities!
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by lord_megatron 4 months ago
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro forfeited, so conduct goes to con. In the first round pro said he wanted to see the con view. Con provided a list of movies which were better than the book, pro didn't rebut. Pro then said "I will reveal information and opinions on..." but forfeits the last round and has no argument at all. Con argues that it is hard to imagine many details such as setting and the character and it is better to see it on a colored screen. Con also argues that they don't have to listen to the author's opinion and not read lengthy character descriptions in a movie. Pro doesn't rebut. Overall, con makes an argument to support his side of the resolution, while pro doesn't give any points at all.