‘Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close,’ has started riots and protests, it has been a New York times best seller, and tonight in a packed theater, it made everyone cry at least once.
After not only reading the book but seeing the movie, I am still at loss as to why people where trying to stop the movie from being shown. I usually tend to favor the book over the movie, constantly finding myself let down with my favorite details not making it to the big screen.
This was not one of those times.
The story itself is a heart-breaking tale of a young boy named Oskar, who loses his father in what he calls “ The Worst Day,” which is September 11th. Oskar is intelligent beyond his years and brutally honest with a cunning sense of curiosity. Before his father died, they had a tradition of participating in scavenger hunts. A year after his father dies, Oskar sneaks into his closest and finds a key inside an envelope. The outside of the envelope simply says ‘Black.’ Oskar is determined to find the lock for the key, convinced that it will help him hold on his father a little longer. What he didn’t plan on was how much he was going to help everyone he comes into contact with.
I fell in love with Oskar by page two of the book, and my heart broke for him as I got deeper into the story. The book itself is beautifully and poetically written. It’s truly a one of a kind life-changing tale. You can’t help but get mad at Oskar's mom for laughing in the other room with a man Oskar is convinced is more then a friend. You can’t put it down until you know what the key opens.
As the lights within the theater dimmed and Oskar’s face appeared on the screen, I was unable to take my eyes off of him. His witty curiosity in the book was not lost on the big screen. In fact, there were parts of the movie where I found even more powerful and engaging then I did within the book.
‘Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close’ is one of those rare movie adaptions where they stuck extremely close to the book. I will say that the flash blacks in the book and the movie are confusing. However, keep in mind the story is being told by a nine-year-old, which is why I think the author did this intentionally. Oskar’s mom had a much larger role in the movie then the book, but I found it to be a surprising enhancement to the story.
I can’t honestly say if I had to choose between the book or movie if I had a choice. If you’re an avid reader, this is one that needs to be on your shelf. Furthermore, it’s also a must-see movie, just make sure to pack the tissues. September 11th affected everyone in one way or another. On print or on the big screen you will find your self laughing, crying, and cheering Oskar on as he tries to hold on to his father, while learning to let go.
Mandelyn Kilroy is currently attending Full Sail University and majoring in Creative Writing For Entertainment. Mandelyn currently lives out side of Philadelphia near King of Prussia with her cocker spaniel Chloe. When she is not working or studying, she spends her time reading, writing, and taking in everything Philly has to offer.
Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
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