We took the kids to see The Spiderwick Chronicles last night. This movie was significant for a couple reasons. The first, is that all the special effects (of which there were many, and well done) were all done with Linux. This, needless to say, makes me happy.
Second, we just read, as a family, the whole Spiderwick series. There are 5 books in the set, and they are a very quick, very fun read. They are the sort of book that just begs to be read out loud to kids. Thankfully, it’s fast paced and fun — so it’s fun for the whole family, even our youngest. (She just turned 7)
Something that tickled my fancy, but was sort of a bummer for the kids, is that the books are WAY better than the movie. They noticed this. Very quickly. Also, they noticed how drastically different the movie was from the book. Again, all wonderful things for children to realize, because now they might actually see the advantage to books. 😉
Don’t take that as a shot at the movie. The movie itself was awesome. Great special effects, great plot, fast action (no boring beginning, the action starts pretty early on). The kids, and their parents, truly liked the film. It might be a bit scary for particularly young children, but it’s not TOO bad. Nothing a hug from Mom wasn’t able to make all better during those scenes.
Looking at the credits, the 2 book authors were (I think) executive directors, or producers, or one of those fancy “we’re involved” titles. I think that’s really good, but it must have been heartbreaking for them at the same time. They had to butcher the books quite a bit. I don’t think they made any bad choices (apart from Hogsqueal, his character in the book is done soooooo much better), but lots of changes were made.
Anyway, I heartily recommend the movie, and forcibly urge you to read the books. If you have kids, read the books out loud to them. They will like it, and so will you. 🙂