Friday, April 20, 2018

Ready Player One

I read Ready Player One in October 2016 because two librarian friends/coworkers recommended it to me. Honestly, based on the description, it's something I probably never would have picked up on my own. So I owe a huge thanks to those librarians because I LOVED the book.

My review:
I loved this book! It was recommended to me by a friend who said I’d like it even though I don’t like sci-fi. To clarify, I don’t like hard sci-fi. I like things that seem like they could happen, like dystopia and robots and establishing a life on other planets. This book was amazing because it could be read as a statement on what direction the world is going in - so much is done online, not face-to-face. Life seems so great on Facebook but it’s not in reality, etc. 
Wade basically lives in the OASIS, an online world that’s better than the real world, especially considering that people live in trailers stacked on each other. He squats in an abandoned van to log in to the OASIS and become Parzival, an avatar who is still in high school, but is searching for the egg the OASIS creator left encoded in the game before he died. I don’t want to give too much away, but this book totally sucked me in, and I already want to re-read it!

I saw the movie on opening weekend, in an IMAX theater - the first IMAX movie I've seen that wasn't an educational documentary at the Pink Palace! It was pretty cool to see on the big screen; I think that kind of fit with the movie overall, being such a blowout action-y movie based so much on technology.

The movie itself was pretty good... It could stand alone. If I hadn't read the book, I could still follow the movie. That's important to me - I remember seeing The Giver and feeling like I would be so lost if I hadn't read the book. But that movie was horrible, so let's move on before I go on an angry tangent.

Ready Player One told a story in the movie - to my memory, it was pretty different than the book, but I read it long enough ago where I can only remember snippets and the general feeling I felt about it. The CGI in the movie was pretty bad in my mind; it looked kind of 80ish, which might have been the point! I haven't read any reviews or book comparisons about it yet. But I thought it was kind of a ripoff that so much of the movie was just CGI characters doing stuff. Some of the scenes were pretty hokey, too, and the references were too much - not thrown in to be clever, but so in your face you know they wanted the audience to react. And the audience DID react, to let everyone know they got the joke, and that's one petty reason I hate going to the movie theater - people clapping for the movie, talking back to it, etc.

Bottom line: the book is always better than the movie, but I always love seeing the movie just so I can compare them!

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