Shutter Island is about to start at the movies soon. I also happen to have the novel (by Dennis Lehane) on which it is based at home.
Except in very rare situations, I usually find the book to be superior to the film version. A friend told me to watch the movie first, because then when you read the book, you can take your time to properly digest it. And because the book will be more in-depth, it’s like adding to the movie experience.
On the other hand, watching the film first could lock up certain images in your mind (whether it be the way a character looks, talks or acts), which could be detrimental to the reading experience. In other words, it limits the ability of your imagination to envisage the scenesor characters in your mind (eg, like seeing DiCaprio’s face all the time! Argh!).
Just to take a few recent examples. I read The Road first before seeing the film, whereas I saw Revolutionary Road first before reading the book. Did it really affect either experience? Not really. Each had a different feel to it.
So what should I do? Read the book first or watch the movie first?