True Story – October’s Book and Movie Get-together

true story book imageTrue Story

Novel: (2006) Written by Michael Finkel

Movie: (2015) Directed by Rupert Goold Screenplay by Rupert Goold and David Kajganich

The set up:

Five of us (women ages 22-48) pick a book that has been made into a movie. We read the book and then get together for thematic food, to discuss the book, and then to watch the movie.

On the menu:

Each of us are to bring either a drink, dessert and/or appetizer and it is fun to use the story for inspiration. Below is what we ended up with this month.

Appetizers: Hummus, Tzatziki sauce, and a Cheese bake dip with assorted crackers and chipsfood for true story

Drinks: Red wine, White wine, and Flip Flop wine

Dessert: Chocolate brownies  

Quick Book/Movie Summary (From Amazon):

In February 2002, New York Times Magazine writer Michael Finkel received a startling piece of news: a young man named Christian Longo, wanted for killing his entire family, had been captured in Mexico, where he’d taken on a new identity: Michael Finkel of the New York Times.

Thoughts about the Book:

I really don’t like to read books where something bad happens to children, and I wouldn’t have read this nonfiction book if it hadn’t been picked for our group. But I think Michael Finkel is a good storyteller, even though it was an awful story.

It was somewhat interesting but slow at times – then right when I was about to give up (How can there be any more to this book) a new question would arrive.

There was a half and half split in our group as to if this book was just plain boring or if it was a well-written boring book.

Thoughts about the Movie:

Boring, quiet, disturbing at times. It was unanimous – the movie was a yawner with disturbing scenes. A couple of us were okay not to even finish it – but we did. The acting (Jonah Hill and James Franco) was good but with people mostly just talking to one another, there wasn’t much to it. We all thought that we would probably be lost if we had not read the book first. There were a lot of differences between the two – like the girlfriend played a much bigger role in the movie than the book – however, without her, Jonah Hill’s character, Michael Finkel, would have had to talk to himself a lot or in his head a lot, which would probably had us all snoring.

Interesting Discoveries:

We all agreed that the book (not the movie) had a similarity to Gone Girl by Gillian in that neither person was 100% creditable. And so we thought the title was perfect.

Here’s an interesting interview with Finkel right before the movie was released.

The Girly Discussions:

The main reason why this book/movie probably got picked in the first place is because the movie had James Franco … We also talked about the pretty scenery: the church in the beginning was beautiful, and then near the end of the movie there was a wide view of a parking lot after a rain shower and it was next to the ocean. I also thought the actress who played Jill (Felicity Jones) had an interesting face.

My rating:

Book: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Movie: 1 out of 5 stars

The bottom line:

If you like true crime stories and aren’t easily upset, then the book is well written and interesting enough to read – but skip movie.

Next month’s Book and Movie:

Z for Zachariah

Love and Laughter,


1 Comment


    1. The Martian – February’s Book and Movie Review | dorlanavann

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