Books to films: Ready Player One

Colette from Chelsea Library compares Ernest Cline’s science fiction novel, Ready Player One, to the recent Spielberg film adaption.

 The book 

A very cool science fiction novel which depicts a dystopian world, marred by socio-economic and environmental calamities that could all be escaped when you plug into the virtual world “The Oasis” for your day to day drudgery and social interactions, where you can be anyone or anything (sounding incredibly familiar to today or is it just me?!)

The plot of the book follows teenage outcast, Wade Watts embark on a virtual reality challenge in a race to find a hidden Easter Egg in The Oasis. He ends up befriending his fellow competitors in order to defeat the corporate enemies whose wishes to rule The Oasis is pure corporate greed (money), versus the original intention of that platform being a better place, accessible for all.

Full of 80s game references, this book will surely bring out the sense of nostalgia, whilst also painting a truly possible reality through Cline’s clever writing prowess making the world he has created not seem so far-fetched.

The film 

Brilliant book teamed with a superb director Spielberg, for sure the film would be incredible right?! How disappointed I was! For me, there were so many alterations especially with the games featured that all the nostalgia that was with those retro games and references were completely lost.

The character development was so rushed that I just did not care what happened as I barely came to know them onscreen, but the special effects are good. When there were “cameos” of characters from games I recognised, they looked like they were straight from the original game.

In short, this film could have been so much more. If it is any consolation, those who have not read the book gave it a thumbs up, reason being the 80s soundtrack that did hit those nostalgic notes.


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