Back in the day when Eat Pray Love (Penguin Group, by Elizabeth Gilbert) was the book to read (when I was 18), I read it. I liked it alright, but I was far from crazy about it.
Photo courtesy of Crakowski
Just half a year later, my friend Taylor and I had the opportunity to hear Liz speak, and I loved her. Absolutely fell in love. She is so straightforward, so real, so honest, so forgivable, so smart, so happy. I loved her. We even got a chance to talk with her after her lecture and take pictures with her!
Just me and Elizabeth Gilbert... no big deal ;)
Then this summer the movie came out and Erika and I went to see it to celebrate her 20th birthday! I really really liked it. I'm often of the camp that believes the book is better than the movie, and I do believe this about Eat Pray Love, too, but not at any fault to the makers of the movie. Julia Roberts always has been and always will be a great actress (she has an Oscar, people!). The production made no sacrifices in story-telling, generously following Liz's own footsteps to Italy, to India, to Indonesia. The movie wasn't over-glamorized. And there is no one better to play Felipe than Javier Bardem (hamana-hamana-hamana).
Photo courtesy of A Little Bit Silly
After re-reading the book this fall (and loving it approximately 1000% more than I did the first time), the only thing missing from the movie is Liz's beautiful descriptions of her experiences with meditation and reaching new spiritual planes. And that is just nit-picking, because as an avid movie-watcher, I know that it would have been too much to put in more than they did. I suppose the most disappointing part was the portrayal of the Ashram and those practicing. They were loud and dancing, which is great, but hardly accurate of most of my personal experiences with Indian spiritual practices nor of Elizabeth Gilbert's own experience. While it was visually exciting, it made the Indian Ashram feel more like a Native American Powwow. (Native American spirituality is beautiful, too— just not what Indian spirituality is.)
Even with that in mind, the real point is, I love Elizabeth Gilbert, I love the book Eat Pray Love, and I love the movie Eat Pray Love.
And the DVD releases today! Will you be buying it? Renting it?
And tell me— did you see this movie or read this book? What are your reflections?