Academic Master


the similarities and differences between movies and books


Nowadays, whenever people are free, they watch a movie or read a book. Both movies and books are a source of information and entertainment. Many arguments exist on how one is better than the other and what benefits any of them provide. Then, some opinions exist that are both interesting and beneficial and have pros and cons.

To debate the preference of written literature over films or movies or vice versa, we will try to provide a compare and contrast paper that will explain the similarities and differences between movies and books. For this purpose, we will use five factors and then observe how these factors are linked to books and movies. Movies and books, though both are good sources of entertainment and knowledge differ in idea growth, entertainment factor, time consumption, availability, and understanding.


Idea growth and imagination are important factors when selecting between movies and books. The books help us imagine the situation, characters, nature, and behaviour of characters, and they hold a good transition between scenarios to help the reader imagine the story’s prompt and decide on the next part of the story. The movies, however, do not help the viewer go deep in imagination. The viewer is more focused on the character’s appearance, environment and other details in scenes and cannot imagine much of what the story will present next. In movies, we cannot focus on one thing because our attention is towards what actually scene is showing rather than why this character is behaving like this or what can be outcomes of the event in the previous scene.

When discussing the entertainment factor in books and movies, again, the book gets a more positive response. The books entertain the reader by involving him in the story and allowing him to predict the next event using his imagination. The level of interest increases throughout the storyline and the reader feels part of the story when he thinks about the characters’ behaviour and how the story follows. Movies, on the other hand, provide a different type of entertainment. The viewer enjoys the colourful scenes and likes the attention to detail that the directors provide in the movie.

Time consumption and availability vary in both books and movies. It depends on the reader or viewer how much time he will devote to reading a book or watching a movie. With the advent of the internet, we have access to literature and movies. It also depends on the person as to how much time he can devote to the movie as the average length of the movie is about 2 hours and the average time a book on the same concept will take up to 4 hours. Here again, the factor of imagination arises, while reading a book, a person can take a pause and analyze what the author is presenting, which is not possible in movies as a person becomes too involved in the scenes and camera effects that he does not like to pause and think or provide his analyses of the movie.

Most people have heard a popular term: “The movie was nothing like the novel.” This statement verifies that the level of understanding is higher in books than in movies. In books, the author explains a character’s personality and behaviour to others through declarative sentences. Reading the text helps him understand the character more and allows him to make up an image of the character. Whereas in movies the characters are understood by their physical appearance, and their interaction with others, the viewer understands the character by these aspects.


We cannot argue which media source is better as it all depends on the reader or viewer.  Factors like age, interest, and personality change our likeness of each. Both movies and books have different ways of presenting the story, but they are similar to the main ideas, and both complete their end goal in their way, i.e., personal satisfaction.



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