Eat, Pray, Love – Loved it, Hated it

  by Jess  |     August 29th, 2010   |    4View Comments

The book moved me.

The movie snoozed me.

Eat, Pray, Love is about one woman’s journey through Italy, India an Indonesia. But don’t be fooled – the book and the movie take audiences on very different trips.

The book is about one woman’s journey to find herself …. and along the way she finds God (who just happens to be hiding within her the whole time).

The movie is about one woman’s journey to find a reason to get up in the morning…. and along the way she finds pasta, forgiveness and love.

The book is like good old fashioned Coke Classic – the real deal – sugar and all.

The movie is like Coke Zero – designed to taste the same with out the substance.

The first time I read the book, like many fellow EPL readers, I LOVED IT!  I couldn’t put it down.  (Okay – well maybe for a brief time in India, but I powered through those sections which I highly suggest.)  I laughed, I cried, I related.  I got whisked away on wonderful journeys and I saw a deeper meaning to life.  This may sound a little cheesy – but I honestly think that if people read and understood chapter 70 and applied Gilbert’s philosophies to their own lives we would have peace in this world.  It’s true.  Like Coka-Cola – It’s the real thing.

The first time I saw the movie I hated it.  I hated it because I loved the book so much.  Elizabeth Gilbert is a brilliantly funny writer and the way she weaves her self deprecating tale is inspiring, ingenious, and downright HIGHlarious.

With the exception of a very relateable attack of the Italian muffin-top scene in the movie, most of the humor, brilliance and substance was gone… in comparison to the book.

But the second time I saw the movie (with incredibly low expectations) I noticed the brilliance the film had all on it’s own.  The scenery is, of course,  amazing.  The soundtrack is toe-tapping good.  And if you’re a Julia Roberts fan you’ll get your money’s worth since she is in EVERY scene.  After seeing this movie, if you are not inspired to book a trip to Bali to ride bikes through the Banyan trees then I’d like to check your pulse.  The movie’s strength comes from it’s locations, it’s editing, it’s actors – not it’s storyline.  (Which is devastating if you fell in love with the book like I did.) But for armchair travelers it’s a great way to visit Italy, India and Indonesia in under 3 hours.

Moral of the story – the book and movie are like siblings – although they have the same mother – they are completely different beings.  I’d recommend both for different reasons.  The book for a deeply moving story.  The movie for a fun eye-candy adventure. But if you do plan to do both – read the book first. Give your imagination the first crack at it and then give yourself a few months to forget before you see the movie.

Tags: Eat Pray Love, India, Indonesia, Italy

4 Comments → “Eat, Pray, Love – Loved it, Hated it”


  1. Maxine

    1 month ago

    Wow, I LOVED the movie, so I guess I have to read the book if it’s really that much better! Thanks for giving me some food for thought. I’m craving a Coke now…


  2. Jess

    1 week ago

    Maxine – if you don’t LOVE the book 10 times more than the movie I will buy you a case of Coke. Enjoy!


  3. Nancy

    1 week ago

    Wonderful, wonderful description of both the book and the movie. I’m in total agreement with you all the way. Interesting, I wasn’t eager to see the movie, thinking they would totally ruin it, but, you’re totally right. It’s just another child of the same mother and, if you look at it that way, it was enjoyable. I found the scenery and photography especially wonderful and totally what it looks like in al those places. It helps to enjoy the movie, I think, if you’ve been to all the three places. You did a perfect job as a critic!!!


  4. Jess

    4 days ago

    Thanks for the props, Nancy! Finally my critical Virgo finding a purpose. Have YOU been to all three places?


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