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Book #19 – The Memory Keeper’s Daughter – the movie

September 2, 2009

Earlier this year I read The Memory Keeper’s Daughter by Kim Edwards. The writing was okay, but the story really intrigued me; the idea that one person’s decision could affect so many lives.

David Henry is a doctor that specializes in bones, but during a blizzard in 1964 he has to deliver his own baby. However, there turns out to be more than one baby. After perfect Paul is delivered there’s another: imperfect Phoebe. David immediately notices the signs of Phoebe’s Down’s Syndrome, and asks the only other person in the clinic at the time, Caroline, to bring Phoebe to an institution for the mentally disabled. Upon arrival, she realizes that she cannot leave Phoebe in that place. So Caroline disappears with the baby, to raise Phoebe herself. Meanwhile, David tells his wife, Nora, the Phoebe died at birth.

the memory keeper's daughterThis evening I watched the made-for-TV movie adaptation of the book, which came out last year. As in all movie adaptations, there were parts of the book that were left out. Entire scenes that seemed important in the book, even whole characters. But I felt that the movie stayed true to the story and the effects that David’s decision had on not only his only family, but also Caroline. Although it didn’t really show the extent to which all the characters struggled, it did portray that they all had to deal with the decision that David made.

I’m not going to talk much about the acting or production of the movie. But I will say that Emily Watson’s portrayal of Caroline was one my favourite things about the movie. And yes, there were some cheesy made-for-TV moments, but I did need a few tissues to make it through the end. If you have read the book, I highly recommend seeing the movie as well.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. stacybuckeye permalink
    September 3, 2009 7:31 am

    I purchased the book recently, but didn’t realize it had been made into a movie.

    • September 3, 2009 10:30 am

      I didn’t know either until after I had read the book. I always like seeing other people’s interpretation of books I’ve read :)

  2. theyoungandmarried permalink
    September 3, 2009 9:24 am

    I got so excited to see the movie because I LOVED the book, and was pretty disappointed by it. Yes I know it is a made-for-tv, but still… so much of what made the book great was completely ignored by the film. But I agree, Emily Watson was fantastic.

    • September 3, 2009 10:43 am

      True, it’s the inner struggles of the characters that makes the book so good. I had been putting off watching the movie for quite a while, because I was expecting it to be really bad. It could be that my low expectations made me enjoy the movie that much more. And putting 3 months between the book and the movie probably didn’t hurt much either. I usually enjoy movie adaptations more when the book isn’t fresh in my mind.
      I’m glad you liked the book!

  3. September 3, 2009 9:30 pm

    I read the book first and wouldn’t let myself watch the mvoie until I was done with it. I even DVR’d it and erased it a couple of times because of the temptation. I finally watched the movie today and I actually liked it better than the book, which doesn’t happen often.

    Here’s my review:

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