Book vs. film: Denial


  • the book describes a long and complex legal case. The film compresses the story to a courtroom drama and the complexity is lost
  • the  unnecessary and heavy-handed use of visual symbols in the film
  • the historical fact-checking described in the book is fascinating – no attempt to translate this to film (and probably wouldn’t have made good viewing anyway)
  • emphasis in the film on parts of the story that seemed minor in the book (particularly the long speech given to Lipstadt about why she should not testify).

Book here. Film here.

4 responses

  1. Yup. I haven’t seen it, but that’s what I thought might be the case.
    It occurs to me that perhaps Lipstadt agreed to the film in order to recoup some of her costs?

    • Possibly… The movie may have suffered for me because I watched it immediately after finishing the book, so was making direct comparisons. I enjoyed the detail in the book about the expert witnesses’ testimonies – hard to capture that stuff in the movie but at the same time, they could have picked out a few examples.

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