Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Book vs Movie Review

June 23, 2017 Movie Reviews, Reviews 7

Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Plot Synopsis:

Everyone has bad mornings. You wake up late, you stub your toe, you burn the toast…but for a man named Arthur Dent, this goes far beyond a bad day. When he learns that a friend of his is actually an alien with advanced knowledge of Earth’s impending destruction, he is transported off the Earth seconds before it is exploded to make way for a new hyperspace motorway. And as if that’s not enough, throw in being wanted by the police, Earth II, an insane electronic encyclopedia, no tea whatsoever, a chronically depressed robot and the search for the meaning of life, and you’ve got the greatest adventure off Earth.

Director: Garth Jennings

Staring: Martin Freeman, Zooey Deschanel, Sam Rockwell, Mos Def, Alan Rickman

Info from IMDb



I’m going to confess a deep, dark, secret. I actually watched the movie for Hitchhiker’s long before I read the book. I know. I know. Take my geek cred card away now. But I did rectify the situation. And I recently listened to the audio version thanks to Sync, thus inspiring this post.

Book Review:

Have you stopped to think that Hitchhiker’s was published in 1997? That’s 20 YEARS before the first Kindle and 23 years before the first iPad. Yet, like most great science fiction, Douglas Adams features just such a book, a travel guide for the entire universe that’s electronic, searchable, and informative. This amazes me.

What I appreciate best about Hitchhiker’s (the book) is following the story of Arthur Dent. He’s just an average guy, trying to stop a bypass from destroying his home. But then, he finds out his best friend is really an alien. Then Earth is vaporized. After which, he learns first hand that Vogon poetry is the worst. And his day doesn’t really get any better after that. Arthur is really a character that I can empathize with. I’m pretty sure I’d have the same freak out if Earth were vaporized and I was blasted out into the vacuum of space. Oh, and most importantly, we learn the answer to the ultimate question.

The audio narration for Hitchhiker’s is by Stephen Fry. He does a great job. If you downloaded this from Sync and haven’t listened yet, get on it!

Movie Review:

The casting for Hitchhiker’s (the movie) is fantastic. And really, what initially drew me to the movie. Alan Rickman as a moody robot. Sam Rockwell as a charismatic space president, with two heads. Martin Freeman as the everyday Arthur. Mos Def as an alien, who while researching Earth for the Guide, ends up stuck here for 15 years. Just perfect.


Oh, and yes, just like the book, Stephen Fry is the narrator of the movie!

I also really enjoyed the visual representation of the book elements in the movie. I don’t know about you, but I don’t always have images in mind while I’m reading.  Curious about the Babel Fish? A whale and a bowl of petunias crashing to earth? Or what happens when the Infinite Improbability Drive is activated? Hitchhiker’s (the movie) does and exceptional job of this.

I really love everything about this movie! It’s hilarious and heartfelt. And has Alan Rickman! Well, his voice anyway.

Grab your towel and watch the movie. Or read the book. Either way, you can’t miss with Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.



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Rating Report
Overall: 5

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7 Responses to “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Book vs Movie Review”

  1. Livia

    I listened to the audiobook back when it first came out and loved it. I was so determined to keep reading them but never did even though I bought a paperback collection of them at the airport in London back in 2001. I also enjoyed the movie, but I’d have to reread and rewatch to notice those observations you had about the Kindle-like tech featured in the novel.

    I remember forcing my then 14-year old nephew to listen to the audiobook with me whenever we were in the car during his visit. Fast forward several years later to the movie release and my move from Denver back to Houston. My nephew and I simply had to go see the movie together. My nephew found the movie boring though and fell asleep, darn it.

    Great post!

    • Lynn

      Good attempt at getting the nephew to enjoy a great book, Livia. Maybe try again with the movie now that he’s older!

      • Livia

        I wish I could say he’d give it another chance, Lynn. But he was 18 y.o. when we saw and had a pretty strong opinion about it being too boring. We live in two different cities as well. He’s in Houston and I’m in Los Angeles. I chalk it down to being his loss if he couldn’t appreciate the movie like he did the audiobook.

        • Lynn

          You are probably right, Livia. 18 year olds have pretty strong opinions. But at least he enjoyed the audio version!

          • Livia

            Yes, that was something. And he actually reads political / non-fiction and paranormal novels. I like to think I played a small role in planting the reading bug. =)

    • Lynn

      Thanks, Julie! I’ve heard good things about the Dirk Gently series, but haven’t read it. Let me know if you check it out!

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