Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty: movie vs. short story

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty movie vs. short story
Ben Stiller in The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
*Disclosure: I was provided with a complimentary Google Play download of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty to facilitate this post. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.

I was able to see the film version of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty back in December 2013 (click here for review) and I still remember how great the cinematography was and how it was such a breath of fresh air - a very original movie. The movie is actually based on a short story of the same name, by James Thurber, which was published on March 18, 1939. I was able to read the short story recently and was surprised by how different it was from the movie.

The general theme of the story is the same as the movie: Walter tends to daydream - okay, he daydreams a LOT - and it helps him cope with his mundane life.
Some major differences are:
  • In the story, he is married, and it revolves around a day of him accompanying and dropping of his wife for errands; in the film, he has a major crush on a coworker (Kristen Wiig), and even goes as far as to join eHarmony just to talk to her.
  • The story was published in 1939 and has the feel of that time period - "overshoes," brandy, etc. is referenced throughout. The film takes place in present-day.
  • The story seems to take place in the suburbs, and Walter Mitty lives in NYC in the movie.
  • And, the most major difference: Walter Mitty decides to have a real-life adventure in the movie, for the purpose of finding a lost photo negative of which he was in charge. The story's character doesn't do this at the end of the story.

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty: movie vs. short story
Ben Stiller and Kristen Wiig

I am also planning on rewatching Walter Mitty from the Google Play store, in Digital HD. This format is convenient because it sync across all your devices - you can watch on your computer, tablet, or even your phone. I like using my iPad Mini for reading and also for watching movies, although occasionally I will use my laptop for movies. 

Walter Mitty would be a great film to watch on Digital HD because the cinematography in it is amazing - Walter travels across the world, including places like Iceland, which was gorgeous on-screen. Watching the movie in Digital HD format will only enhance this beauty, and you also have early access to movies when you download them in Digital HD, versus buying the Blu-ray or DVD version.

Make sure to check back in a few days for a giveaway of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, as well as a book of James Thurber short stories, which includes the Mitty short story!

What are your favorite devices to use for reading and also watching Digital HD films?

{and if you prefer Blu-ray or DVD: click here to purchase}


  1. I don't watch digital HD films..but I totally love my Kindle!

  2. Aw I really wanted to see this movie! It looked really good. I have to say though- I don't like reading books/short stories on movies when I really like the movie- and vice versa. So I may have to do one or other other on this one if they are very different!

  3. Hmmm, it's interesting to see the very big differences between the book and film. Hollywood doesn't typically go THAT far away from the original!

  4. I've only seen the 1947 adaptation, but from reading your review it sounds like they're all quite different from each other.

  5. I use my Kindle Fire for reading and don't watch digital movies. I need my big screen for that!

  6. I am all åI am sticking to the good old devices I have - WII and BR DVD player


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