Book to Big Screen: The DUFF

12:00 AM Serena 0 Comments

The DUFF: Designated Ugly Fat Friend, based on the novel by Kody Keplinger, was released into theaters on February 20th. Even though I hadn't read the book until earlier this week, I was really excited about it because it's so awesome to see YA books as movies. 

If you haven't already seen the trailer yet, here it is for your viewing pleasure: 

The DUFF Novel Summary:
Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper is cynical and loyal, and she doesn’t think she’s the prettiest of her friends by a long shot. She’s also way too smart to fall for the charms of man-slut and slimy school hottie Wesley Rush. In fact, Bianca hates him. And when he nicknames her “the Duff,” she throws her Coke in his face. 

But things aren’t so great at home right now, and Bianca is desperate for a distraction. She ends up kissing Wesley. Worse, she likes it. Eager for escape, Bianca throws herself into a closeted enemies-with-benefits relationship with him.
Until it all goes horribly awry. It turns out Wesley isn’t such a bad listener, and his life is pretty screwed up, too. Suddenly Bianca realizes with absolute horror that she’s falling for the guy she thought she hated more than anyone. 
I enjoyed both the book and the movie. Though they were both really different than the other, each had its specific qualities about it that I liked. 

In the book, Bianca is a lot closer to her friends and spends a ton of time with them. They're really more like sisters, and I loved their relationship. They weren't as active in her life in the movie, and I would have liked to see more of them. Bianca is also really heavily feeling the weight of her current home situation in the book which ended up bringing her and Wesley closer together, and while they did have serious chemistry in the movie, I felt the romance was a little lacking. 

Book Bianca and Book Wes were the OTP; I was rooting for them from the very beginning. Movie B and Movie Wes were more like the BrOTP. I knew they would obviously get together, but I wasn't totally feeling the same tension build that I was when I was reading. 

There were multiple other plot things that were either altered or changed completely in the book to movie process, including the addition of mean girl Madison, but I felt that was necessary for the movie to be a little more appropriate for the screen and appealing for a movie-going audience. Not that The DUFF is horribly inappropriate or anything, there were just times that I felt the book and movie were serving different purposes. Gosh, I don't even know if I'm making sense anymore, but those are my feels. 

I feel like I'm making it sound as though I didn't enjoy the movie, but I promise you I did. (Especially the sountrack, OMG.) It was a little more, I don't know - raunchy, maybe? - than the book, but ohmygosh it was laugh out loud hilarious. You can tell a lot of it is improv and the actors are thoroughly enjoying the jokes and the banter almost as much as the audience is. The fun is one of the things that definitely did not get lost in the transition. I'm pleased to say that neither did the message. Both the book and the movie are trying to convey the same message: it's okay if you don't fit in or if other people think you're a little different. Just be you and live your best life. 

The DUFF was a hilarious, fun watching and reading experience. I'd recommend it to fans of good old teen movies and romcoms everywhere. 

Have you seen The DUFF? What did you think? 

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