Lu Galasso - My Sister's Keeper

Okay, so I went and I saw My Sister’s Keeper the other night, a film which I had very high expectations for because not only have I read the book (and cried through the whole thing), but I also enjoy Cameron Diaz as an actor. After seeing the film, I looked at my friend in shock. And not in a good way. I was TOTALLY disappointed. I would even go as far as to say that they ruined the book. I say that because the writers of the film changed the ending. I don’t mean they altered it but I mean they changed WHO DIES. Meaning that the story doesn’t even make sense! Let me start with Abigal’s character, Anna. The story goes that when Kate was little she found out she had Leukemia. It was safer and more effective to have an exact bone marrow and palette donor and so Kate’s parents genetically altered the baby that they were going to have so that she would be an exact match for Kate. Therefore, Anna spends her whole life being a donor to Kate for whatever she needs.

Then one day, Kate’s kidney’s begin to fall and so Anna is not asked, but required by her parents to donate her kidney to her sister. Anna learns that without one of her kidneys she would have ot be careful for the rest of her life, and it was going to be hard for her to have a child. There were many other things that scared Anna from having the surgery, or so she claims. Anna then goes and hires a lawyer, Campbell Alexander, in order to sure her parents for “the rights to her own body”. I won’t go into detail about how that turns out because that would just give away the entire movie. For the most part the film follows that part of the book very closely except that it leaves out a very important character from the novel named Julia. Who becomes Anna’s guardian for the time when the trial is taking place because Anna’s mother becomes the defendant lawyer. I would like to point out that although I’m making the story revolve around Anna, which the book does do, the film makes the story about Kate. That being said, we hear from Kate multiple times in the film, whereas in the book we only hear from her near the end of the novel.

Then there is the brother, Jesse. In the book, Jesse is a trouble maker, starting fires, living in a room above the garage, basically wants nothing to do with his family. Has his own car. And he’s 17. The Jesse in the film looks like he’s about 14, he takes the bus, they don’t show him doing anything wrong except being out late at night drinking SODA (not even alcohol like in the book) and hes at family dinners. The only bad thing they show him doing in the film is coming home past curfew and then proceed to say at the end of the film that he got himself together. Together from what? Really?

They had Alec Baldwin play Campbell Alexander. In the book Campbell Alexander is supposed to be sexy. A knockout, and he and Julia are supposed to have a romance. There is also supposed to be suspicion about why he has this service dog with him all of the time and when you find out it happens in the courtroom while he is asking Anna questions on the stand, which in the book takes her convincing. In the film there are two questions asked about the dog and the revelation happens outside the courtroom.

It’s like the film is trying to draw all the same morals and conclusions as the book but without actually explaining why. If you hadn’t read the book you would have been so confused as to the point and as to what is actually going on. If you’re going to adapt a novel into a film. Either change it completely or not at all. This film just sorta sat in the middle. Like it wasn’t really sure what was going on. I would give the film 2 stars out of 5.

– Lu Galasso