Review: Adaptation (2002) is a review about a writer trying to think about writing a review to a movie adapting

by Banned Library in


When my triplet cousins came over (who all happen to look, sound, and act just like me), I told them: Jerry, Johnny, and Francis I have to work. Jerry said sure, what was I working on? Johnny said he was going to sit and drink. Francis kept to himself outside under the car because the sun hurt him. I told Jerry I was working on a review for the movie Adaptation.

    Writer Charlie Kaufman has been tasked with adapting a book about a man stealing orchids into a movie. Along with his brother Donald, he goes through the motions of writer's block, attempting to stretch a story that is filled with dry facts about flowers. A commentary not only on adaptations of stories but on stories themselves, Adaptation finds itself referring to itself in a twisty mess of thought and re-thought.

    Jerry and I ate pulled pork sandwiches and talked about the movie and both of us enjoyed it. Jerry likes Nicholas Cage in his more unhinged roles, running around bug-eyed and manic, but agreed with me that the subtle performance here shows range. Meryl Streep is Meryl Streep and neither of us feel the need to go over her virtues, of which are many. Well written and delightful, the movie charmed us both.

    Then Johnny screamed and ran for the door. Outside was a fire, big and red and bright. Francis stood in the middle of the fire, a gasoline ring in my front yard. Johnny bounded to his brother. Jerry and I watching on, still munching our pulled pork sandwiches. Francis pulled a knife from his belt and tore his shirt from his body.

    The circle was not just a circle. It held a summoning wind. As Johnny broke the fire, he broke the natural order of the world. The sky turned black and the grass died and the birds flew as one.

    A death. A life. Birth and wonder. My triplet cousins were all consumed that day. Johnny impaled on his brother's knife. The sacrifice triggered a demon horde in the circle which pulled Francis screaming into the abyss. Jerry, surprised by this turn of events, sucked in a breath and a chunk of pulled pork and choked to death on my blackened lawn.

    I sold the house and moved away. The new owners attempted to give back my copy of Adaptation, but I told them "It's a library copy, you can watch it and return it if you want."

    It's that good.