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Popcorn & Prejudice: A Movie Blog

Seattle Times writer Moira Macdonald muses on moviegoing. Email Moira: mmacdonald@seattletimes.com.

May 15, 2012 at 9:36 AM

“What to Expect” comes to screen

Regular visitors to P & P know that I’m an avid reader, and I’m always interested in how a book gets transformed on its way to the screen . . . but this week comes a book-turned-movie that I just can’t bring myself to read cover-to-cover. “What to Expect When You’re Expecting,” a how-to guide to pregnancy (not how to get there — though quite possibly that’s covered — but how to navigate the nine months), is a megabestseller that’s spawned, to judge from my visit to the Barnes & Noble childcare section yesterday, a gazillion lookalike books with titles like “What To Expect When There Are Way Too Many Pregnancy Books To Choose From And They’re All Scary.” (It’s possible that I made that title up.) Anyway, being as I am not now nor have ever been an expectant mother, I have not read this book, though I’ve seen it in friends’ homes and spent a few minutes flipping through it in the bookstore last night. Yikes. (Let’s just say that there’s a lot about pregnancy and birth that’s strictly on a need-to-know basis.) I have no idea whatsoever how somebody looked at this book and said, “Hey! This should be a movie about a bunch of really blonde pregnant women!,” but clearly somebody did. I saw the movie last night and it’s funny how the book sort of plays a silent supporting role, lounging around in the background like an ever-present houseguest who nobody acknowledges.
Odd, isn’t it, that “What To Expect When You’re Expecting” opens in the same week as “Battleship,” a movie inspired by a low-tech board game that involves such scintillating dialogue as “B-7.” “Hit.” ? And to think of all those books out there with actual plots and characters (I’m reading a good one this week: “The Art of Fielding”), going unadapted. Oh well.

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