Monday, December 11, 2006
Cover of Seabiscuit [HD DVD]
You should know
I saw the movie back when it was in theaters the night before I had my wisdom teeth removed. It was years before I got to read the book.
While the movie is fairly faithful to the book, the book isn’t much like the movie, if that makes any sense. For starters, books just have more room to get into history and exposition; Hillenbrand’s source list includes a long, long list of news clippings and interviews, only a fraction of which could ever fit into a movie, even a three-hour-long one.
The book is an incredibly in-depth piece of reporting. We don’t just learn about each of the key players, as we do in the movie: we learn family histories and pedigrees. We learn how every horse Seabiscuit races is related to him. We learn how horseracing works, and how it used to work, and how it evolved during while Seabiscuit raced. It’s not really light reading, and it’s not quite plot-driven; it’s a work of reporting, and it’s a work of history.
Read it if…
…You like sports, horses, history, or good reporting. And definitely read it if you enjoyed the movie. But if the movie was too long and boring for you, the book will not excite you in the least.
The rest of the internet
The official companion site for the book.
The IMDb page for the film.
Seabiscuit has his own Wikipedia page.