Very well done. Some pretty major plot tweaks that made for a more tightly crafted narrative. My only dissappointment was Bridget; my take on the situation is that she has been recharacterized and given a different motivation for her behavior, changing from a unique and powerful motivation (mental illness), to a familiar and bland motivation (grief). In typical fashion, scenes that I expected to be phenomenal translations from the text failed to truly impress me, their greatness eclipsed by my own expectations (I think I should just start calling this thing I do in movies the Mr Holland's Opus Effect-MHOE).
Response (which should probably actually be Reflection, but for the sake of parallelism):
Just past the exposition part of the film, I was prepared to list characterization as a whole as a weakness, as I felt that all the characters failed to shine as brightly as their inner drama painted them in the book. I then realized that this isn't a weakness of the film, it's the nature of humanity. Speaking for myself and assuming that my conclusion generalizes to the whole, I feel like a large purpose of life, possibly life's biggest purpose, is the discovering of my true inner beauty and bringing it to the surface to share it with the rest of the world. That's it, the secret of life. Forget 42. I've commented in the past about my favorite quote, by the artist/author Sabrina Ward Harrison, "If you're not yourself, who will be?" and talked about my feelings of obligation to be the truest me I can be. Here's a movie that screams that belief in every scene.
I hereby refuse to shrink from my life's purpose like I recoil from hearing my voice on a recording. I will continue to refine that voice until it accurately reflects who I am at my core, even if it takes the rest of this life, or well into the next one or one-thousand lives. There's no other purpose worth pursuing.
Who's with me?