Serendip is an independent site partnering with faculty at multiple colleges and universities around the world. Happy exploring!

All Over Creation in film form?

jo's picture

I used to think a lot about how I would adapt certain books for the screen, so thinking about how I would make a movie based on All Over Creation by Ozeki is pretty fun. I'm pretty sure Yumi would narrate the movie, mostly for herself and her story but sometimes telling the perspectives of others when they needed introduction. I feel strongly that most of the words she narrates should be direct quotes from the text. Similarly, it would be really important to me that certain conversations be entirely preserved, like Geeks descriptions of GMO's to Frankie.

Obviously, since the book is so long, quite a few things would have to be shortened and/or taken out, and the idea of that sounds stressful. Yumi's past could be shown much more quickly and succinctly, and much of the Seed's time in San Fransisco would probably have to be cut. The part I see most clearly is the image of farms in Idaho, of the irrigation birds and the vast, expansive fields. Of country roads and dingy farm houses. I would be excited to represent a (probably romanticized) vision of rural Idaho. I think this could be a really great movie, the type of movie that people really like nowadays.

One of the things I would feel most conflicted about if I were actually going to make this movie is the varying perspectives and arguments held by the many characters in the book. I appreciate how Ozeki's story doesn't strongly argue for or against GMO's, that it clearly represents the complicated issues involved. That said, I think the overall sense (from the storyline around the Seeds and the Idaho Potato Party and Elliot) is that GMO's are not good and Cynaco (and other corporations) lie for profit and manipulate and hurt people - though this is how I feel in general so it could be that it just fits my own bias and that's why I see it that way.

But what I would really want to do with a movie of this book is to authentically and honestly convince people of the dangers of GMO's and big agribusiness. I'm worried though, that if that were my main goal, I might not be the best person to represent the story itself.