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Anyone But You Book vs. Movie: Which is better?

Rom – Com inspired by Shakespeare

My dear bookworms and rom-com fans! Did you catch the new movie ” Anyone But You “? It’s a delightful modern twist on the classic Shakespeare play “Much Ado About Nothing”. 

I’m a total sucker for a good adaptation, and after watching the movie. So,  just had to dig back into the original “Anyone But You” book. 

Titanic pose from Anyone but you
Image credit: Netflix

The Setting: Then vs. Now

Shakespeare’s play unfolds in Renaissance Italy It is full of beautiful villas and those “Romeo and Juliet” vibes. 

While, the movie throws us right into the modern world where we have coffee shops, destination weddings, and awkward run-ins with exes! This change in setting totally impacts the way we see Beatrice and Benedict’s iconic bickering.

I should mention that in this way, their witty barbs feel way more relatable in our own time.

Book vs Movie: Over-the-Top Drama

As we all know, Shakespearean plays are all about the power of words and the drama of misunderstandings. 

In the movie, things get dialed up a notch! The characters are way more expressive, and the misunderstandings are blown up into hilarious, cringe-worthy situations. Yes, you read it right,  a few scenes will definitely give you cringe – not so romantic vibes!

 But, the “Unwritten” dance sequence in the final act? Pure rom-com gold!

It’s All About Perspective

The play is told from various characters’ points of view, leaving room for interpretation. 

Did the “merry war” between Beatrice and Benedick really mask deeper feelings all along? That’s part of the fun as a reader! The movie focuses on Bea and Ben as the stars. We get inside their heads way more, which adds a new layer to their evolving relationship.

So, Which Is Better?

Honestly, I think that’s the beauty of adaptations. They offer different takes on the same timeless story! I love the play’s subtle complexities and the power of Shakespeare’s language. 

Yet, the movie’s modern spin and hilarious over-the-top moments had me laughing out loud. 

I wouldn’t want anyone but this movie as a perfect Friday-night date flick. This is indeed the best movie to watch with your date! But no matter what you do, never watch this movie with your family. I repeat, never! Thank me later.

A scene from the movie
Image credit: Netflix


Do I need to read “Much Ado About Nothing” before seeing the movie? 

Absolutely not! The movie stands on its own. But if you enjoy reading Shakespearean plays then , digging into the play afterward just makes the whole experience richer.

Would Shakespeare purists hate this movie? 

Maybe a few! But I think even the Bard himself would be secretly delighted to see his works inspire such a fun, contemporary twist.

What we truly need to appreciate is the fact that , even after so many years later from when the play was written by Shakespeare, the main plot of the story remains as enjoyable as before.

It’s only that the surroundings and settings of the story has changed. Our Benedict and Beatrice , created by Shakespeare will live forever among us , only the setting will change .

This brings us to the conclusion, that movies can become old with time, but the original play by Shakespeare , can never be old. Afterall, there is no comparison between the movie ” Anyone But You ” – or the book. It’s ultimately the art and literature who won the game.

Let me know what you guys think! Drop your thoughts in the comments!

Reference : Time

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