The Adjustment Bureau is a film that is based on the short story Adjustment Team by P.K. Dick. This is a story about a team that adjusts and influences the events that take place in the day to day life. The movie although based n the book has major differences from the short story. The first notable difference is in the characters. The adjustment team in the story is a dog and a human being. The clerk is a human being while the summoner is a dog. Their job is making Ed get to work earlier than 9.00 o’clock so that he would be in sector T137 on time. This is where they clean up and revise their plans. The main character in the story, who is Ed, is a married man who works for the government. He is supposed to be at work early. The summoner was supposed to summon him on time so that he gets a lift to work from a friend. The summoner falls asleep, and Ed is delayed by a man selling insurance.
The movie has a difference in depicting the characters. They do not paste him as is in the book; rather they create a new character and a twist in his story. David Norris is a charismatic congressman who has a promising future in the political world. He is a single man who lives by himself, but is, however, surrounded by many officers of his campaigning team. David, unlike Ed, is supposed to be delayed. He is meant to get to work late. His summoner falls asleep at the park because he is exhausted. He forgets to pour coffee on him so that he would go back to the house and change, therefore, getting late. His mistake makes him get onto the bus, and he meets a lady who is a ballet dancer, who she had met in the men’s room while practicing his speech, and they later fall in love.
Already, there is an evident and significant difference between the book and the film. The movie's producer did not write the movie exactly as it was written in the book. He brings in an aspect of reality, making the movie look a little bit closer to reality than possible. The fact that a dog would be used as a tool of controlling destiny to many would seem unreal, and unbelievable. It is, however, a closer and familiar reality that a human being or a certain group of human beings are the ones who are in charge of controlling the fate of the world.
He also changes the status of the main character. Ed in the book is not a congress man. He is an ordinary man who works for the government. He is married to one wife rose. David, however, is single and quite lonely, although he twists his story by introducing a ballet dancer, Elise into his life. The movie has a romantic twist to it.
The author’s theme of the story is that we are not in control of our own destinies. His is his main focus in the story, the main theme and idea. There are the people in the white robes who Ed meets at his office. Things are stationery and everyone is still, and then he meets these people who are carrying heavy machines and adjusting people. When Ed finds out about the bureau he is met by one of the members of the bureau who talk to him about what e had seen when he got to the office. Ed thinks that he is dead when he touches people and doors, and they disintegrate in his hands. This is also similar to the movie. The same thing happens to David when he gets to his office and finds strange men with heavy gadgets viewing people and shining beams of light on their faces. He opens doors and they do not lead to the normal places he is used to, but they lead to different allies in the streets and different rooms in the office. When the bureau finds out that he knows about them, he is met by the clerk and threatened that if he ever speaks of what had happened to anyone, they would reset him. This means that they would wipe out his memory, and his family would believe him to have gone mad.
The general idea and theme of the author is captured quite well in the movie. The idea that people are not in control of their own lives is clearly brought out in both the book and the film. The author suggests that the bureau of adjustment has a particular plan for every person and is aware of every choice that is made by every individual. The movie depicts this very well, as this is seen in their books of plans that have signs that show the path that is being taken by any individual. They indicate a problem that is going to be faced at any point and, therefore, helps the clerks adjust the problems.
The film, however, does not adapt the story in the book as is in the book. The film is a twist of romance and fiction, romance being the dominant theme. The story is centered upon the love of two people who accidentally meet and fall in love and are reunited after many months. They both sense that they will meet each other again and that they fall in love with each other again. However, the bureau keeps them apart by telling David that if they stay together their lives will not be as phenomenal as they should be. David decides that he will no longer pursue Elise so that he would not destroy her future. They, however, meet again and this time David takes the risk of telling Elise the truth. He explains to her that they might be reset, and decides to risk it together.
Their love finally conquers the bureaus plans, and the chairman decides to create a new path for them that are open and unknown. They would decide their own path. The book is basically a combination of thriller and drama. The story centers around Ed and the bureau and how they try stop Ed from telling anyone about the bureau. They center the story on him trying to explain top his wife about the bureau and the cat and mouse chase between him and the bureau. He ends up promising not to talk and leaves his wife doubtful of his endeavors and whereabouts. When it comes to the main story of the book which is the existence of the bureau, the film does a perfect job at bringing it out. The style in which they decide to bring it out, however, is totally different from the book. The film makers add a twist in every aspect of the movie, the characters, the genre and the story.
The stories endings are also quite different. The film ends when both David and Elise see the bureau and use their hat tricks to walk through doors and see what the bureau does. They are not reset but are given a new path by the chairman who tells the clerks that they were meant to be together. The end of the film introduces free will, which does not exist in their current world. The book, however, does not give Ed or his wife free will. Ed is given a mandate and a warning that he should keep his mouth shut about the bureau, and he and his wife will be safe. He lives with the fact that his wife thinks he was just a little bit insane when he said that he saw all those white robed men, and he finds his comfort and relief at the end of the book.
The film, therefore, is a story that brings out the theme of the story, in a more interesting and captivating way.