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Getting to Know You > Books Made into Movies

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message 1: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments I seldom watch TV and haven't seen very many grown up movies since my children were born. I am always surprised to see that books I have read have been made into movies. I am always excited to see the movie based on a book I have read, but find myself often let down. Parts of the story are often omitted or changed. I know there have to be movies out there that are as good, if not better, than the book they are based on, but I'm having trouble remembering any.

Have you seen a movie that is better than the book?

What movies have you seen that are true to the books on which they are based?

What are your favorite movies or TV series that started out as books?

What are some of the worst movie representations of books you have read?



message 2: by Kristina Marie (new)

Kristina Marie | 274 comments I enjoyed the movie and book versions of Children of Men. Both are very good but pretty different. The same is true for The Life and Death of Charlie St. Cloud, Jurassic Park, and P.S. I Love You.

The Hunger Games movie is pretty faithful to the book, surprisingly so.

The only TV series I can think of that started out as books that I liked is Roswell. My favorite as far as movies is of course the Harry Potter series!

I was disappointed in the movie versions of The Time Traveler's Wife, Water for Elephants, One Day, and The Reader.


message 3: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments Kristina Marie wrote: "I enjoyed the movie and book versions of Children of Men. Both are very good but pretty different. The same is true for The Life and Death of Charlie St. Cloud, Jurassic Park, and P.S. I Love You..."

I was fairly happy with Hunger Games. I thought they did a great job of picking the characters. They were very true to what I pictured from the book. My biggest complaint of the movie is that it seemed rushed to me. It didn't flow as well as the book.

I agree that The Time Traveler's Wife could have been better. I love the Harry Potter movies but I wish they didn't have to cut so much out of the original story. I was very happy that they chose to split the last book into two movies.


message 4: by Shriya (new)

Shriya | 13 comments I was not aware some movies where books before, huge fan of Eat Pray Love! I would love to do my Eat Pray Love soon!


message 5: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments Shriya wrote: "I was not aware some movies where books before, huge fan of Eat Pray Love! I would love to do my Eat Pray Love soon!"

I loved that book. I still haven't seen the movie yet or read her sequel, Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage.


message 6: by Rosanna (new)

Rosanna (rosannabell) | 33 comments Game of Thrones has to be one of favorite series adapted to television. Each episode is filmed like a movie. I love it!! It remains pretty true to the books.


message 7: by Amy (new)

Amy | 49 comments I think Gone With The Wind comes a pretty close call in the which was better debate. I'm looking forward to the Great Gatsby in December....Baz Luhrmann always has wonderful scenery!


message 8: by Dan (new)

Dan Scheffler (DanScheffler) | 25 comments I think Kubrick’s movie, 2001: A Space Odyssey was a pretty good adaptation of the book. I also enjoyed Lord of the Rings (the movie), but I have to admit that I read the books in 1987, when I was 16 and I probably missed half of what was in the story!

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas was a huge disappointment for me, even though Johnny Depp is one of my favourite actors.


message 9: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments Dan wrote: "I think Kubrick’s movie, 2001: A Space Odyssey was a pretty good adaptation of the book. I also enjoyed Lord of the Rings (the movie), but I have to admit that I read the books in 1987, when I was ..."

I loved both the books and the movies of Lord of the Rings. I thought both were fantastic. Besides a few parts being deleted, I thought the movies really captured the books well.


message 10: by Dan (new)

Dan Scheffler (DanScheffler) | 25 comments Diane wrote: "Dan wrote: "I think Kubrick’s movie, 2001: A Space Odyssey was a pretty good adaptation of the book. I also enjoyed Lord of the Rings (the movie), but I have to admit that I read the books in 1987,..."

Never imagined the Orcs to be that ugly though!


message 11: by shanghao (new)

shanghao (sanshow) | 33 comments Movie that's better than the book: Maybe...Batman Trilogy by Christopher Nolan (does that count?) I also liked the recent Alice in Wonderland adaptation.

True to the books: I agree with The Hunger Games being relatively faithful. I suppose LOTR, too, but I haven't read them so I can't say for sure.

Some fave movies based off books: To Kill A Mockingbird is just brilliant. One Flew Over a Cuckoo's Nest, although not as good as the book, was great in its own right. Oh and yes, Harry Potter!


message 12: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments sanshow wrote: "Movie that's better than the book: Maybe...Batman Trilogy by Christopher Nolan (does that count?) I also liked the recent Alice in Wonderland adaptation.

True to the books: I agree with The Hunger..."


The Harry Potter movies are all awesome, and the books better still. I can't help think how wonderful the movies would be if nothing was ever cut from the books. Each movie would then be several hours long, of course, so that wouldn't really work to see in a theater. I was very relieved to see that the last book was turned into two movies instead of one.


message 13: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Lieberman | 45 comments Here's a case where the movie was better than the book: "Sophie's Choice." Probably it was Meryl Streep's performance that lifted it out of the schmaltzy realm of Styron's novel, making hers the central dilemma, not the lightweight character (I thought) Stingo.


message 14: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments I liked The Notebook movie better than the book. I thought he ending was better in the movie, too.


message 15: by Ido997 (new)

Ido997 | 2 comments Dan wrote: "I think Kubrick’s movie, 2001: A Space Odyssey was a pretty good adaptation of the book. I also enjoyed Lord of the Rings (the movie), but I have to admit that I read the books in 1987, when I was ..."

In the case of A Space Odyssey, the book was made after the movie.


message 16: by Candace (new)

Candace | 34 comments Diane wrote: "I liked The Notebook movie better than the book. I thought he ending was better in the movie, too."

I agree about The Notebook.


message 17: by [deleted user] (new)

I enjoyed Cry, The Beloved Country by Paton. I think the movie is really good too. Takes place in Africa.


message 18: by Leslie T. (new)

Leslie T. (lat0403) | 30 comments There are very few movies that I liked more than the book. The Notebook was better. And I like the movie version of Jaws more. The book felt like it was more about an affair than a giant killer shark and I didn't read a book about a giant killer shark to read about an affair. I also liked American Psycho more than the book, but I think the movie is just less traumatizing.

The most faithful movie version would be The Road. I don't like the movie, because the book is so depressing and the movie just magnifies that feeling. It's a beautiful movie, though. The first season of Game of Thrones was very faithful to A Game of Thrones, but the second season strayed a little.

My favorite tv show/movie would be HBO's Game of Thrones. There are lots of good movie/book combos, though. Jurassic Park, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, The Killer Inside Me, The Millennium Trilogy (US & Swedish), Shutter Island (the movie ending is actually better).

The movie adaptation I've been most disappointed in is The Hunger Games. Everyone I know loved it and they all told me I didn't even need to read the book because the movie was so faithful. I'm so glad I didn't listen, because I don't think the movie got it at all. On the surface, it's all accurate. Everything that happened in the movie happened in the book. They just turned it into a love story when the book isn't really a love story. It's a one-sided love story, maybe. If they had included the scene on the train at the end of the movie where he finally figures it out (letting the audience figure it out at the same time), my opinion of the movie would be completely different.

What I want more than anything is a really good version of Wuthering Heights. I hope the new one that just came out is good.


message 19: by Natacha (new)

Natacha Pavlov (natachapavlov) | 26 comments A movie which is surprisingly close to the book is Perfume: The Story of a Murderer by Patrick Süskind. Although the story is dark, I felt that the movie was very tastefully done and is very visually stimulating (stunning costumes, setting, cast, etc. when appropriate).

I haven't yet read Bret Easton Ellis's American Psycho, however from what I did look up and based on my viewing of the movie, the movie is easier to stomach and has a dark humor twist to it.

I read Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy last month and I know that a new movie version is set to come out next month. However, given the breadth of the book, I'm skeptical that any movie could do the book justice the way it deserves. Guess I'll have to see if that movie affects my opinion. :)


message 20: by Dan (new)

Dan Scheffler (DanScheffler) | 25 comments Natacha wrote: "A movie which is surprisingly close to the book is Perfume: The Story of a Murderer by Patrick Süskind. Although the story is dark, I felt that the movie was very tastefully done and is very visual..."

I loved the movie version of perfume, but my wife walked out after just a few minutes. The fish market scene was too gory for her. Maybe the book would be more palatable. I agree that American Psycho (the movie) was quite funny in places.

But I find it hard to motivate myself to read a book after I've already seen the movie.


message 21: by Dan (new)

Dan Scheffler (DanScheffler) | 25 comments Ido997 wrote: "Dan wrote: "I think Kubrick’s movie, 2001: A Space Odyssey was a pretty good adaptation of the book. I also enjoyed Lord of the Rings (the movie), but I have to admit that I read the books in 1987,..."

Aha! So that's why to book and the movie are so close! The book is worth reading nevertheless.


message 22: by Natacha (new)

Natacha Pavlov (natachapavlov) | 26 comments I can definitely see how watching a movie might get in the way of reading the book. It's easy to think that since we already know the story, that there might not be much "point" to reading the book.

I forgot to mention that I just read Anne Rice's Interview With the Vampire and while I did like the movie, it pales in comparison to the book. Quite a few things were changed in the movie version and, as usual, the novel has much more depth which makes it amazing to read.


message 23: by Amberley (new)

Amberley I found that the movie version of Forrest Gump is much better than the book version, but this is one of the few cases when the movie was better :)


message 24: by Ellinor (new)

Ellinor (1001andmore) | 791 comments I love the movie of Little Women. I watched it again and again when I was younger. Because I love the movie so much I decided to also read the book - I wish I hadn't. I didn't like it at all and was so glad when I had finally finished it.
A movie adaption which was surprisingly good was Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. I had been very sceptical about it and at first hadn't want to watch it at all. I just couldn't imagine how they would be able to turn such a great book into a good movie. But as it turned out I was wrong. The movie even gave a new touch to the book: because of all the costumes, colours etc. everything seemed so much more sensual.
The Harry Potter movies are really good. I also wish they hadn't left out so many scences. But I guess the movies would just have been much too complex if they had left every scene from the books. It's the same with the Lord of the Rings.


message 25: by Oscar (new)

Oscar Calva (ocalva) | 2 comments I am a believer that a movie can never be as good as a good book, anyway here are some good adaptations: Dr. Zhivago - Boris Pasternak, Les Miserables - Victor Hugo, The Road - Cormac McCarthy, Blindness - José Saramago, Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov, Atonement - Ian McEwan, The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro.


message 26: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments Oscar wrote: "I am a believer that a movie can never be as good as a good book, anyway here are some good adaptations: Dr. Zhivago - Boris Pasternak, Les Miserables - Victor Hugo, The Road - Cormac McCarthy, Bli..."

Sadly, I have only seen one of those movies. I want to see every one of them! I really need to get out more...


message 27: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (last edited Dec 06, 2012 06:57PM) (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments I just saw the movie version of Life of Pi and it was very good. I read the book several years ago and loved it. I was very pleasantly surprised by the movie. The cinematography is phenomenal and surreal and the acting is top-notch. I went with several of my friends who had all read the book. Some of them loved the book, others didn't, but we all really liked the movie.


message 28: by Somi (new)

Somi (somiekhasomhi) The Stardust movie was way better than the book by Neil Gaiman. Michelle Pfeiffer was awesome and the changes to the story made it better for me.


message 29: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments I liked the movie version of Fight Club better than the book.


message 30: by J.R. (new)

J.R. Roth | 4 comments I have some very exciting news - I had a meeting today about the film rights of my book Sheikhs, Lies and Real Estate! The book tells the incredible story of the rise and fall of Dubai's property sector. A large studio is interested in depicting the story in a film, which is quite overwhelming... Check out the website at www.sheikhsliesandrealestate.com or message me if you want a cameo role! JR Sheikhs, Lies and Real Estate The Untold Story of Dubai by J.R. Roth


message 31: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments J.R. wrote: "I have some very exciting news - I had a meeting today about the film rights of my book Sheikhs, Lies and Real Estate! The book tells the incredible story of the rise and fall of Dubai's property s..."

Congratulations!


message 32: by [deleted user] (new)

Here are my nominations for movies that were better than the books they were based on.

The Godfather by Mario Puzo
The movie eliminates some of the minor characters and unnecessary scenes and thereby imparts more dignity to the story. Star performances by top-notch actors also help.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
I admit I read the book after seeing the movie. Fans of the book might disagree and be turned off by some changes, but I liked the movie better. It seemed more real and vivid. The screenplay also was written by Chbosky.


message 33: by Diane , Armchair Tour Guide (new)

Diane  | 12949 comments Patricia wrote: "Here are my nominations for movies that were better than the books they were based on.

The Godfather by Mario Puzo
The movie eliminates some of the minor characters and unnecessary scenes and ..."


The Godfather is one of the best movies ever. I haven't read the book yet, but I am not surprised that the movie is better.


message 34: by Yvonne (last edited Jan 08, 2013 11:25PM) (new)

Yvonne (ysareader) | 82 comments I didn't see that many movies in 2012 but I thought The Hunger Games was a good movie adaptation. It did make it more of a love story than it was in the book but I thought it was a faithful adaptation that I enjoyed in a different way.

The movie Water for Elephants was not as good as the book. I thought Robert Pattinson was pretty awful in it.

I read Life of Pi a while ago and have forgotten a lot of it. I've yet to see the movie.

I'd like to see Les Miserables eventually.

I'd also like to see The Host when that comes out. I thought that would be a difficult one to adapt due to the secondary love story involving the spider like alien who shares a body with Melanie, and the human.


message 35: by Christen (new)

Christen | 7 comments I am very excited to watch Les Miserables. I can't wait to see how it will turn out.


message 36: by Emily (new)

Emily Murphy | 1 comments they have a list of 25 books that should be turned into movies. I've read a few of them and so far, they're all amazing. I'm sure you could find the list on Google


message 37: by Anne (new)

Anne Trager (anne_trager) | 13 comments What makes a book one the "should be turned into a movie"? Le French Book (www.lefrenchbook.com) just announced a new translation of a spy thriller (The Bleiberg Project) that will be published in English in spring and that is currently being made into a movie. There, I'd say it is the non-stop action and likable characters (well with a pretty chilling plot as well). But in the end, what is it really?


The Angry Lawn Gnome (mostlyharmlessreviews) IMO, Blade Runner was better than Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, but they were actually so different I've always had a hard time swallowing the claim that the movie was in fact based on the book.

I go back and forth on A Clockwork Orange, but I do think the movie was better by a finger's breadth than the book. (And I do think both were quite good.) Though here the issue is kinda clouded over the whole business of the "missing chapter" silliness...The 21st chapter actually did not appear in any American editions of the book until at least the late 1980s, and that's why Kubrick's movie ends where it does. But though that last chapter makes the book better, I can't see how it would have improved the movie. (But it would have been nice to have gotten a sense of what happened to Pete. In the early 1980s* some friends and I scratched our collective heads over this, utterly unaware that Burgess had in fact tied down that loose thread, but that it was removed since it came in a chapter Burgess's American editors informed him was too "Pelagian.".)

And while I tend to agree that the movie version of American Psycho] was better than the book, the book had some elements I completely missed until I read an interview w/Ellis where he explained what was actually going on. Namely, wherever Patrick Bateman talks about wardrobe or furniture or dining or what have you, it is more than just tedious detail. If you read the text carefully, Ellis is actually dressing his characters in what amounts to clown suits, having them live in a house of horrors and eating one unappetizing mess after another.

And, like I said, this definitely got past me, and also seems to have been missed by his most vociferous critics. Not that I'm mounting much more than a lukewarm defense here; the older I get the less inclined I am to the sort of "raw meat" offered up by both book and movie. But the book has some hidden humor -- which the movie does not -- which I do wish I'd been smart enough to pick up without having to have it spoon-fed to me.


==============
* - Doubtless while listening to A Flock of Seagulls, The Fixx or Suicidal Tendencies and wearing our Members Only jackets. And likely drinking New Coke. Weren't those the days? Errm, perhaps not.[


message 39: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 662 comments I have been reading books before the movie is released. Trying to finish up Les Miss before I go see the new release out. I have also heard good things about the movie of it a few years back with Liam Neeson.

Got to see Life of Pi which is one of my favorite books.

Just finished reading Anna Karenina and waiting to see the new release when it come to DVD.

Read Cloud Atlas and then went straight to see the new release in November.

I watched all the Twilight movies but only read the first book. This is a case where I like the movie better.

Love my Game of Thrones HBO series. Saw the first two seasons then read the first four books of the Song of Ice and Fire series. These are some of my favorite reads of all time. Am going to wait for the sixth book to be released before I start the fifth book of A Dance with Dragons. Hopefully the series won't catch up by then.

Have not read Hunger Games but enjoyed the movie and will probably not read the series but will watch the sequels.

Cant wait to see the Great Gatsby, however I did not like this book much.

Also want to read Great Expectations which is set to hit theaters later this year


message 40: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 662 comments Just watched Anna Karenina with Kira Knightly. The movie was like a dance. I really enjoyed this adaptation of the book which I just finished last month.


message 41: by Sarah (last edited Feb 21, 2013 11:10PM) (new)

Sarah | 662 comments I also just finished Peony in Love by Lisa See and read this book as if I could picture a movie version of the story in this mystical reality kind of way with this ghost roaming around her human homeland


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