TTT: Book to Film Adaptations

TTTBooks and films. I love them both, but when it comes to film adaptations of books, i’m often left feeling disappointed. When I can, and when I know a film is an adaptation, I prefer to read the book first. I’ve even put off watching a film for years to allow myself the time to get around to reading the book first (or, in the case of I Am Legend, decided not to bother with the film at all)!

I’m splitting this top ten into two top fives, because the only film adaptations subject I could get ten answers on, was films I haven’t and don’t want to see, which isn’t that much fun to write about. So, two sets of five it is.

Five film adaptations I still need to watch

Much Ado About Nothing – I only recently read this, even though i’ve had the DVD of the Joss Whedon adaptation on my shelf for months. I might get around to it before 2016!

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – I read this in 2011 and wanted to watch the film immediately afterwards, but still haven’t been able to face it. I know–i know–i’ll end up in tears by the end. I’ve managed to put myself off for four years and counting…

The Day of the Triffids – I think i’m putting this one off because I know it won’t be anywhere near as good as the book. I think it’s one of those times where I want to watch the film to hold on to the book a bit longer. (And hey, if it’s awful, it’s just an excuse to re-read the book!)

The Hobbit – I was putting this off until the third film came out, so I could watch them all at once. I still haven’t bothered. This is one I know i’ll moan about, because how can he split the slim Hobbit book into three films, but ram the lengthier Lord of the Rings trilogy into one film each!? Money grabbing bastard.

Hunger Games: Mockingjay – I’m really, really looking forward to a double-bill of part one and two. As much as I prefer the books, these films are perfectly entertaining and action packed.

Five films I have watched but wish I hadn’t

The Maze Runner – With the book having a great story but poor writing, I had had high hopes for the film bringing the the world to life and really enjoying it. I was sorely disappointed. The film was, somehow, far worse than the book.

The Haunting (1999) – I love The Haunting of Hill House and its 1963 film adaptation. The 1999 film, however, is terrible and all but unrecognisable to the book.

Girl, Interrupted – I’m not even sure I made it all the way through to the end of this film. It bored me. I read the book year later, and didn’t like it any better.

Gone Girl – While well made, this film suffers from what most decent adaptations from books do… missing details. It didn’t give you the full picture surrounding Amy’s relationship with Nick, or the situation with Desi. It made things much more black and white, making Amy the unquestionable villain, rather then the morally grey she is in the book.

The Shining – I saw this film a few years before I read the book, and I never really liked it. I say that as a life-long fan of horror films. It just felt like it was trying too hard. When I did read the book, it terrified me. Book > film is a less popular opinion in this case, I think, but it’s one I share with Stephen King!

About Wendleberry
I'm odd.

24 Responses to TTT: Book to Film Adaptations

  1. Sam Whitehouse says:

    I’ve read The Shining, but I never finished watching the movie adaption. Great list.
    Top Ten Movie Adaptions I’m Looking Forward To:

  2. readerbuzz says:

    Most movies-from-books, for me, fall into your second category!

    Here’s my favorite book-to-movie adaptations!

  3. LHauser27 says:

    Hi! I totally agree with you about Gone Girl. I did not like the movie at all. I remember changing my mind about liking the characters then not liking them all through the book. But that didn’t happen in the movie.
    My TTT

  4. bahhaha! I loved the 1999 version of the Haunting. It was just freaking silly 🙂 Especially that part where the one guy gets his head nommed off by a lion head.

    My TTT

    • Wendleberry says:

      Yes, the beheading and the piano wire to the eye are the two things that stick in my memory. For a cheesy horror film, it’s great, for an adaptation of a fantastic book, it’s terrible! 😉

  5. rachelburden says:

    Haha, it sounds like you have the same view of film adaptations as I do! They always seem to lose something don’t they? I love your second list idea, I’m convinced I could find so many that fall into that category! And Maze Runner would definitely fall onto that list as would The Hobbit I’m afraid. Nothing like the book AT ALL! May as well have called it something else.

    I didn’t actually know that Joss Whedon had made an adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing. I may have to check that out. I have seen the 1993 version with Kate Beckinsale and Kenneth Branagh in it though and that was pretty good as long as you ignored Keanu Reeves and Denzel Washington… Brian Blessed was in it to… I think… but he only ever plays himself so who he played doesn’t really matter. It was good for a laugh anyway.

    Happy Reading!
    Rachel @ Paein-and-Ms4Tune

    • Wendleberry says:

      Film adaptations almost always fall short of the books. I think with The Hobbit, if i do ever get around to watching them, i will try to forget about the book completely and watch them as independently as i can.

      I didn’t even know there was a previous Much Ado adaptation. I’m mostly only interested in this one because Joss Whedon 😉

  6. I’ve had the Joss Whedon Much Ado About Nothing on my shelf since my birthday in July and I have yet to watch it either. Maybe we should do a buddy watch and live tweet it? 🙂

  7. Ayunda says:

    I agree, the Shining movie was very different from the book, and not in a good way. But meanwhile I watched Gone Girl but haven’t read the book, and I thought the movie was fantastic! Then it must mean the book is much much better? My TTT.

    • Wendleberry says:

      Yes, the Gone Girl film is not a bad film, but the book is so, so much better! The details about certain situations and characters will make you think differently about things.

  8. ChrissiReads says:

    I wasn’t a huge fan of Girl, Interrupted either.

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