Jul 9, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday: Best/Worst Book to Movie Adaptations

I'm always a grump about movies becoming books, but looking ahead at movies in the works, it's the way of the world now.  Sometimes it works (usually when you don't know ahead of time that it was a book first), but more often than not it is a disaster.  I'm already dreading the film adaptation of Ender's Game...enough that this past semester, every student who asked for a good book to read was handed a copy because I fear that they will have ZERO interest if the movie bombs. Anyway, here's my

Top Ten Best/Worst Book to Movie Adaptations


1. Clueless (based on Jane Austen's Emma)

Okay, technically not a direct book to film adaptation, but it is a film retelling of Emma and a remarkable one at that.

2. The Hunger Games
I would have never guessed how great this movie could have turned out.  Not only did it give me and the rest of the world a love for Jennifer Lawrence, but it also gave me hope for movie adaptations of books.  It definitely gives me hope for the upcoming Divergent film (but Ender's Game, like HP, is too complex for film...at least for one film).  Fun fact: at the midnight showing, my friend kept pointing out all the changes from the book, leading me to discover what it's like watching a HP movie with me.  I'm sorry everyone.

3. The Princess Bride
I found out that this was a book after I had watched the movie and still loved both of them more than anything.

4. Life of Pi
Oddly enough, I hated the book and loved the movie.  The visuals are just too incredible not to love and I couldn't bring myself to imagine what Ang Lee brought to the big screen.

5. Hugo (The Invention of Hugo Cabret)
I didn't believe that it could be anything spectacular because the visuals in the novel are already unbelievable. I was wrong.


6. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Okay, I'm not really being fair here because I actually really like the movie series and think they did a decent job with the material. The books are obviously way better.  But this particular movie was an abomination.  I remember throwing a pillow at the TV when the Weasley's Burrow burned to the ground.  NOPE. There's no need to add action to a movie when there's plenty of it that was ignored from the book.  Also, Dumbledore meeting Harry in a muggle tea shop when the world's most evil wizard is trying to kill him? Sure that makes sense.

7. The Da Vinci Code
Tom Hanks' hair.

8. Ella Enchanted
This isn't an I hate Anne Hathaway bandwagon jumping thing.  I actually love Anne Hathaway and loved her performance.  But some of the female power present in the book didn't translate to the Hollywood version and that disappointed me.

9. The Cat in the Hat
It's difficult to reinvent something that's already a cultural icon.  Thus, another notch on the bedpost where the downfall of Mike Myers' career sleeps.

To be fair, I didn't get past the first 20 minutes.  But from what I saw, I don't think finishing the movie was necessary.

Check out more lists over at The Broke and the Bookish!!


  1. I'm with you on The Princess Bride. I didn't put any Jane Austen adaptations on my list--otherwise it might have been nothing but Austen films. But I agree with you that Clueless is a very well done film.

  2. I actually really liked the 6th HP film. I think it played up the humor from the book a bit and I like that. :) Then again, I can't really complain about the HP movies...some are ones I like more, but I love them all.

  3. I hated that scene from Half-blood prince too. When Bellatrix can easily come and burn Weasley's house, what is preventing her from killing or abducting Harry?! the silliest scene one could ever come up with.