Friday, July 19, 2019

A Glass Of Wine At The Movies - My Favourite Book To Movie Adaptations

Some of my favourite things after books are movies and television shows. I especially love it when the two come together and an adaptation of one of my favourite books gets released. I am sure there are probably a lot of people who dislike when one of their favourites gets turned into a movie or television show. There is a high likelihood that it will not be satisfying. It might end up being miscast. Your favourite scene could be cut from the show or movie. The story could change so much to make it unrecognizable from the source material. There are, however, the few exceptions where the adapted version lives up to the source material.

I was thinking of good adaptations and how they can honour the source material and create something entirely new. We all discuss when we've been disappointed but rarely spend as much time discussing when Hollywood gets it right.

Here are my favourite book to movie adaptations. These are mostly in no particular order but I especially like my top three. They are among some of my all time favourite movies.

1. Stand By Me (adapted from a short story by Stephen King called The Body)

One of my favourite movies of all time and one that is basically a comfort movie to me. It is one of the movies I watch when I am sick in bed, or just when I need an evening filled with all of the things I love.  River Phoenix may break my heart every time I watch it but it is perfection to me.

2. Gone Girl (adapted from Gillian Flynn's novel of the same name)

Everything from the setting, the casting, the directing, script writing, and editing was amazing here. Rosamund Pike brought one of my favourite characters to life with a delectable precision and all of the major moments from the book translated to screen perfectly.

3. Goodfellas (adapted from Wiseguy by Nicholas Pileggi)

This movie is an incredibly faithful adaptation of Nicholas Pileggi's book. It's one of  the best, if not THE best, gangster movies ever made and it is filled with some iconic performances.

4. Room (adapted from the book by Emma Donoghue)

Both the book and movie are heartbreaking and hopeful. They both allow you to believe that your experiencing things through Jack's eyes for the first time. The movie boasts electric performances by Brie Larson and Jacob Tremblay (who gave the best performance by a male actor that year).

5. A Simple Favor (adapted from the book by Darcey Bell)

Here's where I offer a confession ... I tried to start this book and had to put it down. I might go back and try again later, but I think this may be a case where I like the movie more than the book it was adapted from. Blake Lively and Anna Kendrick are both on top of their game and the blend of dark comedy with an absolutely bananas plot works perfectly in this campy, over the top thriller.

6. Brokeback Mountain (adapated from the short story by Anne Proulx)

Another faithful adaptation of the source material (the length of the source material may account for this a little) that boasts a career defining performance from Heath Ledger. The movie is also beautifully shot and I am still angry it was robbed at the Oscars.

7. Silence  of the Lambs (adapted from the novel by Thomas Harris

I feel like this one is given. The movie is a classic for a reason. The acting is incredible, and I felt the same tone and atmosphere that I did while reading the book. It also doesn't hurt that it is just a well made movie with some truly memorable moments.

8. Interview With The Vampire (adapted from the novel by Anne Rice)

I recently rewatched this and was surprised with how much it holds up. Tom Cruise gives an impressive performance as Lestat and Brad Pitt broods rather well as Louis. New Orleans is the perfect back drop for this story and it makes for one heck of a beautiful film.

This is, obviously, not an exhaustive list. I am sure I left many amazing movies out. What adaptations are your favourite? Let me know in the comments.

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