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Green Room - Week 26 - Day 4

What is your favorite book-turned-movie/movie-turned-book? (TV shows count)

Do you find it better when they follow the original note-for-note or go off in their own directions and interpretations? (That's more for TV shows, since they have more time and space to accomplish that)

What have been some of your *least* favorite adaptations and why do you think they failed?

One thing that *won't* fail is that the topic for the main competition is here: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/797204.html
and Last Chance Idol has their topic over here: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/797508.html

So make sure to get your entries in by tomorrow!

Now excuse me for a few minutes - I have a red-handled machete and some promises to keep.

Comments

( 43 comments — Leave a comment )
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theun4givables
Oct. 27th, 2014 02:25 pm (UTC)
I don't know how the book holds up to the series, but I watched House of Lies for a brief time when I lived with my dad. I don't get Showtime now, otherwise I'd have kept up with it. But I know that the show is based off a book, and I've been meaning to read it.

So thank you for the round-about reminder, Gary. ;) The show itself is brilliant, so I can only hope that the book measures up. :D

EDIT:

I AM ASHAMED TO MENTION MY LEAST FAVORITE, MOST AWFUL MOVIE ADAPTATION OF ANYTHING EVER:

THE LAST AIRBENDER

Just... ALKJGREIOFRNEJA940a5t83490IVCS:L MFejioUTa40n4[ I cannot keysmash enough to communicate my level of hatred for the butchering M. Night did to probably one of the BEST children's shows EVER EVER EVER. Avatar: The Last Airbender is a million times more coherent than that pile of shit movie and just -- UGH.

I love ATLA so, so much and I couldn't even push myself through 10 minutes of the film "adaptation" because it just was so fucking wrong and poorly done and just -- NO.

Edited at 2014-10-28 12:52 am (UTC)
medleymisty
Oct. 27th, 2014 02:42 pm (UTC)
Speaking of that last line...I haven't read the Walking Dead comics, but I have seen enough about them on various wikis and things to know that I HIGHLY prefer the TV show.

I thought the Gone Girl movie was a very good adaptation of the book, but then the book's author wrote the screenplay.

I like the LOTR movies better than the books, although I am upset about what the movies did to the Ents and to Faramir/Eowyn. The Ents were all badass in the books and didn't need time to be all "Huh, should we go kick Saruman's butt or not?" They just did it. And ugh, what they did to Faramir made him unworthy of Eowyn.

Least favorite is one of the recent Mansfield Park movies. It says Fanny is a "spirited" heroine. Hahahahahahahahahahahaha. No.

Ooooh, also another favorite is Baz Luhrman's Romeo and Juliet! :)

Which I guess goes to show my point - the staying true to the source or reinterpreting it depends on how it's done. Like pretty much everything - there's no hard and fast rule and it just depends on context and quality and stuff.

Also I really don't think that the person who makes my schedule at work has any idea about traffic or how long it takes to do a tour or where my stops even are in relation to each other.



dmousey
Oct. 27th, 2014 03:00 pm (UTC)
Last nights TWD was brutal and badass as usual! All Stephen King novels that made it to movies suck. Except for Misery and Delores Claiborne( which was boring) but both of them starred Kathy Bates. So far the Hunger Games is doing a good job with the series translation to screen.

And then there's... cue the Craig Ferguson music please....
GAME OF THRONES....

Which is just now starting to stray a lot from the books. GRRM needs to hurry up and write the sixth book, the series won't wait for him.
beeker121
Oct. 27th, 2014 08:46 pm (UTC)
I have been astonished at how closely GoT has tracked to the books. But as you say, they're about to run out of books so it could get interesting.
rayaso
Oct. 27th, 2014 03:08 pm (UTC)
Favorite book turned movie? The Lord of the Rings. There are many worthy candidates, but lack of brain cells this morning prevents me from listing some. To Kill A Mockingbird is utterly outstanding, both as a movie and as an adaptation of a book.
bleodswean
Oct. 27th, 2014 04:22 pm (UTC)
Do you like the Tolkien books, though? I definitely prefer Viggo, I mean...you know, the film adaptations. *leers*
(no subject) - rayaso - Oct. 27th, 2014 06:45 pm (UTC) - Expand
reckless_blues
Oct. 27th, 2014 03:19 pm (UTC)
Morfiy. Oh my god Polyakov is hot. (I mean, there's also the rest of the movie, but...he's so hot.)

The film Morfiy was adapted from the short story collection Zapiski yunogo vracha by Mikhail Bulgakov, same as the BBC series A Young Doctor's Notebook with Daniel Radcliffe. Though the TV series is ... very different. Also sort of unnerving for me because everything looks like Russia, everybody has Russian names, but all the characters act extremely British. I don't dislike what I've seen of the series, exactly - it's got its own charm - but it has no subtlty whatsoever and the protagonist is an ineffectual buffoon in the style of every other British protagonist ever.
bleodswean
Oct. 27th, 2014 03:46 pm (UTC)
So...............what do YOU think of the TWD graffix to TV? I, personally LOVE the adaptation - so much more depth and pathos than can possibly be written into so many story lines in the commix. (Not to say some graphic novels aren't moving, they are. Thinking of Gaiman's Sandman.)

I loved "Winter's Bone" although the novel certainly moved me to tears and the film did not, but overall the film was hugely successful on a visual and aural level.

In the same way that fans get so disappointed by the cheesy Stephen King adaptations, I feel that justice has not been done in the numerous attempts to film "Lady Chatterley's Lover". And it makes me sad. :(
clauderainsrm
Oct. 27th, 2014 04:00 pm (UTC)
This season has been a pretty solid adaptation of the comics. The biggest differences have come out of earlier changes. That's something that I've been loving from Scott Gimple's run so far - he's been using things straight out of the comics to get the buzz going, and then twisting them just enough to keep people excited.
(no subject) - bleodswean - Oct. 27th, 2014 04:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
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(no subject) - bleodswean - Oct. 27th, 2014 05:05 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - dmousey - Oct. 27th, 2014 04:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bleodswean - Oct. 27th, 2014 04:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - beeker121 - Oct. 27th, 2014 08:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bleodswean - Oct. 27th, 2014 08:54 pm (UTC) - Expand
kehlen
Oct. 27th, 2014 03:58 pm (UTC)
I see two people already have mentioned LoTR and this puzzles me, unless medleymisty and rayaso mean the director's cut, because I find the theatrical version soppy, too grandiose and just plain unpalatable while the longer version is OK. I will never forgive the cutting of the Scouring of the Shire though.


As for my own favourite book-to-movie transitions... I do not really have any. Well save maybe for the classic Gone with the Wind.

In general, the British movie makers somehow manage to twist and turn and add to the books, even my favourite ones that I know by heart and don't you dare touch that without the result being blasphemous unwatchable and okay, and even good.

So to name a few, Treasure Island recent mini-series with Eddie Izzard as Silver, also recent mini-series from the Day of the Triffids (bizarrely, with the same actor as the not-canon big baddy) and of course the Chronicles of Narnia.

There is also the old one based on Fahrenheit 451, but that's François Truffaut for you.
dmousey
Oct. 27th, 2014 04:12 pm (UTC)
Phillipa Gregory's, " White Queen" series was done very well, I thought.
(no subject) - kickthehobbit - Oct. 27th, 2014 05:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - rayaso - Oct. 27th, 2014 06:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - medleymisty - Oct. 27th, 2014 07:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
finding_helena
Oct. 27th, 2014 04:59 pm (UTC)
I really disliked the entire Harry Potter movie franchise. I feel like they stripped all the humanity out of it. It was just a romp with all sorts of CGI stuff, and they'd cut soooo much stuff out of the book and then add stupidly long unnecessary scenes. Granted, I haven't even watched the last one but I didn't really care for any of the earlier ones so it didn't seem worth it.

I watched the movie first, but I really liked the movie The Princess Bride. I thought it did a great job capturing the humor and flavor of the source material.

And the 1995 Pride and Prejudice is a winner.

For me, not everything has to be the exact same in an adaptation, but if something's changed or omitted, I want it to be for a good reason, and a lot of times it seems it's done to make something more commercially appealing rather than to really serve the story/characters.

I do like the Game of Thrones TV adaptation, though there are a couple of added/changed sequences of which I don't approve.
kickthehobbit
Oct. 27th, 2014 05:12 pm (UTC)
The 2011 "Jane Eyre" is almost inexcusable—not because they skip over large parts of the book (I'm fine with them deciding to give her childhood ~10 minutes altogether), but because of how very rushed it feels, and how they left out a lot of the exposition. As someone who's read and loves the book, I was still left going, "wait, we're already to this? What happened to [major plot point]? WHAT'S GOING ON?" more often than I was really happy about. :P

At the same time, the actors cast as Jane and Mr. Rochester had great chemistry, so I managed to stick it out to the end.
ryl
Oct. 28th, 2014 01:04 am (UTC)
Thank you for reminding me I've been meaning to watch the most recent Jane Eyre. I don't think a movie adaptation is the best choice for a Victorian novel, though. They're so intricate they really need the BBC or HBO treatment. For example: the A&E version of Vanity Fair. Even though they cut a lot out, they got the characterizations down perfectly.
halfshellvenus
Oct. 27th, 2014 05:28 pm (UTC)
I have to second, "To Kill A Mockingbird."

I also thought "The Accidental Tourist" was done well, even though Geena Davis didn't quite match the behavior I expected of the character... the whole of the movie worked really well.

And I'm a pretty harsh critic when it comes to things like that, since the movie version of a book usually disappoints me!

ETA: For TV work, I also like the HBO adaptation of "The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency." Terrific casting, and while the 'mysteries' happen in different order from the book, that doesn't change the overall impact of the series. I only wish they'd been able to make more episodes... :(

Edited at 2014-10-27 06:51 pm (UTC)
crackpotpie
Oct. 27th, 2014 05:59 pm (UTC)
I got into a new BBC show called "Intruders" this summer. Despite its slow and confusing start, it turned out to be deeply creepy and unsettling. A true gem for horror fans of all types.

It's based on a book, but I haven't got around to looking it up yet.
clauderainsrm
Oct. 27th, 2014 06:25 pm (UTC)
I know I've brought it up before - but my *favorite* adaptation has to be "The Player" by Michael Tolkin.

They really take it to a meta-level that really made me smile when I eventually read the book (and then went back and watched the movie again) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Player_(film)
veronica_rich
Oct. 27th, 2014 06:48 pm (UTC)
This made me think of an older Cracked podcast I listened to the other day on my way home, in which they were discussing the timing of movies and why those scripts need to be written a certain way to gain production funding and to have a chance of being popular with the public. Supposedly there's this timing formula where people watching/listening to a story of that length need certain things to happen at certain times - i.e., by 15 minutes in there needs to be something that changes the hero/protagonist personally; at 60 minutes, a big action scene or when you know the couple is going to get together; 80-90 minutes in, the low point in the hero's life/experience where all hope seems lost; etc. Which is to say why novels sometimes don't have the same things in the movie, because of timing issues, and why some deleted scenes you think "gee, they should have left that in!" are actually cut out - to meet that formula.
adoptedwriter
Oct. 27th, 2014 07:45 pm (UTC)
The World According to Garp and Wizard if Oz.

Fuzzy1 just passed her state board for medical assistant. Now she's not just an MA but a CMA. Certified! Woot! Cake at my house tonight!
AW
sarcasmoqueen
Oct. 27th, 2014 07:49 pm (UTC)
In my opinion, most novels are way too long to be adapted to film satisfactorily. Someone up this thread mentioned that all of Stephen King's books made crappy movies. I tend to agree with 3 exceptions - Stand By Me and The Stand. But these were not standard books or movies - Stand By Me was based on a short story, which is much easier to make into a manageable length movie, and the others were a TV miniseries. Yes, TV miniserieses (yes, I just made up a word)can be pretty badly done, but personally, I enjoyed both of these.

That being said, I think a lot of books to movies can be enjoyed just on their own, not in comparison to the book itself. I love the Harry Potter series - both the books and the movies. The characters looked EXACTLY like I pictured them in my head, which is usually my biggest problem with books made into films. The movies were definitely missing a lot of the details that are in the books, but I still found them enjoyable in their own right.
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