WritersBeat.com
 

Go Back   WritersBeat.com > General Discussion > The Library

The Library Reviews and opinions on published writing: prose and poetry.


Films as good as the book?

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 02-12-2015, 12:02 PM
inkylinks's Avatar
inkylinks (Offline)
Scribbler
Official Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: UK
Posts: 24
Thanks: 7
Thanks 3
Default Films as good as the book?


It's an age-old trope to say that the film will never be as good as the book, but I would disagree. As heart-breaking as it is see your favourite book dismembered onscreen in a bad re-telling, it is equally exhilarating to see things done right and experience the story anew.

I've been thinking about this since I started reading Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park. I've always loved the film series and was cautious about trying the books: I was certain it was going to be ruined, one way or the other. Either the fantastic dinosaurs would become flat on paper, or the book would so out-match the film that it turned to trash. I was pleasantly surprised to find I was wrong - I've enjoyed the book just as much as the film. They are definitely different, no arguing with that, but I don't think either portrayal of the story suffers much from the chosen format.

The question: are there films that have stuck in your mind that were as enjoyable to watch as the book was to read? Or, do you consider this question to be an act of book-lover's blasphemy?

__________________
Personal website:

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 02-12-2015, 01:47 PM
tremor (Offline)
Copyist
Official Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 50
Thanks: 18
Thanks 4
Default

When we read, write use our imagination to visualize that text, with the details the author provides.
When I watch a film adaptation of a book, I have to remind myself that it's one person's or a group of people's personal opinion of how things would go. I also get ultimately disappointed when films miss out on what is vital information that gets lost in translation.

Sent from my Sony Xperia ZL
__________________

"If I knew then what I know now, I'd stay six years old." -"Thrones" by Alexisonfire
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 02-17-2015, 10:01 PM
Mike C's Avatar
Mike C (Offline)
Legend
Official Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 9,117
Thanks: 99
Thanks 1,572
Send a message via MSN to Mike C
Default

I can't think of any movie that surpasses the book.

I haven't read Jurassic Park; I thought the movie was shit, but assumed the book was too.
__________________
لا شيء يدوم‎
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 02-18-2015, 04:06 AM
JoeMatt (Offline)
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 6,395
Thanks: 441
Thanks 1,526
Default

Not that I liked the movies or the books all that much -- but I'd say the Godfather and Forrest Gump movies were better than the books.

Probably my favorite adaptation is Revolutionary Road. It was kind of like they based the movie on what I saw in my mind's eye when I read it. Given the limitations of making a movie adaptation, I think it was about as good as it gets. There's this strange P.O.V. shift to a minor character at the end of the book -- they did it in the movie too -- for people who hadn't read the book it was kind of a WTF thing, but I was pleasantly surprised.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 02-18-2015, 09:01 AM
inkylinks's Avatar
inkylinks (Offline)
Scribbler
Official Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: UK
Posts: 24
Thanks: 7
Thanks 3
Default

When I watch a film adaptation of a book, I have to remind myself that it's one person's or a group of people's personal opinion of how things would go
Probably my favorite adaptation is Revolutionary Road. It was kind of like they based the movie on what I saw in my mind's eye when I read it. Given the limitations of making a movie adaptation, I think it was about as good as it gets.
I think this is ultimately the best and worst thing about adaptations. I would agree that more often than not the onscreen version lacks a vital element, but that vital element tends to be something personal to my experience of the story. Conversely, I think it's a rather sublime moment when an adaptation does match your personal experience - there's joy in knowing your vision is shared, and seeing it given a physical manifestation. (I get an excited inner voice screaming 'yes, that! Exactly THAT!') I wonder if in these cases the writer had simply written the book so well that many people experienced the same thing, or that the film-makers were more able to tap into the shared experiences of the readership?


I can't think of any movie that surpasses the book.
I would agree. I've not yet come across a film that I would consider to be better than the book, but there are a couple I consider to be on a par because they manage to recreate my experience to an extent that I'm not disappointed by the change in artistic medium.
__________________
Personal website:

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 02-18-2015, 09:27 AM
Mike C's Avatar
Mike C (Offline)
Legend
Official Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 9,117
Thanks: 99
Thanks 1,572
Send a message via MSN to Mike C
Default

Ah, thought of one.

Lord of the Rings.

The books are cool if you're, like, 13. Or if you're a hippy and it's 1967. But characters lack any emotional depth and in many cases are 2 dimensional avatars. And there's the dreadfully dull Tom Bombadil bit.

The movies are pared down, action heavy, faux-history light, and all the better for it.
__________________
لا شيء يدوم‎
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 02-18-2015, 10:35 AM
calligraphy's Avatar
calligraphy (Offline)
Always Online
Official Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Gallapagos Islands
Posts: 2,876
Thanks: 80
Thanks 345
Default

GOT's for me is better as a series.

I know.

Go ahead and kill me now.

But fantasy can really get me sleepy.
__________________
My Book:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 02-18-2015, 09:50 PM
Mike C's Avatar
Mike C (Offline)
Legend
Official Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 9,117
Thanks: 99
Thanks 1,572
Send a message via MSN to Mike C
Default

I saw the first two episodes of GOT. I'd always avoided the books, even when I was young and impressionable and into fantasy.

Two was enough. I'm sure it deserves all the hype, but I've outgrown the genre.
__________________
لا شيء يدوم‎
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 02-21-2015, 08:50 PM
K.S. Crooks's Avatar
K.S. Crooks (Offline)
Abnormally Articulate
Official Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Toronto
Posts: 147
Thanks: 1
Thanks 26
Default

For me, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Angels and Demons, The U.S. version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. And although I have not read the following myself several people I know have said the movie versions of The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile are equal to the books as well.
__________________
K.S. Crooks- Dreamer and Author

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 03-20-2015, 07:45 AM
Prodigalson's Avatar
Prodigalson (Offline)
Homer's Odyssey Was Nothing
Moderator
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Humboldt Co., CA
Posts: 1,896
Thanks: 174
Thanks 315
Default

I agree. I'm not much of a Stephen King fan but his books do film well and with those two stories he was at the top of his game. I'd say the book and movie were neck and neck for those two.

There is also the 2004 version of 'Man on Fire'. Its treatment of life and death and the sacrifices we make and why may have struck a chord only because I was doing chemo when I saw it, but I read the book afterward and felt the movie accurately portrayed it.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 03-20-2015, 07:13 PM
brianpatrick's Avatar
brianpatrick (Online)
Verbosity Pales
Official Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Arizona
Posts: 3,026
Thanks: 273
Thanks 656
Default Films as good as the book?

Jaws was a better movie than the book IMO.

Can't think of any others.

Last edited by brianpatrick; 03-20-2015 at 07:22 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 03-20-2015, 09:15 PM
KnightofFlowers's Avatar
KnightofFlowers (Offline)
Pencil pusher
Official Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 17
Thanks: 10
Thanks 3
Default

Hi everyone, In my humble opinion, I thought the movie version of "The Cider House Rules" was better than the book. John Irving wrote both and won an Oscar for the screenplay. I also thought "The Joy Luck Club" movie was better than the book. Interesting thing about "The Shawshank Redemption" many movie peeps think the screenplay and the film are one of the best ever. I thought the movie was okay. I took a screenwriting class and one of these assignments was to watch the movie and discuss it. Me and another guy in the class were the only two who read Stephen King's "Different Seasons" where the story appeared. I noticed little differences like when they drank beer on the roof of the building they had an ice chest so the beer was cold whereas in the book the beer was warm and the character of "Red" (played by Morgan Freeman) was a guy a pale guy with red hair.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 03-21-2015, 02:09 PM
Prodigalson's Avatar
Prodigalson (Offline)
Homer's Odyssey Was Nothing
Moderator
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Humboldt Co., CA
Posts: 1,896
Thanks: 174
Thanks 315
Default

...and the ending was slightly different. But so what? Most movie renditions of books make major changes in characters, scenes and plots. 'Red' may have gone from Irish to Black but his character remained the same and other than the three things mentioned I believe the movie was faithful to the book and still pulled it off.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 03-22-2015, 12:51 AM
flyingtart's Avatar
flyingtart (Online)
Word Wizard
Official Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 707
Thanks: 107
Thanks 141
Default

The film can be better than the book. Alan Parker's Angel Heart from 1987 was based on the novel Falling Angel by William Hjortsberg. It's a definite improvement on the original material.

And The Godfather by Francis Ford Copolla elevates Mario Puzo's potboiler to classic status.
__________________
I am not young enough to know everything.
Oscar Wilde
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to flyingtart For This Useful Post:
KnightofFlowers (03-22-2015)
  #15  
Old 03-23-2015, 02:09 PM
chat bot's Avatar
chat bot (Offline)
Heartbreaking Writer of Staggering Genius
Official Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: OFF-AIR
Posts: 1,619
Thanks: 6
Thanks 165
Default

SHawSHAnK rEDEMptIoN
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
💭

Last edited by chat bot; 03-23-2015 at 02:13 PM.. Reason: a-RACHnophobia
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 03-25-2015, 12:47 PM
JoeMatt (Offline)
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 6,395
Thanks: 441
Thanks 1,526
Default

Was High School Musical a novel? Because the movie was awesome.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 03-25-2015, 02:31 PM
brianpatrick's Avatar
brianpatrick (Online)
Verbosity Pales
Official Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Arizona
Posts: 3,026
Thanks: 273
Thanks 656
Default

Originally Posted by JoeMatt View Post
Was High School Musical a novel? Because the movie was awesome.

Sadly, it is not currently available...

Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to brianpatrick For This Useful Post:
JoeMatt (03-25-2015)
  #18  
Old 03-25-2015, 02:57 PM
JoeMatt (Offline)
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 6,395
Thanks: 441
Thanks 1,526
Default

Hah. I should have known better.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 03-26-2015, 07:33 AM
Schmoo's Avatar
Schmoo (Offline)
Copyist
Official Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Colorado
Posts: 59
Thanks: 23
Thanks 9
Default

I will admit that there aren't any movies that I think are actually better than the book but a few had some changes that I liked and some I didn't. The one that sticks out is Misery by Stephen King, I loved the book and it scared the crap out of me but when I saw the movie I was truly disappointed although a good movie it left a lot of important things out.

But on the other hand being a romantic when I read the notebook by Nicholas Sparks I loved the book but I thought the movie was good but they changed the ending and I did like the ending of the movie better than the books ending.

Usually I like to read a book before the movie comes out. I like to see the authors original view first then see what the screenwriters saw along with the director and all involved. Only a few movies I wanted to read the book after I saw the movie. I am currently reading Wild which I saw in the movies first and went out to get the book. So far there are few differences in the book than in the movie but it is fairly close.

I am sure there are others but my mind is drawing a blank.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 04-07-2015, 10:04 AM
Alecc0 (Offline)
Pencil pusher
Official Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 16
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Default

Bladerunner definitely works better as a film than the Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep short story
__________________
"Think beyond your lifetime if you want to accomplish something truly worthwhile." - Walt Disney
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 04-07-2015, 03:42 PM
brianpatrick's Avatar
brianpatrick (Online)
Verbosity Pales
Official Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Arizona
Posts: 3,026
Thanks: 273
Thanks 656
Default

Originally Posted by Alecc0 View Post
Bladerunner definitely works better as a film than the Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep short story

Oh my, friend... I would have to disagree there.

It was a pretty good movie for its time, but the brain of Philip K. Dick couldn't be caught on film.
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 04-07-2015, 04:15 PM
JoeMatt (Offline)
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 6,395
Thanks: 441
Thanks 1,526
Default

Spoken like a true Dickhead.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to JoeMatt For This Useful Post:
brianpatrick (04-07-2015)
  #23  
Old 04-07-2015, 05:12 PM
brianpatrick's Avatar
brianpatrick (Online)
Verbosity Pales
Official Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Arizona
Posts: 3,026
Thanks: 273
Thanks 656
Default

Originally Posted by JoeMatt View Post
Spoken like a true Dickhead.

On an exciting note Joe, I found a place that still has stock of the High School Musical novel!

Should I order an extra copy for you?
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 04-08-2015, 04:44 AM
JoeMatt (Offline)
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 6,395
Thanks: 441
Thanks 1,526
Default

Originally Posted by brianpatrick View Post
On an exciting note Joe, I found a place that still has stock of the High School Musical novel!

Should I order an extra copy for you?
Absolutely! Do have a PayPal account?
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 04-09-2015, 01:29 PM
calligraphy's Avatar
calligraphy (Offline)
Always Online
Official Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Gallapagos Islands
Posts: 2,876
Thanks: 80
Thanks 345
Default

Originally Posted by Mike C View Post
I saw the first two episodes of GOT. I'd always avoided the books, even when I was young and impressionable and into fantasy.

Two was enough. I'm sure it deserves all the hype, but I've outgrown the genre.

Ugh.

Tell me what do we read when we grow up, Michael?
__________________
My Book:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Last edited by calligraphy; 04-09-2015 at 09:34 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #26  
Old 04-09-2015, 08:29 PM
brianpatrick's Avatar
brianpatrick (Online)
Verbosity Pales
Official Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Arizona
Posts: 3,026
Thanks: 273
Thanks 656
Default

Originally Posted by calligraphy View Post
Ugh.



Tell me what do we read when we grow up, Micheal?

The same 33 novels over and over and over again?

Well, that's what I do, anyway...
Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 05-01-2015, 04:32 AM
IWrite (Offline)
Official Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 45
Thanks: 5
Thanks 3
Default

Originally Posted by inkylinks View Post
It's an age-old trope to say that the film will never be as good as the book, but I would disagree. As heart-breaking as it is see your favourite book dismembered onscreen in a bad re-telling, it is equally exhilarating to see things done right and experience the story anew.

I've been thinking about this since I started reading Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park. I've always loved the film series and was cautious about trying the books: I was certain it was going to be ruined, one way or the other. Either the fantastic dinosaurs would become flat on paper, or the book would so out-match the film that it turned to trash. I was pleasantly surprised to find I was wrong - I've enjoyed the book just as much as the film. They are definitely different, no arguing with that, but I don't think either portrayal of the story suffers much from the chosen format.

The question: are there films that have stuck in your mind that were as enjoyable to watch as the book was to read? Or, do you consider this question to be an act of book-lover's blasphemy?
/ There can be no comparison of them because if you watch movie then everything is in front of your eyes but while reading the book you have to imagine things which is pretty good because it improves our creative thinking and we tend to improve on various things like vocabulary, grammar and lot more. But movies which we watch we watch for fun, we don't have to imagine anything which is ok its just for Fun and entertainment. Books tend to improve us...
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 05-02-2015, 12:41 AM
Filterdreaming's Avatar
Filterdreaming (Offline)
Dedicated Writer
Official Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Australia
Posts: 193
Thanks: 21
Thanks 22
Default

Twilight. Both the book and movie were as painful as each other.
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 05-17-2015, 06:55 AM
Alicia2
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

.

Last edited by Alicia2; 05-24-2015 at 09:52 AM..
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 06-09-2015, 08:10 PM
Ohasa (Offline)
Pencil pusher
Official Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Top right corner, u.s.
Posts: 11
Thanks: 21
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Default

I actually liked both the movie and books of the host by Stephanie Meyer.
Not greats, but enjoyable for me at least.
__________________
The first draft is always s#!% -Ernest Hemmingway
Reply With Quote
Reply

  WritersBeat.com > General Discussion > The Library


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Need an editor? Domenic Tips & Advice 18 02-14-2013 03:27 AM
Creep World (WIP) MalReynolds Fiction 20 12-09-2009 03:52 AM
Suck - 1st rough chapter of a vampire novella J. Newman Fiction 30 10-21-2009 09:34 AM
Book Review: A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin Mr.Gryn The Library 6 09-24-2009 12:51 PM
[Fantasy]The Dark Forest Novel [WIP] Desmond Tiny Fiction 1 12-02-2006 09:15 AM


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 11:34 PM.

vBulletin, Copyright © 2000-2006, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.