Make a list of books you’ve read that have also been made into movies you’ve seen, such as Charlotte’s Web or The Hobbit. Next to each title, note whether you preferred the book or the film version.
Lord of the Rings – Movie
J.R.R. Tolkein’s bibliography is a game changer to the
literary world, but the guy’s prose moves at the pace of grass growing. The movies not only attached faces to our
heroes that perfectly fit, but shocked the world with an impressive score,
handled a lot of the character dynamics better, and made certain things clear
to the viewers that casual readers couldn’t decipher.
The Hobbit – Book
The same cannot be said for the next adaptation of Tolkein’s
works. I’m not against the idea of
expanding the adaptation into multiple movies and I felt the love triangle gave
Kili’s death a lot more weight than in the book, but three movies just made it
feel too flabby. What we were left with
was a lot of stuff that went nowhere and some really bizarre pacing.
Coraline – Movie
Neil Gaiman’s writing is always amazing and whimsical, but
when you combine it with the director of The Nightmare Before Christmas and the
visual brilliance of Laika, you have an amazing work of art. Take something great and make it even
better. That’s the sign of a great
Harry Potter – Book
What makes the Harry Potter series so great is the nuance
and attention to detail within the world and the characters. Both of those elements are lost in the
series’ translation to screen. While the
movies aren’t bad by any means, they feel very hollow and insubstantial
compared to their literary counterparts.
It would have been a lot better as a television series, where less
essential elements would have been cut and the world would have been more
The Hunger Games – Movie
The Hunger Games has a lot of interesting ideas, but its
worst enemy is its own prose, which is in the first-person present-tense and
can be very hard to follow. The movies
don’t have that problem, but also added some things that greatly improved the
tension and the stakes. The amazing
acting doesn’t hurt either.
The Princess Bride – Book
This one was a really tough call and there’s no disputing
the genius of the movie. However, I have
to give this one to the book for the sole purpose that it has the Zoo of Death
and Buttercup’s final badass proclamation at the end. Both are good, but the other just has some of
my favorite parts.
Twilight – Neither
Movie? Book? Does it matter either way? We lose as a species by the mere fact of its