Same. I love Peter Jackson’s LotR trilogy, but only watched about 20 minutes of the first Hobbit movie before turning it off and never giving it another consideration. LotR is so far above and beyond what I could ever have hoped for in an adaptation, and I couldn’t find a redeeming thing about what I saw of The Hobbit.
The book was better…
WORLD WAR Z
Do not, do not, do not attempt any of the film versions of Asimov’s Nightfall, and I nearly walked out of the theater on just the trailer for I, Robot. Bicentennial Man was not bad, and at least followed the novella for the most part, but – you guessed it – the novella was better.
Asimov has never really had a good adaptation. The more I read about the upcoming Foundation series, the more sure I am that I will not watch it.
Oh gosh, forgot about The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy! The movie was rough!
The movie and the book were basically two completely different things.
I, Robot really has nothing to do with the book. I haven’t seen or read Nightfall but I couldn’t believe how different I, Robot was. I’m not sure about watching any other Asimov movie.
This reminds me of a joke:
How do you tell the difference between someone who read the Game of Thrones books and someone who just watched the series?
Don’t worry, they’ll tell you.
Abe Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
I know with a title like that… but it was a really good book, with an interesting premise and it drew in a lot of historical stuff (in a completely ahistorical way) and it had a REASON why Abe Lincoln was a vampire hunter, not just “because that’s funny”. The movie version removed all of the politics – wouldn’t want to offend anyone on the losing side of the civil war! – removed all of the originality, and just had Abe Lincoln stake a bunch of vampires with no further plot or character at all. One of the most disappointing book-to-screen transitions I’ve ever seen.
Was just perusing the ol’ bookshelf here, lookin’ for other possibilities. Found two.
Memoirs of a Geisha which, yeah, is a big ol’ drama llama on both fronts and, yeah, the movie won Academy awards. I dunno. Book was better.
I tried to read the Game of Thrones books, this was years before the show (which I’ve never seen). I gave up after the first one. Talk about tedious. He could give Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series a run for its money with spending hundreds and hundreds of pages where nothing happens.
The Golden Compass is pretty dire, and not even in a it’s fun to riff on way.
Stephen King’s The Stand. One of my favorite books of all time, and they have failed - miserably - to try to bring it to the small screen (and I believe a couple attempts to make a big-screen version that never even got off the ground). That last miniseries was absolutely ATROCIOUS in every single way, so I decided to go back and rewatch the 90’s version on Vudu, which suddenly seemed really amazing after that CBS All-Access bullshit.
In fairness, it’s a VERY complex book, and I can see how difficult it would be to tell the story in a TV or movie adaptation. So, basically, I’m saying, ‘JUST STOP TRYING.’
Huh, I got to see Crash in theaters right before the world locked down, and picked up the book. But once things got a little apocalyptic I decided to set the book to the side for a bit due to Ballard being a bit more morose than I felt was healthy during the past 18 months. I’ll have to bump it up the list.
It won’t get better. He’s darker than John Brunner
I watched About A Boy before I read the book and thought it was a pretty good movie with some over-the-top corny moments. The book, however, is Hornby’s masterpiece. Removing the whole Cobain thread rips the heart out of the story.
On the other hand, High Fidelity fixed a number of problems with the book. They’re both great, but I’d pick the movie.
Speaking of Nick Hornby novels, I read Fever Pitch before they Americanized it for the movie version. As a Cardinals fan, I was further incensed when they incorporated them getting swept by the Red Sox in the actual World Series. I’m mostly over it, especially since worse Cardinals teams have won the World Series since, but at the time, it bothered me a lot.
(And no, I have not seen the movie, nor do I plan on doing so.)
I’m a books are books and movies are movies type of person who feels cinema should be taken on its own terms.
Yes, I liked Constantine, as it’s own thing, I like Baz Lurhmann’s The Great Gatsby as it’s own, thing, it has style and left me gobsmacked and I number it as one of my favorite films that year (though it often winds up on lists of this type). Under the Skin is another example of an adaption that does it’s own thing and does it brilliantly.
Saying that, even on its own terms, I think Eastwood botched Michael Connelly’s Blood Work (and I found it funny how Connelly brought the movie into a later McCaleb novel (one character was pissed off at how he was turned into the bad guy)
And I was disappointed in Ghost Story, which took a chilling, intelligent, complex novel and simplified into a standard tale of revenge - little atmosphere, little substance, few scares.
Yep. I love the book and have read it about 3 times, but the first read was after seeing the film. In my case, the film hit theaters about the same time that I was dealing with three things in life. 1) I had recently stopped working in a comic shop, and the nature of the relationships in the staff and customers in Championship Records were very familiar. 2) I had recently broke up with my GF of the past 6 years. 3) I had no direction in life at the time. To say it spoke to me at the time is a vast understatement.
The movie, to be honest, watching now has not aged well against current sensibilities, but holds a special place for me regardless. My DVD copy is well used, and i’m still more likely to grab it and watch, then to pull the book from shelf and re-read once more.
The Hollywood version an Americanisation of the Tarkovsky film. Which is excellent, and varies somewhat from the novel Solaris in content (but not central theme). In American hands it was botched, much in the same way most conversions of British TV shows are.
Maybe we need a third thread for “The movie’s as good as the book”, into which I’d offer this version of Solaris, along with High Rise and The Fly.
This. But good call; maybe once the current End Times cools down some.
Oh, wow! Totally forgot about that movie — yuck. Haven’t read my old Peter Straub paperback for a long time but now I’m curious. Thanks!