1. Fight Club
Tyler Durden is revealed to be the same person much earlier in the book.
Palahniuk said himself, “I was sort of embarrassed of the book, because the movie had streamlined the plot and made it so much more effective and made connections that I had never thought to make.”
2. The Shining
Anything Kubrick is pretty much cheating. His whole career is adaptations and any one of them would be good for this list.
But the film and book differ drastically enough that Stephen King condemns it.
The book was ghosts and ghouls and a haunted mansion; a little hokey if you ask me.
The film is a little more psychopathic as we watch Jack deteriorate and eventually go insane.
3. The Godfather
Mario Puzo’s book was a’ight. He admittedly only wrote it with the intention of being a commercial success, but Francis Ford Coppola’s adaptation spurred The Godfather into one of the greatest films made. The film trimmed every ounce of fat in the book and then trained for a year with no carbs. The film is just better in every aspect.
4. Forrest Gump
One of Tom Hanks’s greatest performances coupled with a fantastic storyline make this film a contender. Winston Groom wrote the novel and mentioned that the movie, “took some of the rough edges off.”
The film streamlines the characters and events in an entertaining and light-hearted manner that the book just couldn’t pull off.
This is the part where I go on listing all the various ways to devour shrimp.
5. Blade Runner
Philip K Dick was a great story-teller, not so much a great writer.
The short story, “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” was revamped in Blade Runner. The film has uniquely stellar visuals to create a future dystopia in the much disputed Director’s Cut, making this one of the greatest neo-noirs of all time.
7. Shawshank Redemption
Another Stephen King adaptation, this novella is actually on-par with the film. It was nominated for Best Picture and it is definitely warranted. There are character differences but the adaptation is pretty close for a film. Also Morgan Freeman narrates the whole thing.
When watching the movie, I feel like it’s better than the story. When reading the story, it’s better than the movie. This is madness.
9. The Notebook
Nicholas Sparks put out sappy love novels like Starbucks put local coffee houses out of business.
The casting is superb and the story pretty good. The film focuses more on the characters’ love story rather than the feeble and nauseating sentiments of their life.
It’s now a requirement for couples to watch, so you know, thanks for that.
10. Princess Bride
This adventure/love/comedy story is beloved by many people, and rightly so.
Though SciFi and Fantasy films are usually better or close to their literary counterparts, this one incorporates the book element into the film. With the grandpa reading the boy the story, and his constant interruptions, along with the quirky characters and Rodents of Unusual Size, the movie creates the magic just a little better than the book, it’s inconceivable!
Sorry. I had to.
Now here’s an interesting film/screenplay.
Charlie Kaufman (the film’s screenwriter) set out to adapt Susan Orlean’s, “The Orchid Thief,” but couldn’t bring himself to do it. So he wrote a screenplay about him writing a screenplay about Susan Orlean’s “The Orchid Thief.”
Confusing, I know. But hey, somehow Hollywood loved it and it’s actually good if you take the time to think about it. But if you’re looking for an entertaining film without much brain power, look elsewhere.
Also Nicholas Cage…if you’re into that sort of thing.
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