17 Excellent Book Adaptations That Don't Make Readers Fall To Their Knees And Curse Hollywood

    Once again, I am here to tell you to watch A Series Of Unfortunate Events on Netflix. Go queue up the first episode now. I'll wait. Actually, no, read this post first. Then go start the show.

    A little while back, I asked the folks of the BuzzFeed Community about the book-to-movie adaptations they think are as good as (or — gasp — better than) the source material. There were lots of enthusiastic responses, so here are 17 excellent adaptations that you can watch to soothe yourself after reading one of these other posts about book-to-movie adaptations that...weren't as well-received, let's say.

    Responses may have been edited for length and/or clarity. 

    1. "Bridgerton is my favorite. I think the Netflix series has gone above and beyond in taking the book's characters (who I found to be flat) and making them multi-dimensional and complex. Unlike other book adaptations, I don’t mind that the show strayed from the books because the costumes, production, and actors have made it so much more dynamic."

    Screenshot from "Bridgerton"

    2. "The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is one of the best book-to-movie adaptations of all time. The characters were brilliantly cast and bring an iconic story to life in all the best ways. And Alan Rickman as depressed Marvin? C'mon. It’s the greatest!"

    3. "To Kill a Mockingbird. Gregory Peck gives an absolutely perfect performance as Atticus Finch, and the fact that he did THAT courtroom speech in one take just shows how he was the right choice, and justifiably won him the Oscar. Mary Badham was also well cast, and not only did she embody Scout's tomboyish nature, but also the incredible esteem that she has for her father."

    4. "Trainspotting. It was the first time ever and to this day that I felt a movie was better than the book. The book was good but all over the place and had too many random characters that got tied up awkwardly and quickly at the end. The movie was perfect. They focused the narrative and gave it a killer soundtrack!"

    Screenshot from "Trainspotting"

    5. "The first season of The Handmaid’s Tale was spot on."

    Screenshot from "The Handmaid's Tale"

    6. "The HBO/BBC adaptation of His Dark Materials was basically perfect. The cast, the visuals, the score. It broke my heart in all the right ways."

    Screenshot from "His Dark Materials"

    7. "Stardust! It expanded upon the book and made it so much better. The characters are so much more lovable, and it really does a good job of bringing this magical story to life. It's one of the few times that the movie is better than the book."

    Screenshot from "Stardust"

    8. "I'm gonna go with Denis Villeneuve's Dune. It's super faithful to the novel, visually stunning, and the performances are on point. We'll see how well Part Two does in concluding the story of the first novel."

    Screenshot from "Dune"

    9. "The To All the Boys trilogy was actually really good, especially for a Netflix teen movie. The movies stayed pretty true to the novels, which is sometimes rare when books become movies. Plus, the author was a producer and was actually in the movies, which is probably why the movies did a good job encapsulating the main points of the story. They, of course, changed some things in the movies to make it more dramatic (especially in the last one), but I still liked them."

    Screenshot from "To All the Boys I've Loved Before"

    10. "Tuck Everlasting. I recently just read the book for the first time and then rewatched the movie right after. The biggest difference is they aged Winnie up to be closer in age to Jesse, but I thought it was a really faithful adaptation that got to the heart of what it means to be mortal and how to make your time on earth mean something. Add in a star-studded cast like Sissy Spacek and Alexis Bledel, and the movie really brought the story to life before my eyes!"

    Screenshot from "Tuck Everlasting"

    11. "The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton is one of the most faithful book-to-movie adaptations. I know both like that back of my hand."

    Screenshot from "The Outsiders"

    12. "I quite liked the Crazy Rich Asians book-to-film adaptation, too. Although they changed some major things in the movie, they accurately captured the essence of the book."

    Screenshot from "Crazy Rich Asians"

    13. "I loved both the book and movie of Me and Earl and the Dying Girl. The movie was a more fully realized version of the book. Plus, the music and casting were absolutely spot on (especially Nick Offerman as Greg’s dad)."

    Screenshot from "Me and Earl and the Dying Girl"

    14. "American Gods. Since, in many ways, I actually think the show improved on the book in some aspects. Compared to the book, where Shadow accepts what is happening, the show has him questioning what is happening, making the reveal that Mr. Wednesday is Shadow's father much more interesting. I also enjoyed how the show expanded on some other characters, such as Laura and Mad Sweeney. Still mad about it being canceled."

    Screenshot from "American Gods"

    15. "I loved the A Series Of Unfortunate Events Netflix series. They really took their time and made the details accurate to the book. The casting was spot on, and the setting and places were so perfect; it really was amazing to see a book series I read when I was 10 come to life as a Netflix series."

    Screenshot from "A Series of Unfortunate Events"

    16. "The Perks of Being a Wallflower is hands-down one of the best adaptions, mainly because the author, Stephen Chbosky, also wrote the screenplay."

    17. And finally: "THE LORD OF THE RINGS!!! This trilogy is perfection and so well done! So much heart and love and care was put into it, and nothing has come close to the level of cinematic masterpiece that this series achieved."

    Screenshot from "The Lord of the Rings"

    Alright, which excellent adaptations did we miss? Tell us about 'em in the comments!