Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Movie Adaptations

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week's Top Ten is Top Ten Movie Adaptations. These are the books that were transformed into movies that weren't a complete cinematic train wreck. In fact they were quite...good. Nine times out of ten the movie is never as good as the book but below are my ten that if they didn't do the book(s) justice at least they came pretty darn close. But first a disclaimer: Having realized that I can probably fit Gone with the Wind and Pride and Prejudice on just about any top 10 list, I am leaving them off as it would get quite redundant to put them at the top every single week :)

"The world is changed. I feel it in the water. I feel it in the earth. I smell it in the air. Much that once was is lost, for none now live who remember it. It began with the forging of the Great Rings."-Galadriel in The Fellowship of the Ring

I thought Peter Jackson did an excellent job of telling the tale of Frodo and his quest to destroy the ring. The second movie lagged a bit but the scenery was wonderful and the casting was spot on. Still loved the books more but I have watched this trilogy more than once and would not mind watching the whole thing again (especially with Viggo as Aragorn) Can't wait for when they do The Hobbit!

"Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light."-Albus Dumbledore in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkabahn

I read the Harry Potter series as an adult and was enchanted with the books from page one. I read the last 3 books over a two day span. I have absolutely loved what they have done with these movies on screen (except for Half Blood Prince-Mr. Director, what WERE you thinking?!). I have loved watching the characters grow up and think Daniel, Emma, and Rupert really brought Harry, Hermione and Ron to life in these films. I'm kind of sad the next movie will be the last.

"Sat in that jail, I sat in that jail til I near about done rot to death. I know what it like to wanna go somewhere and cain't. I know what it like to wanna sing... and have it beat out 'ya. I want to thank you, Miss Celie, fo everything you done for me. I 'members that day in the store with Miss Millie - I's feelin' real down. I's feelin' mighty bad. And when I seed you - I know'd there is a God. I know'd there is a God." Sofia from the Color Purple

This is such a sad story! Whoopi Goldberg was perfect as Celie and Oprah was perfect as Sofia. I haven't read the book or watched the movie in a long time and I need to do both soon.

"A census taker once tried to test me. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti."-Hannibal Lecter

Anthony Hopkins-my hat is off to you. Reading the encounters between Hannibal Lecter and Clarice Starling creeped me out quite a bit. Seeing you on screen as Hannibal positively made my skin crawl (as did dude dancing around wearing other peoples skin but not as much as ol' Hannibal).

"Show me a man or a woman alone and I'll show you a saint. Give me two and they'll fall in love. Give me three and they'll invent the charming thing we call 'society'. Give me four and they'll build a pyramid. Give me five and they'll make one an outcast. Give me six and they'll reinvent prejudice. Give me seven and in seven years they'll reinvent warfare. Man may have been made in the image of God, but human society was made in the image of His opposite number, and is always trying to get back home."-Glenn Bateman

This my favorite Stephen King book and movie. Sure, the clown in it creeped me out quite a bit but the Stand had lots of memorable characters and was scary enough to make me not want to go to Las Vegas for a long time.

"If there is one thing the history of evolution has taught us it's that life will not be contained. Life breaks free, expands to new territory, and crashes through barriers, painfully, maybe even dangerously."-Dr. Ian Malcolm

The only thing I didn't like about book vs movie in Jurassic Park was parts of the movie were taken from the 2nd book-The Lost World. These books made me a fan of Michael Crichton. The first time I watched it was in the theater. We were sitting below a speaker and the first time the T-Rex showed up and did its ear splitting roar I nearly wet my pants. Hey, I was 11.....

"A story like mine should never be told. For my world is as forbidden as it is fragile. Without its mysteries it cannot survive. I certainly wasn't born to the life of a geisha. Like so much in my strange life, I was carried there by the current."-Sayuri

I devoured this book when it came out in 1997. I have been wondering for the past 14 years why this guy has not written another book. When the movie came out in 2005 I wondered if it would do the book justice and I thought the cinematography in this was absolutely beautiful.

"When I look back on my childhood, I wonder how my brothers and I managed to survive at all. It was, of course, a miserable childhood. The happy childhood is hardly worth telling. Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood. And worse still is the miserable Irish Catholic childhood."-Frank McCourt

Yet another story that was so sad. The poverty Frank endured was heartbreaking. I thought the actor they got to play him was a good choice. I have his other two memoirs on my shelf and have not read them yet.

"I can't go on forever, and I really don't want to try. So who can I trust to run the factory when I leave and take care of the Oompa Loopa's for me? Not a grown up. A grown up would want to do everything his own way, not mine. So that's why I decided a long time ago that I had to find a child. A very honest, loving child, to whom I could tell all my most precious candy making secrets."-Willy Wonka

No offense to Johnny Depp but Gene Wilder was the perfect Willy Wonka. I've heard it said that the newer one is closer to the book but it is the older movie version that evokes the same feelings I had when I read Chocolate Factory and Great Glass Elevator-pure delight!

Resolution #1: Uggg - will obviously lose 20 lbs. #2: Always put last night's panties in the laundry basket. Equally important: will find nice sensible boyfriend and stop forming romantic attachments to any of the following: alcoholics, workaholics, sexaholics, commitment-phobics, peeping toms, megalomaniacs, emotional fuckwits, or perverts. Will especially stop fantasizing about a particular person who embodies all these things.-Bridget Jones

I was going through a chick lit phase when this book came out. I loved the book. I think there's a little bit of Bridget in all of us. Truth be told I really didn't care for Renee Zellweger until she played Bridget. Exactly as I imagined her in the book.

And there be my Top Ten Movie Adaptations! This list was a little more difficult than I thought it would be because in a lot of instances I've either seen the movie or read the book but not both.


  1. I almost put Angela's Ashes on my list but it's been a while since I read the book and saw the movie. So heartbreaking but such a great book!

  2. I enjoy the 6th Harry Potter novel, but there are some things they could have handled better --- like the Half-BLood prince revelation. The one they have now is almost funny in its randomness.

  3. The quote you included from Willy Wonka is the reason it's on my list. Gene Wilder is fabulous in that role. Great choice, and great list!

  4. Great list. I also enjoyed Bridget Jones's Diary even though I didn't have enough room to add it to my list. I also thought the film adaptation of The Devil Wears Prada was good. Loved Meryl Streep in it.

  5. Man, Jurassic Park is cropping up on a lot of lists. It was a pretty big deal, apparently. And I know how you feel about Pride and Prejudice. Pretty much any list there is, I immediately think of it. So much so that I'm actively avoiding adding it to lists (except for this week...), just to give other books a chance!

  6. Love your list! Aragorn....may be the reason I've re-watched those quite long movies many times!