Much of the time, I’m not really a fan of the way Hollywood butchers my favorite books for the big screen. I’m one of those annoying people who can’t enjoy a movie or TV show because they’re lamenting all of the missing dialogue, changed scenes, and actors who look nothing like the character inside my head.
That said, three of my favorite books did manage to get a decent adaptation treatment, and those are…
1. ‘The Lord of the Rings’. I’ve read the books a couple of times, in between watching the movies about a gazillion times, and I have to bow down to Peter Jackson for not only making an amazing series of films but actually improving on the books. If you’ve read them then you know that J.R.R. Tolkien, for all his imagination and language wizardry, was not exactly the master of the gripping narrative. I could go on and on in true obsessed geeky style about how much I love these movies but I’ll spare you all the slobber.
2. ‘The Hunger Games’. When I found out they were turning this into a movie I realized I would probably wind up going to see it with friends who had read the books, so I decided I needed to sit down and read the entire trilogy as well. I’m really picky about reading the book before I see the movie! Anyway, I fell in love with the books from page one and by the time the movie finally opened I couldn’t imagine it would be nearly as good as the books. Wrong. It’s not 100% at the end and I still love the books better (what can I say, I’m a bookaholic), but it’s pretty darn near close to perfection. I can’t wait for the sequels.
3. ‘Pride and Prejudice’. Technically this isn’t a movie, because I’m talking about the five-hour BBC miniseries version. It. Is. Perfection. I love Jane Austen’s novel to death and I’ve reread it over and over since high school, so obviously I have really high standards for the characters of Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy. I don’t think you can really get much better than Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy, do you? Or do you have a better candidate for a remake?