I saw “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” part 1 this weekend. Wow, is all I can say. It was amazing. Not only in how it interpreted the book, but also just as a film unto itself. Beautifully directed, edited, music was great. It was the kind of movie where it doesn’t hurt quite so badly when you look at the total amount of money you spent between tickets and concessions. My family doesn’t go to the movies frequently, but this one was worth it all.
I’m also in the midst of re-reading all of the Harry Potter books with my little girl. We just finished book 3 and are both enjoying the different things that the books and the movies have to offer. The movies provide all the great acting and movie sets, being able to see all the places come to life before your eyes, and of course the books, besides being the original source of the stories, also have all the great details, etc. some of which they just can’t fit into the movies.
Because of all of this, I’ve been thinking about different books made into movies. The Harry Potter franchise, in my opinion, has been one of the best. I don’t feel like there are any just plain stinkers in the lot. But we all know, there have been some reeeeeaaaalllly bad movies made from good books. Stephen King comes to mind. For some reason, a lot of the movies made from his books miss the mark somehow. It’s not his fault obviously. Once an author has to give up their rights to the movie industry, they don’t have any control obviously. What’s funny as far as Mr. King goes, is that one of the most beloved movies made from his books, “The Shining,” is vastly different from the book. Key elements are there, but there’s a lot left out. But most people will say that “The Shining” was a good movie.
So it seems that there are a few categories here… 1) good book, bad movie 2) good book, good movie 3) good book, good movie, but but what on earth did it have to do with the book? and 4) Good book, terrible movie and did the director/producer even read the book?!
Some books can make terrific movies, but some perhaps are just better left as books.
What are some of your favorite books turned into movies? Even better, what are some of your NOT favorite ones?