What are you reading?

Dr. Zhivago is a good example of the movie being as great as the book.

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thinking about that, trying to come up with great Books and Movies

Favorite combo is To Kill A Mockingbird, but still so much more in the book.

found a list to help spur my memory: The Exorcist, Bridge over The River Kwai, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Silence Of The Lambs

I’ll mention Princess Bride, is it great? I love it, love the book too. Same writer helps.

ok, The Lord Of The Ring series, needs to be mentioned

America Psycho, i didnt feel the book was “great”. Maybe just my opinion.

Jaws, Godfather - Movies much better than books
The Shining: not close enough in story for me to include
MASH, enjoyed it, but a great book?
Harry Potter, nice movies, i don’t consider them great movies

won’t count plays

maybe one of the 20 versions of Little Women or Austen or Dickens could be considered a great movie, but doesn’t hold the same type of weight to the singular film.

and of course only listed ones i have read and seen

now that I am awake, want to add (looking at IMDB top 250 to help)

From Here To Eternity, Grapes Of Wrath, On The Waterfront, Witness For The Prosecution, Ben Hur, and 2001 A Space Odyssey

Have to see the 2nd Dune, but based on the 1st a strong contender

Haven’t read Gone With The Wind, Wizard Of Oz, Rebecca, A Clockwork Orange or No Country For Old Men

12 Years a Slave, The Help - I see as very good, not sure I would rate either as great - movie or Book

Turning a book into a movie is problematic in that the length of the movie is almost always too short to do the book justice. The adaptation is more of a Readers Digest version. A novella or short story might be a better length to adapt to a movie, such as Shawshank Redemption (which was 124 pages).

I think the better medium is a prestige television limited series, which may take from 5 to 10 hours. I generally don’t read a novel in one sitting, so see no problem watching an adaption over several nights. The Night Manager and Foundation are two excellent such series that immediately come to mind.

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Your point is well taken

I didn’t love the Night Manager (book); haven’t seen the mini-series

Based on the mini-series concept will add QB VII

I have Shogun and The Thorn Birds on my book shelves - I don’t believe I saw the full mini-series

Jurassic Park - great book, even better movie imo

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One of the best examples of this is Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. I read the book on a long business trip during the 1980’s and I found any movie version barely skimmed the surface of the book’s contents. It would require a 10 part tv series to do the book justice.

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The books win hands down for these two series. Reading the books fuels the imagination more than watching a movie when it comes to the fantasy genre.

And, of course, the length and richness of these books is difficult to narrate fully in a three hour movie. I found it would have been difficult to keep the characters and narrative straight without having read the books beforehand.

well, there are long scenes of Napoleonic wars and the sewers that are easily skipped

I still want to see the 1934 French version of the movie

The sewer bit takes forever. Hugo must have been in a shitty mood when he wrote that.

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Agree. You end up with either a very long movie, a miniseries, or a LOT cut out.

The Joy Luck Club cut a lot out, but did justice to what was left in. It’s one of the better book-to-movie adaptations IMO.

Where’d You Go Bernadette? cut out some SUPER relevant details in the movie adaptation, as did In Her Shoes although the story held together better without the missing details in In Her Shoes.

I didn’t like that The Wizard Of Oz omitted the good witch of the south.

The Sound Of Music went from book to Broadway musical to movie. The movie and the musical weren’t terribly different, but the musical only bears slight similarities to the book. I mean, there was a gal named Maria studying to be a nun who went to live with a widowed and retired Austrian Naval captain… that’s about where the similarities end.

Not many of those left. Although neighboring Switzerland did win the America’s Cup not so long ago.

There was a non-musical SoM movie??

I would imagine they’re all gone now since Austria hasn’t had a coast in over 100 years! It ended a number of men’s naval careers, including Georg von Trapp’s.

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Not that I know of. Maybe it would be clearer if I said book to Broadway musical to movie.

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That’s the downside of becoming a rump state. I think in Handmaid’s Tale, United States is reduced to Hawaii and Alaska so some job descriptions would have gone away.

Book definitely needed some songs.


Well they did talk about the song Silent Night in the book. It was the only song the children remembered.

The are sections of Les Miserable where the song lyrics were so close to the original writing i couldn’t help but sing it to myself.


on the movie / book discussion. realized I forgot Shane