Every author hopes their books will get picked up and written into a screenplay and then produced as a movie. But what about the great movies that become truly terrible movies? I think that one of my biggest pet peeves as a reader, seeing as how my book (and then series, and other books in the future!) is only almost finished and I haven’t had to deal with this yet, is when a great book is taken and becomes an awful movie. This could be due to bad acting, I’m looking at you, John Travolta, in Battlefield Earth…. Ok, that was a combination of bad adaptation, a clumsy script, and bad acting… or simply due to not being able to fully translate the complexity of a book to the screen.
The Time Travelers Wife is a great example of this. I loved this book, enough to even read more then once. The movie version of it was lackluster at best. I think the intentions were good, but the book itself was just so in depth and descriptive, that bringing it to life on the big screen just couldn’t do it justice. So much had to be left out to fit it into the allotted time, and it was evident to anyone who had read the novel.
Another one that left me with less then warm feelings was Heaven Is For Real. I enjoyed this book for what it was, a story told by a father about his son’s visit to heaven, and how it shaped their family after that. I found the movie shortly after I finished the book and was very excited to watch it. It was very different from the book. Important parts to the story were either changed or left out, the dad, he is a Pastor, in the book his views on what had happened were excitement, and yes a little fear, as he would ask his son questions about what he saw and experienced. Everything was backed up with scripture as well, which I appreciated. In the movie, the dad, and especially the mom were shown as skeptics, the church members, as well as members of their town mocked them and criticized them. It was a bit disheartening to see them take a book that was written as truth and twist it for the sake of Hollywood.
It leaves me wanting to never watch another book to movie adaptation ever again, so it doesn’t ruin my vision of the characters in my mind.
I will say there are some great adaptations as well. I thought they did a wonderful job with the Narnia books, the Hunger Games were fantastic as well. And honestly, and I might be one of the few here, I liked what they did with The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy.
I think my favorite one though, isn’t a movie, its a television show, Outlander. I read the series, well up to book 6, several years ago, but had to take a break, simply because they were HUGE books and I had to take a step back for a while. Unfortunately, I haven’t picked them back up since. But the two episodes of The Outlander series have been very good. Good enough that I happily added Starz to my Amazon Prime so I can watch all of it. Thanks Amazon! Best thing ever, books AND movies! Oh and about a million other things I don’t (I really do…) need.
Long story short, books are not always meant to be movies. Here’s to hoping mine are!
What do you think? Worst book to movie adaptation you have watched lately?
Much love ❤