Updated: Oct 20, 2020
We all have strong opinions about book to movie adaptions. Love them or hate them they're part of the life cycle for a popular book. From my own experience, there's always an initial excitement with a dash of apprehension when a new movie for our favorites stories are announced. But one saying I think sums up the bookish community's opinions is "the book is always better than the movie".
However, there are definitely some gems of movies based on books even if they aren't quite an exact replica of the source material. I want to take this time to break down my favorite book to screen adaptions on my blog. I would like to add that this list in no way compromises ALL of the best book to screen adaptions. It is based on stories where I have read both the book and watched the movie to understand the full picture.
After by Anna Todd
My somewhat bookish unpopular opinion is that I adore the After series by Anna Todd. I'm not going to take this time to justify my love of them - which I've done in a few other posts. Today we're here to talk about the After movies that are still being released as I type this.
I absolutely love following the author, Anna Todd, on social media. Therefore, I've been following the journey of the movies since day one. The author is one of the most active and hands on authors I've seen with the movie project - something I love to see as the crew brings her creation to life.
Anna Todd's movie adaption is a recent addition to the books made into movies club. The first move was released in 2019 and was one of the highest grossing Indies of the year. While the first movie was a far cry from the r-rated origins of the books, there were still so many of the lovable qualities we associate with the books. And according to social media the next movie will live up to that r-rated label. The cast was also a fantastic choice in that along with Anna Todd they genuinely seem to care about the adaption they're making.
Cheers to more movies to come.
Gone With The Wind
Some titles really need no introduction and that is the case for the Gone With The Wind book and movie.
I'd like to give full credit to my mom for obsessively watching Gone With The Wind while I was growing up. By the time I was about 14 I decided it was time to read the book considering I'd grown up knowing the story. It was definitely an experience and I'm not sure preteen me understood it as much as I would have liked but nevertheless I persevered.
We all know the story of Scarlett O'Hara and Rhett Butler alongside the roles played by Vivian Lee and Clarke Gable. The book AND movie are an epic odyssey across the imagination of the reader/watcher. Even the movie comes in at an astounding four hours. In this case, the book somehow manages to be even more grand in scope - which says a lot in itself.
The movie is a classic in its own right much like the book it is based on. For that reason it made my list of best book to screen adaptions
I will be the first to admit it's been a while since I've done a full reread of the Twilight books but that doesn't mean I don't remember them from my preteen-hood. Or at least enough to judge them.
I'm going to start this off with a controversial opinion: the Twilight movies are better than the books.
Now, follow me for a second. I know I started this out by saying the books are always better than the movies but twilight is my usual exception. Twilight is a story that for me is best contained within a two hour movie format. In my opinion, the books dragged so much where the movies did a thorough job of picking up the pace.
Of course, I am super gay for Kristen Stewart so that may have something to do with my opinion on this subject.
Despite JK Rowlings fumbling through transphobia and discriminatory stances in recent years, we all know there's a special place in many people's heart for the Harry Potter series. The books are the biggest successes of an entire generation. We all were raised with the story of a boy who lived in a cupboard under the stairs.
I didn't read the Harry Potter books until I was well into my teen years but the movies were a major part of my life as a kid. Every year my family would save up to go for our annual outing to see the newest HP movie in theaters. It was something we all bonded over and was a shared interest between me and my siblings.
With all of that having been said, the movies did so many things right, with the exclusion of Ginny to be fair. It brought the wizarding world we'd all come to love to life. These movies weren't just a good book adaption, the really captured to soul of the books and introduced them to an entirely new audience. Along the way they also kept the saga going well past the series end for younger generations.
The Harry Potter movies are just as magical as the world they take place in and I couldn't imagine not including them on this list.
To Kill A Mockingbird
No list of the best book to screen adaptions is complete without To Kill A MockingBird. My feelings of the books are somewhat mixed but I think it's universally accepted the movie was a good, even great, adaption of what the books were.
I read To Kill A Mockingbird in high school for the beloved tradition of required reading. The book was tolerable for high school me - which wasn't the case for all classics - and then when I saw the movie I found it to be such a true statement of what the books were about. The movie is as timeless as the books in almost every way.
If you want to see the relationship between Atticus and Scout on the big screen this movie did an amazing job of accomplishing that.
If you're interested in purchasing some of the books on this list or others be sure to check out Book Depository
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