Holiday weekends are often big movie release weekends, and I’ll bet a bunch of you went to the theater. (Especially Buzz Girl Movie Buff Heather?)
What I’m wondering is if any of you walked out and turned to a companion and said, “Wow, that film was even better than the book!”
I’m guessing that answer is no. Not all films start out as books, of course. And it’s the general consensus that with ones that do, most lose something in the translation. Rather like the low-fat version of a fried food or dessert.
However, given my penchant for Jell-O Fat Free Chocolate Pudding, I have seen some films I actually thought improved on the book. And while I can’t join the buzz on any of this season’s hottest releases, I can share these examples...
The First Wives Club. A witty screenplay, ’60s music, and what I heard was numerous ad-libs from Bette Midler brought added sparkle to an already terrific concept.
The Perfect Storm. While I enjoyed elements of the book, the film wins raves from me for its suspenseful pacing, and poignant focus on the characters’ struggles and dreams. (And okay, going back to last week’s post, it also gets a high-five for featuring George Clooney).
Bridget Jones’ Diary. I loved the book, and worried how I’d react to the film. But I found the storyline in the screen version tighter, the dialogue sharper, plus Colin Firth and Hugh Grant breathed sexy life into her leading men, earning a Bravo from me.
The Bridges of Madison County. In Clint Eastwood’s hands, the central characters had a dimension and humanness that allowed me to understand the depth of their struggle in a way I didn’t grasp from the book. I’ve cried every time I’ve watched it.
So, how about you? Are there any movies--old or new--you thought took a book’s premise to a higher dimension?
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