This week is a Top Ten Tuesday rewind, meaning we can pick a past topic we've missed, and as I only started these a few weeks ago, I had quite a lot to choose from, in the end I decided to do Top Ten Book to Movie Adaptations, seen as I'm a film student and all (plus the date of this original prompt was on my birthday!)
1) Fight Club - Chuck Palahniuk/David Fincher - If you've read any of my blog posts before you've probably come across my love for Fight Club, but just in case you've not - I love it. I read the book first and fell in love with it when I was around 16 and then luckily enough the film was on TV a few nights after I'd finished it...and then a few days later one of my brother's friends gave me the DVD - kismet I'm telling you. The way Fincher portrays the story is incredible - if you've read the book you'll know there is a big "hidden gun" (as Palahniuk calls the reveal) and he brings it across on the screen so well! And the casting! I swear I now cannot imagine any voice other than Edward Norton as the narrator. The film is just incredible, I promise.
2) Batman Begins/The Dark Knight/The Dark Knight Rises - Frank Miller/Chris Nolan - The best film series and best comic book adaptation of all time in my eyes. In a word: INCREDIBLE. Nolan brings Gotham into this world and makes it something that could so easily be happening, nothing is too outrageous or theatrical, it's just right. Chris Nolan is without a doubt one of the best film makers out there at the minute and he seems to have this Midas touch, everything he works on is unbelievable and these films are no exception. The Dark Knight Rises was just everything I wanted it to be and more, I don't think anyone will touch Batman for a long time now, because really what could beat Nolan's version?
3) The Road - Cormac McCarthy/John Hillcoat - I really loved this book, I bought it after reading All The Pretty Horses by McCarthy, because once I find an author I like...I pretty much try to read everything else they've written, anyway; The book was great, the perfect mixture of love, horror and dystopia and left me with a lot of thought. I think the film was at the cinema when I read the book but I didn't see it until it was released on DVD; I was not disappointed. Kodi Smit McPhee who plays "The Boy" was fantastic considering his age, and Viggo Mortenson was just WOW. His dedication to that role must have been very strong considering all the changes to his appearance that he committed to, and it really paid of because this film will remain one of my favourites for a very long time. There are hardly any characters, and most times we focus only on the boy and his father; this film is carried entirely on story and it shows, and it's wonderful.
4) I couldn't not mention - The Harry Potter series - J.K Rowling/David Yeats Chris Columbus/Alfonso Cuaron/Mike Newell - I don't know how it is in other countries, but being British I have grown up with Harry Potter. We would be read the books in story time through school and they were a pretty huge playground topic, then as I got older and the films were made I saw each one at the cinema with family, and then as I got older with friends, and that seems to be how it is for most people I know, I think I'd be very hard pressed to find someone around my age group who hasn't seen these films, and after The Deathly Hallows Part 2 was released my social network pages were filled with peoples sad thoughts about being left behind by Hogwarts, because we, I, truly have grown up with these stories, and I still cry when I watch that last film.
5) Wuthering Heights - Emily Brontë/Peter Kosminsky/Cody Giedroyc - I'm mainly mentioning the 1992 Ralph Fiennes/Juliette Binoche version here, but also giving a nod to the 2009 ITV series which starred Tom Hardy (yum). As I mentioned last week in my Top Ten Books You Don't Want People To Forget About; I adore this story. It's my favourite love story of all time and Heathcliffe is one of my top male literary characters. The two versions I' mentioning are (I think) the best. They are both great and I don't think I like one better than the other. I will say though that adaptations of this novel can go wrong - I cannot stand Andrea Arnold's 2011 version, which in my opinion besmirches (that's right! Besmirches!) Brontë's story.
6) Romeo & Juliet - William Shakespeare/Baz Luhrmann - We all know the story so I won't go into that here, but I will say that if you think you've seen adaptations of this play and this is just another, stop! watch it! because I promise it's not like any other Shakespeare you've seen. Yes, okay, this version is not how Shakespeare is intended to be seen; it's loud and brash and overly theatrical, but it's brilliant. One of my favourite moments is Romeo's entrance, which is accompanied by Radiohead's Talk Show Host and just beautiful Honestly, just go and watch this film, you'll love it.
7) American Psycho - Brett Easton Ellis/Mary Harron - Christian Bale's acting in this film is top notch, I'm telling you. The book is wildly satirical and darkly humorous, and this adaptation really lives up to that. There is (of course) gory scenes but I actually tend to forget to look at all those parts in a bad light when thinking of the film because the rest of it is just so, as I said, darkly humorous. I really like all of Ellis's adaptations actually, I don't think his films are particularly easy to adapt but those who take them on seem to do a great job, if you're looking for something similar to this film try out The Rules Of Attraction, which was adapted in 2002, and which I love. (Side note: One of the main characters, Sean Bateman is actually a literary younger brother to American Psycho's Patrick Bateman, cool, huh?)
8) Pride & Prejudice - Jane Austen/Joe Wright - I'm talking about the 2005/Keira Knightly version here - not the BBC version! The reason for that is....Colin Firth is not Mr. Darcy in my eyes and I actually don't think much of Jennifer Ehle as Elizabeth Bennet either. The Joe Wright version is by far my favourite I love it, know all the words, etc, It's just such a lovely version of the classic; the cinematography's wonderful, the music is beautiful, and Matthew McFayden is such a good Darcy. I adore that scene in the rain where he proposes! and the ending..gah! All the roles are filled by such great actors - Donald Sutherland manages to portray a caring Mr. Bennet, and Tom Hollander as Mr. Collins is so pathetic and hilarious at the same time, I just can't find fault with this adaptation, it's wonderful.
9) Into The Wild - Jon Krakauer/Sean Penn - This book was my first foray into "adventure" writing, and I really enjoyed it. Krakauer writes the non fiction book about a young man Christopher McCandless who, literally went "Into The Wild" and sadly died there. I wasn't sure at fist how Penn would adapt the book, but it'd from McCandless own view, and used the book as a guideline as Krakauer had collected as much information as he could about McCandless time travelling from various people he had met and diaries he had kept. Because of this obviously some parts of the film are guessed at but it feels no less authentic and is a completely respectful take on the young man's life. McCandless is portrayed by Emile Hirsch, who I thin is a really great actor, but at the end we do see the real Christopher, in a smiling picture he took of himself before he died. Amazing film and book.
10) Factotum - Charles Bukowski/Bent Hamner - Factotum is the only Bukowski adaptation I've seen, though I believe Tales Of Ordinary Madness, Barfly and Crazy Love are all adaptation from his various works as well. Matt Dillon stars as Chinaski (Bukowski) which I think was a great choice! I really like Matt Dillon and he works so well in the role, Bukowski fans have probably seen this one but if you haven't then definitely do so; it's not the world best adaptation but I really enjoy it, and I like seeing Bukowski's words come to life.
Well...That was a pretty hefty list! I know there are so many amazing adaptations coming out if the next few months - what are you all looking forward to seeing? Has anyone seen The Perks Of Being A Wallflower yet? What did you think of it? I'll hopefully be seeing it this week and I can't wait!