Monday, September 3, 2012

Adaptation > Novel

Most of us avid readers probably agree that the movie is never as good as the novel, right? For the most part, movies simply pale in comparison to the book. However, on very rare occasions, I enjoy adaptations more. Here is a list of a few of those movies.

Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant
Directed by: Paul Weitz
Novel by: Darren Shan
Synopsis: Teenager, Darren Shan, meets a mysterious man at a freak show who turns out to be a Vampire. After a series of events Darren must leave his normal life and go on the road with the Cirque Du Freak and become a Vampire. --IMDb

It's been so long, I don't remember why I didn't care for the book. There was something about it that just didn't appeal to me. Which was disappointing since I knew a bunch of people who loved the series. When the movie came out, I figured it would suck too. I was surprised that I actually liked it. Gave me a few chuckles, it did. It was bizarre and quirky, but it wasn't terrible. Since it's been so long since I read the book, I think I may give it another try sometime. Especially since there are so many books in the series. I'd like to know what happens to the MC.

Blood and Chocolate
Directed by: Katja von Garnier
Novel by: Annette Curtis Klause
Synopsis: A young teenage werewolf  is torn between honoring her family's secret and her love for a human. --IMDb

Fans of the novel were incredibly disappointed when this movie came out. And rightfully so. The book and the movie are completely different. There are a few similarities, such as character names and the fact that they're werewolves, but everything else was pretty much changed.

I actually seen the movie first and found out later that it was an adaptation. Though the movie still kind of sucked as far as movies go, I liked it better than the book. In the book, Vivian (the MC) was a complete biatch. Huge attitude, annoyingly overconfident, I hated her. In the movie, she was actually kind of likable.

I was so excited when I went to see the film. It turned out to be kind of a disappointment though. I think I force myself to like it because it has Hugh Dancy in it. Me likey likey Mr. Dancy.

Directed by: Iain Softley
Novel by: Cornelia Funke
Synopsis: A young girl discovers her father has an amazing talent to bring characters out of their books and must try to stop a freed villain from destroying them all, with the help of her father, her aunt, and a storybook's hero. --IMDb

Though I love the plot of the book--it's very creative and fun--I thought the pacing was way too slow. When I read it in high school, it bored me to tears and took me forever to get through. Funke is an amazing author and I love her book The Thief Lord, but this particular novel of hers just didn't do it for me.

The movie, on the other hand, though slow at times, was pretty entertaining. How could I not like it? It has Brendan Fraser in it.

The worst part though, in both the book and the movie, is the scene where they burn the aunt's library down. Those men should have been castrated and then burnt at the stake for doing such a thing. Shame on them!

The Princess Bride
Movie by: Rob Reiner
Novel by: William Goldman
Synopsis: A classic fairy tale, with swordplay, giants, an evil prince, a beautiful princess, and yes, some kissing (as read by a kindly grandfather). --IMDb

I just recently finished reading the book. You can read my ramblings about it here. The book was amazing and was incredibly similar to the movie. Even to the point where the dialogue in each is the same. However, I grew up watching the movie, so I have a bit more loyalty towards it. Also, the book has a ton of commentary from the author, which was funny at times, but also a bit annoying as it, more often than not, slowed the pace. The movie, of course, has none of that.

Besides, I can actually see Carry Elwes and his sexy self in the film.

The Seeker: The Dark Is Rising 
Movie by: David L. Cunningham
Novel by: Susan Cooper
Synopsis: A boy's life is turned upside down when he learns that he is the last of a group of immortal warriors who have dedicated their lives to fighting the forces of the dark. --IMDb

Okay, I'll admit it. I haven't actually read this book. The two or three times I've tried to, I couldn't get into it and had to stop. I'm not even sure why. I feel really bad about it too since my wonderful cousin gave the series to me.

Though the movie wasn't the greatest, it managed to entertain me from beginning to end. I'd definitely watch it again. It also makes me want to attempt reading the novel once more. Perhaps now, in my old age, I can get through it.

Do you agree with my list? Are there any movies you enjoyed more than the book?


    I saw the movie before I knew there was a book and really enjoyed it. I read a sample of the book but wasn't impressed enough to buy it. The reviews I read seemed to agree.

  2. I have yet to see that movie. A friend of mine said it wasn't very good, but he doesn't always have the best taste in movies. I've been meaning to read the book, but maybe I'll see the movie first now. :D

  3. Hey, Cirque du Freak! I saw that movie a while back!

    I didn't know what to make of it at first, given that I started watching it with my brother and a friend while channel surfing one night...but to my surprise, I found myself enjoying it (even with my company putting the CGI on blast and shouting "the pork must be eaten!"), and actually getting curious about the story proper. I'd say that's a win for any adaption.

  4. This is true. Although, I can't say I'm really into blonds anymore.

  5. lol, "the pork must be eaten?" Eh?

  6. It (barely) makes sense in the movie's context.

  7. -raises finger-

    ...Maybe this isn't the place for me to share my "types".

    But in any case, neither the novel nor the movie are high on my TBR or TBW (to-be-watched) list.

  8. Did you just flip me off, good sir? :P

  9. I dare not, madam! The finger that I was wasn't the middle one.

  10. As a fan of the Darren Shan saga, I thought the movie was TERRIBLE. The series is really quite dark and serious, as far as MG fiction goes. But the movie was STUPID.

  11. I was pretty young when I first read the book, and I don't think I cared for how dark it was. Now I love those kinds of books, so I'll definitely have to give it another go.

    Thanks for your thoughts! ^.^