Sunday, March 15, 2009

Weekly Geek - Bad Movie Adaptations

Weekly Geek - Bad Movie Adaptations

Worst movie adaptations: The recent release of Watchmen based on the graphic novel by Alan Moore got me thinking about what I thought were the worst movie adaptations of books. What book or books did a director or directors completely ruin in the adaptation(s) that you wish you could "unsee," and why in your opinion, what made it or them so bad in contrast to the book or books?

Let me preface this with it is really hard for me to answer because I go in to movies based on books with a very particular mindset. I look at the movie and the book as two separate things. This keeps me from being disappointed and allows me to enjoy the movie. I have to do this or I would hate the Harry Potter movies for not acting out the books word for word and be mad every time one of Nicholas Sparks' movies isn't exactly like the book.

That being said, there is one time when I am pretty sure Hollywood really messed up the chance to bring a great book to life. I know there are many people who don't like The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown but I loved that book. I though it was fun and interesting and the entire time I was reading it I wished I had pictures to go a long with all the paintings and places that were being described.

I was already disappointed in the movie when they announced Tom Hanks as the lead. Now I love Hanks but he is not at all how I pictured the character, not in appearance and not in personality. I was also disappointed with the actress who played the female lead as she wasn't how I pictured her either. When I finally saw the movie I went in with an open mind but just felt the movie didn't capture the intensity of the novel and I was really let down.

I am cautiously awaiting the movie release of Angels and Demons. Please don't let me down again.


Maree said...

I didn't really enjoy the movie either. It seemed like every time the action got going, they stopped for a history lesson. And all that the actress seemed to be able to say was "What?" which was very annoying.
Um. Happy Weekly Geeks!

prophecygirl said...

I thought the Da Vinci Code book was amazing, but the movie was awful. Such a bad adaptation, unfortunately.

melissapilakowski said...

I wonder if either of those books really lend themselves easily to movie adaptation. So much of the books are hidden in the details, which of course the movie can't fit it all in. I've only seen bits and pieces of the DaVinci Code on HBO, but I'm not impressed. I wasn't hoping for much, though.

Penny (aka Yooperchick) said...

Honestly, after hearing that Tom Hanks was cast for the role, I couldn't even bring myself to watch the movie...I was THAT disappointed in the selection. I'm not sure if I will see Angels and Demons. I think I will send my hubby to watch it first (he just finished the audiobook) and then have him tell me if I should go or not. :)

kaye said...

I read the hard cover copy of The DaVinci Code that did have pictures of all of the historical places, paintings and other facts in the books. It made the reading very good. I enjoyed the movie as well. (I also have to seperate the book/movie to avoid dissapointment). I am looking forward to Angel's and Demons.

One movie I absolutely hated and wished I could "un-view" was "The Seeker" based on Susan Coopers series "The Dark is Rising". What a mess!

SariJ said...

I do believe this was one movie I turned off. I loved the book, but the movie was a disaster! I love Hanks but even he could not save this movie, and half the time he looked like he was wondering how he got himself into the mess.

Steph Su said...

The problem with having a guy like Tom Hanks playing such a popular literary character is that Tom is so high-profile, we basically have this image of him as being Tom Hanks, and he never is fully able to pull off the Robert Langdon (is that his name? it's so long ago, I forget) image. Sigh.

Angie said...

The worst movie adaptation I've ever seen was Anne of Green Gables The Continuing Story. I thought the first 2 Anne movies were good, and stuck to the book really well. But the third one, which was supposed to cover the last 5 books of the series, was so different from the books that the characters names were the only thing that remained the same. It was awful.

Paxton said...

Wow, your first paragraph is almost exactly the same as mine. I feel the same way, the book and movie are two different things and are not meant to be compared. Sometimes that's hard to do.

I too loved Da Vinci Code the book (but I liked Angels & Demons more) however I was happy with the movie. While Tom Hanks was not my first choice (that would be Mark Harmon), I thought he did okay. Besides, Ian McKellan was perfectly cast. I mean PERFECTLY.

Good article.

Paxton Holley
Cavalcade of Awesome

Bernadette in Australia said...

I agree wholeheartedly Erika - Da Vinci Code the movie is a very poor adaptation (I liked the book too - it was a great romp of a thriller). I try to do as you do and view the movie as a separate entity to the book but when it is a direct adaptation you have to give some consideration to the way they've interpreted the characters and story.

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