Some of the best films have been adapted from books and since there are so many to choose from it would definitely make sense to split this top 5 into two parts… so basically a top 10.
Here are my top 5 book to film adaptations part one.
Based on the Nicholas Sparks (Message In a Bottle, Nights in Rodanthe) novel, The Notebook is viewed by many as a two hour long over the top sentimental love story but for people (like myself) who can appreciate it for what it is, it is simply a sweet love story. Sparks’s books all have a common theme of lost and found love and this being the most successful of all his book adaptations the film obviously struck a cord with the masses as it is deemed as a younger generations Sleepless in Seattle or Dirty Dancing.
Robbie (James McAvoy) and Cecilia (Keira Knightley) are two ill-fated lovers whose lives are irrevocably changed by a false claim made by Cecilia’s younger sister Briony (Saoirse Ronan). Adapted from Ian McEwan’s 2001 novel also called Atonement, this British drama depicts the course of Robbie and Cecilia’s relationship during World War 2, as well as the life and guilt experienced by Briony as an 18 years old girl to an older woman (played by Vanessa Redgrave).
Cormac McCarthy (No Country for Old Men) is a highly revered American author who has published ten novels in 40 years. The film adaptation of McCarthy’s Pulitzer Prize winning book The Road stars Viggo Mortensen as a man who travels with his son in the wake of an unspecified disaster which has turned the environment into a desolate land where food is virtually non-existent. Like many post apocalyptic films the main theme is adaptation and survival and throughout their perilous journey in search of the coast they come across cannibals and the issue of their mortality. This film is touching and a powerful interpretation of McCarthy’s book which is definitely a favourite of mine.
Adapted from the short story Memento Mori by Jonathan Nolan, Memento is known for being one of those rare films that has a unique story and script which makes it popular conversation for those that have seen it. With Jonathan Nolan creating the story who better than his older brother Christopher Nolan (Inception, The Dark Knight) to direct and translate his brothers story on screen. Describing this film without spoiling it for those who have yet to see it is a difficult thing, lets just say the film involves various plot twists, short term memory loss and a non linear story which all lead to nothing being quite what it seems. Whether that is an accurate description or possibly confused you even more Memento is definitely a must see.
When discussing films adapted from novels by the science fiction writer Phillip K Dick, Blade Runner and Total Recall usually come to mind first. However Steven Spielberg’s spin on the 1956 book The Minority Report is a great film that doesn’t always get praised as highly as it should. Minority Report is set in a world where crime has been prevented for years until John Anderton (Tom Cruise) who works for PreCrime is predicted to commit a murder in 36 hours. This leads to a man hunt for Anderton led by Danny Witwer (Colin Farrell ) who believes the system of predetermining murders is flawless. The film is an exciting version of the Dick book with only a few details added (including the character Lamar Burgess played by Max Von Sydow) to the film which enhance the story as a whole.