Why I Love Book to Film Adaptations

You hear one of your favourite books is being made into a film. It’s a book that’s so iconic to you and holds a dear place in your heart for whatever reason so you’re probably going to be a bit apprehensive to see whether the film producers get the casting right, the setting right, whether the scenes play out the same as they did in your head or whether they’ll completely change the ending or leave important parts out. Those are all factors we think about when we hear a book we love is going to try and conquer the big screen but today I want to talk about why, in spite of all the apprehensions, I absolutely adore film adaptations.

booktofilm

Now, I’m not claiming I love every single film adaptation that has been made of every book I have loved – that would be impossible and there has been some pretty shocking ones that I’d rather not think about (It’s Kind of a Funny Story, for example – please, if anyone reading has read this book and seen the film and agrees that it was an abomination, please get in touch so we can discuss further). But on a whole, I generally love a good film adaptation and get extremely excited when I hear of a new one in production.

I understand that not everyone loves reading. As much as I can’t believe you wouldn’t love reading, I understand that some people don’t and having a film adaptation of a book allows non-readers to join you in a world which they weren’t previously privy to. Some people disagree but I think everyone should be entitled to enjoy something beautiful. It’s all art; whether it’s in the pages of a book or on the big screen in front of you. Art is there to be appreciated.

Another reasons why I tend to have a slightly different outlook to film adaptations is because I rarely go into a film version of a book with any high expectations. I know that a film is going to be different; that places aren’t going to look the same as they did in my head and that sections are going to be missed out for a variety of reasons. I like to see them as two separate entities rather than a carbon copy. I think carbon copies of one another would ruin the reading and/or viewing magic for either.

Here are some of my all-time favourite book to film adaptations:

The Perks of Being a Wallflower: This film was so true to the book and I believe they got the casting perfect. Although you can debate Emma Watson’s American accent, I think the cast choices made this film for me. Charlie is such a unique character in the book but Logan Lerman’s performance captures his character development spot on.

The Book Thief: My favourite book ever and believe it or not, I actually watched the film first before even reading it. There are a lot of missing parts to this film and if you’ve read or even looked at the book, you’ll understand. With over 500 pages of the most miniscule detail, it would have been extremely difficult. But the film portrays the basics of the story and most importantly, the emotions of the story, perfectly.

The Beach: There’s some subtle changes in this film to the book but none so that make it glaringly obvious. Both the book and the film capture the sights, sounds and sensations of this beautiful beach he visits and the trials and tribulations he faces on his travels. It’s a very deep story and I think both the book and the film portrays that.

I’d love to know your opinions on book to film adaptations! Are you a fan? Which ones have you loved and which ones do you wish you had never seen? Let me know!

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26 thoughts on “Why I Love Book to Film Adaptations

  1. I like book to film adaptations! It took me a long time to separate the film result from what the book used to be, but once I got that down I enjoyed it all so much. I studied film and sometimes you just can’t translate the written word 1:1 on screen and that’s okay too. However, I love seeing characters come to life! The only thing I don’t like is when the actors and the films completely override my memories of the book. That always makes me a little sad…

  2. I really enjoyed reading Safe Haven but when it came to the movie I was really disappointed. I agree with The Book Thief, it missed some points but the atmosphere was still there, I cried like a baby. Great post.

    1. Ah I haven’t read Safe Haven! The Book Thief was amazing – but considering how long and wordy the book is, it would have literally been impossible to include everything. The film still caught the essence of what the book is saying and I think that’s the most important thing (: I cried a lot too! xx

  3. The Perks of being a wallflower and The Book thief are my favorite book to movie adaptations! I read the books before the movies and loved the movies still. Also I think The Fault in our stars is a pretty good adaptation too.

      1. The TFIOS cast was perfect. They caught the essence of the book and it made me cry. Just like the book did. Although in the book thief, I would have liked to see those pictures that were in the book. Apart from that, The Book thief movies was incredibly good.

  4. I so agree! I am always most focused on whether or not a film captures the feeling and message of a book over whether or not it was 100% accurate. And admittedly sometimes certain things from the book HAVE to be in the adaptation for that to happen, so sometimes I am really angry when they leave stuff out (i.e. District 11 sending Katniss the bread in the first book WHY DID THEY LEAVE THAT OUT WHY) but in generally I’m pretty forgiving as long as the movie gives me the same feeling as the book did.

    I’m really happy to hear that you like The Book Thief adaptation. The Book Thief is my number one favorite book of all time (excluding Harry Potter of course, because hello) and I have yet to see the movie, and the longer I go without seeing it the less I’ve been sure I wanted to haha.

    I think my favorite adaptation would have to be Catching Fire/ Mockingjay Part 1 but TFIOS was super super good too. And I 100% agree that Perks was an AMAZING film. I cried through pretty much the entire thing haha.

    http://www.katsyxo.com

    1. Oh oh oh you just HAVE to watch The Book Thief! It IS different I won’t lie and they left one of the most heartbreaking scenes from the book out (when Liesel finds Max in the crowd when he’s on his way to the concentration camp and she gets whipped and omg I can’t) which I was gutted about but other than that, it was perfect and I think the actors are what made it so perfect. Geoffrey Rush was INCREDIBLE. The Hunger Games films are brilliant – I recently made my boyfriend watch the first one, he hasn’t read the books because he doesn’t read but he became so obsessed with the films hahaha! xxx

  5. The film adaptation of Witi Ihimaera’s “The Whale Rider” is really different from the book. The core story is there; it’s just that there are so many factors about it that have been changed. Despite that, both the book and the film are remarkable works in their own way. In fact, the film is one if my all-time favorite films.

  6. I LOVE adaptions! Personally, I like being able to watch a movie, then read the book and be able to imagine the actors who portrayed the characters. I like to watch a movie, and be able to fill in the confusing bits with information I learned from the book. For me, they go hand in hand. I love watching a movie based on a classic, and then reading the book. It makes me love that world more when I can see it so clearly. Like with Jane Austen. She is my favorite author, and my favorite thing is to watch adaptions of her books. My all time favorite adaption of a book would be the 2009 BBC version of Jane Austen’s Emma. That movie perfectly captured all the quirks of the characters and all the funny bits, and the vibrant colors of the story.

    My least favorite film adaption was the Percy Jackson movies. I watched the first one before reading the book. As a movie, I quite liked it, so I read the book. …IT WAS NOT THE SAME AT ALL! I still like the movie, but as far as adaptions go…. it was shitty. And another I disliked where the Twilight films. I actually liked reading the books. Despite everything that’s wrong with them, they were entertaining. And while I read the books, in my head, they were funny! Idk if it’s just the way I read it, but Bella was a hoot, Edward was more dashing, and Jacob was a complete dream boat but in a cute puppy (haha) way. It just wasn’t cheesy to me as I read it. The movie version though makes me laugh because it’s so corny. I think they could have done so much better with those films.

    1. I agree with the Twilight films! I really did like those books when I read them at school and like you said, despite everything that was wrong with them, they were so addictive! But the films were pretty awful and cheesy and just oh god. Did that stop me watching them though? Absolutely not haha! I haven’t read nor seen any Percy Jackson but I’ll be a bit apprehensive now if I ever do! xx

  7. Oh, yes I absolutely agree!! Actually, I do love every single book to movie adaption. No matter how bad. It’s insane to see the characters in the book and locations and all come to life and that’s what I absolutely love – even if the movie is shit on its own. It’s definitely a great medium to get people to read the original books as well.

  8. The Perks is my favourite adaptation ever ❤ It's the book come to life. I still haven't seen The Book Thief, even though the book is among my favourites, I just know I'll cry a lot and every time I want to watch a movie I'm not in the mood to cry haha

  9. I personally adore film adaptations too! They’re fantastic! I actually am one of the least harsh people when it comes to judging book-to-movie adaptations. For example, The Mortal Instruments movie was one that I adored watching, and I was slightly confused to hear all the hate about it. Very confused honestly!
    I haven’t actually watched any of these adaptations you mentioned and neither have I read the books *hides in shame* BUT I do plan on reading them, since I have The Book Thief sitting, waiting EVER SO PATIENTLY on my shelf! It’s been almost a year that it’s been sitting on my shelf *cue gasp*

    1. Oh you have NOT! I am disappointed! Hehe not really but seriously, put that on your reading list for next year then watch the film immediately after and report back to me with what you thought! You will notice they leave a lot of stuff out but the book is so long and SO detailed it would have been impossible xx

  10. I agree that TFIOS is an amazing book to film adaption. I actually watched the film then the book, but enjoyed the book a lot! This might sound weird but I like reading the first two 50 shades books but when the film came out I was so disappointed, the casting wasn’t what I thought it should of been and I thought the acting and how they did it was just all wrong. I feel the just completely ruined it by doing the film.

    Little miss Minnie // http://littlemissminnie1993.blogspot.co.uk/?m=1

    1. Ahhh really? See, I quite liked the first 50 book (the second one just felt SO samey so I gave up after half) but I thought they got Ana really well. I’m still not convinced with Jamie Dornan but I actually quite shamefully liked the film haha! xx

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