On the heels of the immensely popular The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, the Hollywood Theatre starts screening the sequel, The Girl Who Played with Fire today. Now, I’ve never read any of the books and to be honest, hadn’t heard of them until we started screening Dragon Tattoo, so I’m a little late to this party. However, lots of you have read the novels and spoke very highly of the adaptation from book to film. Some even called it the best they’d ever seen.
With that as a jumping off point, I’m here to pose the question as to what you believe to be the greatest book-to-film adaptation you’ve ever seen is. I’ll give my thoughts in a moment, but in pondering this question, I realized just how many films of books I’ve seen without having read the source material. I promise that I do read, but they don’t seem to be able to adapt my favorites (such as A Confederacy of Dunces, which is probably for the best). Sadly, this means my options are quite diminished and I can’t include the likes of A Clockwork Orange (or nearly all of Kubrick’s films, save one), Bubba Ho-Tep, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, or any Stephen King (save one) among countless others. So here are some of my choices:
1. High Fidelity — Even if the film makes me wonder why Rob would even want to get back together with Laura. The spirit of the book remains in tact after a trip from London to Chicago.
2. Let the Right One In — No surprise since the author of the book scripted the movie (though that’s no guarantee for success). The book offers a few more surprises, but the film is a masterful, minimalist work that focuses on the most important aspects of the novel.
3. The Shining — It’s the “save one” mentioned twice above! Actually, the film greatly surpasses the novel, which was a fairly clunky read for me. Kubrick practically hypnotizes the audience. And I’m practically shivering thinking about the setting as I type.
All right now! Let’s hear what you got.