Your favorite novel or series is getting turned into a TV or movie adaptation, you’re beyond excited, right? Well sometimes those adaptations can make you very excited, or they can just be disappointing. Today, I have decided to talk about some of my favorite novel adaptations. These are in no particular order.
The Hunger Games
Were these movies the best adaptations? No, but they stuck enough to the books. It’s hard to take a first person POV and adapt it to a third person POV in a movie; it just won’t have the same effect. The books were done through Katniss’ POV, so you really get a sense of what she is going through. However, the movies can’t do that, but I thought Jennifer Lawrence was able to portray the emotions well enough. Beyond all of that, the movies stuck to the story well and the chemistry between the characters is what helped me really like these adaptations. Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson really did a good job of bringing the characters to life. I also felt that all the actors played their characters well and Lenny Kravitz was a happy surprise to me as Cinna. He did a fantastic job. Besides the characters I thought the movies did stick to the storyline of the books pretty well. I mean sure there were things that had to change, like Madge giving Katniss the Mockingjay pin rather than Katniss finding it randomly at the Hobb. It’s expected when you get a movie adaptation that there will be changes, so that didn’t bother me. Movies/TV shows should be different than books, or it won’t feel like a new experience to me. However, some changes can be very bad for adaptations. (That’s a topic for another blog though.)
Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants
I have a very fond memory of this series and the movies. I remember thinking the movies weren’t as good as the books, but I felt the movies were a good representation of the books if you hadn’t read them. So, to me, if you can watch the movies and get the story as close to the books without straying too far from them, you have a good adaptation. I also haven’t seen these movies or read the books in a long time, but I still remember liking the movies as much as I did the books, and I really enjoyed the books. So, it still is one of my favorite movie adaptations.
The Series of Unfortunate Events (TV/Netflix)
As it states above this is the TV adaption for Netflix that I’m talking about, NOT the movie adaptation with Jim Carrey. I love the Series of Unfortunate Events. It was a series of books that made an impact on my life by shaping my darker sense of humor. They are a more black comedy style of book, so if you don’t like dark humor, the books and TV series are not for you. However, the adaptation with Neil Patrick Harris as Count Olaf is wonderful! He really did a good job of making the villain funny, yet very creepy at the same time. Much like the actual character is, in the novels. The other reason I love this adaptation so much is that Netflix gave each book two episodes which translates to three books a season, culminating in three seasons, so that you get the full story without editing too much out.
I’m sure you can tell by now that I am a huge fan of Harry Potter. The books are great and growing up I was even more into them than I am now. So, when it was announced that we would be getting the books turned into movies, I was beyond excited. I was probably setting myself up for disappointment considering how much I was anticipating this movie. However, watching the movie I got the same experience as I did reading the book, which was magical! The special effects, the casting, and the closeness to the book really made it feel like I was seeing the first book come to life. I felt like the whole series of books were magical as well, there were one or two of the movies that I was wasn’t as happy with because of the content that was cut, but overall the movies stuck to the main storyline very well. Which, as I stated before is something I use to determine a good adaptation, but it’s not everything to making a good adaptation.
The Summer I Turned Pretty
This is a series on Amazon that I found over the summer. When I started it, I did not know that it was adapted from a trilogy by Jenny Han. However, it didn’t take me long to figure that out and I read the trilogy after I was done with the first season. Now, usually I don’t watch the adaptation before reading the books, but this time I did and I actually preferred the TV series. Now, this series isn’t finished on TV yet, but the changes made in the series vs. the books were better in my opinion. Except for the whole Debutante thing, but that’s just because I thought some of that plot was rushed. If you don’t know in the TV series, Belly (that’s her nickname, real name is Isabel) chooses to become a Debutante and make her first appearance that summer, despite her mother’s objections to it. The TV series also takes some of what happens in the second book of the trilogy and shifts it into the first season of the show. I personally think that the book series was a little boring in places, like some things could have been edited out and it would have still made sense but the books were good as well. I just prefer the changes they made in the show. Jenny Han was also a writer on the series so; it helped to know that she made those changes herself.
I’m sure there were more adaptations that I liked, but these are the ones I could remember while writing this blog. If I ever remember more, and you liked this style of blog, I will do another. Hope you all have had good holidays, and have a great New Year! (This blog was finished just after 2023 started.)