When you read books, you come to realize that there is an intention behind every word that a writer pens down. You may not be able to articulate exactly what it is that it’s being used to achieve but you can bet that it is adding to your experience of reading it. Good adaptations are a mindful of the details, understanding their importance and working to deliver what the author envisioned. However, not all movies do justice to the novels they adapt and here are some that crucified the much loved books. Watch at your own risk, though we’d suggest you steer clear of them to keep your memories of the books untainted.
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The Percy Jackson series
The Percy Jackson fandom rejoiced announcements were first made to adapt the series for movies. They were in for a rude awakening however, because what the production houses delivered was quite unlike the story and the characters they had grown to love. They made so many unnecessary changes that for readers it was soul crushing experience. They changed the ages of the children, changed the rules of Gods not being allowed to talk to their children which overall just killed the essence of the characters and the story.
The Time Traveler’s Wife
The novel was a piece of art, but the movie could quite possibly be called a piece of trash. To those who only watched the movie, it might have seemed like good entertainment, but the readers know that it was a massacre of the original book. A book was dark and bleak, with dynamic characters and a focus on the gift’s melancholic properties which made for a great story. What the audiences got instead of all that was run-of-the-mill romance/drama that was an insult to the novel.
Teenagers face a tough time getting taken seriously and Paper Towns feels like just another jab in this regard. It only seems like a silly teen movie with kids enjoying themselves on a road trip with only a worry to reach prom on their minds, but this book nothing like that. The book tells a deep compelling story of youngsters struggling with their problems. It is a serious story, about serious subjects but if you were to watch the movie alone you wouldn’t know. To get an idea of how far gone this movie is you just need to look at why the teens were in a rush to get to New York. According to the movie, they wanted to get there in time for a prom but in the book they were trying to get there so that they could stop their friend Margo from killing herself.
The only thing the movie did for this amazing trilogy was use its bare skeleton, i.e. boy finds egg, dragon hatches from it, boy meets new people, goes on adventures and fights battles. If that is how adaptations go then sure you can name it after the book, but honestly that just can’t be the definition of movie adaptations. It’s the details that build the story, the character and what they do, how they think and what they’re driven by but this film completely drained the story of its emotions and in doing so, buried the wonder that it inspired.
To those who’ve seen Stardust, it makes for a great watch especially how magic is shown. It’s sure to capture your imagination. Compared to the original writing however, it doesn’t hold a candle. Neil Gaiman’s book is a brisk, charming fairytale, the version by Matthew Vaughn is slow and lacking. The way spells and magic work and its simplicity all but stump the reader. It’s as if the movie just had to be completed and the fact it was just good was enough to green light its production and release. With how Hollywood usually treats books, it’s still a good shot albeit it leaves much to be desired.
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children
Another story with great potential was butchered when it was adapted for movie. The infuriating thing about this production is that the ages of all characters and their powers were changed just to enforce romantic subplots to drive the narrative. This completely unnecessary changes to gain a wider audience turned this into a romance like any other story taking away from the author’s intentions with the book. The worst sin however, was turning the most badass character Emma, rely on a guy for safety, crushing all hope that it would ever deliver to the fandom what the book promised.
These are some of the movies that mutilated the books they were based on. Be that as it may though, they do make for a good watch so make sure you give it a try. If you liked the films, you can bet you’ll love the books. It’s a great starting point for avid readers to explore characters and stories even more. So go ahead and give it a try. All you need is a good cable plan that gives you access to them all. Spectrum Silver channels boasts of some of the best movie channels like the HBO and SHOWTIME so you’ll definitely be covered.