Books Adapted for Films in which Changes were made to story and characters that you actually liked

Galactic Bus Driver

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"The Postman." While the film was not a great film, it wasn't a bad film to kill a tub of popcorn with. For the first ten minutes or so, it sticks to the book like white on rice, then takes a sharp left where the book takes a sharp right, never to reunite. The book was better, by far, but I don't think it would make a good film while taking the basic premise and doing their own thing with it made, not a great film, but one where I could enjoy a couple hours diversion and not be troubled by the liberties being taken with the plot.

I have to disagree with Peter Jackson making anything remotely like a good film from "The Lord of the Rings." The problems in the film can be summed up in a single line, spoken by Faramir, in the second film. "The ring will go to Gondor." The power of the ring was a subtle power, corrupting slowly. Jackson used it as a sledgehammer at every turn. Add in the portrayal of Aragorn as some sort of 'reluctant hero' and the movies were doomed.
 

Narkalui

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I liked Jackson's portrayal of Boromir. He's the heir to the Stewarship, why on earth would be be happy about Aragorn swanning into Minas Tirith and usurping his birthright? "Gondor needs no King" spot on characterisation which leaves things open for one of the most fabulous lines invented for the film: "I would have followed you my brother, my captain, my King!" Although there was little reference in between to Boromir slowly changing his mind...
 

Stephen Palmer

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The second film is still good, but when you compare it with the first and third...
The second film does a great job of showing Faramir's dilemma, his relationship with his appalling father, and with his brother. I liked that.
The portrayal of Aragorn is terrific. He is reluctant in the book, because he understands his very low chances of success.
 

Toby Frost

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Film two is the weakest of the three
I thought the third film was the weakest, as it seemed to contain endless battles and showdowns, like watching a very big game of Warhammer. The second film has problems - I think it falls into two halves, the talky half and the fighty half - but it does contain some of the best stuff. Jackson was always going to have a struggle, because Tolkien is held by his fans in a regard only comparable to Shakespeare - and nobody objects to cutting bits out of Shakespeare to put it on the stage - but I think he succeeded in making a trilogy of very good films out of the books.
 

CupofJoe

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To Kill a Mocking Bird
I love the film and I love the book.
But I feel the film holds together better as a continuous narrative.
 

Galactic Bus Driver

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The second film is still good, but when you compare it with the first and third...
The second film does a great job of showing Faramir's dilemma, his relationship with his appalling father, and with his brother. I liked that.
The portrayal of Aragorn is terrific. He is reluctant in the book, because he understands his very low chances of success.
It's good that you think so. We'll have to agree to disagree.
 

Finch

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I'm a big fan of Philip K Dick. There have been a number of films based on his work. But I will just mention two
The 1982 Blade Runner , the name change from Do androids dream of electric sheep was an improvement . Dicks liked the idea of every thing turning into dust , but in the film it was permanently raining , with water ruining down walls , something that looked good on film.
An other film from a Dicks story, the 1990 version of Total recall , again an improved name from We can remember it for you wholesale . Clearly story titles are not Dicks strong point . I liked the comic book look of the film . Dicks ending of the world being over run by mice was an ending looking for an improvement .
 
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BAYLOR

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The Shining had a few differences, I remember sitting confused in the cinema when Jack Torrance killed chef Dick Hallorann, I was like "but they go to Florida with him".
Also the hotel was ok at the end, in the book it was destroyed when the boiler exploded.
I dislike the film immensely.
 

Anthoney

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This may not be a popular choice, but how about Starship Troopers? Personally, I thought the film was a better film than the novel was a novel, if that makes any sense.
You made me spit my coffee. Starship Troopers is one of the worst book to film conversions of all time. It's the only one I hate worst than Dune.
 

Toby Frost

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I suppose that depends what you think of the book. I think the book - the execution of it, not the "moral message" - is very poor, and the film is an intentionally stupid parody of it.
 

BAYLOR

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This may not be a popular choice, but how about Starship Troopers? Personally, I thought the film was a better film than the novel was a novel, if that makes any sense.
I liked the book and dislike the film.
 

hitmouse

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I quite like both, though the book is a bit laughable in many respects. The film is a clever and funny satire.
 

tobl

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You made me spit my coffee. Starship Troopers is one of the worst book to film conversions of all time. It's the only one I hate worst than Dune.
i love the book and the movie is ok for fun only. as for dune, which adaptation do you mean? there's a movie adaptation that is... not entirelly bad, and a tv adaptation that is quite good
 

Anthoney

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as for dune, which adaptation do you mean? there's a movie adaptation that is... not entirely bad, and a TV adaptation that is quite good
I'm OK with the TV adaptions. They had their flaws but they were working with Sci-Fi TV budgets. The movie made the power of the Fremen all about some stupid sonic device that was given to them. They might as well as stole the Fremen's souls.The movie had a big budget, great cast and good effects (for the time). It should have been a great movie.
 

Teresa Edgerton

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Honestly, for me it has almost always depended on which one I encountered first: the book or the dramatization. Because if I like something enough in one medium enough to seek it out in another, I am going to be disappointed if whatever I loved in the first one is missing, as it almost always seems to be. So if I saw the movie first, the book comes across as inferior, and if I read the book first, I never like the changes in the movie. (But if it is a really, really faithful adaptation I may excuse a few small changes and like them both equally.)


Although I will make an exception for Boromir. I thought Jackson's Boromir* was a better character than Boromir in the books, who I felt was under-developed. I always had the impression that there was more to him in Tolkien's mind than effectively came across in the books, and whether that "more" was the same more that we saw in the movie or not, the movie version made him a more sympathetic and tragic character. His death in the movie really broke my heart; in the book I just wished they would stop eulogizing him and get on with the story.

___
*Though perhaps I should say Sean Bean's Boromir, since I think a lot of what I liked was in how he acted the part as much as in the actual script. And also, well: Sean Bean.
 

Stephen Palmer

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Entirely agree - Sean Bean was brilliant in LOTR. His death scenes always make me cry.

Recently I finished my annual listen to the BBC 1981 adaption, which I still rate as the greatest adaption of all. Michael Graham Cox in that was terrific as Boromir. One of the other standouts in it is Peter Vaughn. I'm not so keen on the guy playing Denethor in the film, but in the radio adaption Vaughn is absolutely compelling.
 

The Crawling Chaos

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I only like film adaptations when they offer a departure from the original material (novels or otherwise). It's a complete waste of my time when filmmakers just take the book and film it without adding a new layer to it - even when that ends up being for the worse.

- Blade Runner (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?)
- The Prestige
- American Psycho
- The Shining
- Under the Skin
- Stalker (Roadside picnic)

all come to mind.
 

Randy M.

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Don't Look Now

The Daphne du Maurier novella is okay, though I've never been as impressed by it as others, but the Nicholas Roeg movie I remember as extremely effective.

Randy M.
 
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