We all know that there is a multitude of movies to pick through that have been adapted from incredible written works. The hard part is figuring out which ones are worth watching. Everyone has their own opinion on the best book adaptions out there. In no particular order, here are some of my favorites that are sure to keep you busy during this pandemic.
1. Gone Girl
Written by Gillian Flynn and made into a movie in 2014, this film/book adaption is sure to keep you on your toes. The movie is filled with a rock-star cast, including Rosamund Pike, Ben Affleck, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry, and Emily Ratajkowski.
This movie starts off by telling the story of a missing wife (Rosamund Pike) and a suspicious husband (Ben Affleck). With many twists and turns along the way, you won’t be disappointed.
Each of these actors shows a type of range you would never expect from them. I mean, Neil Patrick Harris played Barney Stinson, and Tyler Perry was Madea for crying out loud. It is truly thrilling to watch.
Written by Emma Donoghue, the book was adapted in 2015. This is one of the best book adaptions out there. While staying true to the original story, Room still excites viewers every step of the way.
This movie is about a woman who was kidnapped and held hostage for years. In captivity, she mothered a child with her capture. Throughout the story, you are taken through their experience trapped as their trapped in an 11 x 11-foot room, and eventually, their miraculous escape to freedom.
Brie Larson is so good in this role that she won Best Actress at The Academy Awards in 2015.
3. The Hunger Games
The Hunger Games series was written by Suzanne Collins. She has since become one of the most successful writers of the 21st century. The novels were adapted into movies beginning in 2012.
These films star Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson, Woody Allan, Lenny Kravitz, Elizabeth Banks, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Stanley Tucci, and Julianne Moore. Need I go on?
The Hunger Games is a yearly competition in a dystopian world where two members from each district (there are twelve) compete to the death. The winner of the games can keep their life and bring back food and wealth to their district, many of which are struggling. These books follow one character in particular, Katniss Everdeen. She flips the system on its head when she volunteers as tribute. This is just the beginning…
4. Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory
Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory is one of the all-time best book adaptions, premiering in 1971. Although the book had a different name, Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, written by Roald Dahl back in 1964, it still holds up.
This movie far surpasses Charlie and the Chocolate Factory that starred Johnny Depp in 2005. This original is a classic for a reason. As soon as you tune in to these wonderful Oompa Loompas, you will be transported back to childhood. (Unlike Mike T.V. who is transported into a smaller version of himself). If you know, you know.
Gene Wilder does not disappoint as Willy Wonka. You will want a golden ticket and an everlasting gobstopper until the end of time. And that flavored wallpaper? Forget about it.
5. The Martian
The Martian, written by Andy Weir in 2011, is a science fiction novel about a man who finds himself stranded on Mars. In the movie, which premiered in 2015, Matt Damon plays the main character, Mark Watney. After a failed departure from their base on Mars and no way of getting home on his own, Watney fights for his life as the only living being on the planet.
Through sheer wit, determination, and humor, Watney and his team hatch a plan to get him back home. Will there be bumps and mishaps along the way? Absolutely. Will you get to see Matt Damon’s butt? You betcha.
This story is sure to be one of the best book adaptions in your “book” as well. Don’t take my word for it, go watch it.
6. Hidden Figures
Written by Margot Lee Shetterly and adapted into a movie in 2017, Hidden Figures is truly one of the best book adaptions out there. Not only is it entertaining, but it is incredibly inspiring.
Starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monáe, and Kevin Costner, Hidden Figures (2017) is the story of three incredible black women, Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, and Mary Jackson who made history as NASA scientists. They were tasked with the job to put John Glenn into orbit, all while dealing with the significant racial divide at the time.
If you want to watch three strong black women break down boundaries and speak their minds, this is the movie for you.
7. The Help
Written by Kathryn Stockett and published in 2009, The Help is a need to see/read.
The movie, which premiered in 2011, is packed with big actors such as Cicely Tyson, Viola Davis, Emma Stone, Jessica Chastain, and Bryce Dallas Howard.
Based in the 1960s, Emma Stone’s character, Skeeter, comes back home to her southern town after spending time away at college. She begins interviewing “the help,” black housekeepers of well-to-do families, which causes an uproar around the city. Her story turns the segregated area on its head, and sparks much needed change.
If you need a little inspiration in your life, look no further than The Help.
8. Call Me By Your Name
Elio Perlman (Timothy Chalamet) and Oliver (Armie Hammer) will have your heart aching with their incredible chemistry in one of the best book adaptions, Call Me By Your Name.
Originally written as a novel by André Aciman, the movie swept through the 2018 awards season, winning best-adapted screenplay at The Oscars.
The film/book takes you through an achingly beautiful tale about two men finding themselves in each other after a life-changing Italian summer together in the 1980s.
9. The Wizard of Oz
This film is the oldest one on the list, premiering in 1939. Even though it is the oldest, it still holds up today. You will instantly be transported to simpler, more imaginative times, thanks to the original story by L Frank Baum. Can you believe that the original book is 120 years old?
You too will find courage, a heart, bravery, and a brain as Dorothy, Lion, Scarecrow, and the Tin Man take you along for the ride on their way to Emerald City. If you can get your hands on the Wizard Of Oz novel, you will find a few twists you never expected.
10. Silver Linings Playbook
Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence are enough of a reason to want to watch this movie. When these two actors get together, chemistry explodes from the screen.
Cooper’s character, Pat, is a struggling divorcee who finds himself in hot water when he finds his wife cheating on him. After returning from a mental health facility, he moves in with his parents and meets Lawrence’s character, Tiffany.
Tiffany is a recent widow with problems of her own. The two form an unlikely pair as they train for a dance competition together. All the while, they grow a bond that will change the course of their lives for the better. Also starring Julia Styles, Robert De Niro, Chris Tucker, and Jackie Weaver, this book adaption is a must-see.