We all enjoy movies but many of us are still surprised at how many movies are actually based on books. That being said should we assume that behind every good movie is a good book? Sadly this is not always the case, but it is fun to see which books eventually become movies and whether the movies are as good as the books or perhaps even better. By reading and then watching we can get very different stories and we alone can be the judge.
Several movies recently honoured with Golden Globe and Oscar nominations and awards are based on books. One example of this is Hugo, based on the 2007 children’s book The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick. This must have been a huge challenge for Martin Scorsese considering his filmography. His grandchild wanted to be able to watch one on his movies and suggested this book and it looks like he delivered.
Going back to 1995, we were introduced to Stephanie Plum a Jersey gal from the suburbs who becomes a bounty hunter in the book One for the Money by Janet Evanovich. Eighteen novels later with plenty of movie speculation it finally comes out in theaters in February 2012. There are plenty of Plum fans out there who can’t wait to see what kind of job they did with this book.
Brad Pitt hit a home run with Moneyball based on the 2003 book Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game by Michael Lewis. Critics raved about this movie. Based on a true story, sports fans and non-sports fans alike were drawn into this amazing tale.
I am sure you have heard of the Stieg Larsson trilogy of books that started with the translation of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo in 2008. This is a fabulous set of books and the rush to the movie version resulted in three Swedish-made films; now Hollywood is taking a crack at it. Both versions have been very well reviewed so watch them all. I think it will be very interesting to see how these interpretations will differ.
So check out all your favourite movies old and new and see if they have a book companion. Were there any surprises? Which one excelled in the transition and which one disappointed? Which books do you think would have made a great movie? It’s a great conversation starter.
Patricia Milner, Head of Reference Services