Books Into Films, 2011 Edition

Leonardo DiCaprio

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Like many bibliophiles, the idea of a book-to-film adaptation can cause me both joy and great distress. Will it be like The Godfather, where the film is clearly superior to the book, or will it be the opposite, miscast and unfairly butchered? Modern version of The House of Mirth, I’m looking at you here.

NPR just did a great round-up of film adaptations that will be coming out this year. I’m most interested in seeing Jane Eyre, Water for Elephants, and The Help, though this also reminds me to bump We Need to Talk About Kevin up higher on my wishlist.

For me, it’s easier to take a chance on a film version when it’s of a book I’m not entirely that in love with in the first place. I keep hearing rumors of a film adaptation of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, one of my favorite books of all time, and the possibilities for tragedy make me shiver. I’m equally wary about the new remake of The Great Gatsby, another of my favorites, shot in 3-D in Australia with Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby. Will it be an entertaining trainwreck, or does it actually have a shot at doing the film justice?

Only time will tell.

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4 Comments

Filed under Favorites, Fiction

4 responses to “Books Into Films, 2011 Edition

  1. when will Water for Elephants be showed?

  2. Marnie

    I think that the best film adaptations tend to be from pulp or genre works, where the director has room to stretch and feels less fidelity to the literary nature of the text. Hitchcock did some of his best work this way. I’m cringing at the prospect of 3D Leonard DiCaprio as Gatsby!

    • Marnie, for me, one of the cases where the film surpasses the movie is “The Godfather,” which was a very pulpy book and thus totally supports your theory.

      Re: 3D Gatsby–I know. I just can’t even wrap my head around it. Yikes.

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