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From The Books To The Movies: Get To Know The 10 Best Adaptations

Literature is often a fundamental source of inspiration for cinema. However, this inspiration does not always give good results. Films adapted from books that fail to maintain the narrative quality of original works are a common complaint from viewers and critics. However, there are good and significant exceptions that deserve to be remembered, check it out!

City of God (2002)

Paulo Lins' novel was the first to show the complexity and evolution of Rio's favelas, the rise of organized crime, their battles and to portray these communities as they really are with an inside perspective. Fernando Meirelles, in one of the best national adaptations, captured the strength of the original, wiping out the author's sometimes tiring descriptions, creating a modern classic about crime, struggle and the poor reality of Brazil. The soundtrack, which accompanies the passing of the years in the film, helps to bring the viewer closer to this complex and exciting story.

Fight Club (1999)

Written by the cult Chuck Palahniuk, the book gained enormous success after being adapted for cinema in the film by David Fincher. Here, we find a narrative in which men unhappy with their place in society make use of violence as an outlet for their inertia. Known for his biting social remarks, the work also tells of the sarcastic humor that made the film a kind of classic in modern cinema.

Harry Potter (1998-2007)

The films that adapt the Harry Potter books have left an extensive mark in contemporary popular culture, earning a lot of fans. Both films and books have become vital to a base of millions of people. Such an achievement would not be possible if there was not a level of quality and respect with the source material present in the adaptations, however disparate or problematic some of them may be.

Lord of the Rings (2001-2003)

Tolkien's literary classics finally received a fitting adaptation through Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings trilogy. Bringing all the epic quality of the books, the films adapt and cut different moments of Tolkien's words in favor of leaner stories that preserve the essence of Middle Earth.

Psycho (1960)

A masterpiece by Alfred Hitchcock, the film is based on the novel by Robert Bloch - and this, in turn, originates from Ed Gein, a farmer from the state of Wisconsin who killed humans and made objects out of their skins. Hitchcock put on his brilliance and earned the title of ‘master of suspense’ adding complexity to images. Bernard Herrmann's famous score - and his iconic snippet of the shower scene - are another triumph that eclipses the romance.

The Godfather (1972)

Considered one of the best films of all time, The Godfather is an adaptation of the book with the same name by the author Mario Puzo. The technical and narrative prowess is by director Francis Ford Coppola, adapting the story makes the Godfather film a work that many consider to be superior to the book.

The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

Stephen King may be known for his horror literature, however, the author is versatile, delivering even quality dramas that have already yielded classic films. An example of this is The Shawshank Redemption. Here, we follow the trajectory of Andy Dufresne, a banker that goes to jail to spend to two life sentences for the murder of his wife and lover, which he claims he did not commit. After its release, the film quickly became a classic, getting nominated for seven Oscars.

The Shining (1980)

Impossible not to mention, we have another adaptation of Stephen King on the list, even though radically deviated from the source material. The director, Stanley Kubrick, worked only on adapting books, which makes his filmography almost a list of classics adapted separately. Eccentric as he was, the director saw in King's book the opportunity to tell a story of his, full of puzzles that generate discussions to this day about the true nature of the plot.

The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

The Silence of the Lambs is a 1991 American psychological horror film directed by Jonathan Demme from a screenplay written by Ted Tally, adapted from Thomas Harris' 1988 novel of the same name. The classic introduced Dr. Hannibal Lecter to the world, who was played threateningly by Anthony Hopkins. The film has its macabre roots in the pages of the books of Thomas Harris, who was the responsible for conceiving and developing the cannibal psychopath through his police books.

To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)

Adapting the classic book by Harper Lee, the feature “To Kill a Mockingbird” shows a city in Alabama undermined by prejudice. With that background, we follow the lawyer Atticus Finch trying to free the black Tom Robinson from a false rape charge. Like the book, the film has become something of an instant classic, keeping its relevance intact even today.

Now that you know all these amazing movies and books, don't forget to check them out! 

The article above was edited by Marina Ponchio. Liked this type of content? Check Her Campus Casper Libero home page for more!

Maria Cunha

Casper Libero '23

Journalism student, passionate about cinema and theater. I love my family more than anything in the world and I am grateful to God every day for it. São Paulo and soccer fan. Enthusiast of reality shows and soap operas. ????
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