Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Top Ten Tuesdays: Books to Movies

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This week we're being asked to list our Top Ten Favorite Books to Movies. As painful as book to movie adaptations can be, the changes they make, the things they leave out... there are some great ones out there, even if they aren't as good as the book (they pretty much never are) they are enjoyable. Here we go (in no particular order)....

1. Around the World in 80 Days (Brosnan version)

Although I have a fondness for David Niven and his version of the Jules Verne classic, I have a passion for Pierce Brosnan. I love him as the proper English gentleman who has to keep his word on the bet. I also like the transformation he goes through as Princess Aouda influences his thinking.

2. The Great Train Robbery

The play between the Sean Connery & Donald Sutherland characters is great. This is an instance where I like the movie better than the book. And it's one of the few heist movies that I really like. Probably because it's set in the Victorian era.

3. War of the Worlds

This is one of my favorites by Wells. And I don't care how many times they remake it, you can't beat the 1953 version.

4. Hound of the Baskervilles (Jeremy Brett)

Much as I love the Basil Rathbone version which is actually true to period--unlike most of the Holmes movies with Rathbone, Jeremy Brett lived and breathed the essence of Holmes. He read the original stories and was a stickler for making sure the writers stayed true to the canon. Absolutely the best Holmes ever!

5. The Thin Man

The movie is absolutely better than the book here. Myrna Loy and William Powell play Nick & Nora to perfection. And I love the screwball comedy. The series of movies gets a little out of control towards the end, but they're all fun.

6. Gone with the Wind

Love Vivien Leigh as Scarlett and Clark Gable as Rhett. She's feisty and determined. I just wish she'd figure out sooner who she really loves. Ashley is such a waste of her time....

7. Murder on the Orient Express

David Suchet is the better Poirot. But I love the 1973 version with its star-studded cast. I thought this version captured the over-all feel of the Christie classic. (I still need to see the Suchet version....)

8. Rebecca (1940)

Alfred Hitchcock certainly knew what he was doing with suspense. The casting is perfect. Dame Judith Anderson is wonderful as the woman you love to hate, Mrs. Danvers. I love the old classics.

9. Gettysburg (Killer Angels by Michael Shaara)

I'm not usually a war movie buff. There are just a few that I've seen that I actually like. I love this movie and have watched it over and over again. It would be worth it just for the visuals and the music. But I like the way it follows characters from both sides of the war. I enjoyed learning more about Joshua Chamberlain (one of my favorite personalities from the Civil War) and General John Buford. Two officers who made a difference by holding their ground when it counted.

10. The Maltese Falcon

I love it when a movie takes a genre I don't usually like (like private eye/hard-boiled) and turns it into something I like to watch. Humphrey Bogart as Sam Spade--can't be beat!

I made it to ten!


Unknown said...

I ADORE the Pierce Brosnan version of Around the World! One of my favs! And I couldn't agree more about Jeremy Brett. :) You've got some great choices here! I'm also a big fan of the Thin Man movies, Rebecca, and The Maltese Falcon.

Red said...

I want to read The Maltese Falcon. I loved the movie so I'm hoping I have a similar reaction to the book

Misha said...

There is a movie on Murder on the Orient Express?! I didn't know. I want to watch it! I liked Rebecca too.

Falaise said...

The Suchet version of Murder on the Orient Express is very interesting. It is far more sombre than the Finney version and a bit more oblique. It suggests that Poirot is havng a real personal crisis over the investigation and leaves the ending very uncertain. You should definitely try and get hold of a copy.

Teacher/Learner said...

Wow, I love all the classics you chose! The Great Train Robbery was terrific--I thought I was the only one who had heard of it :) And to me, Humphrey Bogart is the one & only Sam Spade.

Playing Librarian said...

Oooh.. I love Murder on the Orient Express!

Irene Palfy said...

mhm.. Maltese Falcon.. I LOVE Peter Lorre! ;")
And Murder on the Orient Express: I like this film very much! :")

Yvette said...

Ooooh, good topic, Bev. I like your choices. We share similar tastes on some films.

Maybe I need to join this meme???
You KNOW how I love lists!

Bernadette said...

I do agree with you about Rebecca - one of Hitchcock's best movies and a really good interpretation of a great book. I'd have to disagree about Murder on the Orient Express though - I couldn't stand Albert Finney as Poirot and I found the rest of the cast just too over the top melodramatic - the recent version with David Suchet probably followed the book a little less but I liked it more. Even though it portrayed Poirot in a more religious way than I suspect Christie ever imagined him, it did at least depict some of the internal struggle he had over the idea that he would willingly not follow the law - in the 73 version he seemed to take to that idea far too easily for me.

But life would be boring if we all agreed all the time eh?

Tasha said...

-Pierce Brosnan is looking dapper in that top hat.
-Donald Sutherland wears a fine mustache.
-I have not seen the 1953 war of the worlds, but I have seen the Tom Cruise version multiple times, as it features Justin Chatwin, my beautiful birthday twin (although he's 1 year older than me).
-The Thin Man - what a great movie! Myrna Loy wears a ruffly striped dress that I want.
-I love the novel The Maltese Falcon, but I watched the movie a few weeks ago and fell asleep through nearly the whole thing.

Anne@HeadFullofBooks said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anne@HeadFullofBooks said...

OMG- I can't believe that I've never even heard of Around the World in 80 Days with Pierce Brosnan. How did I miss it?
Good and varied list. Thanks for visiting my blog.

LBC said...

I feel like every one of these lists I read I think of something that could have been on my list. On your list, that something is the Maltese Falcon, which I love love.

Here is my list: http://hawthornescarlet.blogspot.com/2011/02/top-ten-tuesday-on-silver-screen.html