It’s movie and television award season, and once again I haven’t seen any of the front runners (unless The Last Jedi’s Oscar nom for Best Sound Editing counts). I did start watching Mudbound on Netflix a few weeks ago, but between this and that, haven’t finished it…yet.
I will though, because (spoiler!) I have it on good authority that we’ll be reading Mudbound in the very near future for the Wine Lovers Book Club, and unlike some people, I like to watch screen adaptations of books I read.
Besides the obvious—Harry Potter, Game of Thrones—what are your favorite book-to-screen adaptations? Here are a few of mine.
(Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.)
Anne of Green Gables
I fell in love with this classic middle grade series written by L.M. Montgomery a little later than most; I think I was in high school at the time. But I watched the series starring Megan Follows first with my mom and sisters, and it’s the epitome of sweet goodliness—exactly the kind of thing I’d want my daughter to watch, if I had one. The story follows Anne, an imaginative and vivacious orphan, as she turns the world upside down in the home and town of her adopted parents, a brother and sister who never had children of their own. There are lots of lessons learned, but not in a preachy way.
I recently watched the new series on Netflix, Anne with an E, and it was good too, just not as wonderful as the Megan Follows version. For one, the series focuses on the darker side of Anne’s life prior to her adoption, which, while more realistic, upped the age range in terms of appropriateness in my opinion.
Gillian Flynn’s book was one of our Wine Lovers Book Club reads, and boy did it spark some interesting conversation! Some of us (including me) loved it, others hated it. If by some chance you haven’t read the book or seen the movie, and have been untainted by spoilers, please read the book first. And then comment below when you get to the twist (so good!).
In the film adaptation, Rosamund Pike captures the complexity of Amy’s character perfectly. You’ll hardly recognize her from her earlier work playing Jane Bennett in Pride & Prejudice. As an added bonus, Carrie Coon, who seems to be everywhere now—Fargo (2017), The Leftovers, The Post,
Mindhunter—stars as Ben Affleck’s sister.
Still on the fence? My husband—rabid consumer of anything true crime—still talks about this movie.
For some reason, I lumped Wild into the same category as Eat, Pray, Love, which I did not love (neither the book nor the movie). When I finally read Wild, I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, it’s based on a true story, which isn’t normally my thang, but the finding-myself-through-adventure plot makes for an inspirational page turner. And the movie is good, too! It captures the spirit of the book and allows you to empathize with Cheryl, played by Reese Witherspoon (who also starred in the excellent series based on Liane Moriarty’s Big Little Lies), even in her unlikeable moments.
I’ve read Wild a couple times now, and it’s one of those movies that sucks me in every time I stumble upon it on TV.