39 Movies That Are, In Fact, Better Than The Book…Part 3

21. Starship Troopers (1997)


Directed by: Paul Verhoeven

Written by: Edward Neumeier

Based on: Starship Troopers (1959) by Robert A. Heinlein

Why it’s better: While Robert A. Heinlein’s novel has been debated for its alleged pro-military (and, some would argue, fascistic) agenda, Paul Verhoeven’s film is very clearly a satire. Though it’s wildly misunderstood as time goes on, the biting social commentary of the movie has also become more and more relevant.

22. Jackie Brown (1997)

jackiebrown.jpgDirected by: Quentin Tarantino
Written by: Quentin Tarantino
Based on: Rum Punch (1992) by Elmore Leonard
Why it’s better: In adapting Elmore Leonard’s novel — Quentin Tarantino’s only adaptation to date — the filmmaker made protagonist Jackie Burke a black woman named Jackie Brown, casting Pam Grier in a role that paid homage to her blaxploitation past. What would be a straightforward thriller becomes something distinctively Tarantino with a unique style and endless winks to cinematic history

23. Fight Club (1999)





Directed by: David Fincher

Written by: Jim Uhls

Based on: Fight Club (1996) by Chuck Palahniuk

Why it’s better: It largely comes down to the ending, so spoiler alert: In the novel, the explosive malfunctions, while in the film, there are multiple explosives that do in fact detonate, taking down several skyscrapers. It plays into the film’s tone, which is mercifully more critical of Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) and his agenda than the novel is.

24. Requiem for a Dream (2000)


Directed by: Darren Aronofsky

Written by: Hubert Selby Jr. and Darren Aronofsky

Based on: Requiem for a Dream (1978) by Hubert Selby Jr.

Why it’s better: Like all of Darren Aronofsky’s films, Requiem for a Dream contains haunting imagery that sticks with you long after you’ve finished watching. But this one is especially, relentlessly brutal. While the novel is similarly stark and upsetting, the movie manages to unnerve and unsettle in a way that only film can.

25. The Lord of the Rings (2001–2003)


Directed by: Peter Jackson

Written by: Peter Jackson, Barrie M. Osborne, Fran Walsh, and Tim Sanders

Based on: The Lord of the Rings (1954–1955) by J.R.R. Tolkien

Why it’s better: Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy is one of the best adaptations of all time. It streamlines Tolkien’s unwieldy novels — and while diehard fans of the books may lament some of the changes, the screenwriters were deliberate and thoughtful about what they cut out and what they left in, which is largely what makes the films so successful

26. Mystic River (2003)


Directed by: Clint Eastwood

Written by: Brian Helgeland

Based on: Mystic River (2001) by Dennis Lehane

Why it’s better: Dennis Lehane is an excellent storyteller, which is why he’s so often adapted. But his stories tend to play better onscreen than in print, and Mystic River is the most notable example: The film’s powerful performances (led by Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, and Kevin Bacon) add a level of depth and emotional resonance lacking in the novel

27. The Notebook (2004)


Directed by: Nick Cassavetes

Written by: Jeremy Leven

Based on: The Notebook (1996) by Nicholas Sparks

Why it’s better: Every Nicholas Sparks book/movie is roughly the same, and if you’re not a fan of treacly romance, tearjerking drama, and heavy-handed morals, they’re probably not for you. But onscreen, The Notebook managed to appeal to audiences outside of the normal Nicholas Sparks crowd solely because of Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams. This is on them.

28. Casino Royale (2006)


Directed by: Martin Campbell

Written by: Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, and Paul Haggis

Based on: Casino Royale (1953) by Ian Fleming

Why it’s better: For all its ups and downs, the James Bond film series has left a much more lasting impression than Ian Fleming’s novels. Bond is a cinematic icon — and he’s at his best in this quasi reboot, which allows for a more complex iteration of the character. In particular, Bond’s (Daniel Craig) reaction to the death and duplicity of Vesper Lynd (Eva Green) is more honest and relatable onscreen.

29. The Prestige (2006)


Directed by: Christopher Nolan

Written by: Jonathan Nolan and Christopher Nolan

Based on: The Prestige (1995) by Christopher Priest

Why it’s better: Because it’s about magic, The Prestige relies heavily on misdirecting its audience — and while both the book and the film pull it off, the latter’s big reveal is more effective simply because it’s so visually startling. Nolan’s adaptation is also darker, more tightly paced, and ultimately more thrilling than the novel.

30. Children of Men (2006)


Directed by: Alfonso Cuarón
Written by: Alfonso Cuarón, Timothy J. Sexton, David Arata, Mark Fergus, and Hawk Ostby
Based on: The Children of Men (1992) by P.D. James
Why it’s better: The film version of Children of Men takes plenty of liberties in adapting the P.D. James novel, but it smartly retains many of James’ big-picture ideas. Most significantly, it turns the story into more of a thriller. With Cuarón at the helm, it’s at times an unbearably stressful viewing experience that makes those underlying themes all the more potent




Author: mccullum001

I'm a 27 year old, who really doesn't know what I want to do...I have the education, but nothing to show for it...Stay Tuned!!!

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