Movies inspired by books, some of the best

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We know that there are many movies inspired by books. In fact, one could say that we live in the age of adaptations of everything. However, there are films that, far from retaking bestsellers and bringing them to the big screen, are modernizations of great classic stories, often from legendary books. They are, in other words, proof that there are universal stories, worth telling over and over again in multiple forms, times and settings: whether as dramas, children’s animations, musicals or urban comedies. Therefore, we have made a list of 10 movies inspired by books.

1. Pretty Woman, based on Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw

book inspired movies

A woman from the lower classes (in this case Julia Roberts) is transformed into a jewel under the care of a gentleman (the good Richard Gere). Obviously, he ends up falling in love with her, that is, with her own creation. This myth is as old as ancient Greece (Pygmalion is a sculptor who falls in love with his own sculpture), but it was George Bernard Shaw’s play, published in 1913, which has since triggered a whole series of adaptations cinematographic.

This is one of Hollywood’s favorite stories. Another of the most famous reinterpretations isMy lovely lady(1964), but there are also more juvenile ones. who can forgetShe is like thatwith Rachael Leigh Cook and Freddie Prinze Jr.?

2. The Lion King, based on Shakespeare’s Hamlet

“To be or not to be, that is the question…” Although it is difficult to imagine Simba saying this iconic line in the middle of the savannah, this Disney classic is, in reality, a “fabulized” version of what is surely the most famous work quoted from William Shakespeare. The king’s brother kills the sovereign to keep the kingdom. Later, the ghost of the victim appears to the prince and tells him to take back the throne. Well, in Hamlet’s case, the specter asks him to kill his uncle, but that’s not something Disney would pick up on, for obvious reasons.

In the end,The Lion Kingit’s the closest thing mouse studies have gotten to a tale of revenge and betrayal.

Movies inspired by books, some of the best

3. Bridget Jones’s Diary, based on Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice

The successful comedy starring Renée Zellweger is a film based on the homonymous book by Helen Fielding, who confessed to having “stolen” the story of Austen’s costumbrista novel. It won’t be set in early 19th-century England, but it picks up everything that’s key: there’s prejudice, social pressure to find a husband, embarrassing family situations, a deceptively charming man, and – most importantly – there’s a Mr. Darcy (Colin Firth). .

The curious fact is that Firth also embodied the proud character in the miniseries that the BBC made of the novel. It seems that he was born to embody this gentleman.

4. To hell with the devil, based on Goethe’s Faust

Who is not familiar with the German legend of Faust let us make a summary: Faust is an ambitious man who is dissatisfied with his life. For this reason, he decides to make a pact with the devil to obtain greater wisdom and, incidentally, the love of the maiden Marguerite. Sounds familiar? That’s because it is one of the stories that has most inspired the arts in general. The German writer Johan Wolfgang von Goethe converted it at the beginning of the 19th century into the famous play that defined the romantic ideal of the time.

In cinema, for example, there have been several “Fausts.” One of the most recent had the privilege of being tempted by a sexy and devilish Elizabeth Hurley: Brendan Fraser, inTo the devil with the devil. This film, by the way, was the remake of another comedy from the 1960s –directed by Stanley Donen–, and which is also based on the myth.

Movies inspired by books, some of the best

5. Sexual games, based on Dangerous Liaisons by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos

book inspired movies

The film starring Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe and Reese Witherspoon transfers to a modern New York the erotic and Machiavellian games of the French novel written by Pierre Choderlos in 1782. This book tells the pranks of the Viscount de Valmont and the Marquise de Merteuil , who sexually manipulate various victims. At the time, it was a critique of the decadent aristocratic sphere that dominated society before the French Revolution.

The 1999 film, however, surprised by transferring these wicked conspiracies not only to modern times, but to teenage high society. Until then, there hadn’t been a movie that treated youthful sexuality in such a way.

6. Clueless, based on Jane Austen’s Emma

This comedy is so much more than the movie that gave ’90s girls the best fashion advice. Director Amy Heckerling took one of Jane Austen’s most humane and flawed heroines and put her story in the perfect place: high school. . Also, we have seen movies based on her books before.

Cher (Alicia Silverstone) is the most popular girl in school and, like her literary counterpart, is noble and well-intentioned, but shallow and vain. Her biggest mistake is patronizing girls who are less popular and therefore “less lucky.” That does not prevent him from starring in her love story (after all, she is Jane Austen) with the only man who confronts her about her flaws. A curious fact is that Gwyneth Paltrow, who was considered for the role of Cher, played Emma a year later in the adaptation of the novel by Douglas McGrath.

Movies inspired by books, some of the best

7. 10 Things I Hate About You, based on Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew

The rebellious Katarina Stratford, played by Julia Stiles, also has her origins in the Shakespearean comedy. In fact, the film is quite faithful to the names of the characters and the entanglements of the play, at least in its approach: Katherine is a woman resident of Padua who has a… complicated character. As part of a conspiracy by Bianca’s suitors, her sister “the Shrew” is finally “tamed” by a cunning knight.

Even so, there is a key difference that has to do with the change of times: in the play – which today might seem a bit misogynistic – Katherine completely changes to please her “tamer”, while in the film, both Kat and Patrick (Heath Ledger) make every effort to leave his sidehaterand stay together. or not?

8. Moulin Rouge, based on The Lady of the Camellias by Alexandre Dumas

Actually, the extravagant musical that celebrates love, freedom and beauty is a mixture of several works. It has the ideals and tragic deaths of Giaccomo Puccini’s opera,La Bohemiabut the love story «a la courtesan» is nothing more than a reinterpretation of the novel by Alexandre Dumas (which, by the way, is based on the real romance that the writer had with a prostitute named Marie Duplessis).

Nicole Kidmantakes the place of “the lady with the camellias” as Satine, while Ewan McGregor’s Christian puts a bohemian twist on Armando Duval’s literary character. Baz Luhrman’s script recovers all the key points: even the painful passage in which Armando / Christian, thinking himself betrayed, emotionally tortures his beloved. How can I forget “I’ve paid my whore”?

Movies inspired by books, some of the best

9. Hear Your Destiny, based on Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens

An orphan who runs away from the orphanage, goes to the city and joins a clan of street children, with a questionable leader who exploits them. Where have we read this before? Of course! In one of the most popular – and acidic – novels by Charles Dickens, which was actually a social critique of the way poverty was perceived and those who suffered from it were treated.

The film starringfreddie highmoreadds the musical factor to this story. Unlike Oliver, August doesn’t need to become a pickpocket to survive on the streets of New York. He only has to play his violin to stun passers-by and get big tips.

10. The Mask, based on Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

book inspired movies

It is well known that the crazy green character, who gaveJim Carreya Golden Globe nomination, is a “hero” who first appeared in Dark Horse Comics publications. However, he is inspired by the bookThe Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, by Robert Louis Stevenson, published in 1886. After all, this is the novel that became the benchmark when it comes to multiple personalities. It recounts the mysterious case of a doctor who tends to transform into a sociopath without being able to control it. In this case, the shy Stanley Ipkiss would be the equivalent of Dr. Jekyll, while The Mask would be the jocular sociopath in him. If we think about it, actually, it is. Zero inhibitions!

Movies inspired by books, some of the best

The entry Movies inspired by books, some of the best was first published in Cine PREMIERE.

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