Saturday Seven is a nifty little blog hop with lists galore. Check out the rest of the Saturday Seven offerings at Long and Short Reviews.
I can guarantee the movie/TV version of a good book will be disappointing. From beloved little bits they leave out to inconceivable plot deviations –Why do some directors feel they can take a book that has been a classic for decades and rewrite it?—the movie and tv versions never live up to expectations. I hesitate to watch any new version of a book I love but I am not hesitant to voice my discontent.
Every great once in a while, the movies do get something right—or close to it. Here are 7 times—in my opinion—the right person was cast in a particular part. Disclaimer: I’m not saying the entire production is good—just that these people played the characters pretty close to the way I saw them in my head when I read the book. I have NEVER liked the movie version of a book better than the book.
ONE. Clark Gable as Rhett Butler in Gone with the Wind
Clark Gable is the reason any remakes of this great story will have a very hard time. Vivien Lee is the perfect Scarlett, as well. And Olivia de Havilland as Melanie. And Leslie Howard as soppy Ashley.
TWO. Ian McKellan as Gandalf in Lord of the Rings.
This was touchy because I have been reading and rereading these books since seventh grade. McKellan was everything I hoped Gandalf would be.
THREE. Sam Heughan as Jamie Fraser in Outlander.
I love these books and was both excited and terrified when the TV series came out. Some things have not pleased me, but this kid is perfect.
FOUR. Tom Hanks as Robert Langdon in the Da Vinci Code.
Okay, I am a Tom Hanks fan but I had an image for Langdon in mind when I read the book and I thought Hanks did way better than average.
FIVE. Harrison Ford as Jack Ryan—Patriot Games, Clear and Present Danger.
I love Tom Clancy books. Alec Baldwin did a serviceable job in Hunt for Red October and Chris Pine as the new Ryan in Shadow Recruit has possibilities but as far as the book-to-movie productions—Harrison is my fav.
SIX. Benedict Cumberbatch as Holmes.
I grew up watching Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce as Holmes and Watson and didn’t think anyone would ever do as well in the role as Rathbone. I have to say that Andrew Scott is also my favorite rendition of Moriarty ever!
SEVEN. Hugh Laurie as Bertie Wooster
Not to forget Stephen Fry as Jeeves. I’m obsessed with British comedy both in literature and on BBC America. I didn’t realize there was a Jeeves and Wooster series until I long after I read the books and I approached it with trepidation. How could anyone do justice to my favorite scenes? This is one series I can recommend wholeheartedly as a faithful (mostly) recreation of the stories.
Morgan Freeman as anyone.
As far as book-to-movies, he is an excellent Alex Cross in Kiss the Girls and Along Came a Spider. I’m not a huge James Patterson fan—the Alex Cross books are the only books of his I enjoy, and Freeman makes them actually better in the movie versions.
I have low expectations from most book-to-movie experiences. Can you tell? Have you had better experiences? Tell me what movies made from favorite books made you glad you watched?
7 thoughts on “Saturday 7: Seven Times the Movies Got it Right (Or Close Enough)”
You sure came close to what I’m working on for next week but I;ll keep mine a secret. Your list was great and so many are my favorites. I do need to look up Jamie Frasier in Outlander though. Just never got a chance to see it. Really nice list.
I am in 100% agreement with 2, 4, & 5 – . The others I can’t say as I never saw the movies. What a great post!
My Sat. 7 is https://msfavsthgz.blogspot.com/2018/02/my-leading-men.html
This made me literally LOL: Morgan Freeman as anyone.
I agree very much with your list, esp Gandalf and Sherlock. GREAT job with those.
Your entire list was on point, but I especially couldn’t agree with you more on Ian McKellan. He was the perfect Gandalf in every single way.
This is my Saturday Seven post for this week.
I think as Tim Robbins as Andy Dufresne from Shawshank Redemption got it pretty much right, too. He has that tenderness yet hard edge that works for the story and movie. He was pretty spot on as Dave Boyle in Mystic River, too. Good list!
Here’s my Saturday Seven post: http://bit.ly/2DZCksy
I agree 1000 % with every choice in this blog!!! There is no other Sherlock for me after seeing Be. Cumberbatch. I grew up with Basil Rathbone, too, but Benny boy is damn FINE as Sherlock!
Thanks, Peggy. I hear a new season of Sherlock is in the works. I certainly hope that isn’t just wishful thinking on the Interwebs.