Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Films Adapted from a Novel or Play

Yesterday, my oldest friend asked me for suggestions for his film course this fall---what three films adapted from a novel or play would I teach in a Film Appreciation course? I do not teach film, but I sure appreciate them. Here is what I sent him:

Top 3:

1. 2003 City of God (Cidade de Deus) - Braulio Mantovani from the novel by Paulo Lins

2. 2004 Million Dollar Baby - Paul Haggis from Rope Burns: Stories from the Corner by F.X. Toole

3. 1972 The Godfather - Mario Puzo, Francis Coppola from the novel by Mario Puzo

Other top favorites, by year:

1984 The Killing Fields - Bruce Robinson from the article The Death and Life of Dith Pran by Sydney Schanberg

1985 The Color Purple - Menno Meyjes from the novel by Alice Walker

1986 Stand By Me - Raynold Gideon, Bruce A. Evans from the novella The Body by Stephen King

1988 The Unbearable Lightness of Being - Jean-Claude Carrière, Philip Kaufman from the novel by Milan Kundera

1989 Born on the Fourth of July - Ron Kovic, Oliver Stone from the autobiography by Ron Kovic

1991 JFK - Oliver Stone, Zachary Sklar from the novel Crossfire: The Plot That Killed Kennedy by Jim Marrs and the novel On the Trail of the Assassins by Jim Garrison

1993 (66th) Schindler's List - Steven Zaillian from the novel by Thomas Keneally

1994 Quiz Show - Paul Attanasio from the novel by Richard N. Goodwin

1994 The Shawshank Redemption - Frank Darabont from the short story Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption by Stephen King

2002 Adaptation. - Charlie and Donald Kaufman from the book The Orchid Thief by Susan Orlean

2004 Sideways - Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor from the novel by Rex Pickett

2004 The Motorcycle Diaries (Diarios de motocicleta) - José Rivera from the books Con el Che por America Latina by Alberto Granado and Notas de viaje by Ernesto Guevara

2007 No Country for Old Men - Ethan and Joel Coen from the novel by Cormac McCarthy


* These films were all nominated for an Academy Award in the adapted screenplay category. I'm sure I've missed some good ones, right? Incidentally, if you want to visit a good site on Korean films, go here.

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