Community Post: 8 Great Books That Inspired Great Movies

8. The Godfather

Right off the bat, I am going to break my own rule. I did not read the Godfather book and know very little about it. But the movie was out of this world good that it would be a travesty if I left it off this list. Marlon Brando cements his status as a top 5 actor of all time in his role in this classic film. Al Pacino becomes a legend as Michael and the list goes on and on. A must see book and definitely the next book I read.

7. The Shawshank Redemption

What many people do not realize is that 1. The Shawshank Redemption was actually a book (written by Stephen King) and 2. that the cover of the book is the bottom half of the movie poster. The book is more of an adventure than the movie, but both are equally compelling. Morgan Freeman gives a stellar performance, while Tim Robbins has made a career out of his role as Andy Dufrense. As most Stephen King novels are, the book captures the imagination in a way only King can do.

6. To Kill A Mockingbird

A FAR better book than movie, Harper Lee’s novel is, without a doubt, a top ten book. It’s criticism of racial relations and descriptions of childhood innocence are unmatched. Gregory Peck saves this movie, in my opinion. His portrayal of Atticus Finch is award winning, but the rest of the cast is mediocre at best and the adaption to film leaves crucial plot elements by the wayside.

5. The Wizard of Oz

From someone who has actually READ THE BOOK (#hipster), it is sad that people only know the movie. Both take the audience on a whimsical journey through the world of Oz, but in different and equally wonderful ways. Both deserve a viewing.

4. The Da Vinci Code

Dan Brown and Ron Howard each tell this exciting adventure in similar and equally exciting ways. For Brown, the story of Robert Langdon is told through masterful plot, deep character development and surprising twists and turns. Howard does stray from certain elements of the book but maintains the necessary components of the plot to tell his version of the infamous code.

3. Alice In Wonderland

Alice in Wonderland has been adapted in many formats. It has been a book, a movie, a play, even a television show. That being said, this list is about a book AND a movie. The book, by Lewis Carroll, is underrated and is probably my favorite book of all time (so, I am a little biased here.) But, the Disney Movie is a wonderful adaptation. I encourage those who disagree to read the book and watch the movie. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.

2. A Beautiful Mind

It’s almost not fair to put this one on the list, because they tell such different stories. The movie is fabricated with lies and divergents from the real story, but Ron Howard’s brilliant direction along with Russel Crowe in by far his best performance gives the movie such high ranking. Meanwhile, the book is not nearly as interesting as the movie, but it adds a stronger connection to John Nash in a way that no movie could ever do.

1. The Great Gatsby

It is hard to make a movie as good as the BEST BOOK OF ALL TIME. That being said if you check my blog then you will also see the movie was underrated. Yes, it did not transform our opinions of modern society like Fitzgerald’s classic novel did. But, it did rekindle the ever needed skeptical fire of society and the values that we stand for. And that alone, puts it high on this list

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