Apropos of nothing, here are some movies I've been thinking about that are actually better
than the books they're based on. You have to admit, these are the exception rather than the rule.
1. The Last of the Mohicans
. Really, you could pronounce the movie better than the book based solely on the fact that the movie does not feature a scene in which Natty Bumppo dresses up as a bear. Or, for that matter, the fact that it never refers to Hawkeye/Nathaniel as "Natty Bumppo." But there are many other reasons. Michael Mann took a so-so classic book (along with many liberties) and made it AWESOME.
2. I Am David
. Maybe this one is my fault - I read the book and I didn't really "get" it. I "got" the movie. So there you go.
3. The Painted Veil
. I looooooved the movie
so I was really excited to read the book. Too bad it was only meh AND the ending is different, and worse.
4. Gone With the Wind
. This movie isn't better
than the book it's based on, just as good as
it. This is quite remarkable considering how epic and complicated it (the book) is. The casting alone is superb and my sister and I have fun thinking about who we would choose to play the main parts if they ever do a remake of this movie (Rhett Butler = George Clooney and Scarlett O'Hara = ...Jennifer Connely? I don't know if we ever decided.)
5. The Phantom of the Opera
. In this case, I mean the musical is better than the book. I have to wonder if this book wasn't really a classic until Andrew Lloyd Webber made it so, because to me the story seemed uneven and poorly developed.
6. Mansfield Park
. Sorry, Jane Austen, Fanny Price as written in the book may be righteous but she is also BORING. My favorite thing that the movie changed was that we can actually believe that Henry Crawford reforms himself for Fanny's sake. The book never misleads you like that. But in the movie, it's a pleasant misdirection.
What did I miss?