Everybody has been frustrated when a good book gets turned into a bad movie. There are times however, when a good book becomes a good movie as well. I can even think of one not so good book that got turned into a pretty good movie.
I would be interested in hearing what books you think got turned into good movies.
Some for me are
The Marathon Man
The Lord of the Rings trilogy
The Hunt for Red October
I want to thank J. A. Greystone for his discussion "Books not yet turned into movies" in the Book group for triggering my thoughts on this.
I'm looking forward to seeing The Road as well. Great book. But the review I just read of the movie said they messed it up by putting flashbacks to the man's wife in it. The reviewer surmised that the movie makers decided that adding a woman would add appeal, so it wasn't a movie just about men, about the father and son. But come on.....that's the whole point of the story!
When I heard that "True Grit" was a book before it was a movie, and that it had been ruined by being put on the big screen, I assumed that the complaint was true. But it was done by Charles Portis purists who seemingly wanted a word-for-word adaptation of the novel. The truth is, the movie was remarkably true to the book, including quite a bit of the dialogue. The ending was a bit different, but frankly, the movie's ending was better than the book's ending, which was long, tedious and depressing, rambling on after the significant parts were concluded.
I don't mind a movie being a bit different from the book, as long as it's true to the original story and good. They're different mediums, and can't expect to be identical.
That said, the Will Smith version of I Am Legend was awful in its differences from the book. The changes made there didn't make sense to me, and the original story was so much better to begin with. That one irritated me.