Top Ten Best/Worst Movie Adaptations


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they will post a new Top Ten list that one of the bloggers there at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join!

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday topic is our Top Ten Best and/or Worst Movie Adaptations. I’ve split my list into five of each, although my “worst” adaptations are on the list simply because they didn’t adapt the source work as well as they could have (and SHOULD have). Making the “worst” list doesn’t automatically mean I didn’t like the film, though, so please keep that in mind! I just think that some things could have been done better.


hungergamesThe Hunger Games (2012)

This was easily one of the best film adaptations I’ve ever seen. Jennifer Lawrence WAS Katniss, and I just loved the way the filmmakers adapted the book. Awesome!

narnia narnia2
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe AND The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian (2005, 2008)

Prince Caspian wasn’t as faithful to the books as the first film was (good thing, really, since so much time is just spent with the Pevensies wandering around through the woods), but I still loved every single second of both of these films. I felt like the casting was spot-on (Ben Barnes’ unfortunate accent aside!), and just loved the way the magic of Narnia was brought to life.

lotr1 lotr2 lotr3
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (2001, 2002, 2003)

Can anyone really argue with how amazing this trilogy was? From the epic scope, to the casting, to the costumes, to the settings, EVERYTHING was just perfect. I love these films so much. ♥

The Princess Bride (1987)

My love for this film knows no bounds! The book took me several tries to get through because it’s just, well … weird. The film, however, was a favorite from the very beginning! I love every single thing about this movie.

Stardust (2007)

Truthfully, I liked the film version MORE than the book in this case, particularly the ending, which had a much more “happily ever after” feel to it than the book.

Honorable Mentions: The Hobbit (2012), Pride & Prejudice (2005), Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part One and Part Two (2010, 2011)


twilightTwilight (2008)

Oh, this movie. I kind of loved it – and the rest that followed – simply for the laughter they gave me! When you and your friend go to the theatre to see them simply so you can point and laugh and make inappropriate comments, the film is probably not the best. I mean, “Spider monkey”? Really?

lightningthiefposterPercy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief (2010)

Okay, I love these books. And honestly – if this were a film standing on its own merit and not a book adaptation – the film is actually really good. Logan Lerman is amazing as Percy (even if he IS too old for the character), and I also really liked Alexandra Daddario as Annabeth. My biggest issue was how much they changed of the plot, because it makes it hard to adapt the rest of the books, and they’re at least doing Sea of Monsters because it comes out later this year. So this isn’t a terrible movie, it’s just a terrible adapation, if that makes sense.

poaHarry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)

Honestly, this is probably the best filmed of all the movies, at least until you get to Deathly Hallows. Again, my issue was what was left OUT of this movie: the explanation of Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs and the importance of the Marauder’s Map. So this is one of those films that isn’t bad at all, it was just not everything I was hoping it would be. (This is probably exacerbated by the fact that this is easily my favorite HP book, so obviously, your mileage may vary!)

voyageThe Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (2010)

It wasn’t that I didn’t like this movie, because I did like it. It just wasn’t as magical and amazing as the previous two. Some of that could no doubt be attributed to the change in director and the change in production company, but this one just didn’t seem as seamless as the first two. I loved Edmund and Lucy, Caspian was also great, and Eustace was amazing. But it just wasn’t the same experience, and that was disappointing.

davincicodeThe Da Vinci Code (2006)

My biggest issue with this movie was that it was just … boring. I enjoyed the book a lot and was expecting something faster paced and more exciting. The relationship between the two main characters was off, too, because they played it more like a mentorship instead of the semi-romance it was in the book, and honestly it was all just weird. I was really not a fan.

Honorable Mentions: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009), The Golden Compass (2007), Blood and Chocolate (2007)

So those are my picks this week! What did you choose? Please link me!


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23 Responses to Top Ten Best/Worst Movie Adaptations

  1. Nikki says:

    Omg, great minds really DO think alike!! XD I totally agree about Dawn Treader as well – of all the movies it was probably the one I was looking forward to the most (it’s my favorite of the books). But yeah, it definitely didn’t feel as magical as the previous ones. :( AND I totally agree about PoA – WAY too much was left out there. Really unfortunate.

  2. LOTR! <333

    Hee, I also mentioned The Da Vinci Code on my not-so-good list. Both are good actors but oh man, their chemistry just fell flat…plus, sorry Tom Hanks but you are not how I pictured Robert Langdon to be…

    My TTT

  3. Anne says:

    I love the Chronicle of Narnia books, too, but was a bit disappointed with the Voyage of the Dawn Treader, too. I didn’t think that the Da Vinci Code was so bad. Hmmm. But then i wasn’t a huge fan of the book. Please visit my blog, I am doing a Blogoversary giveaway. Anne@Head Full of Books

  4. ChrissiReads says:

    I don’t know how The Hunger Games slipped my mind. I absolutely loved that film! The Prisoner of Azkaban made my list, but as one of my favourites! I know what you mean though about leaving things out, so completely understand why it makes your worst side!

  5. Angelica says:

    I might be one of the few who hasn’t read or watched the Lord of the Rings! I need to get on that!
    My TTT-

  6. This has to be the tenth time I’ve seen Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief listed under the heading of ‘Worst Adaptation’ on a blogger’s Top Ten Tuesday posts this week. I’m definitely going to be giving that particular adaptation a very wide berth!

    I’m absolutely kicking myself as I can’t believe I left out the Lord of the Rings adaptations on my own list this week! The sheer scope of the novels is daunting, but what Peter Jackson managed to accomplish in three short films is nothing short of ingenious. He really made the stories accessible to a wider audience and they’re certainly films I can watch over and over again.

  7. Cee says:

    I loved the Princess Bride. Everybody in it was so amazing, especially dreamy Cary Elwes. Lol. I never get tired of watching it.

    I totally agree with The Da Vinci Code. I love Tom Hanks and Audrey Tautou, but not even those two can save that movie.

    Here’s my top ten!

    • Merin says:

      Oh, yes, Cary Elwes! And then he went and did Robin Hood: Men in Tights, and I swooned over him even more. Definitely one of my very first celebrity crushes!

  8. lipsyy says:

    hahaha I feel EXACTLY the way about the Twilight films! They were so bad they were good! I really love to hate them and seeing them at the cinema with like minded friends was hilarious! I swear we almost got thrown out for laughing so much!

  9. lipsyy says:

    *the same way*

  10. I absolutely adore the LotR movies. They made my best list, too. I also love The Princess Bride and Stardust, but haven’t read either book. The first Twilight made my worst list, too. Great list!
    Natflix&Books’ TTT

  11. I completely agree with Hunger Games – not maybe as brilliant as the book, but I love the way they adapted the dystopian world to screen and made it very tangible and believable.

  12. booklover217 says:

    The Hunger Games was by far the best adaptation from book to movie. I am really curious to see how they do the sequel.

    My TTT:

  13. Ohh! Incredible list. I cannot believe I forgot Lord of the Rings on my list, but I definitely agree! And then the Narnia movies! They were all great except for that last one.

    And then Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief! I’ve actually only ever read the first book in that series and the movie did not do it justice. I’m hoping that the second one is better, but I’m not holding out hopes on it!

  14. Quinn says:

    We’re in total agreement with The Princess Bride and Stardust. I definitely liked the movie of Stardust more than the book. Oh and Percy Jackson! Why did they change the plot so much!!! Lame!

    HP 3 is my favorite book is well, and I agree that HP3 is best film of all 8 (in my opinion). Although it did leave some info out, it doesn’t bother me that much. The film is my favorite.

    I didn’t find The Da Vinci Code boring, though. I really liked it, and I ended up reading the book after seeing the movie because I liked it so much.

    • Merin says:

      I am actually really interested in seeing how they’re going to fix what they cut out of the Percy Jackson film. The second one builds so much on those storylines – particularly Luke – that I don’t know how they’re going to salvage it!

  15. Great list-I liked the Davinci Code book much better than the movie, but my husband (not a reader) thought it was great- go figure-life must be nice for those non readers at times

  16. Great list! I also love Stardust and The Princess Bride (they’re on my list too!) Here’s my TTT, check it out If you get a chance! :)

  17. Yay LOTR love. :) And THANK YOU. I’m a little upset by how many people are saying that The Prisoner of Azkaban was a good adaptation. Um…with all the (somewhat major) alterations made from the original book? I don’t think so. Glad you agree!

  18. Haha, I’m like you. I kinda love the Twilight movies too. It’s fun watching them and how disastrously bad some of the things depicted are.

  19. Gah, I just cannot make myself watch The Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons, especially the latter as it’s one of my favorite books and I don’t want that to change. The Hunger Games was done brilliantly and ha ha, you’re so right about the Twilight series. I remember watching them with my BFF and pausing from time to time just to laugh or puke or stare. LOL

    • Merin says:

      I actually REALLY liked the film version of Angels and Demons, but haven’t read the book so can’t speak to how well it was adapted. But as a film? It was pretty darn amazing!

  20. Pingback: Stacking the Shelves #56 | Read and Reviewed

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