Lydia Schoch has a Wednesday challenge on her blog. I've only recently begun blogging with her becoming acquainted with from Berthold Gambrel.
The Wednesday challenge this week is which books we loved have been turned into movies or TV Series. Here goes:
The Far Pavilions by M.M. Kaye.
Great book. I've read the poor paper back book I got at a book exchange store in town more times than I can count. Recently bought the e-book as my eyesight works better today when I can control the font size.
I told the story to my 8th grade literature class (I did not read stories. At that age you can't take your eyes off the students for a second or things start flying.) In my novel Human Sacrifices, Jan, my protagonist reads this story to her students too, and catches hell from the parents and administrators.
It was made into a min-series. I didn't watch it when it came out and rented the video. The first half of the book on video was done only in flash backs so I don't know if on the original series they did the story of Ash as a child growing up as a playmate for the crown prince. The video only covered the second half of the book as Ashton Pelham-Martin comes back to India from England. They messed it up terribly. Ben Cross and Amy Irving play Ash and Anjuli, which wasn't a problem, but they got the story out of order. Ash goes off to Afghanistan and fights surviving the massacre of the regiment because he can blend in with the inhabitants, then he escorts Anjuli to be married. Bass Ackwards. It made no sense and put the climax of the story in the beginning instead of the end. Stupid stupid stupid.
I first read the story in the early 80's. When Dumb King George II decided to invade Afghanistan in 2002. I knew from reading this book that it would be the single biggest mistake in American History. I think that the fact we have soldiers stationed there who were in diapers when we invaded the grave yard of empires it's proven my assessment.
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien.
My 7th grade literature teacher, Mrs. Mohica, read this over a nine week period. The summer between 8th and 9th grade I read the Lord of the Rings.
Peter Jackson did a superlative job with all three books. He stayed as true to the books as a visual medium would allow. He cut out Tom Bombadil, but he can be forgiven for that. One complaint, when Frodo tries to offer the Nazgul the ring at the battle with Faramir before going into Mordor is senseless. Sauron would know where the ring is and attacked to reclaim it. Third book not needed.
The Hobbit started off well. stuck to Jackson the story, but then just had to turn a short book into three movies. Staying with the book would make basically a movie and a half. He could have stretched it to two movies and it would have OK, but the fight with Smog in the mountain where they cover him with molten gold was just plain ridiculous. It made no sense for Smog to go after the men of Lake Town when those trying to steal his treasure were in the mountain. The extended fight scene between Thoren and Ork king was merely gratuitous.
I Robot by Isaac Asimov.
I read I Robot in 9th grade. It's an anthology of short stories giving the evolution of robotics. Asimov created a whole universe based on the 4 laws of robotics in a series of books. None of them resemble the movie with Will Smith. It was an okay movie. They made a movie based on Asimov's masterpiece short story Nightfall, and it was so god awful I turned it off and almost burned the video tape before returning to the Blockbuster.
A Boy and His Dog by Harlan Ellison.
This was a short story about an after the nuclear war apocalypse where dogs and humans were telepathically linked. The movie starring a young Don Johnson stayed fairly true to the story. What was left out of the movie was Ellison's punch line. In the story it ends with the question "Did I find love," The answer is, "Yeah, a boy loves his dog."
Ellison also had a short story entitled: Brillo. It's about the first robotic police officer. Brillo stood for metal fuzz. It's a sixties slang thing. A number of TV shows and movies have been made on this theme. Most notable is the Robo Cop movies. Ellison was pissed off that he wasn't give credit for inventing the genre.