Ever since the Where the Wild Things Are trailer was released, I keep thinking about other film adaptations of my favorite children’s books. Those that got it right, like the sweet Bridge to Terabithia or the amazing Lord of the Rings trilogy are as good as a fan of those books could've hoped. Other adaptations have fallen short and made me wish they'd never been turned into movies in the first place.
I know I'm not alone in wishing some children's books (and books in general) had been left alone, or at least for a better writer or director to reimagine. Adaptations offer a unique opportunity for us to talk to our children about the many differences between literature and film. The books that delight us can easily be movies that disappoint us; it's a valuable lesson for any media-savvy child to learn.
Personally, I’m wishin’
and hopin’ Where the Wild Things Are is true in spirit, even
if it isn’t (nor should it be) exactly like Maurice Sendak’s classic
tale. From the little that the trailer depicts, Spike Jonze seems to
have captured the story’s ethos without straying too far out there.
This year also brings us the release of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, which was originally supposed to hit theaters last fall and is finally gracing the screen this July. And I know more than a few dazzled mothers, not to mention tweens, who are salivating for New Moon, which is currently filming and comes out in November. Both movies have a massive audience of die-hard (or should I say Twi-hard) fans who expect a faithful, mind-blowing adaptation.
As excited as I am about all of the movies I've mentioned, I'm also a little nervous. I'm always a little bit anxious that my favorite lines or scenes won't make the cut or that an actor won't honor the beloved character he or she's playing. I know my nieces and nephews will be pretty devastated, for example, if the Volturi sequence in New Moon doesn't live up to their expectations.
What are your favorite page-to-screen adaptations? Which books are you dying to see made into movies?