Tag Archives: Literary adaptation

The Age of Innocence

Best known for his crime dramas, Martin Scorsese’s adaptation of Edith Wharton’s romantic novel, The Age of Innocence is one of his most incisive works.

Three Colors

Is Krzysztof Kieslowski’s trilogy only about liberty, equality and fraternity? Look again and you’ll find it also addresses fate, coincidence and co-existence.

Great Shots – Part Three

What makes a great shot? Beauty? The lens? Lighting? Combined, they create much more than just an image.

Great Shots – Part One

What makes for a great shot? Beauty? The lens? Lighting? Combine them and you have something that amounts to more than just an image.

The Maltese Falcon

John Huston’s film of Dashiell Hammett’s classic novel was the third adaptation of the hard-boiled mystery. How did he succeed where others had failed?

Rashomon

Akira Kurosawa’s Rashomon is celebrated for asking what is truth. Which is more than a little ironic, because that’s not what it is really about.

The Conformist

Few films are as layered as The Conformist. But whether you see it as an exercise in style, character study, or philosophical thesis, it’s a flat out masterpiece.

The Magnificent Ambersons

Orson Welles is celebrated for Citizen Kane but it was this adaptation of Booth Tarkington’s novel that defined his career.

Citizen Kane

Orson Welles’ debut feature is now a quarter of a century old. Have we been taking its greatness for granted or is it time for reappraisal?

Pan’s Labyrinth

Guillermo del Toro says he is “in love with monsters.” In Pan’s Labyrinth, set in the Spanish Civil War, he uses them to navigate history and the world.

Revolutionary Road

Like the novel on which it is based, Revolutionary Road so honestly probed its subject audiences stayed away. Their loss. It is Sam Mendes’ best film.

Dangerous Liaisons

Chodleros De Laclos’ novel has inspired plays, operas, ballets and several films. But none can match the debauched panache of Stephen Frears’ interpretation.

Apocalypse Now

Francis Ford Coppola’s radical adaptation of Joseph Conrad’s novella is one of the most astonishing achievements in the entire history of cinema.

Wuthering Heights

Emily Brontë’s classic romance has been filmed over 25 times. Have any been faithful? Where is the line between interpretation and desecration?

Gaslight

Made in 1944, Gaslight is an Oscar-winning melodrama concerning madness and murder. The film itself is guilty of attempted homicide.

The Unbearable Lightness of Being

How well did Philip Kaufman succeed in adapting Milan Kundera’s ‘unfilmable’ philosophical love story?

Dr. Strangelove

Until 1964, Stanley Kubrick had suffered years of set-backs, disappointments and frustration. But he made his reputation with this satire on nuclear war.

The Big Sleep

How can Howard Hawks’ adaptation of Raymond Chandler’s labyrinthine detective novel be heralded as a classic when it is impossible to follow?

Drive

Nicolas Winding Refn’s film focuses on Ryan Gosling’s nameless getaway driver. But its best scene involves a vehicle of an entirely different kind.

The Last Picture Show

Peter Bogdanovich was New York born and bred, so how did he manage to direct a masterpiece set in small town Texas when he had never set foot in the state?

Fight Club

When it was released, Fight Club was rubbished by critics and rejected by audiences. Now it’s regarded as a masterpiece. So what changed people’s minds?

Doctor Zhivago

David Lean’s film of Boris Pasternack’s Nobel Prize Winning Novel whittled the sprawling epic down to a simple love story. Was it successful?

The Crying Game

Neil Jordan won an Oscar for his script, but only after every studio had turned him down saying his story was uncommercial, offensive and the characters unsympathetic.

The Usual Suspects

The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was to convince the world he didn’t exist. Is this film just another trick, or is it really the greatest heist movie ever made?

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