Movies for namekuseijin

[continued from here]

I’m going to be a bit lazy about this; instead of racking my brains too hard, I’m just going to rotate my head a bit and look at the shelf next to me, which is my DVD haul from the recent death of my local video place (RIP, :cry:, etc). Here’s a subset of them that I genuinely believe would not be anywhere near as good in the form of text:
I Served the King of England
Last Year at Marienbad
Mon Oncle
Run Lola Run
The Saddest Music in the World
Thelma and Louise

And a few more off the top of my head:
Mulholland Drive
The Fall

And back to the shelf, a couple that do come from text, but whose film adaptations bring more than a little to the table:
Blade Runner

I’m not guaranteeing any of them are going to be to your taste, mind you, just challenging your assertion that any of them could have been done better in text.

I’m going to repeat my recommendation of Eureka (the Aoyama movie). And I’ll add La Jetée. Also, I don’t think Yojimbo is based on a book.

Responding to Craftian in the other thread: Brazil is loosely based on 1984 by George Orwell. And presumably lots of LSD as well.

I don’t think I deserve a separate thread. I’m not an attention whore like Pudlo, I just enjoy taking the role of devil’s advocate. I believe it’s healthy for discussions.

I said:

that said, how would we know about those movies you listed? They are not based on books so we don’t know how they’d compare.

Anyway, I reiterate: more great movies were made based on books than great movies with screenplay from scratch. BTW, this list says Die Hard is based on a book. one less, guys…

I don’t know about static fiction, but Run Lola Run could perhaps become a fine IF…

and yeah, Brazil by the Monthy Python guy may be based on LSD, but it’s one my favorite movies


Okay – I would have to say Brazil (and agree that Blade Runner) are in the same categories: the movies are completely different from their source material. Let’s remove only direct novel to movies from the list, otherwise, it’s just too broad of a statement. And, I’d say that most Terry Gilliam movies are based off LSD. :smiley:

Which… actually adds a few more to the list:

Time Bandits
The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus
The Fisher King
Baron Münchhausen (Loosely based on tall tales, but different from the source.)

No, but I do. It seems unfair to auspaco to flood their thread with off-topic discussion.

Okay, then I’m challenging your assertion that there’s not a single great movie that is not based on a book, and the last two examples are of experiences that are not meh against their original texts.

Also, I’m not sure which logical fallacy this falls into, but I’m sure it falls neatly into one.

Statement A: All (or most) good movies are based on books.
Statement B: Good movies not based on books can’t be used as an argument to statement A, because they are not based on books.

Can anyone point out the fallacy? I’d look it up, but I’m at work. :smiley:

The way you state it, I’d say No True Scotsman (a subset of Begging the Question): defining the terms of your conclusion in a way that assumes the conclusion is true.

I’m not implying they can’t be used as arguments. I’m saying we don’t know how bookless movies would compare to their non-existant books.

and I certainly am no true scotsman :laughing:

Then what’s the point of this whole discussion?

But if you really want to take it to that level, you can always examine the infamous “book of the film” gimmick. I very much doubt any of those are much good.

well, we could well compare book-based movies to their books instead. But most people don’t because most people have seen the movies but have not read the books.

spare me, today there are even books based on games such as Assassin’s Creed… (good games btw)

what I really miss from movies is the narrator, the storyteller messing with our understanding. Sure, the movie director can show us rather than tell. and it’s not as effective I believe… case in point: many old, puzzle-based text-adventures used the show-don’t-tell premise. Many people today find this approach boring and lifeless as oposed to a lively narrator pushing the reader into this or that direction, like that of Violet or Varicella.

The Blood and Icecream trilogy

And for good measure, Ryan North’s page by page analysis of the novelisation of Back to the Future called BttF is hilarious.

Survive Style Number Five+

Going the other way:

The Godfather, The Bourne Identity, and Silence of the Lambs were all movie adaptations of books, and they were all dramatically better in movie form. (Speaking as someone who read or attempted to read all of them.)

I’m going to post 2 examples, one going your way, one going the opposite way:

#1: A terrible movie adaptation
Queen of the Damned. I had read all of the Vampire Chronicles books up to Memnoch the Devil, and I liked Interview With the Vampire. I bought the soundtrack before watching the movie, and then really wanted to see it. And, Aaliyah was pretty hot. Man, was that movie a travesty. Even as a fan, I was bored. For someone that knew nothing, it had to be a snooze-fest. Ironically, if they had followed “The Vampire Lestat”, rather than cramming two books together, it might have been good. Probably not. (The soundtrack was better than the movie, so something good came out of it.)

#2: Blade Runner
I love Blade Runner. Especially “The Final Cut”. If there is ever a choice of movies, and someone suggests this, I’ll always vote for it. I can always get something new from this movie, whether it’s just soaking in the visual style, the acting, the nuances, the lean script that manages to tell such a great story, the fantastic characters, the Vangelis soundtrack, the open-endedness of the script, everything.

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep is a fantastic novel. I love the idea of Mercerism, the realistic way PKD deals with an environment gone to hell, the mood organ, the sadistic androids. It’s as zany as any PKD, but more focused than most of his novels. One of my favorite novels.

I don’t like either one more than the other. The book has a similar setting to the movie, but both follow different themes. I love the action of the movie, and the in-depth philosophy of the book. I love the characters of both.

Anyway, I guess I concede to your point when a pointless movie is made of a novel as a form of cliff-notes, to dumb it down for movie audiences. A movie and a book are different mediums, and a 2 hour movie has to be much tighter than a 400+ page book. For an actor to portray everything with a look of the eyes that three paragraphs can do in internal dialogue in a novel is a pretty incredible thing. And nowhere else can you reach the height of a great soundtrack, acting, and script coming together, in any other medium. So, I think your point that movies are a second-rate medium is very, very, far from the mark.

Thanks, Draconis. I was thinking “circular reasoning”, but your example was much better. I guess the Socratic method wins, every time. (Or as Bill and Ted would put it, So-craaaates. Another movie for the list: Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.)

Bill and Ted? really? while we’re at it why not Dumb and Dumber too as fine example of the seventh art? perhaps it could go in between some Kurosawa and Die Hard

:laughing: Actually, I liked Dumb and Dumber.

And while we’re on the subject:

The Big Lebowski
The Naked Gun (It is from the Files of Police Squad, so loosely based on something else)
Modern Times

love The Naked Gun (at least the first). I wouldn’t go saying it’s a great movie, though.

Chaplin and Keaton were visual gag poets. Modern Times couples it with social commentary brilliantly.

Yeah, I cracked up watching Modern Times at the lunch scene. I didn’t expect to find the movie that funny – but it really hasn’t aged all that much.