close
close

The recently released legacy sequel Jurassic World: Dominion has quickly become a box-office hit, but still falls short of the iconic first film that spawned the franchise. Jurassic Park. The 1993 science fiction classic is actually based on the 1990 novel of the same name by Michael Crichton, which went on to become a bestseller.

Ranker fans have rightly included the award-winning dinosaur film in their list of best films from books. Alongside this, there are also other top-notch book-to-film adaptations worth checking out, including acclaimed masterpieces like The Shawshank Redemption and The Godfather.

Note: Leaderboards are live and continue to collect votes, so some leaderboards may have changed after this release.

SCREENRANT VIDEO OF THE DAY

10 The Princess Bride (1987)

Available to stream on Disney+.


Wesley and Buttercup in The Princess Bride

The fantasy romcom The Prince’s Bride is a cult classic about the love story between farmhand Westley and Princess Buttercup, complicated by the irritating Prince Humperdinck. Directed by Rob Reiner, the film is told from the perspective of a grandfather reading a book about the princess to his ailing grandson.

The film stays true to the 1973 fantasy romance novel it’s based on, with author William Goldman using the same metafictional storytelling style. Just like the book, his adaptation relies heavily on humor to tell the story in an entertaining way.


9 Killing a Mockingbird (1962)

Can be rented on Apple TV.


Director Robert Mulligan Killing a mockingbird is an award-winning drama based on Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. The film follows the experiences of 6-year-old Scout Finch and her older brother Jem, which at first are harmless things that children typically experience in Maycomb, Alabama.

Similar to the book, things take a darker turn when her father Atticus, a lawyer, defends the innocent man Tom Robinson who has been falsely accused of rape. The children are exposed to the dangers of stereotyping and racism, which become central themes in the film.


8th Jurassic Park (1993)

Available to stream on HBO Max.


Jurassic Park 1993

Jurassic Park is the blockbuster that spawned an entire franchise that is still active to this day. Directed by Steven Spielberg, the classic film used groundbreaking visual effects to introduce the amazing animals on Isla Nublar, where dinosaurs have been brought back to life. Jurassic Park is still the best film in the franchise as none of its several sequels have come close to the stunning impact the original had on audiences.

Some may be surprised to learn that the film is actually based on a 1990 science fiction novel of the same name by Michael Crichton. Like the film, the book serves as a cautionary tale about the dangers of taking genetic engineering too far.


7 The Godfather (1972)

Available to stream on Paramount+.


The Godfather is a renowned crime thriller that needs no introduction. It introduced the Corleone family and their ruthless patriarch, Vito Corleone, while also underscoring his son Michael’s transformation into the mafia’s next cunning and brutal boss.

Director Francis Ford Coppola co-wrote the screenplay with Mario Puzo, who also wrote the 1969 bestseller of the same name on which it is based. The novel chronicles the events of 1945-1955 and includes Vito’s experiences growing as a child into the powerful adult he eventually becomes.


6 stay with me (1986)

Can be rented on Apple TV.


Stand-by-Me cast

Widely regarded as a cult classic, Stand by Me follows the misadventures of four boys as they set out to find the body of a missing boy. Directed by Rob Reiner, the coming-of-age film is less about the crime and more about the bond between the characters and the way they learn about each other’s backgrounds.

The film is based on a Stephen King novella by the title The body. It shares some similarities with the film, right down to the train tracks in the factory town. The characters in the book also deal with hard-hitting truths about death, poverty, and dysfunctional families.


5 Harry Potter franchise (2001-2011)

Available to stream on HBO Max.


Since the release of the first film in 2001 Harry Potter Instantly became a cultural phenomenon, inspiring a huge fan base that couldn’t get enough of the wizarding world. The successful franchise includes eight films that have become well-loved classics that are still discussed by audiences today. The overarching narrative focuses on the titular protagonist’s battle against Lord Voldemort.

It’s exciting to see the spells from JK Rowling’s Harry Potter books come to life, not to mention the various creatures and magical locations. Part fantasy and part coming-of-age, both the films and novels explore the amazing experiences of the young wizard as he enrolls at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.


4 The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

Available to stream on AMC+.


The psychological horror film The silence of the Lambs is an influential masterpiece directed by Jonathan Demme. The film tells the story of a young FBI profiler, Clarice Sterling, who meets convicted cannibal serial killer and psychiatrist Dr. Hannibal Lecter for advice to find and arrest the killer Buffalo Bill.

The plot of Thomas Harris’ 1988 novel of the same name on which it is based is quite similar. Both the book and film have won numerous awards over the years and are holding up incredibly well, especially given the resurgence of interest in true crime.




3 The Green Mile (1999)

Available to stream on HBO Max.


Director Frank Darabont The green mile is a fantasy drama told from the perspective of death row guard Paul Edgecomb, who meets a mysterious convict named John Coffey who is guilty of murder. When John begins to show signs of a mysterious connection to the supernatural realm, Paul questions everything he knows.

The acclaimed film is based on Stephen King’s 1996 serialized novel of the same name. Both focus on magical realism, with the film being incredibly accurate in retelling the events of the book. The film and novel even end the same way, with Paul reflecting on his choices and the cost of his long life.


2 The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (2001-2003)

Available to stream on HBO Max.


Frodo with the Ring in The Lord of the Rings The Two Towers

With director Peter Jackson The Fellowship of the Ring First released in 2001, it became a cultural phenomenon that took the world by storm. It is only the beginning of the epic saga that chronicles Frodo’s attempt to destroy the One Ring as outside forces work against him and the companions. The trilogy is completed by the hugely popular sequels The two Towers (2002) and the return of the King (2003).

The films are based on the legendary high fantasy novels by JRR Tolkien. While there are some scenes from the LoTR books that are impossible to adapt, the films generally do an excellent job of staying true to the source material, which is a big part of why they became so successful.


1 The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

Available to stream on HBO Max.


The Shawshank Redemption - Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman

The Shawshank Redemption is a popular drama written and directed by Frank Darabont. It centers on the story of banker Andy Dufresne, who was convicted of murdering his wife and her lover and sent to Shawshank State Penitentiary. There he befriends smuggler Ellis “Red” Redding, who serves as narrator throughout the film.

Red is also the narrator in the 1982 novelization on which it is based Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption. It’s by Stephen King and will eventually be published as a short book before being adapted for both screen and stage, which is a testament to how powerful his story is.

NEXT: The 10 Best Book-to-Movie Adaptations, According to IMDb


Next
No: 10 Little-Known Facts About Writer/Director Jordan Peele


About the author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.