Great Movies and Equally Great Books

by Nastasia | created - 05 May 2011 | updated - 2 weeks ago | Public

As an avid reader and movie fan, I am childishly happy if the movie is good as much as the novel/play is. Some of the movies listed below are much different from the originals they were based on, some aren't so good - but either didn't matter much if the essence of the story was still pretty much same, and if they were worth watching anyway. Happy browsing! P.S. Some movies I like very much, but the novels I haven't read yet - they are in another (seen-but-not-read) list.

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1. 3:10 to Yuma (2007)

R | 122 min | Action, Crime, Drama

76 Metascore

A small-time rancher agrees to hold a captured outlaw who's awaiting a train to go to court in Yuma. A battle of wills ensues as the outlaw tries to psych out the rancher.

Director: James Mangold | Stars: Russell Crowe, Christian Bale, Ben Foster, Logan Lerman

Votes: 290,089 | Gross: $53.61M

2. 10 Things I Hate About You (1999)

PG-13 | 97 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

70 Metascore

A pretty, popular teenager can't go out on a date until her ill-tempered older sister does.

Director: Gil Junger | Stars: Heath Ledger, Julia Stiles, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Larisa Oleynik

Votes: 299,914 | Gross: $38.18M

3. 1408 (2007)

PG-13 | 104 min | Fantasy, Horror, Mystery

64 Metascore

A man who specialises in debunking paranormal occurrences checks into the fabled room 1408 in the Dolphin Hotel. Soon after settling in, he confronts genuine terror.

Director: Mikael Håfström | Stars: John Cusack, Samuel L. Jackson, Mary McCormack, Tony Shalhoub

Votes: 256,177 | Gross: $71.99M

4. And Then There Were None (2015)

TV-14 | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

Ten strangers are invited to an island by a mysterious host, and start to get killed one by one. Could one of them be the killer?

Stars: Maeve Dermody, Charles Dance, Toby Stephens, Burn Gorman

Votes: 33,315

5. Animal Farm (1954)

Approved | 72 min | Animation, Drama

A successful farmyard revolution by the resident animals vs. the farmer goes horribly wrong as the victors create a new tyranny among themselves.

Directors: Joy Batchelor, John Halas | Stars: Gordon Heath, Maurice Denham

Votes: 15,618

6. Apocalypse Now (1979)

R | 147 min | Drama, Mystery, War

94 Metascore

A U.S. Army officer serving in Vietnam is tasked with assassinating a renegade Special Forces Colonel who sees himself as a god.

Director: Francis Ford Coppola | Stars: Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall, Frederic Forrest

Votes: 609,981 | Gross: $83.47M

Based upon "Heart of Darkness".

7. Around the World in 80 Days (1956)

G | 175 min | Adventure, Comedy, Family

A Victorian Englishman bets that with the new steamships and railways he can circumnavigate the globe in eighty days.

Directors: Michael Anderson, John Farrow | Stars: David Niven, Cantinflas, Finlay Currie, Robert Morley

Votes: 24,921 | Gross: $42.00M

8. Atonement (2007)

R | 123 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance

85 Metascore

Thirteen-year-old fledgling writer Briony Tallis irrevocably changes the course of several lives when she accuses her older sister's lover of a crime he did not commit.

Director: Joe Wright | Stars: Keira Knightley, James McAvoy, Brenda Blethyn, Saoirse Ronan

Votes: 253,240 | Gross: $50.93M

9. Battle Royale (2000)

Not Rated | 114 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

81 Metascore

In the future, the Japanese government captures a class of ninth-grade students and forces them to kill each other under the revolutionary "Battle Royale" act.

Director: Kinji Fukasaku | Stars: Tatsuya Fujiwara, Aki Maeda, Tarô Yamamoto, Takeshi Kitano

Votes: 169,693

10. The Beach (I) (2000)

R | 119 min | Adventure, Drama, Romance

43 Metascore

Vicenarian Richard travels to Thailand and finds himself in possession of a strange map. Rumours state that it leads to a solitary beach paradise, a tropical bliss. Excited and intrigued, he sets out to find it.

Director: Danny Boyle | Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Daniel York, Patcharawan Patarakijjanon, Virginie Ledoyen

Votes: 224,272 | Gross: $39.79M

11. Ben-Hur (1959)

G | 212 min | Adventure, Drama, History

90 Metascore

After a Jewish prince is betrayed and sent into slavery by a Roman friend, he regains his freedom and comes back for revenge.

Director: William Wyler | Stars: Charlton Heston, Jack Hawkins, Stephen Boyd, Haya Harareet

Votes: 220,471 | Gross: $74.70M

12. Bird Box (2018)

R | 124 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

51 Metascore

Five years after an ominous unseen presence drives most of society to suicide, a mother and her two children make a desperate bid to reach safety.

Director: Susanne Bier | Stars: Sandra Bullock, Trevante Rhodes, John Malkovich, Sarah Paulson

Votes: 282,335

13. Blade Runner (1982)

R | 117 min | Action, Sci-Fi, Thriller

84 Metascore

A blade runner must pursue and terminate four replicants who stole a ship in space, and have returned to Earth to find their creator.

Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, Edward James Olmos

Votes: 697,314 | Gross: $32.87M

14. Born Free (1966)

PG | 95 min | Adventure, Drama, Family

The story of George and Joy Adamson and the orphaned lion cub, Elsa, they adopt.

Directors: James Hill, Tom McGowan | Stars: Virginia McKenna, Bill Travers, Geoffrey Keen, Peter Lukoye

Votes: 5,990

15. Brooklyn (2015)

PG-13 | 117 min | Drama, Romance

88 Metascore

An Irish immigrant lands in 1950s Brooklyn, where she quickly falls into a romance with a local. When her past catches up with her, however, she must choose between two countries and the lives that exist within.

Director: John Crowley | Stars: Saoirse Ronan, Emory Cohen, Domhnall Gleeson, Jim Broadbent

Votes: 132,058 | Gross: $38.32M

16. Mystery!: Cadfael (1994–1998)

TV-14 | 75 min | Crime, Drama, History

The medieval era cases of a Crusader-turned-Monk who investigates mysteries in the Norman English town of Shrewsbury.

Stars: Derek Jacobi, Michael Culver, Julian Firth, Terrence Hardiman

Votes: 2,259

17. Carrie (1976)

R | 98 min | Horror

85 Metascore

Carrie White, a shy, friendless teenage girl who is sheltered by her domineering, religious mother, unleashes her telekinetic powers after being humiliated by her classmates at her senior prom.

Director: Brian De Palma | Stars: Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie, Amy Irving, John Travolta

Votes: 169,086 | Gross: $33.80M

18. Children of Men (2006)

R | 109 min | Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi

84 Metascore

In 2027, in a chaotic world in which women have become somehow infertile, a former activist agrees to help transport a miraculously pregnant woman to a sanctuary at sea.

Director: Alfonso Cuarón | Stars: Julianne Moore, Clive Owen, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Caine

Votes: 466,906 | Gross: $35.55M

19. A Christmas Carol (1999 TV Movie)

PG | 95 min | Drama, Fantasy

An old bitter miser who makes excuses for his uncaring nature learns real compassion when three ghosts visit him on Christmas Eve.

Director: David Hugh Jones | Stars: Patrick Stewart, Richard E. Grant, Joel Grey, Ian McNeice

Votes: 8,566

20. Cold Mountain (2003)

R | 154 min | Adventure, Drama, History

73 Metascore

In the waning days of the American Civil War, a wounded soldier embarks on a perilous journey back home to Cold Mountain, North Carolina to reunite with his sweetheart.

Director: Anthony Minghella | Stars: Jude Law, Nicole Kidman, Renée Zellweger, Eileen Atkins

Votes: 140,425 | Gross: $95.64M

21. Contact (1997)

PG | 150 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi

62 Metascore

Dr. Ellie Arroway, after years of searching, finds conclusive radio proof of extraterrestrial intelligence, sending plans for a mysterious machine.

Director: Robert Zemeckis | Stars: Jodie Foster, Matthew McConaughey, Tom Skerritt, John Hurt

Votes: 255,710 | Gross: $100.92M

22. Coraline (2009)

PG | 100 min | Animation, Drama, Family

80 Metascore

An adventurous 11-year-old girl finds another world that is a strangely idealized version of her frustrating home, but it has sinister secrets.

Director: Henry Selick | Stars: Dakota Fanning, Teri Hatcher, John Hodgman, Jennifer Saunders

Votes: 198,860 | Gross: $75.29M

23. Cranford (2007–2010)

TV-PG | 469 min | Drama

In the 1840s, Cranford is ruled by the ladies. They adore good gossip, and romance and change is in the air, as the unwelcome grasp of the Industrial Revolution rapidly approaches their beloved rural market-town.

Stars: Judi Dench, Julia McKenzie, Imelda Staunton, Lisa Dillon

Votes: 8,634

24. Cyrano de Bergerac (1990)

PG | 137 min | Comedy, Drama, History

79 Metascore

Famed swordsman and poet Cyrano de Bergerac is in love with his cousin Roxane. He has never expressed his love for her as he his large nose undermines his self-confidence. Then he finds a way to express his love to her, indirectly.

Director: Jean-Paul Rappeneau | Stars: Gérard Depardieu, Anne Brochet, Vincent Perez, Jacques Weber

Votes: 22,623 | Gross: $15.14M

25. Dances with Wolves (1990)

PG-13 | 181 min | Adventure, Drama, Western

72 Metascore

Lieutenant John Dunbar, assigned to a remote western Civil War outpost, befriends wolves and Indians, making him an intolerable aberration in the military.

Director: Kevin Costner | Stars: Kevin Costner, Mary McDonnell, Graham Greene, Rodney A. Grant

Votes: 241,660 | Gross: $184.21M

26. Dangerous Liaisons (1988)

R | 119 min | Drama, Romance

74 Metascore

A scheming widow and her manipulative ex-lover make a bet regarding the corruption of a recently married woman.

Director: Stephen Frears | Stars: Glenn Close, John Malkovich, Michelle Pfeiffer, Swoosie Kurtz

Votes: 64,878 | Gross: $34.70M

27. Daniel Deronda (2002)

210 min | Drama, History, Romance

Set in Victorian London, Gwendolen Harleth is drawn to Daniel Deronda, a selfless and intelligent gentleman of unknown parentage, but her own desperate need for financial security may destroy her chance at happiness.

Stars: Jodhi May, Edward Fox, Amanda Root, David Bamber

Votes: 4,462

28. The Descendants (2011)

R | 115 min | Comedy, Drama

84 Metascore

A land baron tries to reconnect with his two daughters after his wife is seriously injured in a boating accident.

Director: Alexander Payne | Stars: George Clooney, Shailene Woodley, Amara Miller, Nick Krause

Votes: 233,373 | Gross: $82.58M

29. The Diary of Anne Frank (1959)

Approved | 180 min | Biography, Drama, Family

59 Metascore

During World War II, a teenage Jewish girl named Anne Frank and her family are forced into hiding in the Nazi-occupied Netherlands.

Director: George Stevens | Stars: Millie Perkins, Shelley Winters, Joseph Schildkraut, Richard Beymer

Votes: 11,998 | Gross: $5.01M

30. Emma (1996 TV Movie)

TV-G | 107 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Faithful, enchanting adaptation of Jane Austen's nineteenth-century tale of Emma Woodhouse--a clever young woman whose mischievous matchmaking schemes nearly end up jeopardizing her own shot at romance.

Director: Diarmuid Lawrence | Stars: Kate Beckinsale, Bernard Hepton, Mark Strong, Samantha Bond

Votes: 5,337

31. The English Patient (1996)

R | 162 min | Drama, Romance, War

87 Metascore

At the close of World War II, a young nurse tends to a badly-burned plane crash victim. His past is shown in flashbacks, revealing an involvement in a fateful love affair.

Director: Anthony Minghella | Stars: Ralph Fiennes, Juliette Binoche, Willem Dafoe, Kristin Scott Thomas

Votes: 179,557 | Gross: $78.65M

32. Far from the Madding Crowd (2015)

PG-13 | 119 min | Drama, Romance

71 Metascore

In Victorian England, the independent and headstrong Bathsheba Everdene attracts three very different suitors: Gabriel Oak, a sheep farmer; Frank Troy, a reckless Sergeant; and William Boldwood, a prosperous and mature bachelor.

Director: Thomas Vinterberg | Stars: Carey Mulligan, Matthias Schoenaerts, Michael Sheen, Tom Sturridge

Votes: 45,589 | Gross: $12.23M

33. Fever Pitch (1997)

R | 102 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

55 Metascore

A sports fan's romantic courtship clashes with his obsession with his favorite football team.

Director: David Evans | Stars: Colin Firth, Ruth Gemmell, Luke Aikman, Bea Guard

Votes: 10,268 | Gross: $0.01M

34. Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (1994)

R | 123 min | Drama, Horror, Romance

When the brilliant but unorthodox scientist Dr. Victor Frankenstein rejects the artificial man that he has created, the Creature escapes and later swears revenge.

Director: Kenneth Branagh | Stars: Robert De Niro, Kenneth Branagh, Helena Bonham Carter, Tom Hulce

Votes: 51,780 | Gross: $22.01M

35. Game of Thrones (2011–2019)

TV-MA | 57 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

Nine noble families fight for control over the lands of Westeros, while an ancient enemy returns after being dormant for millennia.

Stars: Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington, Lena Headey

Votes: 1,778,536

36. Girl with a Pearl Earring (2003)

PG-13 | 100 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

72 Metascore

A young peasant maid working in the house of painter Johannes Vermeer becomes his talented assistant and the model for one of his most famous works.

Director: Peter Webber | Stars: Scarlett Johansson, Colin Firth, Tom Wilkinson, Judy Parfitt

Votes: 72,630 | Gross: $11.63M

37. Gone with the Wind (1939)

Passed | 238 min | Drama, History, Romance

97 Metascore

A manipulative woman and a roguish man conduct a turbulent romance during the American Civil War and Reconstruction periods.

Directors: Victor Fleming, George Cukor, Sam Wood | Stars: Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, Thomas Mitchell, Barbara O'Neil

Votes: 291,559 | Gross: $198.68M

38. The Great Gatsby (1974)

PG | 144 min | Drama, Romance

43 Metascore

A Midwesterner becomes fascinated with his nouveau riche neighbor, who obsesses over his lost love.

Director: Jack Clayton | Stars: Robert Redford, Mia Farrow, Bruce Dern, Karen Black

Votes: 23,575 | Gross: $6.74M

39. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (2018)

TV-14 | 124 min | Drama, Romance, War

65 Metascore

In the aftermath of World War II, a writer forms an unexpected bond with the residents of Guernsey Island when she decides to write a book about their experiences during the war.

Director: Mike Newell | Stars: Jessica Brown Findlay, Tom Courtenay, Michiel Huisman, Katherine Parkinson

Votes: 36,245

40. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)

PG-13 | 157 min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy

81 Metascore

Harry Potter finds himself competing in a hazardous tournament between rival schools of magic, but he is distracted by recurring nightmares.

Director: Mike Newell | Stars: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Eric Sykes

Votes: 552,209 | Gross: $290.01M

Well, every HP movie should be seen and the books should be read (I personally like LotR, Gaiman and SoIaF much much more), but if I must choose which one HP book was adapted the best, I would say this one.

41. Hidden Figures (2016)

PG | 127 min | Biography, Drama, History

74 Metascore

The story of a team of female African-American mathematicians who served a vital role in NASA during the early years of the U.S. space program.

Director: Theodore Melfi | Stars: Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monáe, Kevin Costner

Votes: 202,640 | Gross: $169.61M

42. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (2005)

PG | 109 min | Adventure, Comedy, Sci-Fi

63 Metascore

Mere seconds before the Earth is to be demolished by an alien construction crew, journeyman Arthur Dent is swept off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher penning a new edition of "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy."

Director: Garth Jennings | Stars: Martin Freeman, Yasiin Bey, Sam Rockwell, Zooey Deschanel

Votes: 187,139 | Gross: $51.09M

I didn't like the movie much, but it was ok, and the books, especially the first two, are really must-have in everyone's collection.

43. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012)

PG-13 | 169 min | Adventure, Fantasy

58 Metascore

A reluctant Hobbit, Bilbo Baggins, sets out to the Lonely Mountain with a spirited group of dwarves to reclaim their mountain home, and the gold within it from the dragon Smaug.

Director: Peter Jackson | Stars: Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Andy Serkis

Votes: 760,360 | Gross: $303.00M

Extended Edition!

44. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013)

PG-13 | 161 min | Adventure, Fantasy

66 Metascore

The dwarves, along with Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf the Grey, continue their quest to reclaim Erebor, their homeland, from Smaug. Bilbo Baggins is in possession of a mysterious and magical ring.

Director: Peter Jackson | Stars: Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage, Ken Stott

Votes: 604,085 | Gross: $258.37M

Extended Edition!