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Novel Ideas

Friday 20 April 2012, 11:36

Mark Kermode Mark Kermode

I got involved in a recent Twitter exchange about The Great Gatsby and movie versions of favourite novels. This got me wondering which are the greatest novels never to be filmed - and why?

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    Comment number 1.

    The Life of Pi by Yan Martel - you couldn't film it without giving away the ending -

    Also I know that you didn't ask for impending adaptations of favourite novels - but I'm really uneasy about the upcoming film of David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas -

  • rate this

    Comment number 2.

    The Catcher in the Rye. No question. Impossible to film as the interest is entirely in Holden Caulfield's narration of his life.

    Although there is a 'movie' called The Catcher in the Rye made in 2008 by Nigel Tomm (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1206286/). It consists of 75 minutes and 6 seconds of pure blue screen. I'm not counting that.

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    Comment number 3.

    'Junkie' semi-autobiographical novel by William S. Burroughs.Like most things with Burroughs its abstract in many respects,but of all his works the most filmable.

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    Comment number 4.

    Hello Dr Mark,

    I know your going to say its already been made, but in my mind John Steinbeck's 'East of Eden' has never truly been made into a film.
    The story is long and at times complex and perhaps this is why we ended up with Elia Kazan's 1955 version starring James Dean.
    It only contains a small reworked section of the whole book.
    If it was made properly the result would be epic.

  • rate this

    Comment number 5.

    Neuromancer by William Gibson is a good shout. Not filmed because the Matrix got there and ripped it first I'd imagine! Otherwise, Catcher in the Rye is prob gonna be the winner here!


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