6 Movies That Were Better Than The Books They Were Based On

Most of the time, books trump any movie made from the source material. But every now and then, a movie will take the source material and make something even greater, even if they take many liberties.&&

Not on the list.

Because face it...

This movie sucked too.

Just The Facts

  1. Books can be better than their movies. It happens a lot, actually.
  2. Sometimes movies exceed the books.
  3. I have read every book on this list except for #6.
  4. I have seen every movie on this list except for #2.

6- The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

The Book

The tale of a miserly old coot who, with the help of three spirits, becomes a charitable man.

The Movie

The same thing, but with Muppets!

Pictured: More badass than you.

Why the Movie is Better.

Now I'll confess; I've never read the book. I've read none of Dickens' books. But my former-English-teaching mother taught me two things: 1)Charles Dickens is as boring as hell...

His mustache had no time for fun.

...and 2)Muppets fucking OWN. Let's face it, who's a better narrator: That creepy looking old guy, or Gonzo the Great and Rizzo the Rat?

5- The Entire Fucking Twilight Saga (2008-Mercifully it will all end soon)

Jacob Black2.jpg

*cough*cough* Team Edward *cough*cough*

The Books

Four overly long tales of whiny emo kids falling in love. Oh, and Alice Cullen.

Almost as good as Scarlett Johansson.

The book series ends with the climax of Bella's baby being eaten out of her pregnant stomach, as well as 400 pages of preparing for a battle that never actually happens. It'd be sort of like watching Fast Times at Ridgemont High with that Mormon computer program that censors all the inappropriate aspects of film; you can't help but feel you've wasted your time.

This movie would have, like, five lines.

The Movies

Three only slightly overly long films about whiny emo kids falling in love. Oh, and Jasper Hale.

About half as good as Pepsi. Like, if I had a gun to my head, I'd go for it. But you know, I wouldn't choose him if I had to--- You know what, how about we move on from this subject?

Why the Movies Are Better

Now, I'm not saying Stephenie Meyer is a completely talentless writer. "The Host" was actually an intriguing science fiction story/actually original romance. I'm just saying she's a MOSTLY talentless writer. Sort of like Nicholas Sparks.

No, you know what, fuck him. He wrote a script for fucking Miley Cyrus.

It'd be like if he changed the script for "A Walk to Remember" just for this kid.

(Editor's Note: Don't do a picture/caption combo that links to a joke that you made in a caption of one your pictures).

(Note to Editor: Fuck you, I'll do what I want.)

The books take forever to reveal secrets we already know. (200 Pages in: "OMG, Edward's a vampire? That's so weird, because that fact was revealed on the fucking back cover). The movies do this too, although with a little more fun in the process.

Sort of like how auditing sweet old ladies named Erma is more fun than watching any of the Saw films.

The movies also contain humor, violence and Jackson Rathbone, which all the books lacked.

Did I say HALF, I mean... Shit, I meant Ashley Greene. Yeah, that's what I meant.

It'll be interesting to see if the Breaking Dawn films won't completely suck. (SPOILER: They will).

4- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)

The Book

A popular subject here on Cracked, "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" is Victor Hugo's heartwarming tale of a deformed man who falls in love with a gypsy girl who doesn't love him, only to have her killed by Frollo, the man who raised said deformity, inspiring the monster to throw his master over the edge of the cathedral wall, after which he enters the gypsy's tomb and dies of starvation... Hey, wait a second.

Who thought this should be a kid's movie in the first place?

The Movie

A fun Disney flick about a deformed man who falls in love with a gypsy girl and saves her life, only to have her marry the Nazi poster boy in the end.

Why the Movie is Better.

The book "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" is by no means a bad book. Well, ok, it's not that great of a book, but it's still a pretty ok one. Of course, Victor Hugo wasn't into happiness (He wrote a book whose title literally means "The Miserable), and the film tries to rectify the situation with the heroes, you know, not dying.

Yeah, right, bury myself alive.

Now before all Victor-Hugophiles get all righteous on me, I should mention that another Victor Hugo novel (Les Miserables) was adapted into a film that took a little liberties. That film sucked.

The late 90s was not a good time for Uma Thurman.

However, Les Miserables was also adapted into a musical manlier than half of the Rambo films (the sucky middle ones, not the original or the one that came out in 2008). This musical was better than the book as well, mainly because their was comic relief, a character was much more developed, and it didn't ramble as much. On the other hand, the annoying love story in the musical is slightly less annoying in the book.


Sort of like how Jar Jar Binks is slightly less annoying than Mudlfap and Skids.

3- The First Season of Dexter (2006)

The Book

"Darkly Dreaming Dexter" is a book where Dexter can't decide what to do about a guy whose killed like five people. Then the killer kidnaps his sister. So he follows him. And then a bunch of completely uninteresting events happen randomly without any buildup. And then the book ends.

I haven't felt this down since M. Night Shyamalan's entire career

The Movie

While technically not a movie, the first season is loosely adapted from the first book, so I included it anyway, because I'm writing article and nothing but the threat of losing my corporate sponsorships can stop me from doing my own thing.

The face of a smiling woman with blonde hair pulled back into a ponytail, wearing bright red lipstick, small gold hoop earrings, a heavy gold link chain around her neck, and a pink scoop necked shirt.

Insert some sort of Scarlett Johansson/Pepsi reference here.

Why the Movie is Better

Apart from the freedom a TV series can give you as opposed to writing a book...

No wait, that doesn't make sense.

Well, never mind. The series is better mainly because the big reveal at the end is actually hinted at more than NEVER. Not to mention the fact that the killer randomly doesn't appear, but instead he actually makes an on-screen appearance.

Really, the last 30 minutes of Se7en sucked.

Oh, by the way, if anyone in the comments section ruins Season 4 for me, I will spam your pages and inbox with links to midget porn. You have been warned.

You have been warned.

2- War and Peace. (1965)

The Book

100 pages of story, 1278 pages of needless essays and overlong descriptions.

The Movie

Eight hours of a Russian soap opera that takes place in the early 1800s. People don't kill themselves because the war scenes are totally epic.

Like this but over twice as big. And with real people in it. Speaking RUSSIAN.

Why the Movie is Better

Mainly because any movie without the narration of Leo Tolstoy has to be better than the book its based on. Similarly, "Journey to the Center of the Earth" was better than the book because it had nothing to do with the incredibly shitty novel.

Jules Verne can somehow make a giant squid attack seem boring.

1- Watchmen (2009)

A rainy city. Six people stand there, all but one - a masked man in hat and trenchcoat - staring at the viewer: a muscular and glowing blue man, a blonde man in a spandex armor, a man in an armor with a cape and wearing a helmet resembling an owl, a woman in a yellow and black latex suit, and a moustached man in a leather vest who smokes a cigar and holds a gun. Text at the top of the image includes "From the visionary director of 300". Text at the bottom of the poster reveals the title, production credits, and release date.

Oh shit, that just happened.

The Book

Twelve issues of a very complicated murder mystery that is very intriguing. The story climaxes with a faked alien attack involving a giant squid monster.

And the infamous blue dong.

The Movie

Basically the same thing, but with less rambling, cooler fight scenes and an ending that makes some damned sense!

Millions died so Alan Moore could write a shitty ending to his story.

Why the Movie is Better

This was the most controversial entries on my list, which is why I've saved it for last.

I loved this movie.

First of all, let's take a look at the book. Sure it's got a lot of symbolism, but it also has storylines that completely distract from the rest of the story (Looking at you, Black Freighter). A movie lets you focus on what's important.

Secondly, let's look at the amount of drama. There is some. That alone beats the graphic novel, whose climactic scene consisted of "ten panels of two dudes failing to land a single blow on another dude." Yes, that's basically the most intense scene in the entire story.

Literally every scene in Up contained more intensity.

And finally, let's look at the ending. In the book, Ozymandias releases a squid on Manhattan. This comes completely out of the blue unless you read literally every piece of boring exposition that they put in the back pages because no one would place advertisements in the comic. Even then, it's still completely retarded.


In the movie, Dr. Manhattan says like two lines and the entire ending makes sense. Instead of a random giant squid, Ozymandias fakes a global attack by Dr. Manhattan, which is possible due to the fact that they were working together on something. Also, his reason for banishing Dr. Manhattan goes from "because I forgot I was using tachyons" to "so no one would question the perpetrator." Speaking of tachyons, the movie bothers to explain why Dr. Manhattan didn't know anything about the impending plot.

I'm going to banish myself to Mars?

I'm starting to suspect Alan Moore isn't boycotting the film because of the changes Zak Snyder made, I think he's doing it because he's jealous he hadn't thought of them first.

A plausible reason for Dr. Manhattan to leave Earth? Preposterous!

Several small changes also help make the film better, including having Nite Owl angry with Ozymandias for killing billions and causing the death of friend Rorschach, just letting the alternate timeline exist, and making Bubastis blue.

Pick blue: Because red is for pussies.