Friday Movie Talk – Are some books just too long to be good movies?

I love last week’s discussion about Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher.  There is an overwhelming dislike for this casting and I’m happy to be validated on at least one of my choices for a recast.  Several of you thought Hugh Jackman could pull it off and two of you were on board with Shemar Moore.  Any other suggestions for the perfect Jack Reacher?

Over the past week Jason and I have watched War & Peace – all 209 minutes of it.  I had planned to do a book vs. movie post about it, but even just thinking about comparing the two gave me a headache.  War and Peace by Tolstoy is a powerhouse of a book.  It takes time, reflection, some notes, and a great deal of concentration.  It’s a worthwhile endeavor and one best tackled with a friend (thanks Molly!).  The movie starring Audrey Hepburn and Henry Fonda is fine, but surely a watered down version of the novel. It was good, but not a powerhouse by any means.  Jason hasn’t read the book but he still enjoyed the movie, especially the war parts 🙂

What I’m wondering is if some books are just too long and involved to make good movies.  I checked out Pillars of the Earth the miniseries from the library and am thinking that a miniseries has a better chance of being faithful to at least the spirit of the book.   As much as I love the Outlander series by Gabaldon I can see it failing as a movie.  Same for Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts.

Any other books that are just too long or complex to make a good movie?