Five Books on Film for 2014

On the eve of the Oscars and in the aftermath of the Golden Globes, we bring you five films to watch for in 2014, all of them based on books.

Gone Girl: With A Brand New Ending

We’ve reported before that the zeitgeist book of 2013 will hit the big screen in 2014. Director David Fincher ordered a rewrite of the final third of the book for the film version, which author Gillian Flynn says she was happy to do. So - even for fans of the book, there will be twists and surprises in store. Fincher says he’s learned his lesson from his adaptation of Stieg Larsson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, which he reflects was ‘too beholden to the source material’.

David Fincher directed this cover image of Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike in character as Nick and Amy.

David Fincher directed this cover image of Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike in character as Nick and Amy.

A Long Way Down

Another Nick Hornby novel is about to hit the big screen. A Long Way Down is a black comedy about four mismatched people who meet on a high-rise roof on New Year’s Eve. Each of them has made their way there planning to commit suicide. Instead, they make a pact to band together and stay alive until Valentine’s Day, at least. The UK production stars Pierce Brosnan, Toni Colette (who was in a previous Hornby adaptation, About a Boy), Aaron Paul and Rosamund Pike.

Dark Places

Gillian Flynn’s seriously dark Dark Places, first published in 2009, will be released as a film this year, too. Charlize Theron stars as Libby Day, adult survivor of a massacre of her mother and sisters that happened when she was seven years old. She’s approached by a band of amateur sleuths, self-dubbed The Kill Club, who want her to help them solve the murder - and free her brother Ben, who she had identified as the killer. Gillian Flynn has a (brief) cameo in the film. Also stars Chloe Grace Moretz, Nicholas Hoult, Drea De Matteo and Christina Hendricks (as Theron’s mother).

This is Where I Leave You

Jonathan Tropper’s novel This is Where I Leave You follows a dysfunctional and idiosyncratic family in which the father’s death forces four grown siblings to spend a week together in the house where they grew up for the first time in a decade. The film will be a comedy, with a cracking cast: Tina Fey, Jason Bateman, Adam Driver, Jane Fonda and Rose Byrne.

Before I Go to Sleep

It doesn’t seem surprising that S.J. Watson’s Memento-like thriller Before I Go to Sleep has been adapted for the screen: it’s made for the medium. This twist-laden pageturner follows a woman with 24-hour amnesia who wakes up each morning with an unfamiliar husband, and must piece together the fragments of her life anew each day, with the help of a secret diary. And something in her life is not right. Stars Nicole Kidman and Colin Firth.

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