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Read It First! Movie Adaptations in Theaters This Month

Elizabeth Graney, Librarian, Literature & Fiction Department,
Collage of films adapted from books

If you've heard it once, you've heard it a million times—the book was better! There's nothing like debating the differences between a favorite book and its translation to the screen. But if you don't know your beloved series is coming out as a movie, or that the fun looking preview you saw was adapted from a book, how can you join the debate? The library is here to the rescue! Here we will be exploring the movie adaptations soon to hit screens big and small and give you the chance to read before you view.

Coming This December

The Power of the Dog
Savage, Thomas

Thomas Savage’s The Power of the Dog tells the story of the Burbank brothers, owners of a large ranch in 1920’s Montana. Brilliant, eloquent, and vicious Phil has ruled over quiet and gentle George since they were boys. When George unexpectedly brings home his new wife, Rose, and her son, their already tense relationship shatters. Enraged, Phil does everything he can to break Rose and his brother’s newfound happiness. Starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst, and Jesse Plemons, the 2021 film adaptation will premiere on Netflix on December 1st, 2021.

The Lost Daughter
Ferrante, Elena

Alone for the first time in years, divorced mother Leda takes a vacation by the sea. There, she encounters a young mother and her family. Fascinated and repelled, Leda finds herself confronted by memories of herself as a young mother and the consequences of the choices she made. Elena Ferrante’s powerful novel The Lost Daughter looks at motherhood, identity and the devastating power of love. Starring Olivia Colman, Dakota Johnson and Peter Sarsgaard, the film adaptation will be actor Maggie Gyllenhal’s directorial debut. It will have a limited theatrical release on December 17 and will then be available to stream on Netflix beginning December 31.

Shakespeare, William

The play that dare not speak its name. After hearing a prophecy that he will become the King of Scotland, general Macbeth and his wife are consumed with the need to do whatever it takes to fulfill that destiny. William Shakespeare’s Macbeth has inspired countless literary and cinematic adaptations over the years. Famed director Joel Coen directs Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand in the newest film adaptation. It will be released in theatres on December 25, 2021.

Nightmare Alley
Gresham, William Lindsay

William Lyndsay Gresham’s dark novel Nightmare Alley follows the rise and fall of a 1940s sideshow magician. Stan Carlisle joins the carnival as a magician but soon picks up new skills that allow him to expand both his act and his ability to con circus goers. But Stan isn’t the only one using his skills for ill. As he gets deeper into the world of fraudulent Spiritualism, Stan finds that sometimes not only the mark gets conned. Guillermo del Toro directs the newest star-studded adaptation of Gresham’s bleak debut novel set to be released in theaters on December 17, 2021.

The Hating Game
Thorne, Sally

Lucy and Joshua are workplace rivals. Stuck in a shared office day after day, they trade insults, juvenile pranks, and HR complaints. Given the chance, they loudly and unequivocally proclaim their mutual hatred. So when a promotion comes up that would free them from each other’s company, they enter a ruthless competition to see who can rise to the top. But after a steamy encounter in the elevator, Lucy begins to realize that she may not hate Joshua after all. Sally Thorne’s The Hating Game is a fresh take on the enemies-to-lovers trope we know and love. Starring Lucy Hale and Austin Stowell, the cinematic adaptation will be released in theaters on December 10, 2021.