50 Worst Movie Adaptations

The Time Travelers Wife (2009)

The Adaptation: Audrey Niffenegger's high concept romcom gets turned into an equally soppy vehicle for Rachel McAdams and Eric Bana.

What They Got Most Wrong:
Robert Schwentke attempts to cram Niffenegger’s book into a movie that’s less than two hours long, meaning all the secondary characters are nothing more than cyphers.

Doom (2005)

The Adaptation: Takes first-shooter video games to a cinematic extreme, as Dwayne Johnson blows up slobbering baddies - with a little help from Karl Urban.

What They Got Most Wrong: Near impossible-to-watch action sequences – how are we expected to follow all that?

Wing Commander (1999)

The Adaptation: Dodgy sci-fi based on the same-named video game series. Freddie Prinze Jr. and Matthew Lillard are gripped in interstellar war.

What They Got Most Wrong: Letting the creator of the game create the movie.

The Da Vinci Code (2006)

The Adaptation: Paul Bettany pulls off a great psycho albino in Ron Howard’s adaptation of Dan Brown’s pulp fiction, but everybody else looks bored or confused. A lot like the audience.

What They Got Most Wrong: Not giving audiences a chance to work out the clues for themselves.

Howard The Duck (1986)

The Adaptation: George Lucas produces this frankly bizarre adaptation, which has the alien quacker landing on Earth and befriending a struggling singer.

What They Got Most Wrong: It attempts to be both a bit of family fun and a raunchy spoof – just wrong.

Superman 4: The Quest For Peace (1987)

The Adaptation: Sadly, the last Superman film to star Christopher Reeve – though at this point, it was more of a relief that he stopped making them.

What They Got Most Wrong: Having Nuclear Man as the villain was probably the biggest clanger - the political undertones were about as subtle as his golden mullet and leggings combo.

The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian (2008)

The Adaptation: A long and drawn-out adaptation of C.S Lewis’ tome, with floppy-haired Ben Barnes in the titular role.

What They Got Most Wrong: Not thinking about that all-important subtext – the kids essentially go around killing people, while the good guys are all British and the baddies are Mediterranean-looking.

Lost In Space (1998)

The Adaptation: Danger! No, really, danger! Matt LeBlanc is in the house, putting on his best hero smirk as he drags this quaint ‘60s space opera into cinemas.

What They Got Most Wrong: It. Just. Doesn’t. Make. Any. Sense. Or, at least, by the time everything’s getting explained at the end, we’ve already guzzled 15 beers to dull the pain.

Alvin And The Chipmunks (2007)

The Adaptation: Jason Lee had obviously just hit his head when he signed up to this – a live-action reworking of the kiddie cartoon, about three sibling chipmunks.

What They Got Most Wrong: Allowing the little squeakers to ‘sing’. Our ears are still ringing. And then there’s the squeakquel…

Inspector Gadget (1999)

The Adaptation: Go-go gadget gobsmack! Everybody’s favourite bumbling, gizmo-dependent detective takes a trip to the big screen for a stinker of an adventure.

What They Got Most Wrong: Matthew Broderick as Gadget? Really? Whoever signed off this casting deserves a firing.

Josh Winning has worn a lot of hats over the years. Contributing Editor at Total Film, writer for SFX, and senior film writer at the Radio Times. Josh has also penned a novel about mysteries and monsters, is the co-host of a movie podcast, and has a library of pretty phenomenal stories from visiting some of the biggest TV and film sets in the world. He would also like you to know that he "lives for cat videos..." Don't we all, Josh. Don't we all.