Yes, apparently this was based on a book. Since the book did not feature Jim Kelly, and the movie does, we're just going to assume the movie is better.
The Blue Lagoon
"The Director of 'Grease' brings you a sensual story of natural love." Audiences around the world really should have read that as "there is no way this is not going to end in fire."
Believe it or not, this infamous sexploitation cheesefest did NOT spring from the mind of some perverted screenwriter who wanted to see underage kids do it. It's actually based on a novel from 1908 which features (among other things) a main female character wandering into the woods and giving birth without pain. So, the painful naiveté was actually in the book, too? Wow.
Cool Hand Luke
Of all the wickedly cool characters Paul Newman ever played, the egg-scarfing, box-residing Cool Hand Luke is probably the most famous. And, once again, actually having the novelist involved as a screenwriter not only made the movie faithful, but really, really good. Hey, Hollywood, detecting a theme?
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
"Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" did what many thought impossible until Ang Lee came along and did it: made kung-fu movies very, very boring. OK, yeah, the fights are mostly great, but this movie is two and a half hours, about an hour and a half of which revolves around Chow Yun Fat and Michelle Yeoh pretending they don't want to desperately get into each other's pants. It's like "When Harry Met Sally", only not funny and with a bit more violence.
Anyway, believe it or not, it's pretty popular in China to write these very lengthy kung-fu historical serials. They run in newspapers, they're collected and beloved. And just to prove you really DID come into the middle of the story, this is actually the fourth book in the series. Thanks, Ang. Thanks a lot.
Eddie and the Cruisers
OK, we admit it, we're digging pretty deep into the hell of bad '80s movies here, but we were as surprised as the five people who heard of this movie that "Eddie and the Cruisers" was based on a book, mostly because we're wondering who could write something so cheesy.
A quick recap: "Eddie and the Cruisers" is about a 60’s rock band that has a hit album, and are ripping themselves apart over recording their second album. It’s supposed to be this apotheosis of rock 'n roll, and in truth was actually was good enough to sell a lot of soundtrack albums in the '80s. Apparently it's very faithful to the book, by P.F. Kludge. Kludge is also the author of the much better "Dog Day Afternoon", so maybe he should stick to bank robberies.
- - Bullitt: http://www.blogdecine.com/images/bullit_edited.jpg
- - The Lady Vanishes: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/7/74/Lady_moviep.jpg
- - Scarface: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/a/a9/Scar2.gif
- - Once Upon a Time In America: http://www.moviegoods.com/Assets/product_images/1020/193559.1020.A.jpg
- - Shaft: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/d/d0/Shaftposter.jpg
- - Black Samurai: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/0/03/Black_Samurai.jpg
- - The Blue Lagoon: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/3/32/Blue_lagoon_1980_movie_poster.jpg
- - Cool Hand Luke: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/1/19/Cool_Hand_Luke_Poster.gif
- - Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/9/97/Crouching_tiger_hidden_dragon_poster.jpg
- - Eddie and the Cruisers: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/9/9f/Eddie_and_the_cruisers.jpg