Unpopular opinion, but not all adaptations suck! You will never want to see a movie based on your favourite book if you read religiously. However, some storytellers did justice to the readers in Indian cinema. They created a beautiful universe with a fantastic soundtrack and details, which may leave one in awe.
Here are some adaptations based on books by Indian authors!
The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri
Jhumpa Lahiri often writes about conflicting identities. It is only natural because she shares one as well. The Namesake details the plight and experience of an immigrant family from Calcutta in America and becomes a tale of love, parenthood, and self-acceptance. Mira Nair’s version of the book, adapted on the big screen, stars Irrfan and Tabu – the two most talented artists who do complete justice to the job bestowed on them.
If you want to experience the poetic beauty of Calcutta and revisit the idea of home, watch this movie or read the book. Even better, do both!
It will introduce you to one of the most famous Russian writers, make you fall in love again with Irrfan, and think hard about the culture of allotting nicknames in India.
2 States by Chetan Bhagat
2 States is the real story of Chetan Bhagat and his wife, falling in love and fighting their families to marry each other. Arjun Kapoor and Alia Bhatt portrayed Krish and Ananya successfully showed the plight of lovers separated by social constructs. While the book caught the eye of youth, Bhagat’s target audience, the movie was loved by many. With on-point soundtracks and real-life locations, it becomes easy to relate to. All in all, it is a feel-good movie that you can come back to time and again.
A roller coaster of emotions, with parent-child conflict, young love, and drama – the book in itself is a favourite of many.
White tiger by Aravind Adiga
White tiger captures a picture of India occupied with class relations and embedded in a fragile democracy. Rajkumar Rao and Priyanka Chopra portray the masters, feeding and inhabiting the servants. They exert the essence of an upper-class couple really well, while Adarsh Gourav gives us a splendid performance as a poverty-stricken-ambitious worker.
The movie largely retains satirical humour and gives away the message intended in the book. The story will take you through an India that you already know and sometimes acknowledge.
Watch it for fantastic performances and read the book for Adiga’s writing.
Parineeta by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay
Set in Calcutta and originally written in Bengali, the book talks about class and religion during the Bengal Renaissance. Its adaptation accommodated the best of Bollywood – Vidya Balan (her debut movie), Saif Ali Khan, Sanjay Dutt, and Dia Mirza. The story outlines the social protest with a plot of the union of two lovers, fighting through norms and unrealized feelings.
The novella sheds light on various Indian Literature references, loved by many. Its adaptation went on to win several awards and is celebrated as a classic to this day.
It is a masterpiece with powerful acting and a splendid cast, layered with a beautiful soundtrack.
Watching a movie helps develop an avatar for the character present in the novel. Similarly, reading a book can guide you through its adaptation by intensifying the suspense if portrayed wisely. Watch these adaptations, read the books, then head over to a book club or call a friend for a discussion.
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