So, let's break this down; before you stand some of the most high-profile book-to-movie adaptations of 2015. And we're going to sort them out; The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.
1 - THE GOOD
Cinderella - While the Disney animated feature will doubtless remain the dominant cultural image of the fairytale, this live-action adaptation has a lot of good stuff going into it, all displayed in this big, splashy trailer. While adaptation of fairytales are gaining momentum, this will likely be one of the biggest splashes of the lot. Personally, I'm reckoning on a swan dive more than a bellyflop here.
Insurgent - Say what you like about Veronica Roth's original trilogy, this thing has chops. Will its star power and massive fanbase be enough to save it from 'middle movie' syndrome? By the looks of it, the film-makers certainly think so. From this trailer Insurgent looks like a lean, mean, franchise machine with a bark to match its bite.
The Avengers: Age of Ultron - Comic books count as books, shush. Besides, the Marvel movies are going from strength to strength, and any movie that can make a tune from Pinnochio sound menacing clearly isn't messing around.
2 - THE BAD
Frankenstein - Ech. Ech. Echhhhhh. Adapting Mary Shelley's genre-making classic is tricky enough without trying to turn it into a sci-fi Daniel Radcliffe vehicle. And here I was thinking I, Frankenstein was as daft as we were going to get. And sadly this film isn't looking half as enjoyably silly as that mess was...
Goosebumps - Was the hilariously bad TV series not enough to convince people to leave Goosebumps alone? As someone who enjoyed (and may or may not have been traumatised by) the books as a child, this just reeks of reaching for nostalgia dollars.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens* - Actually, I think this movie looks really good. But I'm the weirdo who only saw the Star Wars movies this year, liked the prequels better than the originals, and thinks Jar Jar Binks was way more entertaining than C3PO. Sadly, as is the way of the fan, this movie will probably be lampooned and torn apart upon arrival, regardless of its merits. Just look at what people have to say about that claymore lightsaber and you'll see exactly what I mean.
(*- And yeah, technically it's an adapation. There's books about the Extended Universe, this is supposedly designed to update / replace those . . . shush.)
3 - THE UGLY
Fifty Shades of Grey - This monster gets a category all to itself, mainly because I knew it was going here to start with and simply couldn't find anything remotely comparable with what this thing represents. The cinematic version of the biggest blowup in the book world since The Story of O (and markedly less tasteful) is an even bigger mess on screen - the director and the author fought like cat and dog from conception to completion, and even the two leading actors can't stand to be in the same room as one another for any extended period.
Rumour has it poor Jamie Dorman (the repulsive Mr Grey himself) was even taken out by Robert Pattison for a comiserative pint and a chitchat during filming. If the stars of Twilight are comiserating with you, you know something's gone wrong. Really, really wrong.
Did I miss anything, Chewers? How would you categorise this year's adaptations? Leave a comment, and let me know!