Don’t know what happened to the month of October but I know that this post, full of binge worthy book to movie adaptations, should’ve been published days ago!! However, in this instance it’s better late than never, cause chances are you’ve saved the darkest of adaptations for Halloween!!
So without further ado ….
THE NETFLIX ADAPTATIONS
The Haunting of Bly Manor
🎬 Mike Flanagan & team
🎭 Drama, Horror, Mystery, Thriller
📺 9 October on Netflix
The Haunting of Bly Manor is an American supernatural horror drama television series, created by Mike Flanagan for Netflix, and loosely based on Henry James’s work, particularly his 1898 novella The Turn of the Screw. The story tells of a young governess hired by a man to look after his niece and nephew at the family country house after they fall into his care. Arriving at the Bly estate, she begins to see apparitions that proceed to haunt the premises.
After watching the Haunting of Hill House and not being able to sleep for weeks … I made a conscious choice to mentally prepare for the viewing experience of Bly Manor. Meaning that I worked my way through Henry James’ Turn of the Screw which was an unexpectedly interesting reading experience. So much so that I actually penned a lengthy review, you can read here.
While being in the know certainly added to my viewing experience, you might be relieved to know that this beautifully executed adaptation is probably equally enjoyable without reading a word. The Haunting of Bly Manor is simply not as blood curdling as the Haunting of Hill House was. However this does not mean that it’s not worthy of your time, on the contrary, the TV series does a surprisingly good job of capturing the dark and gothic tone of Henry James’ work. In my opinion even the faint of heart might be able to binge watch the full series in one sitting for this seasons Haunting seems to be less about the scares but emphasizes tragedy and romance.
🎬 Ben Wheatley
🎭 Drama, Romance, Mystery, Thriller
📺 21 October on Netflix
A young newlywed arrives at her husband’s imposing family estate on a windswept English coast and finds herself battling the shadow of his first wife, Rebecca, whose legacy lives on in the house long after her death.
Daphne Du Maurier’s novel has been on my reading list since forever!! If anything, this upcoming Netflix adaptation should’ve been the ultimate incentive to finally pick up this critically acclaimed classic. The trailer teases us with the promise that this movie will be very faithful to its source material, but trailers have a tendency to make promises that they can’t live up to. I do expect this adaptation to at least end up in Netflix’s top 10 … not so much because of the enthralling narrative but mostly because of … Armie Hammer.
The Alienist: Angel of Darkness – Season 2
🎬 Jakob verbruggen and team
🎭 Drama, Crime, Mystery
📺 22 October on Netflix
The Alienist: Angel of Darkness a series based on the novels by Caleb Carr, continues on Netflix from the 22th of October.
Season two of The Alienist opens with Sara (Dakota Fanning) reuniting with Dr. Kreizler (Daniel Brühl), the formidable alienist, and John Moore (Luke Evans), now a New York Times reporter, to find the Spanish Consular’s kidnapped infant daughter. Their investigation leads them down a sinister path of murder and deceit, heading towards a dangerous and elusive killer. The series shines a light on the provocative issues of the era – the corruption of institutions, income inequality, yellow press sensationalism, and the role of women in society.
Thoroughly enjoyed the 1st season and the novel by Caleb Carr, which had an emphasis on the birth of forensics and psychological profiling. Basically CSI before there even was a CSI. Nothing left to do but to wholeheartedly recommend this wonderfully executed period piece.
The Queen’s Gambit
🎬 Scott Frank
📺 23 October on Netflix
When winning takes everything, what are you left with? The Queen’s Gambit follows a young chess prodigy’s rise from an orphanage to the world stage. But genius comes with a cost. A riveting adaptation of Walter Tevis’ groundbreaking novel comes to Netflix on October 23rd, starring Anya Taylor-Joy.
The book that inspired this limited series was published in 2003 and currently has a 4.16 rating on Goodreads. In my experience a rating this high holds great promise for an enjoyable reading experience. However all the aforementioned has not really convinced me to dive into this novel just yet. However, the trailer definitely screams binge watch!!! Sooo, I guess that is what I’ll be doing.
THE HBO MAX ADAPTATIONS
🎬 Robert Zemeckis
🎭 Family, Fantasy, Mystery, Comedy, Adventure, Horror
📺 22 October on HBO Max
From the mind of Roald Dahl and as reimagined by acclaimed filmmaker Robert Zemeckis, The Witches is a wickedly fun adventure as a young boy stumbles onto a secret coven of child-hating witches as they plot to turn the world’s children into mice. A fresh Halloween classic for this generation, in a story that celebrates courage, teamwork, and unlikely heroes, offering a completely distinct kids proposition with a quirky, delightfully twisted tone in classic Dahl style.
I really have nothing to add, except for … what is not to like?!
ADAPTATIONS STREAMING ON HULU
Of all the steaming services, Hulu surely seems to offer the darkest book adaptations this month. Unfortunately Hulu is a streaming service that doesn’t have world wide access, but some of the more successful adaptations, like The Handmaid’s Tale, pop up on other streaming platforms. So you might want to keep an eye out for …
🎬 Mary Laws
🎭 Drama, Fantasy, Mystery, Thriller, Horror
📺 2 October on HULU
Encounters with mermaids, fallen angels, and other strange beasts drive broken people to desperate acts in Monsterland, an anthology series based on the collection of stories from Nathan Ballingrud’s “North American Lake Monsters”.
This anthology series has an extraordinary approach to the monster narrative, by the end of almost every episode you find yourself questioning who the real monsters are. After streaming a few episodes I am very curious about Nathan Ballingrud’s novel. I wouldn’t be surprised if in this case, reading turns out to be a lot more enjoyable than viewing these experiences.
Books of Blood
🎬 Brannon Braga and Adam Simon
🎭 Drama, Mystery, Sci-fi, Horror
📺 7 October on HULU
Based on Clive Barker’s acclaimed and influential horror anthology book series, Books of Blood follows a journey into uncharted territory through three tales tangled in space and time. According to “the internet” the previous adaptation effort from 2009, was better than the latest one.
🎬 Paul Zbyszewski
🎭 Drama, Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Sci-fi, Horror
📺16 October on HULU
Helstrom is a series created for Hulu by Paul Zbyszewski, based on the Marvel Comics characters Daimon and Satana Helstrom from a graphic novel named the Son of Satan. It tells a standalone story within the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) and therefore has an approach that I svery similar to the Netflix adapations of MCU comics.
This is my list of book adaptations that are available for stream from October 2020. If you think that there is anything I should watch that is not mentioned on this list …. feel free to let me know in the comments.