Movies inspired by classic literature

The modern-day cinematic retelling of some of the classics.

Take Beowulf or Taming of the Shrew and some of the classic literature that have lived with readers for centuries now. But not everyone can read Shakespeare or Austen or Shaw or even Nietzsche. All the literary classics that we have rea din high school have inspired quite a number of movies. Now you might think She’s The Man is a rough and loose adaptation of Twelfth Night and Warm Bodies is a zombie-apocalyptic Romeo and Juliet love story basically; and you won’t be wrong.

Here is a list of movies inspired by classic literature

10 Things I Hate About You is as Shakespearean as it can get

This rom-com starring Heath Ledger is about hard Kat who is softened by Patrick which is based on whole lot of The Taming of the Shrew. A lot less misogynistic, the film is based in high school and has given us quite quotable lines by Kat (the poem reading scene in classroom)

She’s the Man bends gender roles as Twelfth Night does

Twelfth Night has cross dressing females in order to get employment. She’s The Man is about a talented girl who aces in football but has to pretend to be a man to be bale to play. Channing Tatum stars as the star player and also the love interest.

Bridget Jones’ Diary really did have Colin Firth as love interest in Pride and Prejudice

Interesting fact: Colin Firth plays the love interest in this movie and also Mr Darcy in the movie Pride and Prejudice. Bridget Jones’ Diary stars Renee Zellweger, Colin Firth and Hugh Grant.

Clueless feels quite similar to Austen’s Emma

Cher might be pole apart from what Austen created Emma, but Clueless feels a whole lot like the classic novel. The film’s plot where they take pity n the new girl to transform her feels a lot like the main plot of the novel.

Prada to Nada is based on Sense and Sensibility

The rags-to-riches story is not really that but more about accepting one’s culture heritage, accept romance and learning the true meaning of family. The film starts in the posh Beverly Hills but moves to East LA in a Latin rich neighbourhood.

Cruel Intentions takes inspiration from French classic Les Liaisons Dangereuses

The plot is pretty similar to the book. A rich aristocrat promises company to another aristocrat if they can “get with” the innocent Cecille. The film is set in high school with obvious cruel intentions around.


As a pursuing scholar, Sanjukta lives her days reading research papers and lifestyle articles. When she is not pursuing academics, being a noob at video games keep her busy. She believes in equality and a healthy mind over anything else. She doesn't mind having a day-old pizza as breakfast. A hardcore caffeine head.
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