We know there are a few readers out there who dread Valentine’s Day. Inspired by eBookNewser’s Top 10 Most Romantic Adaptations list, we’ve created a Best Book-Based Netflix Streaming Movies for People Who Hate Valentine’s Day list.
Below, we’ve picked the best Netflix streaming movies based on literary works full of drama instead of flirtation; obsession instead of romance; and madness instead of love. What is your favorite adaptation to watch when you are fed up with love?
Thousands of Netflix users enjoy the “Watch Instantly” section of the popular DVD rental website–streaming movies straight to their computers or televisions. We’ve made Instant Movies for Readers lists for months, including: the best streaming movies based on contemporary lit, the best Netflix instant movies adapted from plays, and the best Netflix streaming movies based on comic books.
1. Dangerous Liaisons: “Privileged and bored 18-century French aristocrats Marquise de Merteuil (Glenn Close) and Vicomte de Valmont (John Malkovich) entertain themselves by making a bet focusing on the virginal Cécile de Volanges (Uma Thurman) and the virtuous Madame de Tourvel (Michelle Pfeiffer). Directed by Stephen Frears, this Academy Award-winning adaptation of the acclaimed stage play and novel.”
2. Brief Interviews with Hideous Men: “Grad student Sara Quinn (Julianne Nicholson) is perplexed by her endless string of romantic failures. Combining work on an anthropological dissertation with her quest for personal answers, Sara interviews an array of men, whose confessions range from banal to bizarre. Actor John Krasinski makes his directorial debut with this quirky comedy based on a collection of short stories by David Foster Wallace.”
3. The Shining: “On the wagon and out of lucrative work thanks to his alcoholism and family troubles, aspiring novelist Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson) accepts a position as the off-season custodian at an elegant but eerie hotel so he can write undisturbed. But shortly after Jack, his wife (Shelley Duvall) and his young son (Danny Lloyd) settle in, the ominous hotel begins to wield its sinister power in this chilling horror classic helmed by Stanley Kubrick.”
4. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof: “Members of an avaricious Southern clan scramble to curry favor with dying, wealthy patriarch Harvey “Big Daddy” Pollitt (Burl Ives) in this Oscar-nominated adaptation of playwright Tennessee Williams’s sizzling stage drama. Paul Newman stars as alcoholic ex-football star Brick Pollitt, whose self-pity and drunken malice jeopardize not only his inheritance, but also his marriage to the seductive Maggie (Elizabeth Taylor).”
5. Rosemary’s Baby: “Rosemary Woodhouse (Mia Farrow), the young wife of a struggling actor (John Cassavetes), is thrilled to find out she’s pregnant. But the larger her belly grows, the more certain she becomes that her unborn child is in serious danger. Perhaps there’s something sinister behind the odd enthusiasm her eccentric neighbors (Sidney Blackmer and Ruth Gordon, in an Oscar-winning performance) have for her welfare. Or perhaps it’s all in her mind.”
6. The House of Usher: “Vincent Price stars in Roger Corman’s first Edgar Allan Poe adaptation as Roderick Usher, whose cursed New England bloodline dooms him and his sister, Madeline (Myrna Fahey), to madness and debauchery. When Philip Winthrop (Mark Damon) arrives at the grim Usher mansion with plans of marrying Madeline, Roderick attempts to dissuade him with the tales of the Usher curse. But Philip is undeterred … until the horrors begin.”
7. Less Than Zero: “When Clay (Andrew McCarthy) comes home from college, he finds that his former girlfriend (Jami Gertz) and his best friend (Robert Downey Jr.) have established a relationship — and with it, a fondness for clubs, wild parties and endless amounts of cocaine. Based on the novel by Brett Easton Ellis, director Marek Kanievska’s film explores the drug culture of wealthy teens and the downward spiral that can ensue when no one’s watching.”
8. Naked Lunch: “Director David Cronenberg brings William S. Burroughs’ hallucinatory, “unfilmable” novel to the screen. Part-time exterminator and full-time drug addict Bill Lee (Peter Weller) plunges into the nightmarish netherworld of the Interzone, pursuing a mysterious project that leads him to confront sinister cabals and giant talking bugs.”
9. The Trial: “Director Orson Welles’s brilliant adaptation of Franz Kafka’s existential novel casts Anthony Perkins as Josef K, a bank clerk who finds himself at the mercy of a powerful and bizarre judicial system when he’s arrested for an unnamed crime. In his efforts to exonerate himself, the bewildered Josef becomes ensnared in a ponderous maze of bureaucratic camouflage and faceless courtrooms. Jeanne Moreau, Romy Schneider and Elsa Martinelli co-star.”
10. Dorian Gray: “When London artist Basil Hallward (Ben Chaplin) paints a portrait of the young and beautiful Dorian Gray (Ben Barnes), the subject is so taken with his own image that he declares he’d do anything to keep his looks — even if it meant selling his soul. The plot thickens when his wish is granted, but even the painting can’t mask the true nature of Dorian‘s inner beauty. Colin Firth co-stars in this period drama based on the novel by Oscar Wilde.”