As writers, we spend most of our free time either writing or reading. Sometimes it’s nice to just relax with a good movie and a bowl of popcorn. Perhaps you’re looking to do so, but want to stay with the writing theme. Whether you are a poet, novelist or playwright there are plenty of movies out there for you. Below are eleven movies in my collection (I actually have several dozen writing related movies, but for your sanity, I just picked these ;-).
1) The Shining - This film combines the talents of Stanley Kubrick and Stephen King to bring to life the madness and personal creative hell of writer Jack Torrance. This is good to watch when suffering writers block.
2) Misery - Beware of Number One Fans! This film strikes fear into the heart of every serial novelist out there, with Kathy Bates playing a crazed fan unhappy that her favorite writer has decided to kill off her beloved character.
3) Secret Window - Don’t go to an isolated cabin in the woods to finish your novel – trust me on this one!
4) Finding Forrester - A teenager from the wrong side of the tracks befriends a reclusive writer played by Sean Connery. This film explores the sometimes tumultuous relationship that develops between a teen writing prodigy and a reclusive author.
5) Finding Neverland – Johnny Depp is playwright J.M. Barrie who during the writing of his play, Peter Pan, befriends Sylvia Llewelyn Davies (Kate Winslet) and her young sons, who inspire the story. Have Kleenex handy – this one’s a tear jerker!
6) Quills – Learn more about the banned books and suppression faced by the notoriously scandalous writer (even by today’s standards) the Marquis de Sade. WARNING – extremely explicit language and graphics.
7) Shakespeare in Love – This film won an Oscar for best picture for its sad depiction of writing success in the face of lost love and sacrifice. Pain is often the catalyst to some of our best writing.
8) Miss Potter - While today we regard Beatrix Potter’s cute animal tales with admiration as children’s classics, in her time she had to struggle against family, prejudices and unwilling publishers to find success, as you can see in this film.
9) Deathtrap - written by Jay Presson Allen. Based on the play by Ira Levin. Directed by Sidney Lumet. Sidney Bruhl (played by Michael Cane) is a famous writer of mystery plays but hasn’t produced anything good for awhile. When he reads a play by an old student (played by Christopher Reeve), Sidney instantly recognizes it as a surefire hit. He cooks up a theme to invite his student over, murder him, then steal the play as his own. But when the student finally arrives, things are far from what they seem.
10) Dead Poets Society – One of the most memorable and moving tales about a teacher sharing his love of writing with his students.
11) Capote - This depiction of writer Truman Capote garnered actor Philip Seymour Hoffman an Oscar for his performance and will have viewers both fascinated and repelled by the lengths Capote goes to in order to ensure he gets the story he wants.
To see a more detailed list, 200 Movies about Writer’s and Writing: http://www.susantaylorbrown.com/movies.html
What are some of your favorite movies about writers and writing?