Five amazing books that were turned into movies that completely sucked.

Taking a well-known novel and adapting it for the big screen is risky business.

On the one hand, you risk completely destroying a fan’s image of the characters, story and setting they’ve come to know and love.

On the other? You’re opening a beloved tale up to millions of potential new fans.

And while we’ve seen it work time and time again – think Fight Club, The Hunger Games and even Harry Potter – there are some instances when Hollywood just doesn’t quite get it right.

Here are five examples of when stories should have been left on paper, rather than being caught on film. #SorryNotSorry

1. The Cat In The Hat

If there’s anything that could possibly destroy a Dr. Seuss book, it’s when it’s made into a movie. Cue: 2003’s Cat In The Hat starring Mike Meyers.

the cat in the hat movie
Truly terrifying. Image via DreamWorks Pictures.

The film - which has a 10 per cent 'fresh' rating on movie review site Rotten Tomatoes - manages to take a story that's meant to be fun and cute and turns it into the stuff of nightmares.

Take it from us, best keep the 1,600 words (yes, they managed to make 1,600 words stretch for 82 minutes) inside the covers of the book.

(And if you need to recover after watching the film, you can re-read these timeless children's classics).

2. The Da Vinci Code

When Dan Brown released this mystery-detective novel in 2003, it was outsold by only one other book: J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

Few books have caused such a stir before or since, especially within religious communities, so it was no surprise when the screenplay was snapped up and the tale was adapted into a blockbuster film just three years later.

Starring Tom Hanks. Sporting this haircut:

the da vinci code movie
Tom, is that you? Image via Columbia Pictures.

Unfortunately, things were doomed from the film's debut, with the flick receiving poor reviews during its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival.

One reviewer said of the film: "What seems credible on page is ludicrous in action". Ouch.

3. Eat, Pray, Love

Even if you don't want to admit you've actually read it three times, there's no denying that Elizabeth Gilbert's memoir about her journey of self-discovery across Italy, India and Indonesia was an instant hit.

Her novel has sold over 10 million copies and remained on The New York Times Best Seller list for 187 weeks straight after its release.

eat pray love movie
Not even Julia Roberts could pull this movie off. Image via Columbia Pictures.

Then it was made into a film starring Julia Roberts, Javier Bardem, Billy Crudup and James Franco... and things changed.

Despite making over $204 million worldwide, the film was a critical flop, with many saying the beloved book should never have even been considered to be made into a movie.

That's... way harsh.

LISTEN: Need some new book recommendations? Mamamia Out Loud has got you covered. Post continues... 

4. The Scarlet Letter

While the fact it was forced on you as part as your high school curriculum may mean you can't consider Nathaniel Hawthorne's 1850 novel a classic, it's long been heralded as the American author's "masterwork".

The book follows Hester Prynne, who conceives a daughter after an affair and must live a life of repentance.

Although the book has inspired numerous film, television and stage adaptations, the most memorable (for all the wrong reasons) is the 1995 drama starring Demi Moore and Gary Oldman.

demi moore the scarlet letter movie
Please, no Moore. Image via Buena Vista Pictures.

It grossed just $10 million against a budget of $46 million and was nominated (and won) for a slew of Golden Raspberry Awards, including Worst Picture, Worst Actress, Worst Director and Worst Remake Or Sequel.

5. The Golden Compass

It was meant to be the first of three epic fantasy films, starring Nicole Kidman, Daniel Craig and Ian McKellen.

But the 2007 film - based on the first book in Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials series - failed to live up to the hype.

the golden compass movie
Image via Warner Bros. Pictures.

In fact, despite the first film ending on a huge cliffhanger, it's been confirmed the final two films in the series will never, ever see the light of day.

Critics argued that the film adaptation "took all the magic" out of the 1995 novel which won both the annual Carnegie Medal for British children's books and the annual Guardian Children's Fiction Prize.

And now, to cheer you up, here are some of our favourite successful book-to-movie adaptions: