Week in film, DVD and streaming November 24
Walter Tevis adaptations
The Queen’s Gambit, about a young woman’s rise in the world of competitive chess in the early 1960s, is the streaming hit of the season on Netflix. It’s an adaptation of a 1983 novel by Walter Tevis (1928-1984). His work is also the basis for three other excellent films, all available on streaming services:
The Hustler (1961, not rated) Drama – Paul Newman is Fast Eddie Felson who wants a game of pool against the great Minnesota Fats (Jackie Gleason). Career-defining roles for both. With George C. Scott, Piper Laurie and Myron McCormick.
The Man Who Fell to Earth (1976, R) Science fiction – David Bowie, at his most other-worldly, is perfectly cast as an alien who needs water for his dying planet. Directed by Nicolas Roeg.
The Color of Money (1986, R) Paul Newman returns as Fast Eddie Felson who takes a younger player (Tom Cruise) under his wing. Directed by Martin Scorsese.
Tevis also wrote two other novels that have not been filmed—Mockingbird (1980), post-apocalyptic science fiction, and The Steps of the Sun (1983) about a future with an ascendant China.