Ethan Frome written by Edith Wharton in 1905 is a novel about the dilemmas of a poor New England farmer named Ethan Frome, his wife Zeena, and Zeena’s cousin, Mattie Silver. The first person narrator, an engineer, comes to the town of Starkfield and becomes curious about the crippled, taciturn Ethan Frome. The tragic consequences of Ethan’s unhappy marriage and forbidden love are revealed in a flashback to twenty-four years before the narrators arrival in Starkfield. In 1992, a movie was made of Ethan Frome which kept this plot in tact but included a number of changes in how the story was narrated and in some of the details about the characters and the plot. Some of the changes were effective; others were not so effective. Some of these changes didn’t even make that much of an effect on the way the movie was compared with the book.
One of these changes would have to be that the narrator was an engineer in the book and in the movie he was a minister. This change was not that big of a deal. This seems like it wouldn’t really make that much of a difference. In the movie they didn’t go into that much detail about before the accident so it mad no difference if the narrator was an engineer or a minister. Either way it would have made no difference if he was a bartender or an exotic dancer. It may or may not have made the story a little more interesting, but who really cares what the narrator’s occupation is.
Some of the changes in the book seemed to make an enormous change, some were good and others were bad. The good change seemed to make the movie take another path that the book never took. In the movie the minister sees that the whole town is ostracizing Ethan Frome, but in the book he never even realizes that there is nothing going on and beside the cripple the town seems fine. This change seems to make the movie more interesting, because it sound like the Minister in the movie has a good idea of what may have happened, that maybe the town doesn’t seem to like him after this accident. In the book when we read it we are to think the engineer has no idea about what really happened, we are to believe that the engineer thinks that this is some kind birth defect.
One other change made another good change. When Mattie Silver tried to kill herself in the barn by eating rat poison. This change is also a good one, it makes the movie watchers believe that Matiie Silver may have some mental problems. The book was boring and added no sex or any mystery or thrills. The movie added that special stuff and took away the scenes that made no sense and were not worth the film. The last change made this movie a Hollywood movie. It was the sex scene, it seemed to attract viewers eyes and made them watch the whole movie. In the book they didn’t have sex but it didn’t make that much difference if they did or didn’t do it. It was solely for entertainment’s purpose.
In conclusion I think some of the changes in this movie were in the best interest of the movie, and the entertainment world. The changes made seemed to make the movie more interesting and more socially cool. Some of the scenes added helped its sex appeal and helped it become a Hollywood movie.
Bibliography:none, written by me!