Is the film "To Kill a Mockingbird" is a satisfying interpretation of Harper Lee's novel?

Essay by gwemma88High School, 10th grade September 2005

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The film, "To Kill a Mockingbird", directed by Robert Mulligan is in several ways a satisfying interpretation of Harper Lee's novel, but not so in other respects. The film lacks several scenes that were explored in the novel. Also, in the film, the characters are not nearly as well developed as Harper Lee had them in her novel, and a number of characters are completely omitted. On the other hand though, the film does encapsulate the emotions felt by some of the characters almost as well as the novel does, largely through the use of lighting, music and camera work. In addition, the director and screenwriter have done an admiral job of ensuring that this film was explored through a child's perspective, and similarly did the screenwriter who worked on Whale Rider.

In the film, "To Kill a Mockingbird", it is dissatisfying that many scenes have been omitted.

Scenes which developed key themes. Scenes which are important in the development of characters. Scenes which assisted in the novel becoming an all time classic. One scene that is left out of the film is when Jem destroys Mrs Dubose's garden and is required to go and read to her every afternoon. The death of Mrs Dubose is a significant event in the novel. Without it included in the film, Jem and Scout, but particularly Jem, do not learn a valuable lesson. They do not learn what "real courage" is by the way that Mrs Dubose battled to end her addiction, even though she knew it would probably be a losing battle right from the beginning. Her struggle is very similar to the losing battle fought by Atticus in the courtroom. Without it included in the film, that connection is not made. Another scene that is not included...