To Kill A Mocking Bird: Movie To Book

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 10th grade June 2001

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When the book To Kill a Mocking Bird was made into a movie, the director and producer adapted the book to what they thought would best the most interesting to an audience. In doing so, certain scenes where taken out, and some where added. Characters developed differently or where taken out. The theme was slightly altered. In the next few paragraphs I will discuss the differences between the book and the movie, why I think they are important, and if I think the change was a good or bad idea.

The first notable changes are the scenes which where taken out. One of the missing scenes was Jem and Scout's visit to Calpurnia's black church. The children where treated very kindly and learned a lot about Cal's background. I think the director may have had this scene in the movie but later had to take it out. This may have been because of time and money.

Another scene that was taken out was when Jem goes to visit Mrs. Dubose. This, to me, was a very powerful scene and taught a good lesson about courage. I think this scene was removed because it would stray for the movies over all theme of racism. One last scene that I thought was important the first day of school for Jem and Scout. In this scene we meet many of the characters that play a role in Jem and Scout maturation. Again, I feel that the director of the movie thought that by adding this scene He would stray from the theme of Racism. I think that all these deleted scenes where necessary in the book, but I think it was a good idea to take them out. I think they would be boring to watch.

The second thing I noticed was that in the movie many character where taken out or where less involved as they where in the book. The first character missing was Aunt Alexandria. In the book she visits Atticus and the children to help out. In the book Scout is a tomboy. Aunt Alexandria tries to teach her how to act lady-like. I think the reason she was not in the movie was to take away the emphasis on scout's maturation. Another character removed was Uncle Jack. He played a very small role in the book so I don't think it was very big issue that he was taken out. Lastly, May Ella was portrayed differently. In the book we are meant to feel sorry for May Ella. She is poor. She has never kissed a man, she accuses Tom Robinson of raping her and she is also being beat by her dad but despite of all this she tries to make the most of her shack by planting flowers. In the movie though, It only shows the bad side of her. I think maybe the director interpreted her differently and maybe didn't see the other side of her.

"You Cant truly judge a person until you walked around in their shoes." Atticus said this to his daughter Scout when she spoke harshly about a person from school who was different. It was also a very important theme in the book. In the movie however, this theme is subordinated into something small and unimportant. The movie focuses on the theme as racial prejudice. I think the reason the director made this a big theme because racism was a an issue at the time and making a movie about racism would make the movie much more powerful In conclusion, there are many changes between the book and the movie, I noticed that certain scenes where deleted, characters where altered or even taken out, and the theme was also changed around. Overall I think most of these changes where a good idea, except I feel the Director should have kept the warm side of May Ella, I think that focusing on racism made the movie very deep and powerful. I also think that the deleted scenes made the movie much more interesting to watch and made it less boring than the book.