The film, An Occurence at Owl Creek Bridge, differs in many ways from the written story bearing the same name. The point of view depicted had a different color about it completely when comparing the two. The content of the two stories also differed in many ways. After viewing the film and reading the story, I felt as if the film did not do justice to the piece of writing.
I thought that the French-directed film had a distinct European flare to it. The film was very dark throughout. The lighting was very poor and was probably intended to give a sense of death or evil. I believe that the relations between the United States and France at the time may have had some influence on how Enrico decided to portray this story in American history. The written story had a more unbiased point of view. Although you are perceiving the story through the plantation er s eyes, there is more information given on why he is to be hanged.
The author of the story did not try to make you take a side in the story. He allowed you to view the story from a point of view that would allow you to base your own judgment on the situation. There was never a sense of poor me from the character being hung in the story, but more of a sense that he knew that he deserved what he was getting and this was his just punishment. I believe that the film is about death and the process of dying. The strange sounds offer mystery of death throughout the film. The sounds are never explained, nor do we see where they are coming from while he is running through the woods.
Capital Punishment has been part of the criminal justice system since the earliest of times. The Babylonian Hammurabi Code (ca. 1700 BC) decreed death sentences for crimes as minor as the fraudulent sale of beer. Egyptians could be put to death for disclosing the location of sacred burial sites (2.). In this country, although laws governing the application of the death penalty have undergone many ...
Could it be that these sounds were the rope swinging and rubbing against the wood as he died? As the character is running to his wife, she offers more of a weak or fake smile to him rather than a genuine smile. This instance may be an indicator that he knows that he is dying, but pushes death aside to hold the image of his wife in his final moments. The film seems to be focused around the passage of death and what the human mind may do when death finally comes. The written story was more about life and how life should be lived. I thought that the character in the written story actually escaped and was going to live more so than the character of the film. It seems that the character is interested in living, going back to his wife and experiencing all of the elements of living that he had taken for granted.
The written story also offers a sense of irony in that now he is going to be put to death, but he realizes the value of life and that he was foolish to endanger it as he had. The character emits a sense of regret in the writing. I believe that both the film and the written story are trying to teach the audience the value of life when the man climbs to the shore and realizes his escape. As with the film though, he realizes how beautiful it is to be alive. With a knowledge of the author s past, one realizes another attempt of this writing. Bierce, the author had been a soldier in the Civil War for the Union, and must have seen many cruel and bloody things while fighting the war.
I believe that in the writing, he wanted to give a sense of how lives in the war were wasted and how cruel the army could be. The view that he created offers some sympathy to the character who is to be put to death. It also may offer the sense of what the soldiers had to go through in order to fulfill their duty. Although it may have been against their wishes, they were obligated by the law to fulfill their duty of hanging this man. This could reflect the personal experience of Bierce in how he was torn between morals and his duty at times. The physical format of the two was also different in several ways.
In the film, Enrico chooses to leave out the Union soldier s visit to the plantation. I believe that there are several reasons that this was done. The director may have wanted the film to run a smooth course, yet he may also have wanted the audience to have more sympathy for the man. Without a real reason for the hanging in the film, there is a sense that he is innocent and that it is wrong to be hanging him. It may also be left out so that the audience may build their own story in their minds as to why the man is being put to death. In this way, each member of the audience has a chance to personalize the story so that it meets their own individual standards as to why he is to die.
The title of this story “Dead Mans Path” foreshadows the series of events about to take place in the story. “Dead Mans Path” does not only refer to the ancestral pathway but also refers to Obis choice of action. His “path” by not compromising has made him a “Dead Man”. Dead in this context is not death, but is referring to his failure. His dream ...
This allows each member of the audience to make up their own story up at the point where the film starts. This is a strong tool in that it immediately pulls the audience in and makes them use their imagination and start asking questions. The written story had no description of the sounds that were present in the film, yet there were sounds in the story that were described as strange sounds in the woods as he was running. Although there were a lot of sounds in the film, there was no indications that they were coming from the sides, nor did the character in the film give any attention to the landscape on either side as he ran. There were no strange things moving in the trees in the film either. In the writing, there was no mention of drums chasing him or of the soldiers shooting the canon at him again that was seen in the film.
In the movie, as the man ran after climbing from the creek he panics and runs, as he thinks the troops are chasing him. In the written story the man becomes tired and wears out from how far he is running as opposed to the film where he is running barefoot as fast as he can from the soldiers. I believe that the director of the film had to manipulate the story slightly in order to make it work for the length of film that he wanted and for the effect that he was looking to create. I felt that the stories differed in many ways.
I think that they view that we see in the film is the view that the director saw when he read the story, and he depicted the story as he saw fit. I am sure that the way that each person views the story is different which does cause for people to judge. I think that we were allowed to see into the mind of the director in how he saw the story.