Posted by Gayle on September 12, 1999 at 16:34:28:
In Reply to: Re: A Voice From Out Of The Past posted by MMMMarcia on September 12, 1999 at 15:23:49:
: It sounds pretty close to Mann's portrayal of Cora, to me, Gayle. Am I to assume (*blush* haven't read it YET) that Cooper's Cora was NOT so adaptable? I know changes were made in the character of the two Englishwomen from book to film, but I always get it mixed up...did Cora go over the cliff in the book or Alice? I know it was Uncas/Cora in the book, and Hawkeye/NOBODY...but after that, I'm confused. Can you explain a bit more?
Cooper's Cora was certainly adaptable and might well have been the Cora of the movie if Cooper had given her a man to marry. Cooper had this strange tendency to create wonderful heroines like Cora Munro, Judith Hutter, Mary Monsen, etc., and then be completely incapable of writing heros he could marry them to. It was unfortunate that, by the time he wrote LOTM, he had already committed Hawkeye to celibacy in the previous book. So he had no wiggle room to marry Cora to Hawkeye, and no other man in the book worth shooting at let alone marrying, except for Uncas, who was going to die anyway, per the title of the book! Mann wrote out many of the excellent aspects of Cora's character, but at least he retained her intrepid spirit and had the decency to reward her for her value instead of killing her.
In the book, Cora was knifed to death by one of Magua's more impetuous brethern, and Alice (who was less personable in the book than in the movie) married Duncan.
Magua went over the cliff, but hung onto a branch until Hawkeye took him out with a well placed bullet. That was a remarkably dramatic scene, because the agony of suspense was prolonged forever while Magua struggled to get his footing and hang onto that crummy little twig.
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