Posted by Gayle on October 23, 1999 at 20:57:33:
In Reply to: Re: LOTM: The Movie posted by Dana S. on October 23, 1999 at 16:53:05:
: : ....Hi All: Well, since I had to work this morning, I spent friday night playing with the kids, and after they got bored with me, I lay down on my comfy waterbed(oh, do I love my bed!!!) and flip around the dial(remember when TV's had dials???)and saw nothing but garbage on so looking thru my library of videos, I decided to watch LOTM for the umpteenth time. What a GREAT movie. everytime I see it I find something new.(I'm kinda slow that way.) For instance last nite I noticed, (finally) that in the fight scene in the meadow that the guy at the fort that sez "Got no family, so Thought I'd stick around and lend a hand" dies by two thunderous blows with a tomahawk!!... Just a little something I missed the 40 times I saw It before.
: : What I regret most is the total lack of character development. The players are all thrust upon us and we don't know why they say or do what they do!!!! This bothers me to no end!!! I only hope that the directors cut has enuf scenes in it to help us understand the lives of these people.(without having to resort to endless historical backround checking, which we have all done.) I want to SEE it on the screen.
: : Sorry, I guess I'm just rambling on....But are there any of you that feel the same way?????
: : ...I remain, General Norm (haha)
: Hi, Norm,
: I hope the Director's Cut reveals more of each character as well. But ya know what will probably happen? Each new frame will raise even more questions that we will enjoy researching and discussing. I think it's ironic that the film deviates so drastically from the book, yet, both seem to require "endless background checking." Just as you would like to SEE it on the screen, I am tempted to have the Cooper experts just TELL me what Mr. Cooper is revealing in LOTM the book.
: I always get the characters at the Fort confused. I'm slow, too. I would never have noticed Mr. Got No Family being killed in the valley. Something "fun" to watch for next time...
: Dana S.
Norm and Dana,
Interesting that you should notice the lack of character development. FYI: Cooper doesn't develop his characters in his individual books, either. Each character represents a viewpoint in the particular conflict of political, social, cultural, moral issues being dealt with in the story, so is more or less static as he/she plays out his/her role in the plot. It was only by accident that the character of Hawkeye was used in five books, and therefore is developed as a personality from young manhood to his death in his late eighties.
However, even though Chingachgook accompanies Hawkeye through all five of the books, Chingachgook doesn't develop much as a character, either. He is the representation of the "noble savage" and remains static throughout, except for the fact that in his old age he succumbs totally to "demon rum". Thus in his youth he represents the "noble savage", and in his old age he represents the Indian destroyed by the inroads of the white culture. However, his character is not developed in any way. He just gets older.
I think there was some reference somewhere to Mann's saying that he also was just presenting his characters in a limited situation, so did not attempt any particular character development. However, I do think Cora made a considerable transition as she absorbed the realities of the frontier and transferred her loyalties and her love. The pampered British lady of the opening scenes was definitely not the matured and compassionate woman of the final scene.
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