Death of a Salesman Comparisson

Published: 2021-07-02 05:37:03
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Category: Death of a Salesman

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Death of a Salesman After reading and watching Arthur Miller’s “Death of a Salesman”, it was clear that there were many similarities and differences between the film and the text. Many of the actors chosen for roles in the movie seemed to have fit Miller's portrayal of the characters. Between Willy feeling confused and lost to Linda’s vivid concern for Willy they all were presented very well. However, in the play, Willy Loman is portrayed as a man of considerable size while in the film he is much smaller.
Although Dustin Hoffman depicts the character of Willy Loman well, he gets so enthralled in the heat of the scene that it sometimes makes the audience wonder if Miller intended for Willy to be so dramatic and emotional. At times it's overwhelming and even difficult to understand what Hoffman is saying. A problem with converting plays or books to motion picture is one can't see pictures that go along with text. The mind must create its own pictures of what is being described.
The portrayal of Linda Loman on screen was completely different than what I had imagined her to be as while I was reading. I envisioned her to be a little younger and a lot more run-down and tired from dealing with not only Willy and his lost life but to her two sons and the social issues they have as well. I saw her to be more distressed. As far as plot goes, the storyline was almost exactly the same in the movie and the play. Some scenes were interchanged, but not so much as to disrupt the development or structure of the story.

It also looks as though the director of the film purposely made it appear like the movie was taking place on a stage, probably to stay true to the fact that above all, Death of a Salesman is a play. I felt like the flashbacks were complete and in the film it visually helped the audience to understand what was going on. In the text on the other hand, it was up to the reader to understand when they happened and who all were part of them. I think the movie adaption of this was done very well showing how Ben wasn’t “really there” and it was just Willy’s imagination when it came time for a flashback.
The writers of the film script did a very good job with keeping specific lines clear and understandable, keeping in mind that they had to most likely change small things here and there. Overall I found most of the movie compared to the play a success. Between choosing actors who fit their parts as though they actually were Willy Loman, Biff Loman, Bernard and so forth, to being spot on with the plot for the most part they were both very similar. Some failures in my opinion existed in the movie when comparing to the text as well.
Read also: “Realism and Expressionism in Death of a Salesman”
When reading the play I didn’t see Willy and Linda being so touchy feely, as in the kissing and hugging that went on. Also the woman that Willy cheats on Linda with is much younger than I imagined. She is much more annoying especially with her laughing than as I saw her to be in the play itself. Lastly, toward the end, Biff seemed in my eyes much more emotional than I saw him to be through the text. I saw more anger and distress instead of caring about willy and crying that happened in the movie. Overall, yes there were successes and failures when comparing the film to the actual play, but I must say both were quite similar.

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