Grapes Of Wrath 8 Essay

3153 words - 13 pages

The Grapes of Wrath John Steinbeck, author John Ford, director Produced by Twentieth Century Fox , 1940.In John Steinbeck's and John Ford's Grapes of Wrath the feeling of depression in the 1930s is portrayed very clearly. Both the book and movie depict the great migration West by homeless sharecroppers. The farmers were searching for work, money, and happiness, but were faced with many hardships along the way. Those who were able to make it to their destination were not met with the fulfillment of their dreams, but with the feeling of being unwanted. Director John Ford, in translating the novel Grapes of Wrath, by author John Steinbeck to film, made some minor changes in plot, but remained faithful to the characters, mood and theme.The novel deals with the hardships faced by sharecroppers who live in the Oklahoma Dust Bowl during the time period of the Great Depression of the 1930s. The story expresses the unfairness and cruelty that can be shown between human beings. The story opens with Tom Joad, recently released on parole after killing a guy, heading to the family farm. He meets Jim Casy, a preacher, and they set off for the Joad farm only to find out the Joad family has been forced out of their home in Oklahoma and must migrate west to California, with the other sharecroppers, in the hopes of finding work and land. The trip is filled with hardships. Grampa Joad, who had not wanted to leave the family farm, dies of a stroke the first night of the trip. This foreshadows how their trip is going to go the entire way. They borrow a quilt from the Wilsons, another family of sharecroppers who the Joads have met along the road, and bury Grampa. They pair up with the Wilson family and head on. Next, Granma Joad gets sick and keeps getting sicker as they head west. An important part of the plot is when Ma explains to Granma that they must keep moving west and make it across the desert because they are almost out of money. This shows how the migrant workers had to be determined and keep moving toward what they wanted, no matter what the cost may be. Granma knew that and so did Ma. Granma dies and Ma tells the rest of the family the next morning that she is dead. On page 203 it states: Pa said, "Then Granma's bad." Ma raised her eyes and looked over the valley. "Granma's dead." "I was afraid we wouldn' get acrost," she said. "I tol' Granma we couldn' he'p her. The fambly had ta get acrost. I tol' her, tol' her when she was a-dyin:. We couldn' stop in the desert." (page 203) As the Joad family heads west, they are met by all kinds of hardships. For example, the tension that set the mood of the novel was apparent in chapter 20, pages 236 and 237 when the deputy and contractor came to the camp. One of the migrant workers jerked away from the contractor and accidentally hit him. In response, the deputy tried to shoot the migrant worker, but hitting an innocent woman instead. Tom, the hero of the book, reacted by knocking the deputy out. From that point on...

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