"Don’t tell what she did" : en adaptionsanalys av Mildred Pierce
This essay investigates the relationship between Mildred and her daughter Veda in James M. Cains novel Mildred Pierce (1941). The purpose of the investigation is to point out how the relationship is portrayed in the film from 1945, and the TV-series from 2011. To facilitate the analysis I apply adaptation theorist Thomas Leicht’s list of ten different adaptation strategies to conclude the possible effects these strategies may have had on the relationship portrait and the themes of the novel. For the analysis of the TV-series I also use adaptation theorist Sara Cardwell’s theories about TV-adaptations. The main question of the essay is: How can the film, where the plot is so different from the novel’s, seem more faithful to the novel than the TV-series which is so faithful to the novel’s plot? I have shown that several aspects have had influence on the moviemakers, such as the Hollywood Production Code in the 1940’s, or the novel’s sometimes "unscreenable" themes such as incestuous insinuations. One of my conclusions is that the main difference between the adaptations is how the moral and judging narrator of the novel has been adapted. I have also shown that the adaptations evoke the question about what Mildred Pierce did wrong, but the answer isn’t clear in any of them.
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