Wednesday, February 09, 2011

True Grit omission

Hey guys!  (Crickets.)

Yes, several months since posting.  Pretty bad.  But I've been awfully busy, too.  Perhaps I will share some of the exciting things later.  And a lot of movie reviews.

But for now, True Grit (2010).  Saw it, liked it very much, need to see again.  I didn't come out of the theater whooping for joy, but I did enjoy it.  (I hope to post a review, comparing it with the book and the 1969 movie later.)  Also, I got a Kindle.  And on this Kindle they finally released True Grit.  (But it is $13 for the Kindle, whereas the paperback is $8, and this seems like a lot of road apples, if you ask me.)  I was re-reading a passage this morning and found an interesting bit that was omitted from the movie.

If you'll recall the hanging scene at the beginning of the movie, there are three men sentenced to die.  The first two make little speeches, and the third, an Indian, has the hood placed over his head before he can say anything.  It's a Coen bit of black comedy that gets a good chuckle out of the audience.

In the book, however, the Indian speaks second in line (narrated by Mattie Ross):
The Indian was next and he said, "I am ready. I have repented my sins and soon I will be in heaven with Christ my savior. Now I must die like a man." If you are like me you probably think of Indians as heathens. But I will ask you to recall the thief on the cross. He was never baptised and never even heard of a catechism and yet Christ himself promised him a place in heaven.
I'll have to see the movie again, because I think it includes other bits from Mattie about Christianity (the book is full of asides like this), but it was curious to me that the Coens snipped that bit of dialogue completely. I thought the joke they put in its place was funny, but I wonder if having a condemned character speak about repentance and Christ (especially an Indian, whom a modern audience will assume had his Christianity forced upon him by hateful whites!) was just too unnerving for them to keep in.

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