The 1980 movie version of the novel Brave New World followed the text better than the 1998 version of the movie. There were some changes, but the characters mainly stayed the same, and the movie tried to stay true to the novel.
What I didn’t expect was for the movie to begin with Bernard being nowhere in sight. His name never even showed up until 40 minutes into the movie. Instead, it focused on Thomas and Linda. It showed their life before the trip to the savage reservation and exactly how Linda was left behind. It wasn’t told through a story like it was in the novel. This put more of an emphasis on Thomas’ character. In the novel he was only mentioned a couple of times, and after he was exposed he disappeared completely. In the movie, you get to see his reaction after he is exposed. In the 1998 version his character was more sinister, with him knowingly leaving Linda after he found out she was pregnant.
Bernard’s character was more true to the novel in this version of the movie, but there were moments they changed it. When he and Lenina went to the savage reservation, they both witnessed something unpleasant. This led to Bernard asking Lenina for soma to calm himself down. Lenina was the calm one in the situation and Bernard was the one who couldn’t handle it. Their roles were completely reversed. Bernard to me was obviously an outsider this time. He was socially awkward and his stature wasn’t that of other alphas in the area. It was easy to tell he didn’t belong with everyone else. They also showed how Bernard grew up from the moment he was decanted and how he strayed from the ways of the state throughout the years. This was a new addition to the movie, and I thought it added to his character. It showed how he disrupted the teachings of the state and how other noticed it from the beginning. From the moment he was decanted, his situation was already known to others.
Bernard was considered an outsider from the beginning. Unlike the novel, Bernard stood up for John and Helmholtz during the fight over the soma. He didn’t even think about it. To me, his character was less extreme in the movie. In the novel, he would become upset over everything and seemed much more malicious. When he was given attention after bringing John back, he bragged a lot and his character became more unlikable to me. In the movie, I didn’t dislike him and instead could understand his actions more. He was much more composed, and seemed to care about Helmholtz more than he did in the novel. In the novel, Bernard seemed more concerned with his own problems than with what Helmholtz was going through.
I thought this version of the movie was better than the 1998 version. The newest version changed too much and altered the characters personalities. It made the story too different for me. This version sticks to the novel a lot more closely, and I found myself liking the movie.
The 1998 movie version of the novel Brave New World is very different than what I expected. There were many parts from novel that were either left out or completely changed.
What surprised me the most was how Bernard was not considered the main character. The movie mainly focused on Lenina and how she changed after she met John. This was shocking, because in the novel Lenina did not change and never saw the world from John’s perspective. They changed her character, which in turn added a new conflict. Lenina became someone who didn’t follow the ways of the state. This is shown when she is teaching a class of students about the past. She begins talking about heroes, only to rethink what she’s saying. She goes against what the textbook says, adding her own ideas and thoughts on the subject matter. There was even a moment where she didn’t take soma. People in this society are trained to take soma whenever something unpleasant happens, but she threw all of her soma on the floor. Instead of getting rid of the unpleasant feelings she decided to deal with it. For the first time ever, she felt soma wouldn’t solve her problem. Lenina’s character was changed into something completely different, ending with her understanding the way of life John had been trying to explain to her throughout the movie.
Bernard didn’t seem like an outsider to me. Instead, he seemed to fit into society. He wasn’t anything the novel described him to be. Before we watched the movie, I pictured Bernard as an awkward character who didn’t fit in among the other alphas mentally and physically. I thought I would be able to tell who Bernard was just by comparing him physically to another alpha near him. This however was not the case, and Bernard didn’t seem to add any real conflict to the story. Bernard was more like a side character, while Lenina and John were the main focus.
The fact that John didn’t commit suicide does change his character. In the novel, John decided to kill himself so he could finally be alone in a world where his ways were considered primitive and savage. It was a way for him to make a decision for himself without anyone else trying to control him. In the movie, his death was accidental. This makes me wonder about how John would have dealt with the situation if he hadn’t fallen off the cliff. In the movie he did want to be alone, but when he was running away from everyone near the cliff I wasn’t given the impression he would kill himself. It seemed more like he just wanted to get away from everyone.
The fact that the character Helmholtz wasn’t in the movie disappointed me. His character was one of the more interesting ones and showed just how one could move away from the teachings of the state. However, considering his role in the novel it did make sense to not add him in the movie. If Bernard wasn’t considered the main character and didn’t have a different view from the state, Helmholtz wouldn’t really serve his purpose of being Bernard’s way of connecting with someone who understood him.
Overall, I enjoyed the novel more than the movie. Too much was changed and it took away from some points made.
Watching the 1998 movie version of Brave New world we see a new plot almost with all the tweaks they did. But it did help understand the book as a story a lot better how things were. The movie in a sense sugar coated the actual book be cause they took out a lot of the events which were considered tragic and what made it set as a dytopias They ended it with a happy ended which I though was nice but weird since reading all about dystopias we are used to the tragic endings which no one wins, They did make the story more like-able as there was less of what set one state apart from the savage world. They did take out the core of the society though like fordism. which really in a sense made everyone almost seem expendable They did make high emphasis on the part which everyone belonged to everyone though which was the core of the story which the individual was looked down upon.
Things they kept still was how people interacted with each other like the causal sex no attachment, the high use of Soma every time a character feels stressed out they would turn to the drug to erase it. Bernard in the movie still in a way kept to his character by barely eating it but he had his own agenda in the movie which he just did what ever he wanted. He made things to just go his way. He was never really a loner in the movie as he acted as one with the society compared to the book. Parts of the movie they changed are such as how John was really treat by Linda. In the book we know she hated john almost because of her background of being born from one state but in the movie she actually like him a lot but it was because they made it so she was actually born from the savage world. They made it so John is a lot less hated. The movie also took out the character of Helmholtz whom I though was important as he was the fundamental reason Bernard was able to see his change but to make up for it we did not really see the change in Bernard it was more of a change in Lenina.
The most important thing I though that changed in the movie which was really different from the book was defiantly the ending. They did not just end it with the death of John (which i though was weird that they changed the way he died too) They ended it with a happy ending in which Bernard and Lenina have their child and actually raised the baby together as a family and as parents which as we all know is highly looked down upon in the society of world state but this was what made the movie less tragic and i liked it more.This made me realize that it really was pretty much a story of its own.
While I was reading Brave New World I pictured it to be different from the movie. The book had a lot of details that made it easier to create imagery. One major difference from my interpretation and the 1998 movie version was the hatchery, I thought it would look like today’s hospitals bright and white but in the movie it was extremely dark. I expected the room to be all white and bright, the test tubes were just how I thought they’d be. The movie was very dark as far as lighting goes, which I thought since “everyone belongs to everyone else,” everything would be out in the open so a lot of light would be needed. The dark light in the movie to me seemed as though they were trying to hide something, whereas, if there were to be more light it would emphasize the “freeness” they claimed to have.
I think Helmholtz not being in the movie wasn’t a good idea, only because it would have been nice to see the bond he had with Bernard and John. The friendship and attachment the three men had to one another would have made the movie stronger. Bernard could have been made to look more of an outcast because I feel as though he blended in with everyone else around him and in the book everyone looked at him because of his weird appearance. Lenina in the movie looked modern yet plain, in the movie she only wore green but was high fashioned. I think the reason why the director might have done this was to make it more realistic and appealing to the audience so that they might be able to relate. I did like the window’s however, the way one was able to change what they wanted to see based on their mood. Although I did like the windows, I wondered why would they want to see these pleasant images. They live in such a “perfect world” they should want to see it all the time and not see something else. I did like how they showed the conditioning of the kids, which was very similar to how I pictured it to be.
I didn’t understand why the director made a big emphasizes on that one particular child. At one point I thought that was Bernard when he was younger and the movie was him in the future but then I ruled it out. Maybe the director did it to be a cliffhanger and/or to show that there would always be someone different just like Bernard no matter how hard you try not to have someone like him in the society. Also, Linda wasn’t that bad looking, I pictured her to be extremely fat, horrible teeth, her hair I think did look bad in the movie. The reservation looked more like the city, maybe an hour away from the World State, not a helicopter ride away. I pictured to be jungle like, maybe a forest, because I remember the details describing it mentioning a lot of green. Also in a conversation john and Bernard were having in the reservation john pointed to a mountain, and he also talked about learning how to make pottery by a lake which none were shown in the movie. If the director would have depicted the reservation how it was in the movie maybe the differences would have been easier to see to a person who has never read the book. Had I not read the book I would have thought john was just from a low class neighborhood and the World State was a high class neighborhood.
I like the movie “Brave New World” which was made in 1998. It helped me to understand the themes of the novel, more than I had previously. However, the movie has and missed a few of the main points that the author expresses in his writing. The movie has a happy ending, Lenina and Bernard escape from the sterile, perfectly controlled world and make the decision to keep a baby and raise their own child. It is a subtle change that inspires more sympathy for the movie characters then the sympathy created for the book characters.
John creates conflict in the movie between savages and civilization and his persona is slightly different in the movie. Further, John plays a more significant and deeper role in the movie. However, he is not the main character. Conversely, the book ends when he kills himself.
In the movie, John’s character has a profound influence on Lenina. She starts to view his relationship with Bernard differently, and realizes that the civilization creates artificial happiness and that traditional family attachment is much more important. In the movie she comments,“ Screen with mother was beautiful”. Then Linda and John make her feel needed. She is struggling to fight her need for escapism. She even rejects to take soma, when in the book her character was never able to exhibit that strength. In essence, she still has some connection with John, but not the same way as in the book. In the book, Lenina and John fall in love with each other. In the movie, Lenina likes John, she observes and admires his behavior and she desires to have a physical connection with John, only because it’s her duty as a citizen. However, she and Bernard have always had a special relationship and sympathy for each other, as John observes several times in the movie, that something is going on between them. Society makes them suppress this feeling as it does not fit into the sterilized notion of relationship and reproduction prevalent in society.The movie doesn’t have the characters of Helmotz and Ford, they are completely omitted. It makes the role that Bernard plays even more important in the movie. Also, it contributes to creating even more conflict between The Director and Bernard.
I like the scene with the children, as it signifies the hope of a new generation and that societal progress will depend on them. The movie begins with kids, and it also ends with a scene where one kid elects to listen to the dystopian propaganda. The propaganda that promotes the artificial world designed to numb people into happiness. It creates a view civilization of as a flawed creation and happy place and these kid will be the protagonist of the system. The scene in the center of death was very painful and scary, in the way that make you view and understand that this society, has no reaction and any real human emotion. They teach young children that death is happy. When John sees Linda in the center of death and has a break down , people are incapable of understanding his emotions .This scene is very similar with the book. It contrasts the different value system between the “civilization” world and “savage” world.
While watching the movie of 1998 Brave new world, I was left a bit confused. I was rather disappointed with what came out of the movie. The book was a beautiful piece of writing, why change any of the book’s story if it was good how it was. Throughout the movie many scenes were left out, and many of those scenes were the ones I wanted to see. I felt they miss the whole point of the book and saw the story in a really weak way. At one point in the film I was lost with what was happening, I would question myself: did I forget this part in the book? It was confusing. The movie had it’s good moments but I just really wasn’t liking the cut out parts of it.
For starters, the setting lacked imagination. In the book the World State was a futuristic setting, it made the reader wonder how the place would look. When the film displayed the World State, I questioned myself asking if that really was the World State. When I saw this part of the film I was very disappointed, I had high expectations of it. I was curious to see how the reservation looked like as well. When the reservation came up, I was confused, I thought the reservation was very ancient, and when they displayed the reservation it looked too much of a modern world to be seen as a savage reservation.
Another disappointment for me was not seeing the introduction before they met John. In the book there’s a scenery where a kid is whipping himself in a ceremony. After that they meet John would explains to them he would of liked to be the one getting whipped. In the movie it didn’t happen that way. In the film Bernard and Lenina are attack by some savages and John appears to get them out of there. My heart sank when I notice they did not involve this, it was an important scene, it had a big meaning in the book so I was sadden. I was worried for the ending.
In the film there was a scene where it just took me by surprise. Half way into the film, a guy was conditioned to kill Bernard! It got me by surprise observing this event occur because in the book there wasn’t any mentioning of a man attempting to kill Bernard. That wasn’t needed In the film, maybe they were trying to display that not everyone was ok in the World State. This guy was shown to be weird in the World State. But I felt this part wasn’t as important as other scenes that should have been there. At the end the guy failed at killing him and attempted to kill himself instead. Although it has a big meaning what he did, I don’t get where they got the idea to make up this.
Another important scene where it really hit me hard was the killing of John. In the book John wants to be isolated in a light house and he starts to whip himself. Photographers go looking for him doing this action and they like it. At the end John can’t handle all the stress he has and needs up hanging himself. In the film… Personally I didn’t want to finish watching it. It had miss the whole point! They displayed him on top of a building walking around freaking out, he later climbs down and is chased by a mob of people. They end up cornering him at the edge of cliff and he ends up falling accidentally to his death. This is how the film should have a least ended but no, they continue with the story. At the end Lenina has a sex with Bernard and she ends getting pregnant and now has to leave the World state. Bernard decides to sneak her out and age decides to stay. He later on regrets leaving Lenina with the baby alone and decides to leave the World State to be with his family. They changed the ending from a tragic ending which was in the book to a happy ending in the film.
I enjoyed watching the 1998 film version of Brave New World. All the visions I had of the World State’s appearance was completely different from what I pictured it to be. The biggest difference between the film and novel was Bernard’s character. In the novel Bernard was the outcast of the World State, he was ugly and much different from the other Alpha Pluses. Bernard didn’t associate with the other Alpha’s. In the film it seemed as if Bernard was popular and well liked. Bernard’s big change was a major part of the novel, but I feel like its okay that Bernard’s change was left out of the film. There was already so much going on in the film that if Bernard’s change was shown the film would probably be three hours long. Another difference between the film and novel was that in the film Bernard and Lenina weren’t shown as the two main characters but more like two regular, ordinary citizens.
In the film it was shown that everyone goes to a club and its where they are promiscuous. The novel doesn’t mention a club, so I’m thinking the club is where they have the “orgy porgies”.
One of the similarities between the film and novel is how much control the World State has over it’s citizens. “Everyone belongs to everyone” is constantly broadcasted in the World State, all the citizens repeat that phrase whenever its played. In the film Lenina says “promiscuity is a citizens duty”. The World State has all the same values in the novel and film except one of the most important parts, Ford. Ford was the religion of the World State, all the citizens would make the sign of a “T”. In the film Ford was not shown. I thought that it should have been shown because of the significance it has in the novel.
In both the film and novel Lenina and Bernard take a trip to the Savage Reservation. In the novel the Savage Reservation was in a village called Malpais. I pictured the Savage Reservation to be like a village where people lived outdoors, almost like the Indian reservations there are in real life. I pictured the people to look like how they were explained in the novel. The Savage Reservation in the film was like a trailer park in an industrial area and nothing like a village. Bernard and Lenina’s experience at the Savage Reservation in the film and novel were completely different. In the film Bernard and Lenina’s helicopter is riding over the Savage Reservation and the people are throwing things at the helicopter. Their helicopter then crashes and the Savages begin to attack Bernard and Lenina. Their experience in the novel was much different, it was a good experience for Bernard and they weren’t attacked by anyone.
In the film when John is being conditioned “kill Bernard Marx, will harm society” was repeatedly shown. I thought this was strange because Bernard’s character in the film was shown as a normal regular citizen, not someone who has enemies or someone who should be killed. I think this would have made more sense in the novel because Bernard was a menace to the society and he brought problems to the Controller by bringing John and Linda to the World State.
All in all, I enjoyed both the novel and the film. I think that even though the film was much different from the novel it did portray the World State properly and how it functions. The viewers of the film without reading the novel can definitely understand the values of the World State.
While watching Brave New World the 1998 version, I was felt a little disappointed since I noticed a lot of changes and felt as if the book was a million times better. The first difference that I noticed, and that took me by surprise was that Bernard Marx is never really seen as a complete outsider. He is seen as a “normal” citizen and is somewhat recognized and it his transformation is never shown. In my opinion I felt as if this gave a whole new outlook on the movie. Bernard in the book is immediately portrayed as an outsider and different especially physically, and when we focused on his transformation it felt more dramatic and shows his character on both ends of the spectrum. Sadly in the movie due to him not being portrayed this way caused him to be more of a supporting character instead of the main character. We are never shown the internal complexities and issues which Bernard faced in the book and this also causes the plot to become malleable since there is less importance to everything in the movie.
There were also other major absences such as the presence and mentioning of Ford and Helmholtz Watson. Not mentioning Ford was a huge difference since the whole purpose of the society was with the presence/belief of Ford. Yet in the movie he was not even mentioned once, although we were shown the assembly line in the film. In the film there was no religious belief and this deviated from the book since Ford was one of the underlying important focuses of the book. By not having Ford in the film there is an absence of how the society has progressed and how their belief in Ford is centered in their daily lives, actions and beliefs. Meanwhile by Helmholtz also not being present in the film also does not show how a law-abiding citizen could also change so drastically and show how the World State was facing many issues. Helmholtz was a troubled character which internally knew that he was different and this aspect allowed us to see many issues with the World State, yet due to his absence in the film we never had a chance to observe the inside works of the World State.
I also feel as if the Savage Reservation was never really shown into detail or explained in the film. We are shown a small glimpse but it is not enough for the viewer to really know how it is used to show the difference between the advanced and intellectual World State versus the primitive people of the Savage Reservation. By Aldous Huxley having this in his book, it allowed for the existence of the dystopia and showed how the World State was great and almighty when compared to the savage and primitive people of the Reservation. This setting was also great since in the book we were able to gain a better understanding of Linda’s and John’s life and roles there and also served as a point in which we would be able to see their change once they went to the World State. Yet all of this in nonexistent since the Reservation was never a focused setting in the film, therefore it causes us not to question the World State and the whole cast of characters.
There were various differences between the book and the film such as John having a last name in the film (copper), Lenina becoming the main character and her being receptive to trying and learning new things from John the savage. Overall I think I will stick with the book, I enjoyed it much more and it was richer in detail compared to the 1998 film version.
As we discussed last class, I am offering two extra credit blogs based on two different movie versions of Brave New World (please categorize appropriately). For each blog, you should provide a response based on a comparative analysis of the novel and the film (this response can also include your thoughts on/opinions of/reactions to the film). Remember, your goal is not to simply list your observations (for example: these are the things than are different in the film) but to critically analyze these differences (how do omitted/added/revised characters, plot details, conflicts, etc. change our understanding of the text?).
Here are links to the two versions of the film:
*Blogs are due W night (5/14), & there are only two grades for these extra credit blogs (100 and 0). If you watch the films & blog your responses/reflections completely (in terms of length and content) and thoughtfully, you will receive 100% (an “A”) for the assignment. If you do not turn in the assignment (or if it is too short/not fulfilling the purposes of the assignment), you will receive a “0.” Don’t forget to take notes during the films, so you can include concrete details from the events in your blogs.
I’ve enjoyed discussing your essays with you individually this past week, and you all are making a lot of progress in your writing (both in terms of content and structure). I look forward to seeing the next drafts tomorrow.
Just a reminder that your complete with Cover Letter, fully revised (based on our individual conferences this past week) draft of Essay #2 is due tomorrow. You must e-mail me the correctly labeled file (your name, Essay #2, Second Draft) before class begins and bring four printed copies of your essay to class.
Please do not show up without your printed copies, and do not be late to class. We have a jam-packed class tomorrow, and we’ll need all the time we have to cover both the novel and the essay.
Also, many of you have been letting me know (in private) that you have many questions about We and that there are whole sections of it that you have been struggling with, but so far no one (except Brian … thank you to him!) has posted any questions on the post I made last week.
Please make sure to do so (by leaving a “comment” on that post) by the end of the day today (W 4/30), and we will be sure to cover all of your questions about the text tomorrow in class. I am going to explain a lot of the text, in detail, tomorrow, but in order to use this time most productively, each one of you should post at least one (but ideally a few) question you have/excerpts (with page numbers) you want to discuss.
See you tomorrow, in (cold, rainy) May!