In the End

         Overall I really enjoyed Henrik Ibsen's 1879 A Doll's House both as a play and as movies. It was the first play we have read this semester that I kind of "got into" and wanted to read. The 1973 filmed version, directed by Patrick Garland, was even better than the first two versions because it seemed more convincing than the play, which it followed closely, and the 1973 movie we viewed the week before, directed by Joseph Losey. However, I found quite intriguing the many differences between the play and the movie directed by Losey, which opened up the setting and story line of the play as well as its main character, Nora.

         In the beginning, the Joseph Losey movie starts off by giving the background of Torvald's (David Warner) illness, whereas, the book in turn just begins with Nora (Jane Fonda) returning from Christmas shopping. Then the movie goes to a scene at the bank, which is also not in the book. After a few events take place, there is another major difference between the two versions in that Krogstad (Edward Fox) and Nora meet outside of the house instead of within the house. Christine (Delphine Seyrig) is introduced into the movie just as she was in the book; but, when it comes time for her to find a place to stay, she is provided with help by Dr. Rank (Trevor Howard) in the movie as they drive along together in the sled, whereas in the play she is left to do this alone off stage. The film goes on with only minor deviations from the play until it comes time for Nora and Dr. Rank's conversation in which Nora is going to ask Dr. Rank for financial help. In the play this conversation occurs at Nora's home, while in the movie, it occurs at Dr. Rank's home.

         I found Losey's version of the movie to be very effective in the opening up of the play and its overall effectiveness, although there were differences. In saying "opening up," I am also referring to Nora and how she continues to grow as a person and as an individual throughout both the play and the movie. With this opening up she is able to become stronger and do as she needs and wants to do in the end.

         Overall, I thought that each version of this play was good and well covered, even though there were many differences between the two. But in the end, it all came down to the same thing and Nora just said: "I don't love you anymore" and left her husband and children to live life without her while she tried to carry out her duty to herself.

Christina Coursey

Table of Contents