No Happy Ending

         A Dollís House is an 1879 play by Henrik Ibsen. In 1973, Joseph Losey directed a film adaptation of the play called A Dollís House. This version starred Jane Fonda as Nora and David Warner as Torvald. I enjoyed reading the book and watching the film. I think that Jane Fonda did a great job of portraying Nora as a loving wife and mother that would do anything to her family. David Warner showed Torvaldís character just as I had expected. He was a naÔve man with old-fashioned values. He believed that his reputation meant more than the love he received from his wife.

         The play and film were both considered scandalous during the period of release due to the belief that there was nothing more sacred than marriage, and Nora leaving Torvald was considered unacceptable. Also, the fact that a woman would be willing to give up her children was shocking during this time. I believe that Nora was right to leave Torvald. This was my opinion after reading the book and after watching the film. One reason I thought this is that they are too different to be together. Another reason I think that Nora was right to leave Torvald is that he was more of a parent to Nora than a husband. Torvald also wanted Nora to be his showpiece. Nora was to put on the show of having the perfect family to their guests. Torvald cared more about his reputation than his wife. Although she did something illegal, she did it out of love for her husband. She just wanted to save his life. He did not understand this, because he did not truly love Nora, and he was being selfish. Nora realized she was not happy with Torvald after she saw that he was only interested in his reputation. In the end, Nora concludes that, since Torvald has always treated her like a child, she still is very childlike and needs to grow up before she can raise any children or take on other responsibilities.

         Even though I am normally drawn to happy endings, in this case there could be no happy ending. Nora realized her and Torvaldís lives had grown apart instead of together and that she needed to grow up before they could work on their marriage. This was the most important thing for her at that time.

Nichole Walker