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Word Count: 874
Suspension Without Suspense Though the film Smooth Talk maintains considerable fidelity to Joyce Carol Oatess Where Are You Going Where Have You Been the written form on which it is based a single yet critical difference separates a literary masterpiece from a cheap flicks misguided interpretation The main pitfall of the film adaptation is that it portrays a concrete ending effectively negating the possibility of alternative conclusions an intentional device employed by the author Consequently the film fails to perpetuate the central motif of confusion so critical to complete appreciation of this literary masterpiece Conversely admirable attention is paid to the accurate transposition of other motifs specifically music prevalent throughout the story in the movie The movies ending portrays a definite conclusion where a definite conclusion was originally intentionally avoided Her characters nave confusion embodies the average teenager Thus the ambiguous ending was essential to continuing the motif of teenage confusion Herein lies a critical obstacle of a novels film adaptation whereas an author may purposely leave ambiguous certain events in written form movies cannot always logically convey that emotional suspension rather a comprehensive conclusion is sought in transposition that brings closure to the issue at hand Joyce Chopra Smooth Talks director was faced with the considerable task of portraying this ambiguity unfortunately she opted to present a decisive conclusion instead In the film Connie leaves with Arnold Friend and then returns to her house apparently unscathed She tells him to never come back tells her father of her regret not joining them at the barbeque and walks back into the house and dances with her sister The end The resolution of Connies personal conflict at the end of the written story is intentionally left ambiguous to force the reader into deducing his or her own conclusion based on the previous sequence of events What exactly are her motivations for stepping out with Arnold Friend Will she live Is
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