Drama OCE Final Draft May, T.
Professor Appling, T
November 9, 2014
The Importance of Being Earnest
“The Importance of Being Earnest is the screenwriter Oliver Parker’s film of Oscar Wilde’s play “The Importance of Being Earnest”. Parker produced this film so that the viewer could relax and watch the film without any major added input to the storyline (plot). The viewer is allowed to experience the play through cinematography. Parker produced this film in 2002 and he stayed really close to the original play. Some changes are made to the film so that it is modernized for today’s audience and for the length of the film. Overall the film uses the same storyline as the play and only differs on a few points. The lines of the film come from the original play but some have been altered into several shorter scenes that gives the film suspense and liveliness. The film brings the play to life and allows the viewer to see the comedy of the play. Both the play and the film allows the reader and viewer to see the confusion of the identity of the characters Jack and Algernon (while in London Jack pretends to be Ernest and when in the country Algernon pretends to be Ernest). The film has also added some different locations to help the viewer see the Victorian Society come to life and to see the comedy of the play. It has done this by adding the scene where “Ernest Worthing” in the country has a visit from Mr. Gribsby about an unpaid dinner bill from a restaurant in London, but this bill was acquired by Jack, and Algernon takes advantage of the pretending and tells the visitor about his recklessness. Another added scene in the film takes you to Mrs. Bracknell’s manor where she is waiting with her pen and notebook to interrogate John Worthing. In the play you do not hear about the manor and the interrogation takes place at Algernon’s home in London. The film also introduces images not found in the play to make the film funnier. These images include scenes such as Cecily daydreaming about the Prince in shining armor, and a scene where Gwendolyn is getting a tattoo of Ernest’s name on her backside and then later in the film you see where Jack is having a tattoo of Gwendolyn’s name done on him. During the credit lines you will see a scene of Bunbury’s funeral which all of the cast has attended. This part of the film showed Lady Bracknell’s feelings about Bunbury’s death which was taken from (Act III) where Lady Bracknell is informed of Bunbury’s death: “He seems to have had great confidence in the opinion of his physicians. I am glad, however, that he made up his mind at the lastto some definite course of action and acted under proper medical advice”. (Act III page 306). Wilde conveys the critical view of Victorian Society through the language he uses in the play. Lady Bracknell’s words can be used to infer the view that Wilde’s wants the reader to see.