Dolores Claiborne

Satisfactory Essays
The Eclipse
On the day of the full eclipse, Dolores Claiborne’s life changes forever. True, it had been changed by events beyond her control long before this fateful day, but she chooses this day to end her husband’s life so she and her family can go on living. Steven King masterfully weaves this tale of love, abuse, and denial in his novel, Dolores Claiborne, which was later turned into a movie directed by Taylor Hackford. Although the movie adaptation of the novel follows the story line very closely, there are a few changes made, such as the role of Dolores’ daughter, Selena, the intended audience to Dolores, and the importance of Salena being raped by her father.
Although Salena plays an important role in both the book and the movie, her roles in each are different. In the book, she is dependent on her mother until the point when her father begins to sexually abuse her. She then withdraws from everyone and tries to forget about the fact that it ever happened. In the movie, however, Salena has come back from New York to defend her mother after she has been accused of killing Vera Donovan. She has developed a drug abuse problem, just like her father. Salena is the reason for many of the scenes throughout the movie, as she is remembering them and discussing what really happened with her mother.
In both the novel and the movie, the story of the eclipse and the events leading up to it are told in a flashback. The difference is that in the novel, Dolores is telling her story to the police in the form of a confession. She wants to get it all out of her conscious so that she can be cleared of killing Vera Donovan. In the movie, however, she is talking to Salena, who doesn’t remember all of what happens, or is in denial about most of what happened. Many of the present time scenes in the movie are of Dolores trying to convince Salena that this really did happen.
Yet another important event in both the book and the movie is when Dolores finds out that her husband has been sexually abusing their daughter. It is at this time that she decides to kill him, after some prompting by Vera Donovan. She takes drastic measures in planning her husband’s “accident.” In the movie, however, the abuse is only acknowledged.
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