Of Mice and Men by John SteinbeckThe compelling story of two outsiders striving to find their place in an unforgiving world. Drifters in search of work, George and his simple-minded friend Lennie have nothing in the world except each other and a dream--a dream that one day they will have some land of their own. Eventually they find work on a ranch in California’s Salinas Valley, but their hopes are doomed as Lennie, struggling against extreme cruelty, misunderstanding and feelings of jealousy, becomes a victim of his own strength. Tackling universal themes such as the friendship of a shared vision, and giving voice to America’s lonely and dispossessed, Of Mice and Men has proved one of Steinbeck’s most popular works, achieving success as a novel, a Broadway play and three acclaimed films.
Review of John Steinbeck's 'Of Mice and Men'
John Steinbeck's novel about a pair of migrant ranch workers - sharp little George and hulking retard Lennie - was a major stage hit in the late 30s, first being produced as a film in , with a repeat performance in as a TV movie. It's an enduringly indestructible classic: the two central characters are so strongly drawn that almost any physically apt performers can seem outstanding in the roles, and the plot - George and Lennie work on a run-down ranch and Lennie's mix of physical strength, childish panic and good nature gets him into trouble - is so well-structured that the jobs of adapter and director are mostly done for them. What emerges from this incarnation is a film that is respectful of its origins, but inescapably reminiscent of television. John Malkovich's Lennie is perfect method acting, a marvellous assemblage of gentle giant mannerisms and pathetic childishness, but it remains obviously the work of a highly intelligent man simulating feeble-mindedness and, as such, is less than heart-breaking. Gary Sinise, playing George and doubling as director, establishes himself as both a strong, subtle screen actor and a tactful, competent helmsman. The rest of the cast are limited by their roles, but Ray Walston is moving as the crippled old-timer who shares the hero's dreams of buying a small-holding and settling down, and John Terry not that one is fine as the ranch foreman trying to act nobly. Overall this is an effective reminder of a minor literary masterpiece, but most folk would be better off reading the novel or checking out the movie version.
Of Mice and Men is a well-known classic, and with valid reason. The book may seem rather boring as many books about the Great Depression may seem but it is actually a great tribute to literature. The book is about a man called George and his childlike, kind-hearted friend Lennie.
once upon a time there was humanity
Common Sense says
A shambling sixth-former returning a copy of Steinbeck's classic to the school library, I had to squeeze past two teachers. He was a grizzled old Welshman and he disapproved of the long hair growing way below my collar. He was new: younger, hipper, sympathetic. I was ready for more withering sarcasm but instead he said: "Steinbeck. The man. Cain and Abel, right?