⚡ The Boy Who Hired Wolf Analysis

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The Boy Who Hired Wolf Analysis

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Mendes, having recently finished 's acclaimed American Beauty , pursued a story that had minimal dialogue and conveyed emotion in the imagery. Cinematographer Conrad L. Hall took advantage of the environment to create symbolism for the film, for which he won several awards, including a posthumous Academy Award for Best Cinematography. The film explores several themes, including the consequence of violence and father-son relationships. The film was well-received by critics, who mainly praised the direction and visuals, performances particularly of Hanks, Newman, and Law , cinematography, themes and setting. In addition to Hall's win for cinematography, the film earned five Academy Awards nominations, including Best Supporting Actor for Newman.

Rooney raised the orphan Sullivan and has come to love him more than his own biological son, the rash and unpredictable Connor. Rooney holds a wake in his home for the brother of an associate, Finn McGovern. McGovern is clearly agitated and insinuates that the Rooney family is responsible. Rooney sends Connor and Sullivan to meet with McGovern, under orders just to talk. But, after an altercation, Connor fatally shoots him, resulting in Sullivan gunning down McGovern's men.

Sullivan's twelve-year-old son Michael Jr. Sullivan swears his son to secrecy, and Rooney gets his own personal assurance. At a meeting with his associates, Rooney berates Connor for his actions when Connor halfheartedly apologizes for McGovern's murder. That night, Rooney sends Sullivan to collect a debt from a speakeasy owner, Tony Calvino. Connor, jealous of his father's preference for Sullivan over him and afraid Michael Jr.

When Calvino reads it, he reaches for his revolver , but Sullivan grabs it first and kills both Calvino and his bodyguard. When Sullivan reads the letter, it says "Kill Sullivan and all debts are paid". Fearing his family is in danger, he rushes home. Connor has already reached the Sullivan home, murdered Sullivan's wife, Annie, and younger son, Peter, and fled the scene. However, he has failed to kill Michael Jr. Sullivan and Michael Jr. In a meeting with Frank Nitti , Sullivan offers to work for the Chicago Outfit in exchange for being allowed to kill Connor.

Nitti rejects the offer, and Rooney reluctantly allows him to dispatch assassin Harlen Maguire, a voyeuristic crime scene photographer, to kill Sullivan. Maguire tracks him and his son to a roadside diner but fails to kill Sullivan. Realizing Maguire's intentions, Sullivan escapes through the bathroom and punctures Maguire's car tire before fleeing. In reaction to the ordered hit, Sullivan begins robbing banks that hold Capone's money, hoping to trade it for Connor. Sullivan is impeded when the mob withdraws its money, so he visits Rooney's accountant Alexander Rance at his hotel. The encounter is a set-up, with Rance stalling Sullivan until Maguire enters with a shotgun. In the ensuing crossfire, Rance is inadvertently killed by Maguire, Maguire is injured by flying glass shards, and Sullivan escapes with Rooney's ledgers.

As Sullivan flees, Maguire manages to shoot him in the left arm. When his father collapses from his wound, Michael Jr. For the first time Sullivan bonds with his son. He discovers from the ledgers that Connor has been embezzling from his father for years, using the names of dead men including McGovern. As the Sullivans depart the farm, they give the couple much of the stolen money as compensation.

Sullivan confronts Rooney about his son's embezzlement while they attend Mass. Rooney, however, already knows and believes that Connor will almost certainly be killed — if not by Sullivan, then by Capone's men once Rooney is dead. He still refuses to give up his son and urges Sullivan to flee with Michael Jr. Later one night, cloaked by darkness and rain, Sullivan ambushes and kills Rooney's bodyguards with a Thompson submachine gun before walking up to Rooney, who accepts his fate and states, "I'm glad it's you," as Sullivan shoots him at point-blank range.

With no further reason to protect Connor, Nitti reveals his location, after making Sullivan promise to end the feud. Sullivan goes to the hotel where Connor is hiding and kills him in the bathtub, thus avenging Annie and Peter's deaths. Sullivan drives his son to stay at his Aunt Sarah's beach house in Perdition, a town on the shore of Lake Michigan.

However, he is ambushed and shot by a disfigured Maguire. As Maguire photographs the dying Sullivan, Michael Jr. Mourning his father's death, Michael Jr. Growing up, Michael Jr. Michael states he has never held a gun since the fatal encounter between Maguire and his father. When asked if Sullivan was a good or bad man, he only replies, "He was my father. When Max Allan Collins wrote the graphic novel Road to Perdition , his book agent saw potential in the story as a film adaptation and showed it to a film agent.

The novel was sent to the elder Zanuck in Morocco, who was there producing Rules of Engagement The Zanucks agreed on the story's prospect and sent it to director-producer Steven Spielberg. Shortly afterward, Spielberg set up the project at his studio DreamWorks , though he did not pursue direction of the film due to his full slate. DreamWorks sent Mendes Road to Perdition as a prospect, and Mendes was attracted to the story, considering it "narratively very simple, but thematically very complex".

Mendes considered the story's theme to be about how children deal with violence, and whether exposure to violence would render children violent themselves. Mendes described the script as having "no moral absolutes", a factor that appealed to the director. Spielberg first contacted screenwriter David Self to adapt the story into a feature film. The screenplay was then rewritten by uncredited writers, distancing the script from the graphic novel and leaving the core elements of the story. The story itself is deeply informed by the Lone Wolf and Cub manga series. Some of the characters' names were slightly changed from their original versions from the graphic novel: the surname of the real-life gangsters John Looney and his son Connor were changed to Rooney, and the surname of Tom Hanks' character and his family was streamlined from the original O'Sullivan to simply Sullivan.

One significant addition to the script was the creation of Maguire to provide a persistent element of pursuit to the Sullivans' departure from the old world. Hanks and cinematographer Conrad Hall requested Mendes to limit violence in the film to meaningful acts, rather than gratuitous carnage. Hanks' character, Michael Sullivan, is known as "The Angel of Death" in the graphic novel and invokes fear in those around him, but his infamy is downplayed in the film. Max Allan Collins originally wanted to write the adapted screenplay, but was not given the opportunity. Collins praised the addition of Maguire and considered the minimalist use of dialogue to be appropriate. Collins opposed the profanity in the script, as the vulgar language did not fit his vision of the s.

In the graphic novel, the son kills once, and in the film, he does not kill anyone. Collins also disagreed with the narration technique of the film. In the novel, the son narrates the story as an adult, becoming a priest, while in the film, he narrates while still a young boy. Initially too busy to make sense of the story, he later received David Self's adapted screenplay, to which he became attached.

Hanks, a father to four children, described Michael Sullivan's role, "I just got this guy. If you're a man, and you've got offspring Tyler Hoechlin was chosen from over 2, candidates to portray Michael Sullivan's son. For scenes in which Hoechlin's character assisted his father as a getaway driver, Hoechlin was trained by a driving instructor. Paul Newman was unanimously the first choice for the role of John Rooney. David Self, who created the Maguire character, explained, "He gets so jaded from exposure to this world, he steps over the line from being the storyteller to being the story maker.

A Levite and a priest passed through that way, but both ignored the man. Eventually, a Samaritan came by and helped the injured and miserable man, without thinking about his race or religious belief generally, Samaritans despised Jews. Later, the traveler revealed himself to be the Christ. The moral of this parable is to help all those who are in need, without having prejudice for anyone due to perceived differences. The author tells about the life of a silly and vain emperor, whom two cheaters approached, pretending to be artists.

They suggested that he wear their clothes, which they said would make him invisible in front of incompetent and stupid people. The emperor agreed, and paid them to make such clothes, as he enjoyed wearing fancy dress. In fact, they did not make any fancy suit; however, people started admiring them, so that they might not be considered useless and stupid.

Therefore, the emperor took off his clothes and wore the invisible dress, which actually left him prancing around town naked. Nobody told him the truth except a young boy who screamed to see him. In the book of Luke , Jesus teaches about the love of God for humanity. But he said to her, 'I have found something in the forest, and I have brought it to thee to have care of it,' and he stirred not from the threshold. And who knows if it will not bring us bad fortune? And how shall we tend it? But she would not be appeased, but mocked at him, and spoke angrily, and cried: 'Our children lack bread, and shall we feed the child of another?

Who is there who careth for us? And who giveth us food? And is it not winter now? And a bitter wind from the forest came in through the open door, and made her tremble, and she shivered, and said to him: 'Wilt thou not close the door? There cometh a bitter wind into the house, and I am cold. And the woman answered him nothing, but crept closer to the fire. And after a time she turned round and looked at him, and her eyes were full of tears. And he came in swiftly, and placed the child in her arms, and she kissed it, and laid it in a little bed where the youngest of their own children was lying.

And on the morrow the Woodcutter took the curious cloak of gold and placed it in a great chest, and a chain of amber that was round the child's neck his wife took and set it in the chest also. So the Star-Child was brought up with the children of the Woodcutter, and sat at the same board with them, and was their playmate. And every year he became more beautiful to look at, so that all those who dwelt in the village were filled with wonder, for, while they were swarthy and black-haired, he was white and delicate as sawn ivory, and his curls were like the rings of the daffodil.

His lips, also, were like the petals of a red flower, and his eyes were like violets by a river of pure water, and his body like the narcissus of a field where the mower comes not. Yet did his beauty work him evil. For he grew proud, and cruel, and selfish. The children of the Woodcutter, and the other children of the village, he despised, saying that they were of mean parentage, while he was noble, being sprung from a Star, and he made himself master over them, and called them his servants. No pity had he for the poor, or for those who were blind or maimed or in any way afflicted, but would cast stones at them and drive them forth on to the highway, and bid them beg their bread elsewhere, so that none save the outlaws came twice to that village to ask for aims.

Indeed, he was as one enamoured of beauty, and would mock at the weakly and ill-favoured, and make jest of them; and himself he loved, and in summer, when the winds were still, he would lie by the well in the priest's orchard and look down at the marvel of his own face, and laugh for the pleasure he had in his fairness. Often did the Woodcutter and his wife chide him, and say: 'We did not deal with thee as thou dealest with those who are left desolate, and have none to succour them. Wherefore art thou so cruel to all who need pity? Often did the old priest send for him, and seek to teach him the love of living things, saying to him: 'The fly is thy brother.

Do it no harm. The wild birds that roam through the forest have their freedom. Snare them not for thy pleasure. God made the blind-worm and the mole, and each has its place. Who art thou to bring pain into God's world? Even the cattle of the field praise Him. But the Star-Child heeded not their words, but would frown and flout, and go back to his companions, and lead them. And his companions followed him, for he was fair, and fleet of foot, and could dance, and pipe, and make music.

And wherever the Star-Child led them they followed, and whatever the Star-Child bade them do, that did they. And when he pierced with a sharp reed the dim eyes of the mole, they laughed, and when he cast stones at the leper they laughed also. And in all things he ruled them, and they became hard of heart, even as he was. Now there passed one day through the village a poor beggar-woman. Her garments were torn and ragged, and her feet were bleeding from the rough road on which she had travelled, and she was in very evil plight.

And being weary she sat her down under a chestnut-tree to rest. But when the Star-Child saw her, he said to his companions, 'See! There sitteth a foul beggar-woman under that fair and green-leaved tree. Come, let us drive her hence, for she is ugly and ill-favoured. So he came near and threw stones at her, and mocked her, and she looked at him with terror in her eyes, nor did she move her gaze from him. And when the Woodcutter, who was cleaving logs in a haggard hard by, saw what the Star-Child was doing, he ran up and rebuked him, and said to him: 'Surely thou art hard of heart and knowest not mercy, for what evil has this poor woman done to thee that thou should'st treat her in this wise?

And the Star-Child grew red with anger, and stamped his foot upon the ground, and said, 'Who art thou to question me what I do? I am no son of thine to do thy bidding. And when the woman heard these words she gave a loud cry, and fell into a swoon. And the Woodcutter carried her to his own house, and his wife had care of her, and when she rose up from the swoon into which she had fallen, they set meat and drink before her, and bade her have comfort. But she would neither eat nor drink, but said to the Woodcutter, 'Didst thou not say that the child was found in the forest? And was it not ten years from this day?

And the Woodcutter answered, 'Yea, it was in the forest that I found him, and it is ten years from this day. Was not round him a cloak of gold tissue broidered with stars? And when she saw them she wept for joy, and said, 'He is my little son whom I lost in the forest. I pray thee send for him quickly, for in search of him have I wandered over the whole world. So the Woodcutter and his wife went out and called to the Star-Child, and said to him, 'Go into the house, and there shalt thou find thy mother, who is waiting for thee.

So he ran in, filled with wonder and great gladness. But when he saw her who was waiting there, he laughed scornfully and said, 'Why, where is my mother? For I see none here but this vile beggar-woman. Therefore get thee hence, and let me see thy foul face no more. Therefore I pray thee come with me, for over the whole world have I wandered in search of thee. Come with me, my son, for I have need of thy love. But the Star-Child stirred not from his place, but shut the doors of his heart against her, nor was there any sound heard save the sound of the woman weeping for pain.

And at last he spoke to her, and his voice was hard and bitter. Therefore get thee hence, and let me see thee no more. For I have suffered much to find thee. So the woman rose up, and went away into the forest weeping bitterly, and when the Star-Child saw that she had gone, he was glad, and ran back to his playmates that he might play with them. But when they beheld him coming, they mocked him and said, 'Why, thou art as foul as the toad, and as loathsome as the adder. Get thee hence, for we will not suffer thee to play with us,' and they drave him out of the garden. And the Star-Child frowned and said to himself, 'What is this that they say to me? I will go to the well of water and look into it, and it shall tell me of my beauty. So he went to the well of water and looked into it, and lo!

And he flung himself down on the grass and wept, and said to himself, 'Surely this has come upon me by reason of my sin. For I have denied my mother, and driven her away, and been proud, and cruel to her. Wherefore I will go and seek her through the whole world, nor will I rest till I have found her. And there came to him the little daughter of the Woodcutter, and she put her hand upon his shoulder and said, 'What doth it matter if thou hast lost thy comeliness? Stay with us, and I will not mock at thee. And he said to her, 'Nay, but I have been cruel to my mother, and as a punishment has this evil been sent to me.

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