Hemingway (1899-1961) wrote the short story ‘The Killers’ that was originally published in ‘scribners’ magazine in 1927. Later on that year it was placed in a collection called ‘Men without Women’. The story was a short text, which then inspired film makers Robert Siodmak and Donald Siegel to base a movie on this story.

In the story there is evidence of professionalism as to the way this story is plotted. Even the way the two killers, Al and Max, shone off their image showed that it wasn’t the first time they have done a hold up at a diner. Al joked around in the diner while Max kept on hesitating, he was only interested in getting the job done. Al played parts of homosexuality by saying ‘pretty boy’. The two crooks had no shame in calling the cook a nigger.

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Hemingway handled racial issues carefully and well. Even in those days it is expected for the ‘nigger’ to get all the stones thrown at. Yes, racism is wrong in others views but Hemingway told the story how it would be. This is how the audience could establish the time. Around 1920s as of the racism, the diner and the language.

The language used, in a script form, was very good how Hemingway set the scene without it being fully narrated. During the hold up in the diner Al and Max had strong communication between each other. Hemingway had also set the time, even with useless dialog as they argue about the clock being 10 minutes fast. Al and max were good criminals, they got what they wanted. They managed to get Ole Anderson’s address from Nick Adams.

Ole Anderson, the boxer, the man The Killers wanted to kill, not out of their pleasure but for someone else. Nick had told Ole about the situation, he got there before the killers did. Ole knew he was preyed upon but didn’t run. The story brought up various questions about odd events. Ole was killed and he didn’t want to run before his death.

This being a very violent story in concept didn’t have gruesome actions. This cant have been the only trouble Ole was in, there probably was more than that. Its left to the audiences’ imagination. The Killers vigorously tying up the cooks at the diner and interrogating them, that was the plot. However, the form it was written in didn’t portray physical abuse. The ending was intentionally violent but no gory details were described.

The ending of the story was effective in the way it creates suspense and there are various possibilities as to why Ole Anderson didn’t bother to run and just face the consequences of his ‘wrong actions’. Or how the killers knew that Ole Anderson would be at the diner in the evening. A lot of unanswered questions could be answered if the story was completed. The art of this ending was to leave the reader in bore suspense, as there is no sequel or no form of continuation, in text format. The rest of this story was left to the imagination of the readers. Directors Robert Siodmak and Dan Siegel were inspired by this story to make a movie and also reveal the rest of this ‘incomplete story’.

The Directors made a black and white movie. The movie skated along the same lines according to the text. It was set in a diner; the killers were their characters as it describes them in the text. Directors showed great professionalism in cutting out the word ‘nigger’, which did make the story less real as in those days it was expected for the black individual to get the grief. The decision made by the directors was made wisely because if they wanted to make millions, only a limited amount of money can be raised with only white viewers, as there would be a minor population of black viewers due to the racist comments. Therefore the directors had to cut out some remarks so there was a greater chance for the movie to succeed.

The film still stays faithful to the original story as the story line does not change, only some dialog is altered with. The killers showed a lot of style in the movie, they expressed Hemingway’s language very well. The business of film noir was great as these killers needed to be smooth and talk the way they do, like a mob boss. They need to show threatening gestures, in order to be the boss, the killers demanded what they wanted and they had it. They got the job done. The boxer was killed, Pete Lund (known as Ole Anderson in the text). It was a very violent death shown.

In those days showing anything excruciating in the cinema people did not like and could not bear to witness. Violence being a main factor of film noir, it would usually be left to the audiences’ imagination. However, when Pete Lund was shot after several times and him falling to the floor would be considered a violent scene in those days. Viewers of my generation would find it very mild as we are all exploited to explicit scenes in most movies, including sex, violence and foul language. There was no foul language in this movie as violence was enough to shock the audience. Blood really isn’t visible as it is black and white.

The audience viewing the black and white film would be able to easily understand the film and follow the story as the brain wouldn’t have to take in as much information compared to a colour film.

The other variation to the story of ‘The Killers’ was a colour version. This version was very well presented. The directors had used a lot of their creative skills in this. They portrayed the same story but in a different form. Instead of the hold up being held in the diner and the killing at the boxer’s apartment it was at a blind home. Also the victim was not a boxer he was a teacher to the blind. The colour film could have caused a few problems to understand as the brain would need to take in a lot of information for different details as oppose to the black and white movie. In this variation of ‘The Killers’ the two killers interrogate a blind secretary instead of a bartender (Nick Adams) they portrayed less violence, as they just shook the lady. There was no tying anyone up or any crude remarks. Even though the scene settings and characters had been played about with, this film still stayed faithful to the original story. It follows the same concept. The media in the days of this colour film, audiences could stand some violence and could take swearing in less offence. As the generation had moved on, respect for non- violence, non-sexual and mild language had faded away.

Nowadays children are easily exploited to sex, drugs, swearing and violence. If another version of ‘the killers’ was made today then it would be much stronger as the directors know majority of the people today would easily be able to handle it. The killers was a great story, an unfinished story that led film makers to finish.

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