Arsenic and Old Lace

Topics: Marriage, Family, Plays Pages: 2 (399 words) Published: November 30, 2013
Megan Watson
English 11

Arsenic and Old Lace

In the play and film Arsenic and Old Lace we are introduced to the Burster family. Abby and Martha Bruster are two sisters and the aunts of Mortimer Bruster. These sisters come off as two of the kindest, sweetest old ladies anyone could ever meet, but as the story digs deeper their true secrets are revealed though out the night. Are they really who we think they are?

The original play Arsenic and Old Lace was written in 1941. Three years later in 1994 the play was casted to be turned into a film. Over those years the script was re written to make the film the way it is today. All the characters in the play seemed to have a more serious side to them, but in the film they all came off as more happy people. Mortimer’s role stuck out to me most. In they play Mortimer Bruster, the nephew of Abby and Martha Bruster comes off as a more serious up front person while throughout the film Mortimer’s character seemed to have a more charming yet silly side to him that differed from the play. During the play the setting takes place entirely in the Bruster living room while throughout the film a couple characters travel outside the house and into the open streets of Brooklyn, New York. During the first scene of the film Mortimer and Elaine are at the local county court house to be married, but during the play Mortimer proposes the idea of marriage to Elaine and throughout various acts of the play he repeatedly has second thoughts about even marrying her. In the end of the film Mr. Witherspoon from the Happy Dale Sanitarium almost drinks Abby and Martha’s poisonous wine. As soon as he holds the glass up to his lips he gets immediately side traced and puts the glass down and lives while in the play he ends up drinking the wine as soon as the curtains fall and we never get to see what actually happens to him.

From 1941 to 1944 some major changes were made to the play Arsenic and Old Lace to make the...
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