Beowulf: Cultural Differences In The Film And Epic

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The film and epic poem Beowulf may seem alike because of their similar plots and characters, but when looked at deeper, it is clear that their cultural differences set them apart. Traditionally, epic poems are lengthy stories that praise the deeds of heroic warriors whilst reflecting the brutal reality of life. They expressed cultural pride and teachings, while telling everyone that we are hopeless in the hands of fate; that all human ambition ends in death. In our modern world today, movies are made to entertain, but more importantly to sell and make a profit. This means that they portray what we like, value, and can relate with. It is obvious that we like different things now than we did before. Loyalty, revenge, sexuality, and violence all accurately represent their respective time periods for different reasons in the text and movie Beowulf.…show more content…
Beowulf exhibits this trait multiple times in the text, as does his follower Wiglaf. When asked by Hrothgar to slay Grendel, the ever-so-loyal hero says, “send my hammered / Mail of my armor to Higlac, return / The inheritance I had from Hrethel” (Beowulf 186-188). This shows the loyalty he has for his family. When Beowulf (from the movie) heard about the demon beast, he willingly journeyed across the sea with his men to help a friend of his family rid the land of the evil creature. Wilgaf also proves to be loyal in both the text and movie by staying with Beowulf to help him conquer the dragon, even though all the other men had ran away in fear. He is rewarded with the right to the throne by Beowulf on his deathbed; “Wilgaf, lead my people, / Help them; my time is gone.” (Beowulf 811-812). Loyalty is a cultural value that influenced the Anglo-Saxon society and is still present

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