Rabbits In John Steinbeck's 'Of Mice And Men'

Good Essays
“And will there be rabbits, George?” “Yeah, Lennie. There'll be rabbits.”

There is a certain curse attached to the most familiar lines in literature. Because we know them so well, we tend to smile when we encounter them, and they can break the reality of the story they're trying to tell. What stage Hamlet has not despaired of getting through “To be, or not to be?” in one piece?

In John Steinbeck's novel “Of Mice and Men,” made into an enduringly popular movie, the lines about the rabbits have became emblems for the whole relationship between George and Lennie -- the quiet-spoken farm laborer and the sweet, retarded cousin he has taken under his arm. I would not have thought I could believe the line about the rabbits one more time, but this movie made me do it, as Lennie asks about the farm they'll own one day, and George says, yes, it will be just as they've imagined it.

Lennie is played by John Malkovich and George is Gary Sinise, who also directed this film, using an adaptation by Horton Foote. The most sincere compliment I can pay them is to say that all of them - writer and actors - have taken every unnecessary gesture, every possible gratuitous note, out of these characters. The story is as pure and lean as the original fable which
…show more content…
It led him to a love of Steinbeck, and he eventually played Tom Joad on stage in the famous Steppenwolf production of “The Grapes of Wrath.” Then he directed his first movie, “Miles from Home,” about two brothers who grow up on a farm in Iowa. One is more sober and responsible, the other more reckless. They can't find the balance, and get into a lot of trouble. The buried theme is similar to the one in “Of Mice and Men”: Two men together form a workable partnership, but neither is complete separately. You can sense how important this material is to Sinise. So important that in this movie he doesn't fool around with it; the story itself says all he wants to
Get Access