Compare And Contrast The Greatest Gift And It's A Wonderful Life

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Christmas is recognized by the general public as a time to celebrate family and give gifts. Which it is, but gifts can go way deeper than physical objects. This is exhibited in a book, The Greatest Gift, and a movie, It’s a Wonderful Life. In 1943, Philip Van Doren Stern wrote the Greatest Gift. It tells the tale of George, a person who is about to kill himself but is then shown what the world would be like without him and realizes he shouldn’t kill himself. Unable to find a publisher for it, Philip put the story on his Christmas cards and mailed them to friends. A couple of his publisher friends thoroughly enjoyed it and made the move to publish it in a newspaper. This caught the attention of film director Frank Capra. He decided to fill in…show more content…
It too tells the story of George Bailey, a person who is about to kill himself, but is then shown what the town he lives in would turn into without him and how the lives of many people would change in a negative way, he decides to be thankful for what he has and keeps living. Plot refers to the sequence of events in a story. The story and movie are similar in their conflict, climax, and resolutions. In both the narrative and movie, the conflict is that George is unhappy with his life and wants to kill himself. As said in The Greatest Gift, “The water looked paralyzingly cold. George wondered how long a man could stay alive in it. The glassy blackness had a strange, hypnotic effect on him. He leaned still farther over the railing... ‘I wouldn’t do that if I were you,’ a quiet voice beside him said.” The climax is when George, after seeing what life would be like if he was never born, realized how much people actually needed him, and…show more content…
Both The Greatest Gift and the movie It’s a Wonderful Life have many common implied themes. Some include cliches such as, “be careful what you wish for,”, “you don’t realize what you have until it’s gone,” and, “don’t take things for granted.” These can be considered implied themes because George thought he had the worst life in the world, but after seeing what everyone else’s life would be affected negatively, including his own, he decided that he really did have a great life and wanted to keep living it. While the implied themes are similar, the differences lie in the stated themes. In the story, the stated theme is, “You had the greatest gift of all. The Gift of life.” While in the movie, the stated theme is, “No man is a failure who has friends.” The story’s theme is more geared towards George’s initial will to kill himself. On the other hand, the movie’s theme is directed more towards at George thinking he was a failure. He had done everything for Bedford Falls, and Bedford Falls gave nothing back. However, at the end of the movie, all of the people George had ever affected came by and gave him money to help save the bank when he was in need, reinforcing the stated

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