Books and Movies Reviews

The Odyssey

Homer's epic poem The Odyssey, tells the story of the famous Greek hero Odysseus.Odysseus was one of the greatest fighters in the Trojan War, but sadly underwent many challenging trials before finally returning home to his family, consisting of his wife, Penelope, and his son, Telemachos.The poem takes the reader on various adventures and tells the reader numerous stories which gives the reader insight into Odysseus' character and the themes of the poem.The Coen Brothers' movie O Brother Where Art Thou?, which is based on Homer's poem, takes place in America during the 1930s.Ulysses Everett McGill escapes with two of his fellow convicts, Pete Hogwallop and Delmar O'Donnell, from their Mississippi chain gang.Similarly, Ulysses wishes to return home to his wife, Penny McGill, who is soon to be re-married, and his daughters.The movie, too, revolves around an exciting journey that leads Ulysses home.Throughout both pieces of art there are many important themes, and although they are more dominant in The Odyssey, they are still acknowledged in the movie O Brother Where Art Thou?The three most critical themes in The Odyssey that are touched upon in O Brother Where Art Thou? as well are hospitality, temptation, and disguise.
Hospitality is an essential theme is both the poem and the movie.These works share this theme, which serves as a transitional device between settings, characters, and morals.In The Odyssey hospitality is constantly being exhibited by the characters.For example, Kalypso shows Odysseus hospitality by seemingly allowing, but actually forcing him, to stay on her island.Longing to return home to his family Odysseus, "was detained by the queenly nymph Kalypso, bright among goddesses, in her hollowed caverns, desiring that he should be her husband" (I, 14-15).Although he is being detained against his will, Kalypso shows him kindness and cares for him throughout hi…


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