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Most Helpful Favorable Review
3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.
Thornton Wilder effectively uses characterization to develop the theme of recognizing and appreciating one's blessings in life. Emily, as the main character of the play, undergoes a defining realization that life's beauty is too magnificent for living people to comprehend. Her journey back to her twelfth birthday opens her eyes to the transience of life and her inability to relive moments of true happiness. Initially described as a naïve character whose understanding of life consisted of her personal longings, Emily returns from her trip wiser and more resigned. This shift in mentality-the drastic change from blissful ignorance to burdensome awareness-stresses the importance of appreciating blessings before they are gone.
Contrasting the ideal atmosphere of Grover's Corner, the minor character of Simon Stimson is a misfit in the town's carefree feel. Infamous as the town alcoholic and choir director, Simon Stimson maintains a cynical attitude about life, as best reflected in his defining speech. Equating life to ignorance and blindness, he expresses unexplained bitterness that ultimately culminated in his suicide. While Wilder succeeds in highlighting the need to appreciate life through Simon Stimson's shortcoming, he fails to develop the character to one that is real and believable. In neglecting to address the source of Simon's bitterness, Wilder does not achieve the full potential of such a character.
The play has an overall effect that cannot be defined by any one stylistic element. Diction alone does not stand out, and neither does syntax. Imagery is almost nonexistent, as the stage consists of no more than tables, chairs, and actors. Nevertheless, the combination of various factors distinguishes this play as a noteworthy read, the most impressive aspect of which is its rare simplicity.
posted by Guacamole on June 11, 2009Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Most Helpful Critical Review
2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.
posted by 539476 on April 8, 2009Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 17, 2013
"Life sucks and then you die" in agonizing, endless re
"Life sucks and then you die" in agonizing, endless repetition. Given a choice between sitting through a production of Our Town and having a root canal (without Novocaine) I would gladly choose the root canal. The Emperor has no clothes, but everyone is afraid to admit that they didn't get the point of Our Town, which has no point. I can only agree with the reviewer who wanted to leave a negative billon stars.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 27, 2010
If I could give this book a negative 100000000000000 stars, I would.
I have loved many classics. The Counte of Monte Cristo, Farenheit 451, To Kill a Mockingbird...the list goes on, but out of all the classics I've read, I HATED Our Town. The shallow lives of the characters were superficial, the sad little plot was terrible, and in all honesty, what lessons in this book could you have not learned in a Spongebob Episode? Many people say that this book is "a great lesson in life" and "filled with depth and wonderful lessons" but seriously, people. You expect me to just die and sit on some chair and stare at the stars until it's "time"? You think our lives today are like that? You think we can just take things as they are and be shallow in our lives and ignore alcholism and act like it's still the 1900's? Puh-leez. I am aware that this book teaches you to live life to the fullest, but who doesn't already know that? You could find a shirt in Gap that says those words and have had your life changes as much as if you've read Our Town. No one in todays life is as simple as the characters in this book, and if you think that they are, then wake up! This is the twenty-fist century. It's about time you acted like it. I'm serious. DON'T READ THIS BOOK. If you're looking for something more entertaining to do than read Our Town, go bash your head against the wall. You'll have a much, MUCH better time.
0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 5, 2003
Posted January 30, 2001
The real meaning in our town
I am currently a high school junior. I read this play anticipating another fictional flop. The underlined meaning is what is important, and not the lack of stage stimuli, or the strange method of audience participation. He was showing that people need to take life as it is, not as it seems. As well and live life to the fullest. The most important line, is in the beginning of the play when the narrator describes how stars become terribly bright before the go out...or dieWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 8, 2010
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