East Of Eden Book/Movie Comparison East of Eden: Book / Movie Explanation John Steinbecks epic tale, East of Eden, is portrayed very accurately in Elia Kazans film adaptation of the novel. Though the screen adaptation of East of Eden is an excellent portrayal, one of the most probable reasons for deleting sections of the book were constraints of time and money. Apparently the directors choices to delete certain sections of the book obviously did not affect the movie or the books plot line too greatly. The director most probably felt that the backgrounds of Adam or Kate were not necessary since in this movie the main theme circulated around Cal and Arons fight to win their fathers love and attention. Elia Kazan probably also felt that the role of Lee, Samuel Hamilton, and other supporting characters were not essential to the screenplay. I do think that the director should have added a little insight and background to Adams family such as his feeling of respect and not love toward his father Cyrus and, like his own sons situation, his brother, Charles, jealousy over his fathers affection.
The last moments of the movie sum up and bring all the emotional conflicts of this dysfunctional family to a heads in climatic and dramatic fashion. Cal believes that he will finally aquire the love, appreciation and respect that he has craved for from his father, through his gift of money. His fathers rejection only serves to convince him that further attempts to gain his fathers approval are futile and that he truly must be evil as everyone suspects. His brothers rejection confirms his decision and he reacts by revealing his mothers identity to his brother Aron. Aron subsequently enlists in the armed forces and is killed in Europe.
Crushed by his favorite sons death, Adam suffers a stroke and is rendered comatose. In this passive state Cal is finally free to care for his father without fear of rejection. As in most cases a movie adaptation of a novel is never really as good as the book, especially a book that is considered an epic and written by an author with such a high caliber as Steinbeck, but this is one of the few examples where there is an excellent effort and portrayal of all of the characters and of the central theme of the book. Supporting characters such as Lee, Sam Hamilton, Charles, and other background information would only have enhanced the film but were not essential. Book Reports.