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Posted on May 31st, 2012, by

First of all I’d like to say that the plot both the graphic novel and the film is nearly the same, probably because of cooperation between Daniel Clowes and Terry Zwigoff. Enid and Rebecca are outsiders in society, and their main entertainment is to observe other people, discussing and analyzing their behavior. In such a way they live in the conflict with life. As they become adult their friendly relations begin to change. Rebecca understands that youth won’t last forever, and she strives to become independent, get acquainted with boys, dance and enjoy life.Enid, however, remains faithful to her life outlook. A strange guy Seymour is also an outsider, but he is not as rebellious asEnid, and not as conformed as Rebecca. He is obsessed with his small joys, which is quite enough for him.

Ghost World is a smart and original film with bright and lively images, and it makes the role ofSeymourmore significant than it is in the graphic novel, which I’d like to discuss in my research. The director worked out the plot together with Daniel Clowes, the author of the graphic novel Ghost World. It even was nominated for an Oscar prize in the category of the best film-script, based on the published work of art, a graphic novel. It is more like a separate piece of life, than just a film. The role of an outsider comes through the whole film. It makes people understand that no one can change life according to his personal interests. That’s why there are only two ways out: either to adapt or to remain in confrontation. The second variant won’t bring happiness anyway.Seymourdoesn’t want to cause troubles to people, that’s why he escapes them.

After reading a novel I thought that although it is impressive, the film is absolutely different, being deeper and more detailed. Concerning the depiction ofSeymouras an outsider, I’d like to remind of the scene whenEnidasks him, whether he really doesn’t want to get acquainted with a woman who has the same interests.Seymoursays No’, admitting that he loathes his own interests. In this shot scene, his whole views are obvious. He does what he wants, but at the same time he wants to be normal, just like other people.

Another moment which creates a more impressive image of an outsider, who strives for happiness, is whenSeymourplays his old recordings forEnid. This moment is exceptional, because readers of comics certainly can’t hear the music and feel the atmosphere to full extent. It makes a difference. Besides it is more moving to see on the screen all those things in the rooms of Enid and Seymour, which personify their personal outlook and character.

WhenEnidsaw the apartment ofSeymour, she said she would kill to have all those things.Seymouranswered: Then why don’t you kill me? This moment is also significant, and creates a different image in comparison with the graphic novel.

The film created a better image ofSeymourbeing an outsider, as in many scenes it is more visible how he struggles with himself for not to cross withEnid. He has chosen his record collection instead of friendship and relations with people. He understands that his life is not complete and needs something more. That’s why he searches for love again and again. He doesn’t want to be an outsider. He looks at people from his vague Ghost World and struggles with it, being attracted by the real world. The scenes when he is mocking at people, pointing out their drawbacks show him as a true outsider, which is less obvious in the graphic novel.

This hero partly reminds the character of Terry Zwigoff himself, as he also collected music recordings of the twentieth. Both in the novel and in the filmSeymourcreates an impression of a strange and shy man, with a deep inner world. The story doesn’t make people cry and laugh either, although there are really funny moments, especially in the film. I should say that the film seems to be livelier. The graphic novel is black-n-white with the shadow of green, which is supposed to create an image of ghostlike atmosphere. The film however is very bright, where funny moments are accompanied with tragic and moving episodes, just as it is in our life. Graphic novels are placed between literature and cinematography. Dinamic pictures of the novel remind colorful film-shots.

Finally I’d like to say that the role ofSeymouris more clear in the film, because it is played by a real man, who feels the character of this hero and understands how to show it better. The actor playing Seymour (Steve Buscemi) says that main heroes live in the world which can be situated in any corner of the country. Gradually the city looses its borders and becomes a ghost of what it used to be in the past.Seymourconfesses his helplessness to get out of the Ghost world at the end of the story.

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