This essay sample essay on Lamb Of The Slaughter Movie offers an extensive list of facts and arguments related to it. The essay’s introduction, body paragraphs and the conclusion are provided below.
In this essay I will be comparing and contrasting the stories of the Vendetta and The lamb to the slaughter. These two stories are about revenge. I will compare and contrast the way revenge is presented in both stories. In the story of ‘The lamb to the slaughter’, the main character is Mary Maloney.
In the beginning Mary is portrayed as being a loving and devoted wife that dotes on her husband. Mary appears to love every little thing about her husband, ‘she loved him for the way he sat loosely in his chair’.
At this point in the story Mary’s life seems almost perfect, she had everything she could ever want. She was pregnant, living in a comfortable house and with a husband she loved dearly.
Things were going so well that something must go wrong. As soon as Patrick, Mary’s husband, tells Mary of his news she acts like nothing has happened, although she is clearly in shock. ‘her first instinct was not to believe any of it, to reject it all. ‘ What Patrick said must have affected Mary strongly, even giving her the ‘desire to vomit’.
Before Patrick had told her his news, Mary seemed content and comfortable. I think Mary started to suspect something wasn’t right when Patrick told her to sit down.
He acted strongly by saying it twice, Almost begging her to ‘sit down, just for a minute, sit down’. It was at this point that Mary got scared. Although as soon as he had told her she just went into a state of denial and carried on getting the supper. What he said didn’t sink in, or maybe it did and Mary just chose no to think about it even though she was obviously upset.
While Mary went to get the supper she was almost like a robot, ‘everything was automatic’ In the deep freeze she found a frozen leg of lamb and carried it back up the cellar steps. Upon reaching the top Patrick said ‘for god’s sake, don’t make supper for me. I’m going out. ‘ As he spoke something inside Mary clicked, what he had just told her seemed to sink in. Mary walked up behind Patrick and hit him across the back of the head with the frozen leg of lamb, which she had picked out for their supper. Calmly, Mary stepped back, still not realising what she had done.
Patrick fell to the floor and the crashing noise of his fall made Mary realise what she had done. She calmly took in the fact he was dead by saying, ‘all right’ and ‘so I’ve killed him. ‘ As soon as Mary had realised that she had killed her husband, she became devious. She started to think of the consequences and what would happen to her and her baby. Mary wasn’t stupid, she knew that there would probably be a death penalty, yet she didn’t know what would happen to the baby. Even though Mary had just killed her husband she still cared about her unborn child.
For this reason Mary devised a plan and alibi in her head. She would act as normal. She practiced going to the shop and asking for some potatoes and a can of peas. Mary practised this in front of her mirror and applied her make up. As soon as she felt that her voice sounded normal, Mary left her dead husband lying on the floor and went to the shop. On her return, she saw the body of Patrick. Upon seeing the lifeless body Mary was truly shocked. She had convinced herself that she hadn’t killed him, or even hit him. Mary had made herself believe this was just a normal day.
By doing so Mary felt all the pain and horror of finding her husband dead again, yet this time she was heartbroken. The Widow Saverini is first presented to us as a poor old woman that loves her son, she lives alone with him and their dog. We know she is poor as the text says ‘alone with her son in a poor little house’. When Antoine Saverini, the widow’s son was murdered, his body was taken back to the widow. This would make us feel sympathetic towards the widow as she has to see the bloody body of her dead child. The widow is clearly extremely distressed over Antoine’s death and swears revenge on his killer.
When the widow first saw the lifeless body of her son, she didn’t even cry which gives us the impression she was in deep shock. She must have felt great pain over Antoine’s death and she locks herself, and the dog, into the house with Antoine’s body. Once locked in she broke down and ‘wept great silent tears’. We are told later on in the story that the widow is religious, as she goes to church and prays. I believe that this is why she swore revenge. As some religious people believe that the only way the soul can rest is if the death is avenged.
As there was no-one else to carry out the vendetta the widow had no choice but to seek revenge herself. At the beginning of the story the widow is portrayed as a loving mother that is grieving for her dead son whom she loved and cared for. As the story progresses however the widow appears to become obsessed with avenging her sons death. ‘All day long, sitting by the window, she looked over there and pondered revenge. ‘ Her whole life seems to revolve around avenging her son. As soon as the widow thinks of a plan of revenge, she becomes devious. She plans out far ahead and prepares everything perfectly.
She trains the dog for three month, patiently waiting until the dog will follow her command perfectly. The widow then disguises herself before she carry’s out her main objective. At the end of the story we see the widow as ruthless, but we remember her as a loving mother that is determined to carry out a promise she made to her son, whatever the cost. Both Mary and the Widow are very intelligent. We know this because they both cover their tracks exceptionally well. The Widow does this by disguising her self as an old man whereas Mary does not use a physical disguise, but instead conceals her guilt.
The two women are from different generations and cultures, as well as the stories being set in different time era’s. The Widow and Mary both don’t seem to care what happens to them at first, Mary sees no life for herself without her husband and the widow is old and sees her life as pointless now her son has gone. Later on however Mary thinks about her baby and doesn’t want to leave it and so makes sure that there is no way anyone would ever no it was her that was infact the murderer. Both women are manipulative, Mary is talented at acting and acts innocent and upset at the death of her husband.
Mary not only convinces herself of her innocence but also manages to convince the police. The widow manipulates the dog, by training it to do as she says. Mary is rather impulsive and kills Patrick on the spur of the moment, however the Widow takes her time to carefully plan out the murder. Although we know clearly why the widow seeks revenge we do not know why Mary does because the author does not tell us. The effect of not knowing means we assume the worst, as it must have been really bad to compel her to murder the man she doted on and adored.
Both the women used murder as their revenge, Mary killing her husband and the Widow killing her sons murderer. We get the impression that Patrick told Mary he was leaving her. If this was the case then both Mary and the Widow turned to murder because they had lost someone they loved. Both revenges are different. Mary’s revenge is spontaneous, but the Widows is planned out perfectly. Mary’s revenge seems to be the perfect crime, whereas the Widow has a few flaws in her plan, such as many people knowing she had a motive and also the fact many people saw her, even if dressed as an old man.
Although it doesn’t matter as much that the Widows crime had a few flaws because she didn’t seem to care as much if she was caught as she was old and felt that she had nothing left to live for now her son had gone, whereas Mary was expecting her first child. The revenge I preferred was Mary’s. The crime was so perfect and I admire her intelligence and acting skills. In my opinion the Widow was to cold blooded whereas I can understand Mary’s motives more. I loved the way Mary acted around the police, even convincing them to eat the murder weapon whilst they were supposed to be searching for it.