Story Versus Film: Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been Versus Smooth Talk

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Where Are You Smooth Talking?
The saying goes the only difference between a tragedy and a comedy is the ending. Meaning no matter how tragic or comedic a story begins, the ending is what determines what type of story was told (thus what genre it falls in). This concept of endings is greatly exemplified through the comparison of the short story Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been by Joyce Carol Oates and the film the story was based on called Smooth Talk. Both works contain an abundance of similarities but, due to slight yet critical changes made, the two stories become very different in their underlying themes/genre. The two stories differ in aspects such as (obviously) the title, character traits (i.e. June), certain plot details and most importantly the endings. They differ completely. The difference in endings change a horror story inspired by a real serial killer to a coming of age film for the American teenage girl. The short story Where Are You Going Where Have You Been like all short stories is short The short story is a total of twelve pages long and begins with roughly a two page description on Connie and her family. The short yet informational background helps the reader realize Connie is the typical fifteen year old girl whose main priorities are the same as most fifteen year old girls: need for attention, boys, and looks.. One day she doesn’t listen to her family and decides to stay home instead of bonding with her family at a relative’s barbeque. Connie’s fate begins its dark and bleak road when, like most horror stories, is home alone and a stranger comes to the house. The strangers name is Arnold Friend and his intentions though unclear at first, become more and more evident as the conversation between him and Connie unravels. Arnold talks in a tone that is both alluring and vicious, he tells Connie information about herself that just seems impossible for him to know giving him the characteristic of a hellish creature that sees all ( like the...
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