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The Grapes of Wrath

Essay by   •  December 10, 2010  •  Book/Movie Report  •  754 Words (4 Pages)  •  919 Views

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Film Review: The Grapes of Wrath

The film The Grapes of Wrath, directed by John Ford, pragmatically depicts the conditions, both cultural and economic, during the Great Depression. The film specifically focuses on the "Dust Bowl" in the 1930s. The main focus of The Grapes of Wrath is the journey of the Joad family. The family is forced to leave their farm in Oklahoma due to the tyranny imposed by banks and big mechanized companies who bought the lands. When the family leaves their farm, they travel en route for California hoping to find work. Their goal is to try their best to survive among the thousands of other migrant workers.

Unfortunately, the farm families were unable to reimburse the landowners due to the many droughts that had ruined their crops. Although the crops were destroyed by the droughts, that wasn't the only obstacle in their path. The dust storms blew away millions of acres of rich topsoil because of this the family was unable to grow crops on their land. Thinking things could not have become any worse, large companies began paying individuals, who were in need of work, to demolish the homes and farms of the families. Sadly, this left the family homeless with no work, and the only option they had was to travel west to find a new job.

The film consisted of advertisements in California for work. These advertisements especially appealed to the farmers who were affected by the events. After the farmers viewed these advertisements, they began to migrate to California in hopes of work. In the movie companies would send out more flyers for jobs then they actually had room for. In The Grapes of Wrath, one of the flyers sent out said 800 pickers were needed for work; however, the deceitfully sent of over thousands of flyers in order to get these farmers out to California. These advertisements caused more harm than it did well because it cost the farmers all the money they had saved to travel across the country to California. It was very unfortunate for the farmers to travel all that way to arrive in California to find out that there is no work for them.

Regrettably, when the families arrived in California, it was found that it was not a place of hope and prosperity that they had once hoped. In the film, the initial camp that the Joad family stayed at was unsanitary and extremely overcrowded. The camps had an enormous amount of desperate, starving, jobless, and homeless travelers. The second camp in the film was similar to a jail environment. The camp

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