Notes on Imitation of Life
- 1933 novel by Fannie Hurst
- 1934 First movie made
- 1959 Second movie made
In the year of 1933, Imitation of Life, a novel by Fannie Hurst (October 18, 1889 – February 23, 1968) became available for the public to read.
Imitation of Life was received well enough for two movies to be made. Keep this caveat in mind both films made theatrical adaptations to fit with the culture and director’s outlook of the times.
However, there are situations both films show with emotions and well thought-out directing. It moves you to ask the question, “Have I ever seen similar situations?” Case in point, observe your school and other social environments.
There are events in the story that involves a mother and the life course her daughter took because she did not want to be looked down upon by other people of a certain society.
You will probably find this film quite sad at times. There are also moments in the film that will make you say, “Yes, I’ve seen similar scenarios before.”
The mother (according to her knowledge) was a God fearing woman overflowing with love for her daughter. She showed an unbreakable attachment to her daughter, who was ashamed of her own mother due to the color of her skin.
“Huh, shouldn’t a mother’s and daughter’s skin color be the same?” You ask. See picture for comparison.
Sarah Jane (1959 adaptation) did not appreciate the deep pain her mother felt as the very crowd of people she was trying to appease/imitate were the ones causing her to feel so oppressed. ALERT! Some scenes will cause your blood pressure to rise.
In these films you see the mother’s attempt to comfort and console her daughter. Her mother wanted the best for her daughter. She wanted Sarah Jane to see that it is the person on the inside and not outward appearances that mattered. Sad to say, the daughter even placed stipulations on her mother before she would accept anymore help from her. The mother would have to help her daughter in ways that no one knew she was her mother. How heart wrenching some of these scenes are! The daughter would rather give her devotion to people who really didn’t accept her for who she was as a person, but cast aside someone who accepted and loved her dearly; her own mother!
Imagine, disavowing someone whose love for you is unmatched by others, but not appreciating them because they are not “cool” or with the “in crowd.”
- Do some children act this way today with parents?
- Do people act this way today with friends?
- Do the masses knowingly or unknowingly act this way today towards the Grand Creator?
Without giving away the whole movie, just know the daughter finally and remorsefully comprehended the deep love her mother showed her.
Have you taken the time to express your appreciation to the ones who have proven their unmatched love for you? It will warm their hearts if you let them know you are always thinking of them and not due to a gift they bestowed upon you.
Though there is a bigotry(directed strongly ) element to this movie, regular subscribers to this website know the stand the writers make on this issue.
“Humans are all the same (DNA) and from the 2 original parents. Granted, certain personalities try to find things to separate one another and skin color just happens to be the easiest to instigate such separations. Happily, it still does not change the fact that we are all viewed the same by our Grand Creator.”
Imitation of Life; though this movie does not use the graphic violence and language that is common today in many movies the nature of this film may not suite you. Mistreatment of a woman being struck by a man is in this movie.