War Between Shrews

This Means War vs. The Taming of the Shrew

First, in Taming of the Shrew an important character to notice is Bianca. She is the youngest daughter of Baptista, whom is a young beautiful woman that many men are trying wed. Though Bianca might seem ready for a master, her father refuses unless her older sister Katherine has found a man. Katherine is a strong, opinionated woman who isn’t afraid to speak her thoughts because of these traits, it caused many people to not seek beauty in her but veil and disgust.  Another important character is Lucentio, he is the suited man for Bianca, he was able to woe her instantly. Lucentio is a young charming man full of caring characteristic. While on the other hand, Petruchio is a cruel greedy man who only seeked Katherine for her wealth.

In the movie one of the central characters is Tuck he is a small,  kind man with a funny sense of humor. Though many may not see him to be the type who works for the CIA he is good at what he does. Tuck hides behind the idea that he is a travel agent but this identity caused many problems with a previous relationship leaving him with an ex-wife. Though Tuck might have lost someone he loved, he still had his best friend FDR. FDR is Tuck’s partner in crime who also has to hide behind the title of being a cruise ship captain. Through the movie you will begin to notice that he is a womanizer and somewhat snobby. Though many people might find these traits unattractive Lauren Scott, found his games foolish, at first. Lauren is a product testing executive who has recently suffered through a failed engagement and to cope she dates 2 different guys who happen to be FDR and Tuck.

In comparing the story lines, viewers and readers will notice though the two have to different plots and ideas they both surf around the same theme and topic; relationships. Relationships won’t last long unless their is true honesty with each other. Being honest is what a relationship is all about, some would argue that it’s about control, but in the end it's about trust and honesty.

That’s how our characters were able to win their girls.

The scene is set with Tranio and Lucentio, hiding in the bushes, over hearing a group of people disgust the fates of Katherine and Bianca.

“Tranio: You will be a school master and undertake the teaching of the maid: that's your device.”

(Act 1, Scene 1, 196-198)

The context of the quote was given to Lucentio from his servant Tranio when he saw that he had been wooed by the presents of Bianca. In honoring his master and wanting to help him, Tranio gives Lucentio the idea that he should become someone else. Someone that would be able to get close with the youngirl, like a school master. In doing so Lucentio would hopefully be able to woo Bianca, just she owed him.

Though Tuck doesn’t dress up as another person to woo the girl he has madly fallen for. He does however still hide behind the identity of false management in the workforce as well.  

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Screenshot 2018-04-11 at 4.29.44 PM

At this point in the film viewers know that for a living Tuck works for the CIA. But, as the movie continues forward he ends up facing his ex-wife after visiting his son at karate. In the scene, you are given a small piece of important information that he is known as a travel agent. In the film viewers are able to tell that his previous family is very sour about the idea of him being a “travel agent”.

The context of and the reasoning of hiding their identity might be different in the film and play but either way each character both play apart in being dishonest about who they are to someone they care about. The two characters, Tuck and Lucentio both lied about their profession to a  women they love. Which in the end, Tuck ends up with his ex-wife again later finding out his true identity and same thing with Lucentio. Eventually in the play, he reveals his true self to Bianca and still was able to win her over.

Later on the script Lucentio runs into a problem.

Hortensio: Sir, you say well, and well you do conceive. And since you do profess to be a suitor, you must, as we do gratify this gentleman, to whom we all rest generally beholding.

(Act 1, Scene 2, 277-280)

Here is the scene when all three suitors for Bianca meet up and create the plan to marry off Katherine, the older sister. The men convince Petruchio to marry the women and he claims that he will do it because of the wealth and the money that is being offered with the commitment of the marriage.

In comparing the circumstances at hand the audience can see that the men combined from both Taming of the Shrew and This Means War that they all have different motives in the beginning and while at first they didn’t stop to think how it might affect the relationships with the female character in the film and play.

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Screenshot 2018-04-11 at 5.26.04 PM
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Screenshot 2018-04-11 at 5.33.22 PM

In the scene, best friends Tuck and FDR, reveal to each other that the person they are dating/seeing happen to be the same person. Through a quick transaction of words it is understood that the men will continue to date the women under three conditions, she doesn’t know that they are friends, they stay out of each other way and “no hanky-panky”.

In comparing the book to the film though there isn’t necessarily an agreement placed upon the three suitors when it came to Bianca. Though the men did agree on the idea that let the best and most fit person for her win there wasn’t any rules held against them. In the film the men did happen to agree upon those three things but throughout the film you will notice that they didn’t acknowledge them and tried any way possible to win Lauren over, even if it meant lying to her.

Hortensio (as Litio) : Madam, my instruments in tune.

Bianca: Let’s hear. Oh fie, the treble jars!

Lucentio (as Cambio) :Spit in the hole, man, and tune again.

(Act 3, Scene 1, 39-43)

In the scene, the reader can identify that the game of trying to win Bianca has begun. Laid out for the reader is the idea that Hortensio and Lucentio is disguised as other characters as if they were both school masters. Lucentio is trying to convey how he feels towards Bianca and how much her presence pleases him but Hortensio is getting in the way bring the musical instrument that he doesn't know how to play or tune properly, interfering with Lucentio’s shot at trying to win the lady.

Though neither of the characters is scene playing a gamut in the movie. A scene is portrayed of FDR showing Lauren another type of art; paintings.

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Screenshot 2018-04-12 at 9.53.19 AM
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Screenshot 2018-04-12 at 9.53.33 AM

In the scene FDR took Lauren out for a date to see an exclusive exhibit on Gustav Klimts. To impress the girl, FDR had an earpiece with someone from his agency relaying information to him about each painting. Eventually though, the connection was interrupted by Tuck and he starred relaying false information to FDR to screw up his date and get between Lauren and him.

Reading the end and seeing the credits roll up the screen the audience can come to the assumption that relationships are important to society. It is often portrayed that in relationships it is often about control over whom, and Taming of the Shrew was a great example for that. But, in the movie This Means War, it shows that instead of control, relationships are more about honesty. For a healthy relationship won’t work unless you are true with yourself and the person your trying to be with.