Please allow me to introduce myself, I'm a new member to the
group (longtime lurker, though), which I came across in my
search for info on Charles Williams; I thought I was the only
person left who knew who he was! It's great to know that
there are other people who keep interest in cult novels.
Anyway, I was a bit disappointed with the adaption of The
Siege of Trencher's Farm (which was by Gordon Williams, you
had it right) into Straw Dogs; I feel that Sam Peckinpah's
inclusion of the rape scene screwed it up bigtime. One of the
points was that, with his home and family threatened, the
coward main character would finally break down and become a
killer. But by Peckinpah changing the wife from just a bitch,
as she was in "Farm," to a slut of sorts as portrayed in the
movie, he altered that point; Hoffman's character loses
motivation there. Why would he defend his wife when, moments
before, she was parading around naked for the attacking mob
to gawk at? Also, the rape itself brings up warped
conotations, in that the wife character appears to give
herself over to her attacker because he used to be her
boyfriend and she isn't getting the necessary violent sex
from wimp Hoffman. Susan George was adament about not doing
the scene, but was more or less contractually forced!
into by Peckinpah, who insisted it go on; if her word is to be trusted, he lay on the floor beside the soundstage while directing the scene and mocked being anally insulted; his interpretation, apparently, was that she was enjoying being raped.
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