He Said, She Said: Of Mice and Men

Anthony Vega and Melissa Sikes


“Of Mice and Men” is a story about two simple men with good intentions. But sadly, good intentions don’t get you very far in this life. This story also captures the spirit of a greatly depressed America. An America that was so depressed it collapsed into itself financially like a teenage girl with a shopping addiction. Written by John Steinbeck, “Of Mice and Men” shows us what it’s like to be a migrant worker at a time when work was scarce and dignity scarcer. A lot of this is put into a book because nothing depresses you quite the way a book does. And when it’s just you and a pile of soundless, black words you’re much more liable to gain perspective on things.

The words in “Of Mice and Men” give you quite a lot of perspective through the struggles of George and his touched-in-the-head friend named Lennie. Both of them had dreams that seemed simple enough to reach but America isn’t exactly the right place to be dreaming about anything. If you read the story that’s great, it’s highly recommended by a lot of people who are experts at recommending things.

The movie is really good too, but only through the medium of print can you really feel what it’s like to physically hold the broken hopes and dreams of two grown men in your hands. It’s incredibly uncomfortable but it makes you feel like a decent human being, almost like allowing someone to literally cry and tremble on your shoulder.


John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men, a tragic tale of the lives of two work seeking vagabonds, George Milton and Lennie Small, has been tugging on reader’s heart strings since its publication in 1937. In 1992, the book’s fifth film adaptation made its way to the big screen. Directed by Gary Sinise, who also played George in the film, this adaptation stuck to the plot of the book with few changes, fifteen to be exact. The book stands on its own, there is no denying that, but the film was arranged and told in a much more potent way.

This tale begins with George and Lennie on the run after Lennie “does a bad thing.” The two men flee the scene heading to town to search for work. After finding employment on a ranch, they decide to rest for a night by the river before heading to their destination. Before they drift off to sleep, George tells Lennie of how it is going to be for them some day. They have big dreams of owning a small place where they will be their own bosses. A place where they will grow their own crops and have rabbits that Lennie will tend to. As George thinks of the future, he tells Lennie to hide here by the river if anything should happen.

On the ranch, the introduction of Curley’s wife is the beginning of the end for the dreams of George and Lennie and their new partner Candy. After Lennie accidentally murders the Mrs., he flees to the river bank, unbeknownst to him that that is his final resting place. This story reminds me of Old Yeller. Now on to the spoilers…

Arrangement is key to making the greatest impact and the film’s series of events makes this story that much more effective. In the book, it ends on a pathetic note. George kills Lennie for his own good, but when confronted about it, George says Lennie had the gun and was going to shoot him, but he was able to get the gun and shoot Lennie himself. He then goes off with Slim to get a drink. This ruined the book for me. In the film, it ends with George shooting Lennie, of course, but comes to a close with George hopping on a train and having flashbacks of the time he spent with Lennie. It almost brings tears to your eyes.

This book is a classic. The film is powerful. So, do the literary world a favor and pick up the book and watch the movie. You won’t regret it.}