Ancient Telling, Contemporary Showing: A Reading of The Killing of a Sacred Deer (2017) As Film Adaptation
Keywords:Film Adaptation, Hypertextuality, The Killing of a Sacred Deer, Linda Hutcheon, Iphigenia at Aulis, Gerard Genette
This article aims to investigate the contemporary aspects of adaptation from ancient plays, presenting a reading of The Killing of a Sacred Deer (2017). A comparative view towards Iphigenia at Aulis by Euripides (405 BC) raises the question of how story elements of that play are recreated within the film adaptation. Also, it seeks to explore the relationship between the type of engagement, from hypotext (play) “telling” to hypertext (film) “showing”. The theoretical framework of the article utilized theories of Gerard Genette’s “hypertextuality” and Linda Hutcheon’s “adaptation”. The results indicate subtle thematic connections, as well as a significant interplay between hypotext and hypertext. The Killing of a Sacred Deer represents an adaptation with a creative interpretation, one which reimagines the forms and themes of ancient tragedy in a modern-life context. Various influences, imitations and transformations of Euripides’ story elements are interwoven in the adaptation process and discussed in the article.
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