Monday, April 16, 2012

Clue: from board game to film

You have six suspects, one body. So, who's the killer? Was it Mr. Green with the lead pipe in the lounge or could it of been Miss Scarlet with the candle stick in the kitchen? No matter who actually is the mastermind behind the death of Mr. Body, one things for sure: Clue, the movie, does a great job transferring over to film the circumstances and elements that make the board game original and riveting. 

The Characters
In the board game we have the characters Mrs. Peacock, Colonel Mustard, Mr. Green, Professor Plum, Miss Scarlet, and Mrs. White.  An attribute of each of these characters is a specific color that makes their game piece recognizable. In the film, however, each character (although in deed having an article of clothing / item of the color from their board game piece) has a deep and rich backstory.  This backstory acts the same way as the game piece color.  It makes the specific character easily distinguishable. With this additional back story, the characters become more intricate and stronger possibilities for who killed Mr. Body. 

The Locations
In the board game we have the kitchen, dining room, lounge, ballroom, hall, conservatory, billiard room, library, and study. The film version contains practically all of these locations. The best representation of this board game-like feeling is exhibited in the alternate endings when the butler goes through a step-by-step break down of how all the murders played out.  He, along with the suspects, frantically run from room to room, clearly paralleling their hectic nature to that of the game.

Alternate Endings
In the board game there are many possibilities for who committed the murder, what object, and where. The masterminds behind the film version were witty enough to transfer this ambiguity over to the story version by giving us three possible endings.  These endings were screened at various theaters, therefore making the audience practically a player themselves.

The genre/feeling conveyed through the aesthetics of the board game is seemingly that of a mystery. However, the true nature of a board game, is that of fun which in turn is transferable to the genre of comedy.  Therefore it is not surprising when we find the genre of the film that of a comedic mystery.

All in all, the film version of Clue does a great job capturing the essence of the board game. 


  1. Great job here! I really like this breakdown, it's simple and gets the point across really well. Wonderful exposition between the photos/stills and the blocks of text, they really worked well to flesh out you're point.
    However I'm curious to how you thought that the different aspects of the film tied together. Also, I would be interested as to what you thought about the addition of new characters, The Butler, Yvette and The Cook.

  2. Stellar organization, very easy to read. I enjoy your addition of pictures.
    However, I don't get a clear sense of judgment... I understand that you enjoyed the film and found the adaptation interesting and appropriate to the nature of the game, but not how you feel about the specifics aspects you discuss. For example, how do you think the alternative endings worked? Would you have been unsatisfied with any of them if you had seen the movie in theaters (and thus only seen one)?
    I think you could have explored the specifics of character more, explaining to those who haven't seen the movie what additions to character background were added.
    However, all and all, good job. Concise and lucid.

  3. I like how you separated everything into categories, and explained how each subject relates to the movie. I especially agree with the alternate endings of the movie, and I think it is very reminiscent of the board game. Playing the board game has a certain "frantic" feel, and I think that the film captured this in its tone and ending. Also, the board game has an actual variety of possible endings, which is literally translated into the film. However, I don't know if I agree with the marketing scheme of the film, as I would be frustrated at not being able to see the entire movie after I paid for it.

  4. I agree with your classmates - your organization and breakdown work really well in this post, and I love how your visuals work with your text. I think you make a good case for how the film successfully adapts elements of the board game itself. I agree with Joachim's comment that I would have liked you to touch on the differences, such as the added characters, and Cat's comment about going further into the character's backstory and how that also branched off from their names in the original board game. For example - Ms. Scarlet is a "madame" (runs a prostitution ring), playing off the color red being "passion" and "fire." But with Mrs. White, the perpetual Widow (and possibly black widow) they play off the opposite of the color (and in fact dress her in black).