MTI’s Masterpiece Literature Presents: The Notebook

by Emily Alfano

The Notebook takes place in the 1940s in South Carolina. Noah Calhoun is a mill worker and Allie is a rich girl that falls in love with him, someone way below her “class.” Allie’s parents do not approve of them. Noah goes off and serves in World War II. At that point they both realize their love was nothing and it wasn’t going to work out. In the meantime, Allie gets involved with another man, Lon. They are close to getting married, until Noah comes back to their small town and finally figures out that their love can’t be stopped by others and works everything out.

Hamlet and The Notebook both have a plot of being in love, with parents trying to stop it from happening. Even though The Notebook doesn’t have the plotline of killing a family member for power, it still has a plotline of being able to be with each other. In Hamlet, the prince Hamlet falls in love with Ophelia, the daughter of Polonius. Polonius is the Chief Counsellor to the king. Her father and brother (and Gertrude) believe that Hamlet is just going to use her. They think Hamlet is going to take her virginity and just throw her away like trash because she could never be his wife. She really loves Hamlet, but her father convinces her not to be with him. Now with The Notebook, Noah and Allie were in love. Noah took Allie to an abandoned home, explaining he was going to buy it one day for them. Allie was late for curfew that night, so her parents sent police out looking for her, this event is what made Allie’s parents disown their love. When Noah and Allie return to her mansion, her parents ban her from seeing Noah. Allies parents call Noah “trash” in an argument and state they are moving back to Charleston.

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The four main characters of Noah, Allie and Allie’s parents, John and Anne Hamilton in The Notebook are similar the four main characters of Hamlet, Ophelia, Polonius and Claudius in Hamlet. Polonius and Anne and John Hamilton are similar because they both didn’t want their daughter dating someone they feared was going to destroy them or bring them down.  Noah and Allie, and then Hamlet and Ophelia are all deeply in love. They want to be with each other no matter what. But in Hamlet Ophelia ends up dying because she’s so hurt she can’t be with Hamlet. In the end of The Notebook they end up reuniting.

The play Hamlet has multiple antagonists. Hamlet’s best friends, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern go behind his back and sneak around him and they give Claudius information on what he’s doing, making Hamlet’s attitude change towards people. In The Notebook Fin and Sarah, high school friends of Noah, introduce Noah to Allie the summer after Noah graduates from high school. They both wanted Noah and Allie to work out. They help them sneak around, they are critical minor characters.

In The Notebook there is a dialogue of Noah saying, “So it’s not gonna be easy. It’s going to be really hard; we’re gonna have to work at this every day, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, forever, every day. You and me… every day.” Noah is trying to convince Allie to be with him, even if it’s going to be hard. Moreover, Hamlet says “I loved Ophelia. Forty thousand brothers could not, with all their quantity of love, make up my sum.” Hamlet truly loves Ophelia, her father getting in the middle because he believes Hamlet’s crazy was wrong of him because he doesn’t really know why Hamlet’s upset. Their love shouldn’t be anyone else’s worries.

Each story stresses that no matter how many people tell you, you shouldn’t be in love with someone, it doesn’t matter what they say. You are the one making your own choices. It shouldn’t be what everyone else thinks. In life you need to take risks to find out what’s going to happen in your life, if it’s good or bad. Take chances, and be your own person, you can’t let someone make your choices for you the rest of your life. Follow your heart!

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2 thoughts on “MTI’s Masterpiece Literature Presents: The Notebook

  1. Emily, this is great. I see how the notebook and hamlet are similar now that you explained it. You put so much detail in this because when I saw that you were going to compare hamlet to the notebook I couldn’t understand how they were similar, but now I understand its all about love. Both of these are about true love and how it conquers all. The only difference is the notebook has a happy ending where the two end up reuniting and hamlet and his love end up dead.

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  2. I absolutely love this movie! It makes for a good story because it shows that in relationships you will not always have the best of times. However, if you stay together and work it out it will be worth it. Like the movie quote says “It wont always be easy, but it will be worth it.” Love knows no boundaries.

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