October 6th Lab


  1. My version of Motherless Brooklyn isn’t about anything as my goal is to stop the production of a film adaptation as soon as possible. I also hope to provide a coherent reason as to why such an adaptation would be a large failure.
  2. I believe a great deal of challenges lie in the overuse of detective fiction tropes and organized crime tropes, making a great number of the characters appear bland and not genuine. In addition, Lionel as a individual is hard to understand for the reader, as he experiences strange personality shifts throughout the novel but by the end it is left somewhat unclear whether or not he has changed as an individual and whether the change he has experienced is for the betterment of his life.
  3. I find Lionel can be a rather compelling character at specific moments of the novel, mainly because his situation comes off as rather unique and the reader has a preconceived notion of what might happen in the novel. The story becomes something of a game, where the reader tries to see whether or not Lionel will follow the path that they have imagined the story will take.
  4. I hope people understand that Motherless Brooklyn isn’t literary material that should get adapted into a film due to the convoluted nature of the novel and lack thereof of any real coherent story. In addition, there is little value in understanding the novel, as there does not appear to be any theme being expressed by the novel and many of the morals that are being delivered end up being completely subverted within the novel by many of the characters in the story.

Log line

Protagonist: An emotionally troubled detective
Goal: To try to accept himself
Antagonist: His own feelings of guilt and loneliness

What causes him to fail at his goal?: His continued tendency to place too much emotional reliance on other individuals.
What does he learn while trying to change: Things he was never aware of in his life
Why does he feel the need to change?: In order to live his life as an individual and escape his past.
What leads him to need to change?: His boss’s death

“A troubled detective, after his boss’s death, feels the need to change himself and escape his feelings of guilt and loneliness. Along the way, he learns the various facts that were hidden from him in his life, but he continues to make the same mistakes as he had in the past.”

  1. A troubled detective feels the need to change and escape his negative emotions after his boss’s death, learning things never knew but also while continuing to make the same mistakes he made in the past.
  2. An emotionally troubled detective wants to change and accept himself after his boss’s death, becoming informed but making the same past mistakes.
  3. An emotionally troubled detective pines for self-acceptance after his boss’s death, learning things he was never aware of while continuing to struggle with his personal faults.
  4. A man struggling with self-confidence and emotional issues wishes to change after his boss’s death, during which he is exposed to hidden truths but continues to struggle with past mistakes.
  5. After his boss’s death, a troubled detective wishes to change himself for self-acceptance and learn the truth, but he continues to struggle with his emotions and makes mistakes along the way.


  1. Pages: 83-84, 144, 213, 260, 285, 303, 309, 310, 311
    My quotes tend to come form the last third of the novel, which is understandable as my main idea involves observing Lionel’s state by the end of the novel.
  2. I can use passages throughout the novel indicating some small minor changes that may have come in Lionel’s personality and note them as temporary, adding onto the fact that nothing he does will be permanent. This can also be added on and made into its own point/idea of the aspect I chose.


I believe I have properly analyzed the quotes and passages which I chose, as I have provided a through analysis of how I perceive these passages. I feel I have exhausted my own ideas of these scenes, but I feel there may be more quotes in different scenes I can use that provide evidence I need.


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