The story is about the narrator and an old man. The narrator has an illness that increases his senses and image. He is friends with an old man but does not like the old man’s eye. He thinks the eye is evil because it is blue with a clear substance over it. The eye makes the narrator angry, and he wants to kill the old man to be rid of the evil eye forever. After a week, he sneaks in to kill the old man, but the old man dies of a heart attack. The narrator explains in great detail the heightened sense of hearing, and how it affects the decisions that are made.
The narrator hears the old man’s fear in his body, and it gets louder the more scared the old man gets. He hears the old man sit up, and not lie back down for hours. He laughs at the fear the old man is exhibiting. As the narrator stands in silence he is afraid the loudness of the man’s heartbeat will wake the neighbors. He then screams and jumps on the old man. While he throws the mattress on the old man, he hears the heartbeat stop. Poe decides to cut up the old man’s body and hide him under the floor boards. When the police come he tells on himself. The reason he tells on himself is because he hears a loud tic that keeps getting louder. The narrator thinks the ticking sound is the old man’s heart still beating.
The extreme sensory that the disease portrays in the narrator has compelled his hatred for the old man’s eye. His hearing is extremely good, and he hears everything from the universe and around the world. The heightened sound had been the trigger to try and kill the old man. It had also been the trigger that made him tell on himself to the police.
The narrator was not mad at the old man but was mad at his eye because of the way it looked at him. He is sane to plan a crime, commit a crime, and cover up the crime. He was capable enough to plan every detail with great patience. He continued his plan for over a week without getting caught or being noticed by the neighbors. The narrator does not have good morals because he is going to kill a person he likes. The old man’s evil eye is the reason he is going to murder his friend. This is not morally correct, and, therefore, the murderer has little morals.
The old man’s eye is powerful because the narrator can see into the evil eye. He thinks the evil eye is seeing him, and he does not like the way it looks. The narrator’s hearing is excellent, and he hears things that we normally would not hear. “For example, the narrator heard the old man’s heart beating rapidly, and then he later heard it stop beating” (Poe, 2011). After the police had come, Poe thought the old man’s heart had started beating again.
Poe’s gothic style fits into this story very well. Poe uses descriptive words that sound proud of what he had done. The theme the narrator possess in the story relates to the gothic tone that normally is present in Poe’s work. Romantic elements in the story relate to the old man’s friendship. My personal reaction to the story was that the man was ill, and used his illness as a reasonable excuse to take someone’s life. The movie was more intense than the story. The movies portrayed the words and sounds to make it more believable.
The Tell-Tale Heart. Dir. Edgar Allen Poe. 2011. Web.