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Notes

For the film to succeed as a tragedy it is necessary for Carter to die. At the end of the novel, Carter’s attempt to exact vengeance on Eric goes wrong and we are left wondering whether Con McCartey, one of the men sent by Fletcher to bring him back to London, will rescue the wounded Carter or leave him to die.6 In the film we see the contract killer on the train at the beginning, and there is a shift in point-ofview towards the end, when Kinnear phones him to arrange the killing. This is the only scene in the film where Carter isn’t in some way present and it prepares us for his death. This is less a matter of satisfying the demands of censorship morality codes than of completing the structure of a revenge tragedy. Having fulfilled his task of vengeance, Carter must die.7