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The movie is largely the same as the book. The changes made largely consist of condensing scenes for the sake of time. In addition, Helene McReedy is more sympathetic in the film than in the book. The character of Cheese is changed from a white imprisoned drug dealer to a Haitian who is free and a sub plot involving a gang war is eliminated. The most significant change is Angie Genarro who, due to scenes which were truncated from the book, becomes largely a cypher.ALSO.... there are serious character changes to the two two detectives. Very much left out of their part of the story. As mentioned above, Genarro is horribly left out of the story. In the book, Patrick and Angie are the *stars.* The story is *not* about the Morgan Freeman and Ed Harris characters, but Hollywood marketing seemed to require it. Also, Casey Affleck and his very slight physical build is way, way, way too physically unbelievable in the role of the big and tough talking Patrick. The movie is fun, but as a die hard Dennis Lehane fan, I must say that few films of his books come anywhere as close to perfect as Mystic River.
...charged with the murder of the pedophile?While Patrick's actions may have technically been illegal it must be remembered the circumstances in which they occurred. In the middle of a massive shoot out in which the occupants of the house were trying to kill Patrick and the police Patrick kills a man who had taken part in the brutal rape, torture and murder of a young child. The police are not going to investigate the crime too much and likely ruled it self defense. It's also possible that Remy coached Patrick on what to say or handled the interview himself.Even though the pedophile was shot in the back of the head proving that Patrick wasn't being confronted by the pedophile it could be said that he may have been going for a weapon or Patrick thought he was and ordered him not to move and so when the pedophile started to crawl away Patrick shot him.
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