The short story has also been adapted into a motion picture called In the Bedroom by director Todd Field in Dubus provides details of the gruesome murders in the story to bring out the horror of the crimes they committed.
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Matt Fowler felt justified in kidnapping and killing Richard Strout, however, having accomplished his final act of revenge, does not find peace.
This becomes another driving force for Matt Fowlers plan to murder Richard.
Her inability to infer what has happened or what she refuses to infer shows her ignorance to the situation because she embraces him despite the immoral actions that Matt decided to take into his own hands. Not only is Matt trying to seem like a man to his wife, he is also trying to prove himself to his friend, to show he is no coward when it comes to Richard, he will stand up to him if necessary.
Ruth has already begun to judge Mary Ann before she has really gotten to know her.