The usefulness of the 1995 film, The Scarlet Letter, in helping students understand the 1850 novel is discussed in this paper. In the novel itself, one of the main themes is the demythification of the Puritan Founding Fathers as democratic pioneers. Nathaniel Hawthorne reexamines the heroic American `History` and reveals silenced shameful `histories` such as the persecution of others-Native Indians, religious nonconformists, independent and disobedient women know as witches-and the suppression of human natures like sexual desires or individual pleasures in the rigid Puritan society of the 17th-century America. Roland Joffe catches this important theme in the novel and represents it in his film in scenes not featured in the novel. It has been criticized harshly and unjustly so far as a very poorly adapted film for many reasons such as bad casting, a wrong historiography-witch trials and native Indian invasions- , eroticism, voyeurism, a happy ending, `dues ex machina`, and flat characterizations. Many of these reasons, however, can be understood and explained as characteristics of film, which is presented in clear-cut shots with a director`s point of view and should be sensitive to contemporary mass audiences and their interests to be a box office success. Moreover, this film announces itself as being "freely adapted," which means it actually doesn`t have to exist as a faithful representation of the text. A freely adapted film should be appreciated and evaluated on the basis of its containing a main theme or motif, not literal contents, of a text. In h s sense, Roland Joffe`s film fie Scarlet Letter properly grasps the persecution spirit of the Puritan Founding Fathers as the main motif in the novel and effectively visualizes it in the film by creating some scenes such as a witch trial and serious warfare with native Indians, foregrounding oppressed women`s cases like Hester, Hibbins, and Mituba, and directing appropriate mise-en-scenes, cross cuttings, and camera angles, and many other film devices like music, light, color, sound effects, symbols, and images. His direction and adaptation actually fits postmodern trends of the end of 20th century, which brings us feminism, colonialism, and new historicism, and, therefore, has the function of making contemporary audiences realize Nathaniel Hawthorne`s historical consciousness and his novel`s postmodernity which transcends the 19th-century through to the present.