The Pull of “Gravity”

“One hell of a ride”, Sandra Bullock took the words right out of my mouth. “Gravity” is a seat-gripping science fiction, drama, and disaster film all rolled up into one. Set in orbit around the earth, and on an American space station, this film will keep you wondering, “What is going to come of this”? Commander Matt Kowalski (George Clooney), accompanied by rookie astronaut Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock). Are tasked with repairing the Hubble telescope. However, veteran astronaut Kowalski’s remark to Houston “I have a bad feeling about this mission”, is an inciting incident to the danger they will face. While working on repairs, Kowalski and Dr. Stone are informed by mission control of an impending explosion of a Russian satellite. With little warning and time to react, the shrapnel hurls towards the team and the space station obliterating the station as well as the entire crew except for Kowalski and Dr. Stone. The damage knocks out communication with Houston and amidst the carnage, Dr. Stone is untethered from the space station, free-floating in space with little oxygen left. In a heroic effort, Kowalski risks everything to make his way to Dr. Stone so they can formulate a plan to get to a nearby Chinese space station. From this moment on they are stranded in space in a journey to survive and make their way home. Interestingly, that is the whole plot. Instead, this film focuses on the characters development and the situation they are stuck in.

Antagonistic at first, the wisecracking optimistic Kowalski who loves to hum tunes. Is paired with the uptight, all business, Dr. Stone, who finds Kowalski’s antics irritating. The two characters personalities conflict during their survival, and communication over their intercoms, but through each radio discussion and event they learn to like each other while also learning of past events that explain their respective personalities. Learning about Dr. Stone’s loss of her young daughter offers reasoning behind her personality. All while enjoying the comic relief and calm demeanor of Kowalski. Their quickly formed character relationship is summed up in a dream by Dr. Stone. Beaten down from the journey to survive and thoughts of her struggled past, Dr. Stone is guided to success by the sarcastic remarks of Kowalski’s and the character developing remark to Dr. Stone that “you’ve got to learn to let go”. The calm, joking personality of Kowalski is appreciated by Dr. Stone now more than ever

With little face to face character contact and only seeing their face. You might wonder what stands out about this film. The film shows epic colorful shots of earth beaming with light representing the yearning to go home, and the pitch black of the deep dark space that you can feel the characters fear. It’s a color wave of immense proportions that truly reflects the beauty and danger of space without actually being there. Pair that with seamless shots of floating in space and 3-D like action shots that burst out at you in a proper zero-gravity fashion, and you have an epic space survival film that is both thrilling, and beautiful to look at. “Gravity” is not an acting knock out, nor does it have a plot or storyline with immense complexities. Rather, its success comes in the focus on the relationship of the two astronauts, the allure and danger of open space, and the idea that one of these astronauts might not make it home. Leaving all factual space knowledge at home, this movie is not intended for those who chose to dissect each law of physics. Instead, this sci-fi disaster drama between two contrasting characters in a terrifyingly impossible situation is for those who seek pure visual entertainment, good character dialogue and development, and constant danger in survival. Worthy of appraising, “Gravity” is one of those movies you just want to keep watching.

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Dazed and Amused

How do you remember high school? Was it agonizing, fun, or maybe confusing? However you might have perceived that period of life, it is usually regarded as the glory days. Days filled with boys, girls, hanging out, and exploring the adolescent aspects of life. “Dazed and Confused” is a film about just that. A movie set in Austin Texas in 1976, “Dazed and Confused” is a comedy that follows the lives of a large group of kids that drive around town in their cool cars, drink beer, smoke pot, and live a socially driven romanticized teenage life. Starting on the last day of school the teens are ready to get out and enjoy the first day of summer. The seniors are anticipating the future, but more so the incoming freshman. Waiting outside the junior high school the seniors are anxious to haze the freshman and welcome them to the high school life. Talks about a party, what to do after school, and how to avoid hazing consume conversation amongst the teens. Once school lets out everyone is out on the town. Aimlessly driving around smoking pot, drinking beer, hanging out, looking for the next party. Including a few stars like Matthew McConaughey and Ben Affleck. Each character is as involved as the last, all taking part in the fun and interacting with each other in the typical teenage fashion.

Contrary to the name of the film, there is no daze or confusion as to what the plot or meaning behind the film is. The plot isn’t just about the jocks or the popular kids. The nerds and socially awkward are seen struggling with adolescent life as well. “Dazed and Confused” offers a refreshing perspective on every facet of popularity and personality in high school in comparison to the typical high school love story about the hero who gets the girl or the nerd with potential. The characters and their conflicts are important in the film as they run into each other around town and are evenly introduced and talked about for a while, then it’s on to the next. However, not one, in particular, is the most important. Just like high school itself everyone is seen and talked about, people fight, love, and talk about life. But in the end, just like the party at the end of the film, it is a culmination of every personality and popularity that comes together to make up life itself. It’s a nostalgic lesson into what high school actually was. Though people had their differences and personalities, in the end, it was just a bunch of people with a common want to hang out and interact.

A very 70’s and radical film, “Dazed and Confused” is a great film about the life of a high school teenager of all walks of life. With no in-depth plot or scheme behind it, it’s just entertaining to watch the shenanigans and reminisce a bit on what life used be like back in high school. Whether you were a jock, nerd, popular, unpopular, or somewhere in between, there is most likely a character to latch onto and resonate with. Sprinkle in a few life lessons and minor takeaways about adolescent life and you have an A+ movie that is both funny, entertaining, and somewhat realistic into the life of a teenager. With the amount of cursing and drugs in the movie, it may not be for someone younger than a high schooler. However, if you’re looking for a movie with little confusion and loads of amusement, this is the one for you.

 

Stand By Me

Originally a novel called “The Body” by Stephen King, “Stand By Me” is a compelling adaptational film about four friends who embark on a journey together leading them to learn more about themselves than their end goal. The story is told and narrated by Gordie Lachance in his adult years after having read about a man stabbed to death in a restaurant. Reading this story Gordie is compelled by nostalgic feelings to write the story of when he had first seen a dead body. Flashback to Castle Rock Oregon around the late 1950’s. Twelve-year-old Gordie Lachance spends most of his time with his best friends Chris Chambers, Teddy Duchamp, and Vern Tessio. Gordie is an insecure kid who lives in the shadow of his older brother Denny who died in a car accident in the recent past. Gordie’s parents are still grieving over Denny and overlook Gordie and his writing and storytelling talents. Vern is the dim-witted comic relief of the group. A little chubby and naive, he is still a part of the group and loved by the rest. Teddy is the crazy kid of their friend group. His father is a world war two veteran and violent towards Teddy which is reflected in his reckless actions. Last but not least is the leader and the cool kid, Chris Chambers, Gordie’s best friend. Chris somewhat bit of a father figure to Gordie and comes from an infamously troublesome family and sees himself as having a concrete future of being like his family.

One day while looking for a jar of saved milk money, Vern overhears his older brother Billy talking to his friend about the missing body of a local kid Ray Brower and its location. Having left to tell the boys, Vern fails to hear the fact that Billy and his friend are skeptical to report that they know the location of the body and instead decide to tell their friend group. Lead by the psychotic antagonist Ace Merrill, Billy and his friend group decide to go find the body. Kicking off their adventure, Vern eventually tells Gordie and the boys of what he overheard about Ray’s body. The boys plan a trip to find Ray’s body themselves and return it as heroes, while also seeing a dead body for the first time. Compelled by their delusions the boy’s adventure thrusts them into various trials and tribulations that test their individual personalities while also strengthening them and the group. While on the road to the location of the body Gordie and Chris’ friendship is strengthened greatly while Vern and Teddy’s comic relief and antics make the overall experience that much more memorable for the boys. Through each experience, each character’s strengths, weaknesses, and importance to the group are revealed. Meanwhile, unbeknownst to Gordie and the boys, Ace and his friend group with Billy are inching closer to finding the body and it becomes a race that neither side is aware of. The race to the body and its eventual discovery leads to a conflict between Gordie and Ace’s group of friends. This final conflict between the groups shows the strength and loyalty of Gordie’s group as they barely make it past the wrath of Ace and his sadistic friend group. After finding the body and returning home the boys go their separate ways and you learn of their futures and who they become. On top of that, it is revealed that the man in the beginning who Gordie had read about which compelled him to narrate this story is no other than Chris Chambers.

Family Video Trip

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It has been a long time since I had been into a video store. When I was a kid it was an event to go to Blockbuster and pick out a movie with my family. Every weekend when there was nothing to do my brothers and I got the opportunity to roam around and look at R rated movies and see what was out there even if we couldn’t watch it. So, when I went into Family Video in Shelby North Carolina it was a bit of a flashback. I can remember a time when my family and I would roam around the store looking at all the different sections of movie genres, arguing about which few to pick out, and my brothers and I begging for a box of candy. Though I might not have always got the movie I wanted, everyone was able to find something they wanted to watch. This more recent experience visiting a video store was a bit different considering it has been at least ten years since my last time in a video store, and Netflix and Amazon type platforms rule the home video world. However, I found that the difference between my trip to the video store and scanning films on Netflix and Amazon is not what one might expect. The initial discovery or interest in movies I would like to watch is easy with an online platform because I can search for it. With a video store like Family Video, I got to relive the now archaic experience of looking at movie covers, roaming sections of genres, and finding movies I might not find online. This is the big difference for me between my trip to Family Video and using an online platform like Netflix. In fact, I preferred the ability to find other movies and roam around the store because it is easier to search for something in my taste rather than scanning the “most popular” section on Netflix. I found movies in the video store that I would never find on Netflix simply because Netflix doesn’t have it, or I have to go down some internet rabbit hole in order to find it.

The online platforms offer loads of movies without a doubt, but only movies that are popular with other people. It makes sense that Netflix, Amazon and other platforms would put those types of films there because they make more money from it and gain more interest. Though, this is the reason I think that video stores like Family Video still survive. Old movies, new off camber movies that I might not find online, and movies you know that you can’t find online are in the Family Video and I find that to be relevant to people today. Movies that come out on Netflix are either from the recent past, or the really big hits from way back, but that’s about it. Family Video offered entire sections of past and recent movies that cover the entire spectrum of possibilities, and I think that people still enjoy that. Not to mention the ability to ask the movie buff at the front what he thinks about it, and get some candy on your way out.

I really enjoyed going to the Family Video store. I found it to be a bit of a reminiscent joy to go through the aisles and pick up movie after movie and most of the time decide what movie I want to watch based on how cool the cover looks or the section I got it from. The movie store offers that kind of personal browsing and experience. It almost made it more enjoyable for me to go out of my way, roam around the store for a while and get some candy before I left just because I got to reap the rewards of my efforts in a sense. I think that there is a place for this old style of film selection and one that I hope doesn’t die, at least not in the near future. Sure, it is hard to beat the convenience of Netflix and Amazon, but just because it’s convenient doesn’t mean it’s better. I like to compare this experience to my Jeep. A silly comparison I know, but my Jeep is loud, awful on gas, and the stick shift is a pain in traffic and super steep hills, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I could easily swap my jeep for some Toyota that is dead silent, parks for me, and does everything but makes me coffee, but I don’t want that. I want to hear the motor rumble, I want to switch the gears around as I please and feel the bumps of the road. Just like I don’t want to have a movie put in my face because it’s the “most popular” and I don’t always want to sit on the couch and press a search button. Sometimes, yes, but most of the time I would rather deal with the “inconvenience” of driving to the store and roaming around until I found a film just as I would rather drive my “inconvenient” Jeep. The easy way doesn’t always mean the best way and after my trip to the Family Video store, I was reminded of that.

Hail, Caesar!

 

Hail, Caesar! A comedy film by the Coen brothers set in Hollywood around the 1950’s focusing on Eddie Mannix a mediator and problem solver for the film studio “Capitol Pictures”. Eddie is revealed to be the boss man around Capitol Pictures, and he is in charge of everything. Throughout the whole film, the focus is on Eddie Mannix as he goes through his days dealing with issue after issue. The majority of the problems that Eddie deals with seem to come from his actors and their personal lives, not to mention the media constantly trying to expose them. The inciting incident to Eddie Mantix and the overall movie begins with Eddie arriving at a house where an actress of his is taking provocative pictures in a photo shoot. This requires Eddie’s intervention giving the young actress an alias and alibi to protect her image.

The first set of Eddie’s problems arise from the filming of the movie “Hail, Caesar” staring big-time Hollywood success Baird Whitlock playing in a historical film that is meant to depict the life of Christ through the eyes of Autolycus, a Roman leader. While filming the movie an extra in the film puts a powdered substance in the cup that Baird Whitlock is meant to drink out of. He proceeds to pass out and be abducted by the extra and is taken captive to an unknown house in Malibu filled with communist writers that feel neglected. Adding to the list of Eddie’s problems among Baird’s abduction is actress DeeAnna Moran who is a sassy, rambunctious woman who tells Eddie she is pregnant which concerns her image for the studio and herself. Eddie moves on with life having already sorted out a plan which he reveals to DeeAnna later on.

Again, piling up to the issues for Eddie to deal with comes from another movie by Capitol Pictures called “Merrily We Dance”. Directed by Lauren Laurentz, he is faced with the issue of including Hobie Doyle, a western film actor with a thick southern drawl. Hobie does not fit into this style of movie and it infuriates Laurentz which of course, becomes an issue for Eddie Mannix. Eddie tells Laurentz to make it work, which he eventually does in a laughable way.

Later on, in the movie, we discover that the communists who took Baird captive are holding him for a $100,000 ransom. Eddie receives this news by a letter issued by “The Future” and upon reading it and leaving to pay the ransom he is hounded by a media columnist named Thora Thacker. Thora is pursuing a lead regarding a film that Baird did in the beginning of his career called “On Wings With Eagles” and some rumors surrounding it. After Thora leaves Eddie alone, her twin sister Thessaly who is also a part of the media wanting to write a piece on Baird as well.

During all of this discord, Eddie is approached by a man who works for Lockheed Martin wanting him to leave the film industry to work for him. Eddie is again called to resolve a problem and postpones his answer to the man. Once Eddie leaves he visits a woman named C.C. Calhoun who edits the film for Capitol Pictures. As Eddie is watching the film editing on “Merrily We Dance” hoping to see Hobie’s part that Laurentz complained about with Hobie’s part. C.C gets her scarf caught in the projector and nearly chokes herself to death until Eddie reverses the reel and saves her.

Moving on with life and the pile of issues before him. Eddie goes to see a man named Arne Seslum who had an affair and is the father of the child with DeeAnna Moran. Arne tells Eddie that he is married and has been for some time which forces Eddie to seek out a new solution in protecting DeeAnna’s image. The solution to this issue comes from a man named Joe Silverman who has been loyal to the film company for some time. It is arranged for Silverman to be the foster parent to DeeAnna’s child, but you can tell in the meeting that DeeAnna is on to Silverman and this leads to them dating and the issue resolves itself.

Meanwhile, Hobie is set up with an actress to go visit the premiere of his newest movie “Lazy Ol’ Moon”. The crowd loves the film, and so does Hobie’s date Carlotta Valdez. After the movie, Hobie and Carlotta have dinner together and are approached by the two media sisters Thora and Thessaly who are trying to get a gossip column from them. The sisters move on which leads to Hobie’s discovery of the suitcase of ransom money that Eddie had paid the communist writers. Hobie leaves Carlotta and their date to pursue the man with the money which turns out to be another actor named Burt Gurney a star of a musical production with Capitol Pictures. Hobie trails Burt all the way to the house in Malibu that Baird is held captive at. When Hobie arrives, he finds Baird sitting there peacefully. Baird tries to convince Hobie to join the communist movement, but he is unmoved and aims to take Baird back to the studio. Meanwhile, the communists and actor Burt Gurney are paddling a boat out to sea where they link up with a Soviet submarine. Just before Burt boards the submarine the communist writers give him the ransom money to donate to the cause for communism. That is until Burt’s beloved dog jumps off the paddle boat forcing Burt to drop the ransom money suitcase and save the dog. The ransom money sinks to the bottom of the ocean.

Eventually, Hobie takes Baird back to the studio and Baird goes to talk to Eddie. While talking, Baird claims he will disgrace the name of Capitol Studios as the communist writers would have wanted. This is until Eddie smacks Baird telling him to finish his part in “Hail, Caesar!” and finish what he has started. Baird returns to the studio where he proceeds to give the final speech of the movie and likely the most important part, but he forgets one of his lines. Later Eddie is approached by Thora the media columnist one more time where she explains Baird’s past experience getting a movie part in “On Wings With Eagles” by sleeping with Laurentz. However, because Thora’s source is Burt Gurney the communist he is unmoved by her threat. Eddie explains to Thora that if she posts the column she will be branded as a communist, and ruined. In the last scene of the movie, Eddie goes to confession where the priest tells him it is ok that he comes by often. He also explains that God would want people to do what is right. This point leads Eddie to remain with Capitol Pictures, decline Lockheed Martin, and be prideful of his work.

The author of this film takes a strange comedic and dramatic approach to explain the overall story. With an emphasis on character and the story, this film focuses on the aspects and issues of each character and how Eddie resolves the issues with them. Things like Baird and the communists, Eddie and Thora’s constant media pressure, and Hobie and Laurentz’s contrasting personalities reflect the character vs character conflicts, but Eddie vs. other characters is the main character conflict. Each of the characters was static in their development except for Eddie. It is the issues from the other characters unchanging ways like Baird conforming to his abductors and the ransom behind it that leads Eddie to his realization and lesson learned in the end. Eddie, the literary hero, and sole dynamic character is best represented by the modern hero that must overcome countless issues and rise to the challenges. Filled with character vs. character, self, and society, Eddie and the other characters are faced with constant conflict. Only, the conflicts are strange and seemingly meaningless. It seems like a movie that was pieced together randomly with character issues in order to project a meaning or storyline that was agreed upon beforehand. This film fits the Freytag Pyramid story structure by building up the constant issues upon Eddie until the climactic reveal of Burt being communist, Baird returning, and all other character issues finding their resolve especially Eddie’s problems and internal strife. This film also fits the Blake Snyder genre of “dude with a problem”. Not a perfect fit, but one that shows Eddie thrust into constant problems with many sudden events that test his survival in the business of film. Neither the Freytag pyramid or the Snyder genres helped much in analyzing this movie other than piecing out the events that were important. Though, the important events seemed obvious before fitting them into these film analysis tools.

Overall, it is hard to follow this movie, the scenes jump all over the place, the characters are nearly spread thin in their importance and the overall message is cloudy. It seems as though the story wishes to project that there is always a resolve and to take pride in one’s work no matter the complications at hand, but even that seems debatable. This film is most likely appropriate for adults and detail-oriented people considering its complexity and seemingly arbitrary scenes, but I wouldn’t recommend it. If I had to give this movie a report card grade it would get a solid C. Being a star-studded movie with good filming and production it is relatively entertaining to watch. However, this movie is difficult to follow, spread thin in character building, and not really that entertaining overall, but I give it an average score for the potential aspects or main things I might have overlooked. It was difficult to understand and one of the more difficult reviews I have done. Regardless, for a comedic drama, it wasn’t very funny and the drama was strange and persistent. In the end, it wasn’t really a good movie and especially one that I wouldn’t recommend. The only addition I have to this review is that it is a Coen brothers’ film and they usually have movies with lots of detail and a built-up storyline. With that being said it is possible I am missing certain details and aspects of the movie that is important, but after watching it once I can’t tell.

 

 

 

Interview With a 53-year-old About Film

The person I chose to interview is my father Robert Gazak, a 53-year-old caucasian male, he lives in Wilmington North Carolina and was raised and lived in Louisville Kentucky for most of his life. The interview was conducted on September 12th, 2018.

What was one of the first films you remember watching in a theater?

  • One of the first films my dad saw in theaters was The Exorcist when he was 13 years old at showcase cinemas on Bardstown road in Louisville Kentucky. My dad told me that the movie was way too scary for him at that age and he claims he should not have seen it, but at that time he said it was easy to get into movies underage. My dad also added that after having seen the exorcist he and his friends could not sleep for weeks. It was truly one of the scariest movies he had ever seen and he still believes that today.

How often did you and your family go to the movies and what was the occasion like?

  • My dad tells me that back then It was a big deal to go to the movies, almost comparable to going out to eat instead of eating at home. He and his family went to the movies maybe 4-5 times a year he tells me. My dad told me that he and his family went to drive in movies a lot when he was a kid because they would offer a double feature, kids movie, then an adult movie. He remembers going to see the movie Paton, Planet of the Apes, and sleeping in the back of their station wagon. From the way my dad talked about the drive-in movies it seemed like a great memory for him. He told me that his parents would put he and his brother in their pajamas and they would fall asleep before the second movie and wake up at home in bed.

Did you watch many films growing up, and what kind of movies where you drawn to, why do you think you were drawn to them?

  • When he was growing up my dad says he was drawn to westerns, sci-fi movies, and action-adventure films like Predator, Star Wars, and Rocky. He says he was drawn to them just out of personal taste and a bit of influence from his father. Back in the day movies were meant to entertain, for the most part, he tells me that those genres of movies were the most appealing to him and brought the most entertainment to him and his friends.

Did you ever rent movies from a video store?

My dad told me that renting movies didn’t even exist until about high school or college. However, when movie stores did finally come around the only format was on VCR and it took him a while to actually get a VCR player to watch them. My dad explains that for the longest time the movie theater was the only way and preferred way to watch movies. Later on, in life, he says he grew to enjoy renting movies, but it took a while he says.

What kind of films do you watch now? Do you feel that your taste has changed much in the past 20 years?

  • Today my dad watches relatively the same type of movies, action, war, western some Sci-Fi, but he says there was little to no change in his taste. He says that on occasion his wife (my mom) will make him watch something different like a documentary or aquatically themed movie, but he isn’t too big on those genres unless the documentary pertains to war, science, or some sort of cool history.

What do you remember about blockbuster movies like Jaws and Star Wars when they first came out?

  • My dad vividly remembers the movie Jaws. He told me that when the movie came out it scared the heck out of him because of how relatively realistic it could be. My dad tells me a funny story about when he and his family made a trip to Florida and he saw a dolphin in the water and he got straight out of the water. In terms of Star Wars, my dad explains to me that the CGI and the story were so groundbreaking for that time. He says that his friends and family were mind blown by the explosions and lasers and spaceships and it was nothing short of a blockbuster, but for good reasons.

What was the last movie you watched in a movie theater and did you enjoy the experience?

  • The last movie my dad saw was the Equalizer 2 with Denzel Washington. Being a big fan of action movies, my dad tells me that he loved the fight scenes, punchlines, and the overall story surrounding justifiable revenge. It was a great movie that he highly recommended to me. In terms of the movie-going experience excluding the movie itself, my dad says that the theater was hot, nasty, and old, but he didn’t seem to mind too much.

How often do you go to the theater now and how is it different than when you first started going to the movies?

  • My dad says he goes to the movies maybe 6-8 times a year. He tells me that in comparison to how things used to be, the seating is better, the sound is better, the picture is better, food is better, and he says it used to be you only got popcorn. He says today it is much more enjoyable because the theaters are trying to compete with the home movie experience because today it is so easy to watch movies in the comfort of the home. He explains to me that he watches plenty of movies at home but the theater experience is still a big deal to him because its an experience he enjoys and likes to see movies as they first come out.

What are some things that you would like to see change in filmmaking and new movies in general?

  • My dad’s biggest issue right now with new movies he says is that movies used to be about entertaining people. He explains that now he thinks things have gotten too political and try to project some wrongdoing or social injustice. He thinks that there are too many remakes and not as many original ideas and when there are, it’s a politically motivated socially oriented film.

Good Will Hunting

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Will Hunting, a genius and rebellious kid from the south side of Boston who spends his time with his ragged gang of friends Chucky, Billy, and Morgan. Growing up in abusive foster homes and working as a janitor at MIT. He spends his time reading books, drinking, and finding trouble with his gang of friends that are nothing short of loyal to him. However, Will has a gift, a gift of genius that he applies to his life in a seemingly unsatisfactory way. The film is a story of how Will deals with applying himself, other people, and society, all while subconsciously changing the people he comes in contact with. The story of Will Hunting kicks off with professor Lambeau, a highly esteemed MIT graduate, and mathematics professor. He challenges his class to a math problem that is seemingly impossible. However, there is an anonymous mathmagician who solves the problem. This mathmagician is none other than the janitor, Will Hunting. Will doesn’t tell anyone that he solved the problem, and the lack of clarity forces professor Lambeau to put another problem on the board, which eventually leads to Will’s discovery by professor Lambeau. Will easily solves the second problem put up by professor Lambeau and from that moment Lambeau sees the genius in him. This is the event that launches Will into a series of events that change him as a person and even the people around him.

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After the discovery of his genius, professor Lambeau finds Will Hunting to be a bit more than he expected. In and out of jail, Will finds himself in a position where only professor Lambeau and some therapy can keep him out of prison by the sentencing of a judge. Will is ok with working with professor Lambeau, but the therapy to him is unnecessary. After fooling around and forcing each therapist to give up, Lambeau is forced to his last option, an old friend from college, Sean Maguire. Sean is a counselor from the south side of Boston like Will, and there is an immediate spark between the two. This connection is rocky at first but leads to a series of events that shows Will another direction than the drunken and jail filled one he had already chosen. Sean dives into why Will acts as reckless as he does, he wonders why Will is so scared of commitment and refuses to make something of his special gift. All while Will is in therapy and working with professor Lambeau he meets a girl, Skylar. Skylar is clearly different to Will and through the story continues as a presence challenging Will and his personal issues. However, through the resolution of Will’s issues, we learn a little on the history of Sean, Lambeau, and Skylar. The revelations that each character goes through and especially Will. Begs the question as to what in each individuals history is holding them back from their potential or a life that could be better lived? The author takes an interesting approach to answer this question by reflecting it through the relationships and struggles of each character with each other, and themselves. This romantic drama film aims to entertain the viewer with the idea that we all have a special gift and we all have things from our past that hold back a true potential. But what romantic drama would be complete without a resolution of each character’s relationship with themselves, and each other. Each character learns something in the struggle of helping Will live up to his potential and in the end, fulfills their true potential and restores broken relationships.

The characters in this film are the most important in shaping the overall story and message. Each character somewhat reflects aspects of Will’s life in what he has, and what he could become. Will has the knowledge for success like Lambeau and Sean, and the loyalty of his friends Chucky, Billy and Morgan, but lacks the love and challenges offered by Skylar. Will eventually is shown the future by professor Lambeau and Sean Maguire, but their contrasting personalities challenge Will and his decisions. Professor Lambeau is the protagonist through most of the story, but he is dynamic and changes from a greedy jealous professor to a forgiving man who resolves some of his own issues. Sean Maguire however, is the voice of reason for Will. He is insightful and patient which eventually prove to be the qualities necessary to break through to Will. While dealing with Will and his struggles, Sean even learns a bit about himself and ends up in a better place in the end because of it. It seems at times that the characters in the movie all have personalities and prominent aspects of them that Will possesses himself, but the culmination of all these positive personalities is what Will lacks in the development of bettering himself. Through the film, it becomes apparent that Will takes a bit from the other characters as he is learning from them and applies it to himself and his gift of genius.

The character conflicts in the film are vs. self, society, and other characters. The characters all are faced with the complexities of fitting into society, overcoming themselves, while also dealing with each other. It is these character conflicts that make the story so interesting and highlights the overall moral of the story. We cannot go through life alone no matter how smart one is. People need others and it takes internal strife and learning through experience to understand that. The focus on characters is the driving factor and one of the more important aspects of this film. Each character has a place in the story, and each individual brings about emotions and attachment from the viewer that insight morality and connection to the story whether its relative to the viewer or not.

Good Will Hunting is one of the better movies I have seen in my time. The story develops based on character involvement and projects ideas that are so relative to people from all walks of life. Though the language is a bit much for a kid to watch, I would encourage anyone to watch this movie because there is much to take away from Will, Lambeau, Sean, Skylar, and even Will’s loyal gang of friends Chucky, Billy, and Morgan. If I were to grade this movie like a report card I would give it an A-. It is difficult for me to find many reasons to dock the “grade” of this movie. However, being a romantic drama it seems that the resolution of Will vs. himself is absent without actually seeing Will and Skylar reunite. It is not a detrimental missing factor and based on the ending of the movie it is safe to say all is well, but it would have been nice to see it especially with the context so strongly built throughout the movie between the two lovers. But overall, a fantastic film that I encourage anyone to watch and pay attention to the way the characters develop throughout the film and draw messages that apply to your own personal life.wmuLKvE3SATl