Writing and friendship in the films Finding Forrester and Freedom Writers
Forrester and Freedom Writer films portray some of the adorable qualities and attributes that teachers should have particularly in inspiring students to perform and turn to good people in the society. Finding Forrester films is such an exciting movie which talks about Jamal, who is a young boy from African American from Bronx who won a scholarship in a private school not because of highs basketball talent but because of high examination score (Readers, par 1-2 and SantoPerf). The movie continues by showing the challenges Jamal faced to the moment he met his teacher, Forrester who inspired him to become an excellent writer. Freedom writer is another interesting crime-drama film that talks about Erin Gruwell and her experience as a teacher in a new school where she found unruly, gang like students. Despite the two movies being different, there are literary elements and themes that make these two films similar.
Firstly, according to Finding Forrester, friendship is created in a strange manner. Jamal is portrayed to be a person who likes going out to express himself with other basket player colleagues, but forester prefer being secretive and spends most of his time in his apartment (SantoPerf). When Jamal sneaks through the window, he finds himself in Forrester’s house who scares Jamal with a knife (Readers, par 1). When Jamal goes back to collect his backpack which he had left behind, he found out that it had been commented on and that is how friendship began (Pickering, par. 7 and SantoPerf). Jamal asked William to teach him writing styles. From this film, friendship is created between the two because of their shared interest of writing. The theme of friendship is also depicted in the film, Freedom Writer. The innocent teacher, Erin Gruwell comes to a new school and does everything within her power to bring sanity in her class (LaGravenese). She manages to make her student view issues in a more constructive way.
Even though the theme of friendship is similar in both films, it is created in different approaches. Forrester invests in creating a relationship with a single student known as Jamal while in the Freedom Writer; Erin invests in a community-like friendship and empowerment. Erin does not just inspire one student but entire class. She realizes that her class is highly discriminated based on race when one student claims that it is the white who run the country and have the permission to shoot the blacks. She addresses the conflict by letting the students engage in freedom writing diaries about each other’s stories and those stories they find interesting in their life. Erin spends part of her salary to purchase learning and writing supplies for her students. She leads her students to collect funds so that they could help a child to join their school. This improves friendship while at the same time extends to community service.
In Finding Forrester, William Forrester imparts his writing style knowledge to Jamal. He read his diary and commented. Forrester did not just offer critique to Jamal’s writing but commented on how he can improve his writing and establish himself as a top writer (Pickering, par. 7). In fact, Jamal became so good to the point that his grammar teacher penalized him for plagiarism as his writing style resembled that of Forrester’s article which had been published earlier on. Erin uses almost the same approach. She purchases the diaries and teaches her students on how to tell and write personal stories to one another (Pickering, par. 7). This motivated them and helped students learn Erin’s writing styles.
In conclusion, Finding Forrester and Freedom Writer serve as the best examples for current teachers and students in diverse ethnic and racial school settings. Teachers must realize that every student irrespective of their racial background could succeed in academics. Moreover, administrators in schools need to support teachers in their duties of imparting students with knowledge. Despite the differences, teachers have responsibilities of creating a learning friendship with their students and inspire them to succeed.