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Reviewing Stanley Kramer's Film Inherit The Wind

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In today’s world, we have so many freedoms, like being able to think and be whatever we want to be. In the movie, “Inherit the Wind,” tells about people who don’t have as much of that freedom as we do. The story become a battle between fundamentalism and freedom of thought. There is a strong fundamental idea; if it doesn’t come from the bible then what is being taught is wrong. One brave school teacher named Bertram T. Cates challenged a law that prevented teachers from educating their students on Darwin’s theory of evolution, he was arrested and put on trial. This one school teacher started the fight to give people the right to think for themselves. Two well known lawyers come to defend each side of the case for the defense, Henry Drummond, and for the prosecution, Matthew Harrison Brady.

Many characters in this story had a some kind of struggle with trying to think for themselves. A good example would be Rachel, the daughter of the towns preacher and the fiancé of Mr. Cates. In the beginning she is a follower, she wants Cates to say he is sorry and not go through with the trial, because what he was doing was going against everything that the preacher taught the town. Then later in the story she stops following her father and moves to following Brady. Sara, Brady’s wife, asks Rachel what she stood for and if she believed in Cates. This is the moment she realizes that she needed to think for herself and find what she stood for. In the end she basically tells Cates that she is here for him and that she should of stood for him in the beginning and not with her father.

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The filmmakers really advocated for freedom of thought in this movie. It shows the journey each character goes through to get to the conclusion that maybe there is more then what is in the bible. In the movie where Mr. Drummond and Mr.Hornbeck were walking down the street and a young man stops and says “We don’t need an outsider telling us how or what to think” and Drummond says “that isn’t my mission” this really shows the differences between Brady and Drummond and the battle between fundamentalism and freedom of thought. Brady wants everyone to follow him and to follow God and everything that God has written in his book and Drummond just wants teach people that there is more to learn and more to think about.

Not only were the main characters trying to find their voice but the people in the court room too where trying to figure out what to believe in. Like Rachel in the beginning, they were taught that God is everything, that he make the decision in people life’s and what he says is the truth and everything else is wrong. When Brady first got to Dayton, Tennessee they had a big celebration were the people would sing “If it’s good enough for Brady then it’s good enough for me.” This really goes to show how much the people of this town depended on someone to tell them what they need to believe. During the trial the people shout for Brady and appose Drummond and Cates. In one scene the people make a mob outside of Cates jail cell and starts to throw things at his jail cell. It wasn’t until Drummond put one of Cates students on the stand that some of the people start to question what they have been taught. When the trial come to end more and more people start to come to the realization of thinking outside the bible isn’t bad and there is more to learn. When the final verdict came there was some people that cheered but most was sad that he was convicted of the crime.

These days we have to think about all the advantage we have and the freedom to think what we want and do what we want. This movie really shows the journey that we can go through to find the truth in anything that is place in front of us. Also, it shows that everything isn’t black and white; there is some grey area in everything that you learn and do . As we go about our lives think about how we improve how we talk to people and how we find the truth in things in stead of following the next person that says something we like.

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