Freedom Writers is a movie I bought a few years ago out of the blue and it is one of the best finds I’ve ever had. It goes perfect for a day where I need extra motivation to finish up some leftover work on Sunday.
Director: Richard Lagreveneuse
Cast: Hilary Swank, Imelda Staunton, Patrick Dempsey, April Hernandez, Mario, Scott Glenn, Jaclyn Ngan, Kristin Herrera, Jason Finn
A while back, I had written a post about 5 Movies That Influenced Me The Most (you can read it HERE) and this one is one of them. Based on a true story and book, Freedom Writers’ Diaries, of the voluntary integration of the school system and how one teacher , Erin Gruwell (Hilary Swank) chose to not leave her class to chance. She took the time to use non-traditional teaching methods and gave them a chance to learn to express themselves through their own words and in turn learn that they can defeat their destiny and escape from gang violence from race prejudices and misconceptions of protecting their own. She taught them that they can achieve more and inspire change in their lives if they wished to. She showed them through past Holocaust issues how Hitler was compared to the current day gang and how racial issues was more than they could see.
I love this movie. Its not only a true story but it touches my heart every time. I like the concept of someone being courageous enough to inspire change and overcome personal obstacles and the norms because they learn that its doing the right thing. I always get a bit misty watching this because its full of just pure awesome moments that tugs at our heartstrings. It works just so much better because its the reality. I know that it can happen if one can take matters into their own hands.
They craft this movie to look at also different backgrounds and their characters and the family values that they lead. They also use parallels between the two that Erin Gruwell eventually employs of showing how no matter Hispanic or Asian, they both listen to the same music, have had the same incidents happen to them, but they also wear similar styles and act the same way. I think that was pretty neat. The young actors they use were brilliant. They really owned their roles, reflecting the conflicts they had and the lives they lived. The fears they had to conquer deep inside and the will to change.
Hilary Swank definitely gets a perfect on this role. She captured the interpretation of Erin Gruwell very well. She was convincing to the max. In the beginning when she finally realized the intense situation that she was in for the voluntary integration was more than she had expected and her character showed doubt. When she hit the turning point of how these kids didn’t really understand the big picture, she showed anger but determination afterwards to let them see the light at the end of the tunnel and how their actions were not as worthy as they had thought it to be. And in the end, she gave up a lot of her own personal life and challenged authorities to stick with these kids who needed her.
Touching, inspiring, uplifting are the words I’d describe it. I know its the words on the DVD cover but this movie really is amazing and awesome! I’d recommend it for sure. I tugged on my heart strings and moved me 🙂 I really don’t know how to describe it but its really an incredible movie and an amazing story. So amazing that I went and bought the book right after the first time I saw the movie back in 2009 or 2010. Check out the movie if you haven’t already! Thats essentially what I’m saying!
If you have already, tell me what you thought about it.
I haven’t met a lot of people who have seen this, so it would be nice to not have people giving me weird faces or replies…