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Dead Poet's Society

Essay by   •  December 5, 2010  •  Essay  •  608 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,199 Views

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I was the perfect age for "Dead Poet's Society" when it came out. The film was originally released in 1989, right when I was starting my senior year in high school. It became a phenomenon among my friends. We were all looking ahead towards college, and many of the kids I knew suffered great pressure from their parents to fulfill their dreams.

Of course, things weren't nearly as bad for us as it was for the kids in the film. I grew up in a nice suburb, but we all attended the local high school, and more kids were sent off to Miami of Ohio rather than Harvard or Yale. Still, I knew plenty about kids who were pressured beyond their own desires.

The only problem is that I never saw "Dead Poet's Society" when it came out. I knew about it. I was familiar with the term "Carpe Diem." But I never actually saw the film in the theatres. I'm not sure what the reason was, but it probably had to do with the fact that the summer of 1989 saw the releases of "Batman," "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" and "Lethal Weapon 2." Those films were more my speed than a coming-of-age movie that took place in the 1950s.

Still, I caught the movie on videotape while I was in college, and I was impressed. It touched me deeper then than it does now, simply because I was closer to that age. I could relate better in my teens. I was fortunate to have parents that didn't have me chasing their dreams but, as I said earlier, I knew plenty of boys in this situation.

As an adult, looking back on the film now with its Special Edition DVD release, I feel more removed from the story. It's still a great film, but in some ways I now identify more with Robin Williams' character of John Keating. As adults, we should always try to do things different. We don't want to not challenge kids, but we want to broaden their horizons and encourage them to follow their own dreams.

"Dead Poet's Society" tells the story of a group of boys in a high-class boarding school. They encounter a new teacher named John Keating (Williams), who isn't the kind to do things by the book. He teaches literature, and instead of having them learn the boring angle, he challenges them to expand their minds and look at life with a new perspective.

Keating also exposes the kids to an old club - the Dead Poet's



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