My sweet baby and I settled in and watched this the other night, and it was fantastic. Everything about it was good, in my opinion, but I might be biased, because I love to see union leaders portrayed in a bad light. Have I mentioned that I’m not a big fan of today’s unions? No? Well, there it is. I understand why we need them, or needed them, but I’ll never like the assholes that run them.
Right now, our teacher’s union is in a battle of the bullies with our provincial government, and as usual the kids are pawns, because they are the only bargaining chip that’s worth anything. The thing that makes me mad is that there are some top-notch teachers out there, and it only takes a few bad ones, protected by their unions, to spoil the whole batch, so to speak.
Okay, you can start with the public
shamingflaming and boycotting now.
Anyhow, I’ve been a fan of the willowy, quirky Maggie Gyllenhaal for years, and Holly Hunter as well. The rest of the cast was stellar, and included Viola Davis, Rosie Perez, and Ving Rhames. There were several other fine actors in it, but I didn’t know who many of them were, so pffft.
I figure it doesn’t really matter anyhow, because the movie isn’t really about them. It was about Jamie Fitzpatrick (Gyllenhaal) a frantic, single mother that wanted more for her dyslexic kid than her shitty school could, or would, provide. She teamed up with one of the good teachers, Nona (Davis), whose son was also having a hard time with school, and needed a little more help.
Now without giving away the story, I’ll tell you that this is an inspirational, importance of education kind of film. It will make you laugh, cry, and think, but not one person gets blown up or shows their tits, so if that’s what you’re after, just keep on truckin‘. It’s a movie that was made to tug at your heartstrings, and it does a bang up job of it.
As I was reading up on the film today, I saw that it’s sparking a bit of controversy from the pro-union crowd, and while it does point out a lot of flaws in the teacher’s union, it also shows a lot of good points. As far as I could tell, there wasn’t a definitive lean to one side or the other. That didn’t stop people from protesting the premiere though. I guess they could only see the story from one side. Maybe it’s a guilty conscience thing, I don’t know, but what I saw was an uplifting, David and Goliath, tale of heroism and dedication.
Another character I liked was her boyfriend Michael Perry (Oscar Isaac). He was one of those guys you’d like to get drunk with, but would probably end up in an epic street battle with him by the end of the night. You’d still be friends though, because you would be able to see and respect each other’s point of view. It’s not your fault that cool dudes love to get into epic street battles when they’re drinking.
There were also a few characters that I’d like to staple their lips to their assholes, and the main one is the principal. Yeah, the union president was a douchebag but that principal was just a scumbag from the get-go. I would have gladly foot-swept that lanky prick in the hall when he back-stabbed Nona. I wouldn’t really, because I realise he is an actor, and he’s portraying a fictional character, but if he was portraying a real character, I’d find him and bust him one on the lip. Rotten son of a bitch.
Anyhow, if you want to see some good, and bad, fictional parenting, you should totally check this out. Unless you don’t like to be sad, angry, and happy within an hour and a half of each other. If that’s the case, you should just go get drunk, play a few games of Big Buck Hunter, and listen to your Lynyrd Skynyrd collection.
Haha, who got mad at me for the inference that redneck hunters have no emotional capacity? It’s okay, I was just kidding. Kind of.