Cinematic Critique-Mr. Holland Opus

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Cinematic Critique Film: Mr. Holland’s Opus Written by: Patrick Sheane Duncan Directed by: Stephen Herek Lead Actor: Richard Dreyfuss Mr. Holland Opus is a drama film in which the protagonist, Glen Holland is a musician and composer whose biggest dream in life is to be able to compose a memorable piece of music by which he could leave his mark on the world. In order to support his family and pay the bills he takes up the job of a music teacher at a local high school thinking that the teaching job would give him enough ‘spare time’ to work on his composition. Life, however, does not turn out to be the way he had planned. It is only after stepping into this profession that he realizes not only the fact that teachers hardly ever have any free time, but also how much of the teacher’s efforts and sacrifices go into making each student shine his brightest and the joys that each little success brings. Over the course of thirty years of his teaching career he finds himself using all his efforts in instilling music into the lives of his students, making it fill their souls just the way it fills his own and redefining his dreams and success entirely in the process. Mr. Holland had taken up teaching not because he didn’t want to do anything else, but perhaps because he didn’t have choice for anything else and this clearly showed in his behavior in the beginning. He constantly yelled at his class, humiliated the students by reading out their answers, gave them punishments, had absolutely no control over their classroom behavior, and in the words of Principal Jacob would shoot for his car at the first sound of the bell. This however did not continue for long and soon Mr. Holland found himself drawn towards the needs of his students. He wanted them to learn to appreciate life and so teaching them to appreciate music became his foremost duty.

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