To Kill A Mockingbird (Film Review)

1221 words - 5 pages

The plague of racial hatred. In To Kill a Mockingbird, a small southern town ravaged by the Depression is unknowingly diagnosed with this even more devastating disease. One lone soul is prepared to make the diagnosis. An adaptation based on the classic Pulitzer-Prize-winning novel by Harper Lee, "To Kill A Mockingbird" is a legendary movie, uniquely strong and sensitive about racism and the ways of the Old South during the Depression in the 1930s. It is accurately portrayed and still remains one of the most powerful arguments against racism ever revealed on screen. The film however, does not only focus on the issue of racism, yet it also deals with courage, innocence, childhood, education, prejudice and the lessons that we learn in life.Several kinds of courage can be recognised in this film. There is the basic courage required to overcome childish fears, such as running past the Radley place, or returning there to fetch the trousers that Jem caught on the fence. Atticus also shows a form of childish courage when he shoots down the mad dog, even considering that he has a gun with him. A moral form of courage is shown by Scout, when she is asked by her father not to retaliate when children tease and torment her and himself. The most evident and difficult courage is shown by Atticus when he is certain to lose but still chooses to defend Tom Robinson, due to his great integrity. Though Atticus is pressured and harassed on all fronts and loses friends over the incident he gains the respect of his children and the black population of their 'dirty' town. The weakest person, in the sense of courage is Bob Ewell as he seeks to take revenge on Atticus' children but faces them in darkness rather than in the light of day.The image of the mockingbird occurs frequently in the film. The children are warned that it is a sin to kill a mockingbird because all it does is sing. Both Tom Robinson and Boo Radley can be compared with a Mockingbird as they are both gentle people who have done no harm but tried to help others. Both their lives are predictions made by the prejudice society they live in and due to certain circumstances and backgrounds they don't have the power to change what people think. Like the mockingbird itself Tom and Boo should be protected and cared for, not hunted down. The most powerful story in the film is that of Tom Robinson and when justice is killed, and the childhood innocence of Jem, Scout, and Dill is lost.The film presents us with an idealised form of childhood, where the narrator looks back to her youth and selects important incidents and events. So we have an unusual and fresh view of all the incidents through the eyes of an innocent child. All the virtues that children possess are shown in the film such as their innocence, frankness and a great amount of humour. We can also notice how they are growing up and their decision making have change. Scout realises that "one must lie under certain circumstances". Their fresh outlook on...

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