Good Movie Review On Anyone Can Change The World
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Shot in 2007, the drama film “Music Within” by Steven Sawalich is a beautiful story of a small person who made big changes in the United States. Ignored by his parents and his country, he managed to get what he dreamed of and help the others. The film depicts the life of the famous public speaker and activist Richard Pimentel.
Difficult to believe but the story is real, and what seems possible only on the screen, actually took place in the last decades of the 20th century in Portland, Oregon. The director of the movie aimed to demonstrate both the difficult and unfair life of people with disabilities (through the example of Richard and his friend Art) and the great contribution one is capable of when the wish to help is in all sincerity: “career choice – superhero” (4:56). Richard Pimentel, the undesirable kid and student, found ways of getting education and receiving recognition with public, helping those who had no hope and making a more tolerant nation. He, who went to war in order to get the opportunity to study, lost his hearing sense but this did not become a barrier on his way: “You don’t know me!” (21:22).
Though Richard’s disability was soon fixed with the hearing aid and he soon got a good job, he knew well what it was like to be out of circle of other people: “know what we cripples want” (64:36). No one could understand the needs of the disabled people better than he did, and his oratory talents persuaded the whole country to think of this minority and take its side: “disabled are included in the mainstream” (78:04). He kept on fighting for the rights of these people even in prejudice of his personal life.
The movie uniquely presents issues of marginalized voices represented by the two friends, Richard and Art – discriminated and ignored. The fabulous acting by Michael Sheen gives the audience an idea of how people with cerebral palsy live in the society: “I’m ignored” (64:57). Obviously, only the strongest among the disabled survive – one has to have the inner power, the incredible love of life, intelligence and sense of humour: “I love that” (65:26), “I’ve got CP, I’m not deaf” (63:21), “smarter than the three of us” (32:44). Art is an outstanding example of a personality capable of thinking clearly and freely but being locked in his own body.
Here, the placement affected the scene because it represents the whole society. The director wanted to show that though some needs are common among the healthy and the disabled, still the latter have to hide themselves to please the former.
Every minority of the marginalized people has to fight for its rights otherwise the strongest survives. Richard’s friend Mike, a veteran without a leg, was the one who needed full-time support; he was not strong enough to keep on fighting: “I tried. Later, bro” (77:14). Today, the disabled can get education, job and any ordinary service without any question but that was impossible thirty years ago. Basically, it was Richard Pimentel’s initiative and active position that made the dreams of thousands of the disabled come true. He made employers look not at the special needs of these people but at their talents: “she start tomorrow? she’s a dwarf” (52:23), “they need you to make your company better” (51:51).
“Music Within” demonstrates typical places and situations to show how the disabled do not fit in. That makes the audience feel better what it is like to be deprived of common things. The scene in the pancake restaurant bags the simple pastime and joy forbidden for some. The sense of marginalization is built on depicting the society’s attitude towards the disabled in ordinary situations whether it’s a roller rink or university yard: “My friend is not a retard” (32:43), “Freaks” (29:46). The weak are taken for monsters one had better avoid.
The sense of marginalized voices and borderlands in the story is also built with the help of lots of technical devices usually used in cinema. The director uses high-key lighting so common for melodramas. The very bright light over everything usually follows the scenes with Art, the person who enjoys life and never hangs down his head. His bright personality associates with colorful scenes, positive and motivating. In the dialogues of Richard and Art, the director mostly uses the camera angle according to Art’s view – from the bottom upwards or just on his eye level. The type of lens is normal so that the objects in the scene look like they do with the human eye. The objective camera permits the audience watch the scenes as a neutral observer. The touching soundtrack consisting of the greatest songs of the 80’s contributes to the atmosphere of the era and the marginality of the main characters.
Obviously, the star cast of characters is also an important factor to evoke a response of the spectator’s heart. To see the imposing Michael Sheen in a role of a disabled man evokes absolutely other feelings comparing to the effect of a real man with cerebral palsy. Beautiful Melissa George, tolerant and kind, impresses and inspires the spectator. Famous actors affect the movies greatly, and here is no exception.
The talented production team of “Music Within” succeeded in creating the motion picture about isolation of the minority group and struggles for its rights and the life in the society where everyone must be equal because all are humans. The director showed the evolution from separation and hatred to equality and kindliness highlighting it by two scenes in the same place – pancake restaurant: the birthday person changed together with the attitude towards Art: “I think he likes it” (86:40). Richard Pimentel’s dream to become a superhero and help people came true.
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