Watched Freedom Writers a couple of days back. An inspiring movie about the power of teachers, and how one person who really makes an effort can create such a difference in their immediate circle. There is no substitute for passion, drive, initiative and going beyond the call of duty. It's hard even for the rigid system to resist that. And of course, a teacher is so much more than a teacher. A good teacher is also taught by the students. It is a movie about the cathartic effect writing has, and how it lets people come to terms with the hardships in their lives, and move beyond them. Hilary Swank (perfect casting) is the idealistic, strong-willed, and enthusiastic school teacher, who won't let anything (not even her marriage) stop her in her way of actually 'educating' minds. She makes the classroom much more than a classroom. Like any great teacher she takes learning beyond the book. Her greatest gift is that she doesn't take no for an answer. And few teachers have the ability to hold up a mirror for their students' minds. For what is education but to know yourself before we can know more from books?
Freedom Writers is based on the true story of Erin Gruwell, a white teacher in Long Beach, USA. The movie reminds us of one the world's worst mistakes — World War II — and its good to be reminded of that. Just so that it is never repeated. Freedom Writers is definitely worth a watch. There are always people for whom wealth (and other such trappings) are secondary, and they have the fire to blaze a path even in the darkest forest. There is nothing as unstoppable as an idea whose time has come, or a person with a real mission.
To lead the people, walk behind them. Lao Tzu