Dead Poets Society (1989) Peter Weir
Dead Poets Society is unlike any 80s movie I’ve seen before. Movies that come to mind when I think of it include American Beauty and Crash. The movie follows seven boys who attend a strict New England prep school. The boys have gotten used to their monotonous planned out lives trying to please their parents and take the path that has been laid out for them. The boys find this life dull and unfulfilling as they are just doing as their parent’s wish they would out of obligation instead of pursuing their passions. When the boys meet their new English teacher, Mr. Keating, their lives are forever changed. Mr. Keating teaches the boys in unconventional ways; influencing them to be more creative, passionate and to seize the day. He teaches them the importance of Carpe Diem, viewing the world differently, and to be passionate. When the boys find Mr. Keating’s old yearbook picture, they ask him about the Dead Poets Society. He tells the boys about it, and how he would go to the woods and recite poetry with his friends. The students decide to start their own Dead Poets Society. The influence it has on them is tremendous; they grow and start to become their own person. Neil joins a play, Knox pursues a girl that he just can’t have, Todd finally gets over his fear of public speaking, and Dalton speaks out against the headmaster. Because of Mr. Keating the boys learn more about themselves, life, and the world than they ever would have from any other teacher. He pushes and inspires them to be better people and to think outside the box. When Neil does not quit the play he is in, his father is furious with him. His parents plan had been for him to become a doctor, but his new passion is acting which he wants to pursue. Neil’s father threatens to withdraw him from Welton to attend a military school. The movie ends tragically, but it inspires and makes the audience think. It is an excellent movie and has definitely stood the test of time. I would recommend it to anyone because it is a movie everyone should see.