Sunday, September 6, 2009

Writing tip for the day 9/6/09

The writing tip of the day is to analyze a film using a critical eye. This writing activity will help a writer analyze the theme of a film. Many people watch film for action, an escape from reality, and for a number of various reasons. In this writing tip for the day, I plan to discuss Danny Boyle's Slumdog Millionaire to confront life experiences as being the basis for maturity.

Slumdog Millionaire was widely received as being a great film because the theme pushed back from the act of selfishness. Many people tend to be selfish to the point they have refuse to help others. The film demonstrates what challenges and obstacles it takes to accomplish a dream. Every person should have a sense of purpose in life. People that don't appreciate the film mismanage the message of a dream. Jamal's dream never change from the moment; his goal is to find his true love Latika, after he loses her during each stage of his life - childhood, adolescents, and early adulthood.

People give up on love too easily, even abandoning relationships after a few obstacles. Jamal makes it known that his search for long is going to be the theme through the course of the film. Winning the show is a secondary goal that takes backseat to finding his soul-mate.

In the film's opening, the audience wonders how Jamal will win the money. They never think about Jamal's struggles, hie true love, and the passion he has for living life. After Jamal meets his true love for first time, then a new goal surfaces. Will Jamal be able to be with Latika? In essence, Jamal keeps losing Latika over-and-over again, but never gives up in trying to go after her.

In a waking life, people are not as focused as Jamal. They abandon goals because of money, outside influences, and are unable to formulate an opinion. It is common for one to want something because another has it. So does that mean one has to step over another to get something they think they deserve? Jamal has the ability to make decisions without relying on others. Life experiences, being open-minded, and using critical thinking helps a person rationalize life as they perceive it.

Having a cognitive perception is being able to analyze information without being forced into thinking a collective way. The media manipulates people because many assume that every piece of information is accurate. People are unable to use a cognitive perception to analyze the world, instead they latch onto mass thought.

Slumdog Millionaire was a great film because it used life experiences as a measure for maturity. In reading the screenplay, Boyle signed up because he recognized the strength of the message, noting that every game show answer has a beginning, middle, and end. The writing was done so well, maybe even too perfect, that the audience feels as if they are walking in Jamal's shoes, experiencing every every one of the obstacles to go after his dream - to find his true love.

People enjoy Slumdog Millionaire because Jamal focuses on love instead of being rich. Jamal experiences so much misfortune, but never uses his grave misfortunes as an excuse to failing life; he goes after what he wants in life. Jamal is able to move on after struggle without letting the world defeat him. He does so with courage, hope, and faith, never giving up on his dream to find Latika.

The film proves that cognitive abilities are learned through life experiences, and not because of age, or physical growth. Jamal relies on his life experiences to guide him from one challenge to another. One film ,in particular, delves into a life one leads without cognitive abilities.

In Penny Marshall's Big, Josh (played by Tom Hanks) struggles in the adult world. Even though he physical development suggests that he is an adult, he lacks the life experiences gained in adolescent development, ones that helps an adolescent to mentally function as an adult. Josh doesn't understand simple adult phrases such as "sleepover and pledge." Indeed, his mental frame of mind lack the cognitive abilities in critical thinking, reasoning, and life experience. Adolescence prepares an adolescent to make transition into the adult world.

Susan's ex-boyfriend treats Josh with the same manner as he was treated him in the first conference. Josh realizes that he needs more time to grow up as an adolescent to weather the challenges in being an adult, not just physically, but having mental preparedness to deal with adulthood - failure, making mistakes, and rejection.

The only positive traits Josh has is his manners, which is because he still has an adolescent mind. Most likely his parents taught him to be respectful to others. Adults have the tendency to rub off as being rude and immature because they are too stubborn, negative, critical, and have a whole slew of other problem that encourages negativity.

Josh's character was not ready to make the transition from being an adolescent to dealing with adult challenges. In time, he will have the opportunity to live his life, and gain valuable experiences to meet the challenges. On the opposing side, Jamal is not expected to be successful because he is from the Slums. The Inspectors mentions that most of the kids from the Slums are liars and cheats. Jamal is unlike other Slum kids due to his life experiences.

Jamal is passionate young man that care about the value of life. He followed a dream with his heart, going after happiness in the tune of love. Money never motivate him or even influence his desire to chase after his dreams. When Jamal won the money, all he could think of was Latika.

Any other person would be acting like a child - jumping up and down, yelling, screaming, and crying. After leaving the show, he sat down at the train station, looking unhappy and inspired. He didn't care that he was a millionaire. The only person on his mind was Latika, the true love that mattered most in his life.

A person that has a cognitive perception analyzes the plot, themes, emotional elements, and the intended message of a film. Critical film writing uses a different perceptual style than just looked at film for pure entertainment. Essentially, there is nothing is wrong with disliking a film for a complex plot.

The simple meaning in Slumdog Millionaire; Jamal becomes mature from his life experiences. Even without parents to raise him - guide him through life - he is still able to value love, relationships, has respect, and good manners. He is an honest young man that answers every question with an answer.

As a writer myself, I analyze the film differently for others. I went through many film college courses, and have written stories myself. After earning multiple degrees, and even serving in the military a decade ago, I acquired a majority of my maturity through the rigorous challenges of living life. Intense hardships have a way with making a person mature.

Maturity doesn't come with physical age, adulthood needs life experiences to promote mental growth - psychosocial conditions. A person doesn't have to be educated to be mature. Maturity is gained through measuring the will to defeat obstacles, which helps one realize the value of a dream. Jamal's love for Latika has no boundaries. He would have traveled to the ends of the Earth to find her.

Analyzing film using a critical eye builds a perception, which is useful for decoding themes and subplots within a film. Every film has a hidden message. Slumdog Millionaire has many themes; a few of theme most obvious themes consist of challenging love, life experiences, dreams, and maturity. Finding films that focus on personal interests and relevant issues will increase cognitive perception. Slumdog Millionaire is one of those rare films that has the power to inspire people to chase after their dreams.

You can use the critical film writing activity to analyze any body of work, further exploring diverse perspectives. Thank you for reading the writing tip for the day.

Have fun analyzing a film using a critical eye.

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