Approximately every 6 weeks, Calo students are introduced to a classic film during seminar time. So far, they have seen: 12 Angry Men, The Defiant Ones, Its a Wonderful Life, To Kill a Mockingbird, and Heidi. The response to these classic films is often the same. Initially a few students groan stating their belief that an old movie cannot possibly be any good. Then, without fail, a few minutes into the movie the students are hooked. The next groans are those of the students not wanting the movie to end.
Two weeks ago, the students were introduced to a new film. We did not tell them what we were planning, but instead started the hour seminar session with a short reading from a book. They listened intently, hoping for more than just a reading session. Once the fist page of the 1036 page novel was read, we turned on the movie. Four words ran across the screen GONE WITH THE WIND.
The response was nothing we expected. Instead of the moans and groans, there was excitement. We asked for a show of hands from the students to see who had seen the movie, and only 6 had seen it. When the same question was raised about who had read the book, only 3 young ladies could respond. Some of our students had never even heard of it. Mr. Juliano and I explained the important significance of Gone With the Wind and how it changed the face of movies forever. It is a cultural icon and one of the most beloved books and movies of all time.
The movie is being shown in parts. In addition to stopping the film due to time constraints, the students are being taught history lessons throughout its entirety. Many have come to me asking to read the book or watch the movie in their spare time. Once when we turned it off for the day, there was a chorus of No! heard throughout the room.
The day after we started watching the film, one particular student came to me. She wanted to discuss the movie as she was very upset about the nonchalant attitude of the heroine, Scarlett. The young lady had spent a great deal of time thinking about a particular scene and was able to mirror some of the events and match them to her own life. For once, she was able to look at herself in a different light. This young lady had a truly eye opening moment and it was all thanks to a character in a movie.
Daily I get requests to tell what happens next and pleas to watch the movie during personal time. I always say, No, you must wait until Wednesday. Installment three comes tomorrow and our Calo students cant wait!