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Mr Holland's Opus

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Caught this on cable one night.  I had heard a lot about it when it came out.   I'm not sure what all the big fuss was over this movie.  It was good, but there wasn't anything particularly extraordinary about it.  I thought it was a pretty average feel-good movie.

I guess this is based on a real story?  Not sure.  About a music major who wanted to write a great opus, to make a name for himself as a great Americon composer.   He takes a job as a high school music teacher just temporarily and ends up staying for I think over 30 years.

The movie has what I guess could be considered fairly standard trials of an uncredentialed high school teacher.  Dropped into trenches without any real idea of what he's doing.

He has to deal with students who have no real ability, nor real desire to become musicians.  How to keep from shattering their fragile self-worth at that age.   To show them respect when they're so horrible at what is so important to him.

And, the extremely talented with enormous potential who have to drop out for various reasons.  How to work the system to keep them in the band.

The system also comes up regarding the budget.  Always a factor in stories about schools.

What to do with kids who Just Don't Care.  They have absolutely no interest in music.  They figure it's just an easy class.  He has to figure out how to excite them about something that they've given no thought to in the past.

And, of course, he faces the temptation of a beautiful student who shows sincere interest.

There's one big twist at home.  I won't spoil it here.

And that's mostly it.  It's his career, and a bit about his effect on the students under him.  A bit about his personal life.

On my brother's Total Movie Value Scale, Pay Per View.  A fairly straightforward feel-good movie about the career of a high school music teacher.

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Last modified: March 28, 2005
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