Thursday, March 5, 2015

Film as Literature: Good Will Hunting

Select 3 of the prompts below to answer in paragraph form. Be sure to utilize terminology from our glossary and include specific references to elements of the movie. Post your responses as a comment here. 

1. In the film, we encounter a collision of microcultures (a blue-collar brotherhood vs. academic elitism). How does the film negotiate the convergence of these two populations? Is there a pivot or bridge between the two?

2. Typically, protagonists induce a sense of empathy in a reader or viewer. Does Will earn your empathy or do you find it difficult to accept him? Why or why not?

3. The film is laden with local color. Do you feel that this local color is authentic? How is it achieved? If you didn't live in the Boston area, what impression would you arrive at?

4. Watch this video clip, in which Matt Damon challenges the agenda of a trolling journalist. Compare and contrast this real life clip with a scene from Will (the character) in the movie.

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

2. Will does earn my empathy in the story because he has gone through a lot of tough times as he grew up and it shaped him into the character in the story. The tough and troublesome upbringing makes you feel bad about him and it causes you to really emotionally want to relate to will once you here his story. The movie also uses many different camera angles that evoke emotion towards Will, like close ups and zoom-in angles, on his face so you can become feel an emotional connection to him.

3. I do feel like the Local color and atmosphere in the movie is very accurate to the people in Boston. Although, people do end up creating stereotypes about Bostonians we do not all act like that and most people actually do not. The characters in the movie are portrayed well and are probably similar to those from South Boston. The cast helps out in the story because characters in the story are played by Boston actors who are from the area and naturally act like they do in the movie. It helps the story because it makes it seem more realistic and gives a good idea of what people from Boston would act. If I didn’t live in the Boston area my impression would be that they are very close knit as a family, but they also can be overprotective of their friends and family shown by the multiple fight scenes in the movie.

4. Matt Damon plays Will in “Good Will Hunting” and is very similar to himself in person. Matt Damon was able to rip apart the reporter and what they said about teachers and his job, and he felt insulted by what she says and he destroyed her and the other reporter like he did the other characters in the film. Matt Damon is indeed very similar to his character in the film and could be Will Hunting from the film.

Camden Cleathero

Allek Johnson said...

2,3,4

2. Empathy is a hard thing to show in the particular protagonist. If i were in the theripist's place, it would be hard to accept this person. He is just so self - loathing and a smartass, cocky, Bostonian kid. Anytime you try and be serious he either gives you a smirky comment or is just mean for no reason.

3. I don't think it's that authentic in the film, but it does have a retro bostonian feel, from the times i've been into boston. I don't know it that well. Nor have i lived in the area. So my impression from the film, i would first comment on the strong accents, like an altered NY one. And the torn up streets, yet i get a homie feel from it all.

4. Matt Damon does an EXCELLENT job into telling this reporter and camera man off with his oddly impressive vocabulary, it's like he never left his cocky, boston self in Good Will Hunting. He acts just like he would of in it. He babbles a bunch of vocab and facts at them, leaving them dazed and stunned. Hilarious.

Anonymous said...

4. The Difference from Matt Damon and his character he portrays in "Good Will Hunting" are very similar. they are both very intellectual people but at the same time they seem to hide it behind their "cool" appearance. they are also both very kind people who do many things to help and care for people. in conclusion Matt Damon and his character Will both have very similar persona's even though one is fake and one is real.

-Connor Binegar

Anonymous said...

2. In the film "Good will Hunting" I feel that it is not hard to accept Will because he has had a bad past and done some questionable things but he shows that he is not a bad person in many different situations. He also manages to shun his bad memories and end up caring about his future. in conclusion I feel will is not a bad person and is not hard to accept.

-Connor Binegar

Anonymous said...

4.) Both Matt Damon and his character in the movie good will hunting are both very intelligent and are very confrontational. when both are cornered and what they stand for is questioned they become aggressive and confrontational. How they differ one has a terrible accent and they other is matt Damon.
-Arianna Heath

Rachel Brunault said...

1.
I feel the link between the two microcultures of the “academic elites” and the “blue collared brotherhood” of the film lies in presence of one man, Professor Sean Maguire. Sean was a student at the same Ivy League School as the man who took Will Hunting out of jail, Professor Lambeau. Much like Sean’s old college roommate Lambeau, Sean is a very well schooled man with the ability to show the refined and more polished conversations needed in the world of the elites. However, Sean never grew up in such an environment as the one he had his later education in, he was raised in the poor, gritty areas of Southie just like Will. He can relate to Will, understand him more, mimic his city jargon and colorful language but still be able to turn around and communicate Will to Lambeau. Sean is the perfect bridge for them.

2.
I find the protagonist Matt Damon’s character Will Hunting someone I easily can find empathy for. Will grew up an orphan, jumping from foster home to foster home, some even abusing him. Not only this environment as a child but even when he’s grown up he still lives in a rough and not all that wealthy an area. He has been hurt so many times his live that he has built up walls almost, an exterior to shield his vulnerabilities from the world. He pushes people away, he hurts them before they can hurt him because in his experience it’s the only way to survive. There is a scene from the film where Will is talking to his about to be ex-girlfriend Skylar; she says to him she loves him and you can see it in his eyes he wants to say it back, but he doesn't, he says that he doesn't love her. In his mind, if were to admit he was attached to her in any way, that would be no different than knocking down his own citadel. With that vulnerability exposed comes another aspect of he sees the world and that is that the vulnerable will always feel the most pain. Will does not want to break her heart, to hurt her, to leave her, but if he stays he is afraid that she will stop loving him when he still cares for her and it will only be another scar on his heart. To him, the only way to survive life is to be as distant and aggressive as possible, to push everyone as far away as you can. Will sees it that he has no choice to be how he is.

I know Will Huntings, people are afraid to let you in, to see their vulnerabilities, their soft spots. I am one of these people, not for the same reasons exactly, but I am. Will has my empathy; he has my sympathy. I relate and understand him on all levels.

3.
I feel this movie has a lot of local color in it that is rather accurate of Boston, especially in it’s tougher areas. Bostonians, and in particular the Irish populated areas like Southie, are often very frank and aggressive people with harsh, vulgar tongues who love their beer and are incredibly loyal to their sports teams and the people they care about. All of these images are shown throughout the production. I feel that if I were not from Boston and saw this movie, I would kinda be afraid to go there assuming that the whole place pretty much looks like this, that is was not a very nice city in a lot of parts. But also I would be really curious what it would be like to go there and/or meet somebody from Boston.

Anonymous said...

2. Will, as the protagonist, induces a sense of empathy in me as the reader. Will as a character has gone through so much earlier in his life. He grew up as an orphan, and was beat up by his foster father. Will is very conscious of the people and the things going on around him. As the main actor, Will portrays that everything is fine, when in reality he scared to do something that he really has a passion for. The first time that Will had a therapy session with Shawn, Will had such an ambiance to point out all Shawn’s flaws just from looking at a painting he drew. Will wanted to prove the point that he didn’t need anyone directing his life. Throughout the novel, Will and Shawn’s chemistry had developed into something that they each could relate to. Will has such a strong melodrama with Skylar, and he completely shuts his affection towards her down because he doesn’t know what he wants. Towards the end, Will opens up to Shawn in a way that he never thought he would. I think that Will had started off not knowing what to do with his life, and as he is learning the ropes that life has to offer, he encounters people that make him realize what he can do. I can easily accept Will because he has the brains to be great, he just needs a little help getting there.
3. In Good Will Hunting, I feel that the local color is authentic. The town of Boston is zoomed in upon to be a city where most people know each other. As Boston is viewed in the film, it is made to look like a tough place to grow up in, especially for the main character Will. The local color in the film alludes to what Boston was actually like. The atmosphere in the film depicts strong Bostonian accents along with different dialect. The film portrays close-ups of what the bars and houses look like in Boston during the time of the movie production. If I didn’t live in the Boston area I would arrive at a certain impression of reality. I would most likely infer from my setting that Boston has people that can be rough towards each other and some that are genuine. If I were visiting for the first time I would think that Boston is very wealthy because some of the best colleges in the world are in the heart of Boston. The visual effects make Boston a thriving town that values education; and moral values. Each landscape makes Boston its own unique area that is authentic.
4. Matt Damon in the interview is very similar to his character in Good Will Hunting. In the interview, Matt Damon goes off on the interviewer using very intelligent vocabulary just like he would in the movie Good Will Hunting. If somebody would not know that the interview was a separate thing and not even related to his acting in Good Will Hunting, some would assume that he was intelligent all the time. Damon’s aggressive behavior is also very similar to his character in Good Will Hunting. Damon acts the same in the movie Good Will Hunting, and the interview that he is in. His advanced vocabulary like the one that Damon uses in the movie is very similar.
-Gianna Larson

Kaleala Kadish-Ferriter said...

2,3, and 4

2. At first Will pushed me away because his character was rather aggressive, but as the movie progressed and I began to learn about him and his past, I began to understand the way he is. Will earns my empathy because I can understand why he acts. Will pushes everyone away before they can hurt him. He has learned that it’s better to be the one pushing people away than to be pushed away. He builds walls endless around himself that eventually get pushed down by Sean.

3. This film portrays all the golden landmarks of Massachusetts. For example, when Chuckie brings Will coffee it is Dunkin Donuts coffee which is a pretty significant part of life. Will lives in a pretty ghetto part of town where the living situations are quite close and compacted. Will also works as a janitor at M.I.T., which is a great college in Cambridge. If I didn't live in MA i would say that Boston is composed of poor people, Will and his friends, and rich, well off people, portrayed as Skylar and Prof. Gerald Lambeau.

4. Will, as portrayed by Matt Damon, was a defensive boy who jumped at a change to put people in their place and tear them down. In the clip of Matt Damon he is tearing down a reporter and a cameraman who asked him a simple question. Actors are usually supposed to be nice, kind, and courteous, but Matt Damon is not. One wrong word and you’ll get a slap down full off defensive vocabulary and impressive facts from Matt Damon.

Emma Sudduth said...

1. In the film, Good Will Hunting, Will Hunting and Professor Sean Maguire are pivots between the blue-collar brotherhood of South Boston and the academic elitism. Both Will and Sean grew up in South Boston, but through their intelligence they are invited into the elites. The blockbuster focuses on how Will has to experience the disrespect that is given to him when the upper class thought he was a lowly janitor, but as his brilliance is discovered he is wanted by multiple prestigious companies. Will exists in both scenes because he did grow up in the poor part of the city, but his brain capacity allows him to be accepted into the privileged.

2. Although Will in Good Will Hunting was characterized as an uncaring and closed off young man, his background in South Boston makes me emphasize with him. He grew up an orphan in an abusive foster home, so he knew no love from parental figures. This made him feel like people didn’t loved him because something was wrong with him. This fact would make it hard for him to open up because he would be scared they would leave him if they figured out what he was really like. All the offensive and rude comments he makes to the all the characters were really defensive acts so he would not get close to anyone.

3. In Good Will Hunting the film is based in a realistic Boston, Massachusetts atmosphere. The use of the Dunkin Donuts and Peet’s Coffee cups made it feel real because those companies cannot be missed in Massachusetts. Other things that continually show up are famous places in Boston like the Redline and MIT. By using shots that are in common for Bostonians, the scenes feel more natural. The ease with which the story shows Boston without having the name plastered everywhere makes it seem even to those who don’t live in the Boston area as though the actions that occur in the film fit with the setting.

Anonymous said...

2. In the movie Good Will Hunting, the main protagonist Will Hunting is not the easiest person to like. He is a very rude person and his bad attitude is initially hard to like. As the movie progresses, he becomes a more likable character. You feel bad for what he has been through, but at the same time, the things he does creates an unlikable character. An example of this is how he acts toward Sean in the movie. He tries to know everything about Sean and is rude to him and his deceased wife, saying that he married the wrong woman and many other things. Until the very end of the movie are you able to see progress in Will and that is when my opinion of him changed. He was able to move on from his fear of abandonment and follow what he truly wanted to do and live to his full potential.

3. The film Good Will Hunting is full of local Bostonian color. I feel as if this is authentic to the feel of Boston. In Southie, which is the area that most of the characters live, they were able to capture the way the people talk with strong accents and vivid language. If I did not live in the Boston area I would arrive with a slightly negative impression of Boston. This negative impression on the people of Boston is displayed with the multiple fight scenes and the ghetto area that the movie takes place. This is not the whole of Boston because like all cities there is a good area and a bad area.

4. The real life clip of Matt Damon arguing with the news reporter and the movie have their similarities and differences. The best scene to compare this clip to is the scene in the bar towards the beginning of the movie where Will gets into an argument with the blonde haired guy who is acting to be smart to embarrass Chuckie in front of the girls and impress them. Similarities between the two clips is the intellectual words that Matt Damon uses. In the movie he uses knowledge from books that he has read and in the real life clip he uses very large and smart words to argue with the reporter interviewing him. A difference in the two clips is in the movie he is defending is close friend whereas in the interview he is defending teachers and the general population of teachers.

Ryan Wheeler

Colleen Murphy said...

1. In the film Good Will Hunting, the character Will Hunting is part of the blue-collared brotherhood, but his mind is set with the academic elite. Will has belonged with the blue collared brotherhood, but once his brilliant mind is discovered by the academic elite, the two populations converge in a way to allow both these populations to intertwine. Will still is welcome by his brothers, yet is able to change his lifestyle and mindset for the better. This connection is made apparent when Will is able to tell off a snobby, smart college student at the bar. He defends his friend using his intelligence showing that even though he doesn’t appear the brightest person, you should never judge a book by its cover.

2. Throughout Good Will Hunting, the protagonists makes various decisions that can change your view on his character. Initially, I did not empathize for Will. He was a smart adult making dumb decisions. He had the ability to do great things and he knew this, yet did nothing about it. As the film goes on, Will’s character evolves revealing his true feelings. He becomes more aware to what his situation is. Will accepts the fact that he can change his life drastically with one decision. He could get a better life and he knows it. After Will accepts this and does something about it, I then empathize for him. He starts to make the right decisions, but with the wrong attitude. Towards the end of the film, Will’s character is well rounded and on the right path. He knows what he wants and goes for it.

3. The film, Good Will Hunting, is set in Boston. This is made apparent throughout the film in various ways. Little things like Dunkin’ Donuts cups to more obvious things like Boston accents add to the local color. The accents, although sometimes overpowering, make it obvious that the setting is Boston. This creates the authentic color of living in the Boston area. Another thing that helps the film achieve the authentic feel of Boston is through the places they go to. They go to MIT, BHCC, and the Boston Common. These places are hard to miss. They characterize Boston. If i didn’t live in Boston, I might think the accents were crazy. By and large, the film does a good job of portraying the Boston color

Anonymous said...


Allison Brooks

D


2. It’s hard to hate Will. He obviously has his issues like aggression and arrogance but when put into the context of his past it’s easy to understand. I would definitely say Will earned my empathy because as much as I wanted to hate him for all of the rude things he did, I always ended up feeling bad for him. He experienced so many negative things in his life, like being an orphan and not having a real stable job. I would imagine it’s difficult dealing with such traumatic events and if I were in the same situation as him I would probably act the same way.


3. I feel like some of the local color is a bit exaggerated. For example, the accent. I know a lot of people with very thick Boston accents but some of the words said in the movie don’t sound right. Sometimes they don’t pronounce the “r’s” in the middle of words which is kind of bizarre. It could be because the accents can be different in various parts of Boston or it could be that they were trying to exaggerate the local color. They also drink a lot of Dunkin Donuts which is pretty accurate in all of Massachusetts. If i didn’t live near Boston, I would probably think that the characters were very annoying because of the accent. Even as a resident of Massachusetts the accent is a bit annoying so it’s probably worse for someone who isn’t.


4. The clip of Matt Damon standing up to the reporter is eerily simialr to his character in Good Will Hunting. He makes it a point to show the reporter that he knows what he’s talking about and is educated. He refuses to let her make wrongful assumptions about teachers and even attacks the camera man at one point. He is aggressive and passionate when he speaks which is exactly the same as Will in the movie. The only difference I can think of is that Will doesn’t seem like the type of person who would defend a teacher. He seems like someone who would argue with teachers.

Skylar Daley said...

2.) For the most part, Will Hunting does not earn my empathy in the movie. He was born with such an incredible gift, and throughout the movie he seems to think that is okay to just throw it away. There are tons of people who want to help him and provide him with incredible opportunities, but Will is too stubborn to take them. He is rude and disrespectful to those same people. I do not feel any sympathy towards him because if I had been in his position, I would have taken advantage of such a unique and valuable gift.
3.) In my opinion, the local color in the movie is quite authentic. Ben Affleck and Matt Damon are actually true Bostonians, so they were able to pull off Boston accents with ease, and the other non-native actors did a sufficient job as well giving a convincing performance. Many popular , trademark things people of the Boston area can identify with are present. From the Dunkin Donuts coffee cups in peoples’ hands to people gathering in Boston Common, it is apparent that the creators of the movie put a lot of thought and effort into making the location clear to the viewers. They added just enough local flavor into the movie without making it overwhelming.
4.) In the video of Matt Damon confronting a rude journalist, he shows many qualities that are almost identical to that of his character in Good Will Hunting. Just like Will, Matt pulled out many long words and advanced ideas seemingly out of thin air when he felt passionately about something. You would not have expected it to come out of him, which is surprising when it actually does. Something that might be different between the two, though, is that Matt conducts himself in a little bit more of a professional manner, and does not throw curse words left and right and say excessively offensive things. Even years after shooting the movie, the character of Will seems to still live on inside of Matt Damon.

Anonymous said...

2.) Will does earn my sympathy because it is clear he is a good kid who underwent terrible circumstances to put him in the state he is in today. Also the moments that were shown where he simply couldn't show love and compassion to those he wanted to was because of his abandonment issues that made you feel for him more. The movie used a soundtrack to exemplify what emotions you should have at certain times to effect you more so than if there wasn't.

3.)I personally have never been to Boston but from all that I have seen in videos and how others I know who have been explain it to me makes it see like an authentic Boston vibe. The characters became one with the Boston stereo types and the setting they chose for each scene game it even more of a Boston feel.

-Arianna Heath

Amanda Towne said...

2.) In my opinion, Will Hunting earns my sympathy. Sometimes when people have had a hard life or dealt with painful experiences, it causes them to act out in tough situations. Will is an orphan living in foster care and tends to lash out in situations he doesn't want to deal with. He got arrested at the basketball courts and was on the verge of going to jail for starting a fight. Professor Lambeau bailed him out on two conditions, if he helped him solve difficult math problems and if he would seek therapy. Professor Maguire was willing to help him while he was going through a hard time. It was hard for him to accept help because he was afraid to admit the truth and felt he didn't have any problems. I understand if Will has had a hard life and acts out because of it. He might have found it difficult to accept new things and lost his temper easily because he had a lot of built up anger inside. All in all, I would accept Will even at his toughest times.

3.) I feel like the local color is authentic because Boston was portrayed with specific details that represent the city. When Will and Professor Maguire were talking in the park, they were overlooking the swan boats in the lake. That plays a major part in the movie that is a realistic representation of Boston. Similarly, the Boston area is known for Dunkin Donuts as well. In the movie, they show Dunkin Donuts cup and shops around town portraying the Boston scene. The boys live in apartments near M.I.T and attend nearby schools. Personally, I feel like they represented the Boston colors clearly easily showing that they filmed in the Boston area.

4.) In the video in which a reporter offended Matt Damon, he defended himself similarly to what Will Hunting would have done. The reporter mistakenly asked Damon a question that caused him to lash out. In the movie, Will was often defensive and he didn’t let anyone judge him. If that were the case, he would speak up, usually with yelling, to get his point across. Will and Damon are intelligent people who speak high vocabulary in both the movie and the video. Will Hunting is a very similar character to Matt Damon as they are both alike.

Eric Sanford said...

Eric Sanford

1. In Good Will Hunting, the juxtaposition of different subcultures that have developed in the same society is striking, forcing Will to be torn between a blue-collar brotherhood and the academic elite. Born an orphan into squalor, Will has overcome many obstacles, and is an undeniable prodigy, rivaling and surpassing the intelligence of those considered to be at the top of their fields. Despite this spark of brilliance, Will continues to be drawn to a life he is comfortable with, constantly drinking and getting into trouble recklessly along with his friends, unwilling to allow himself to face the extreme change that accepting his intelligence would create. The separate worlds are further represented by Sean and Gerald, who become Will's would-be mentors, in that Sean is not nearly as successful as Gerald, but is content, and helps Will to realize his potential without forcing him to fully accept the world of the academic elite. The arguments between Sean and Gerald are parallel to the personal clash Will is experiencing as he struggles to manage his comfortable blue-collar life, his genius, and his love for Skylar, who he pushes away in an attempt to avoid the emotional pains of a relationship. As Will finally begins to conquer his fears and effectively reach his potential, he becomes a bridge between the two worlds, unable to fully release his roots, but willing to attempt to reach greatness.

2. Will Hunting, the protagonist of the film Good Will Hunting, is a complex and at times frustrating character. He emits an aura of apathy and belligerence to those around him, pushing anyone he cares about away in an effort to protect himself, as well as them. Will is torn between his immense genius and his humble roots, and is obviously terrified of the possibility of drastic change. In an effort to disguise this, he utilizes his intellect in attempts to analyze and bully people around him, usually succeeding, until he meets Sean, his therapist, who makes him realize that his efforts to push people away are the products of inexperience and stubbornness, which greatly hinder his potential for success. As Will continues to struggle to find himself, he gains a great deal of empathy, finally breaking through the toughened exterior he presents to the world. It becomes all the more satisfying to watch as Will comes to terms with who he is, and the fact that he can no longer force those who care about him away. The interior struggle that Will manages to overcome earns him the empathy of the audience.

4. In this instance of life imitating art, Matt Damon reacts in defense of his mother, a teacher, when a reporter makes incendiary comments about her profession. This moment is an uncanny reflection of the scene in Good Will Hunting in which Damon's character Will defends his friend's dignity in a bar through arguing with a faux-intellectual who was attempting to belittle them to impress Skylar. Damon, in this real-life instance, uses a very similar technique to his character, refuting the reporter's claims with a mix of a highly developed vocabulary and vulgarity, leaving the reporter, much like the fictional Harvard attendee, baffled and defeated.

Jillian Blye said...

Jillian Blye

2. Will Hunting puts up a wall in the beginning of the movie, he pushes people away and acts as if he does not care. When going to see a therapist named Sean, he helps him open up and let out the emotion he has kept inside for years. He was an orphan at a young age and it affected him throughout his entire life. Will does earn my empathy because all the tough times he has been through shaped him into the person he was at the end of the movie. Since he went through a lot, the viewers feel his emotion all throughout the movie and some can relate back to him.


3. Good Will Hunting has a lot of local color in it, and shows the rougher sides of the Boston area. The people had thick accents and used aggressive vocabulary. If I was not from the Boston area and didn't know anything about it, I would stereotype Boston. Since only certain parts are shown, I would believe it was all like that. The movie had close ups of the houses and the city, but it does not show what Boston is really like.


4. The interview shows Matt Damon speaking as if he is Will from Good Will Hunting. He uses similar vocabulary and has the same attitude as he did while making the movie. When the interviewer asks him a question he gets very protective of his mother uses high vocabulary to prove his point. He’s hot headed and stands up for what he believes in. The movie portrayed him to be the same way, playing the role may have been easy for him because he just had to act like himself.

Jillian Blye said...

2. Will Hunting puts up a wall in the beginning of the movie, he pushes people away and acts as if he does not care. When going to see a therapist named Sean, he helps him open up and let out the emotion he has kept inside for years. He was an orphan at a young age and it affected him throughout his entire life. Will does earn my empathy because all the tough times he has been through shaped him into the person he was at the end of the movie. Since he went through a lot, the viewers feel his emotion all throughout the movie and some can relate back to him.


3. Good Will Hunting has a lot of local color in it, and shows the rougher sides of the Boston area. The people had thick accents and used aggressive vocabulary. If I was not from the Boston area and didn't know anything about it, I would stereotype Boston. Since only certain parts are shown, I would believe it was all like that. The movie had close ups of the houses and the city, but it does not show what Boston is really like.


4. The interview shows Matt Damon speaking as if he is Will from Good Will Hunting. He uses similar vocabulary and has the same attitude as he did while making the movie. When the interviewer asks him a question he gets very protective of his mother uses high vocabulary to prove his point. He’s hot headed and stands up for what he believes in. The movie portrayed him to be the same way, playing the role may have been easy for him because he just had to act like himself.
Jillian Blye

Jackie Cotter said...

1. Will offers a convergence of the two microcultures. He chooses to spend his free time with the blue-collar brotherhood, and he seems to be dragged into academic elitism by Professor Lambeau in a way to escape jail time. Through Will, Professor Lambeau learns that his microculture isn’t valued or desired by people he may consider being in a lower class. Also through Will, his friends learn that not all people who have received a high education value money and think that they are highly above people who have not. When Will introduces Skylar to his friends, they act obnoxiously, and people who are considered “upper class” may think that Skylar has received a poor education, if any at all, when she is, in fact, a Harvard student.

2. I find that Will did earn my empathy. He was bitter towards certain people, but the movie showed that he had a hard time accepting his rough childhood, and he would take out his anger on anyone that he didn’t know personally and didn’t trust. In the final therapy session, Will breaks down and cried on Professor MaGuire’s shoulder; which indicates that he has gained trust in him, opposed to Professor Lambeau. It is nearly impossible not to emphasize with Will, and feel happy for him in the end when he decides to go to California to get back with Skylar.

4. Matt Damon has a very similar personality to that of his character he played in “Good Will Hunting”. He had no problem mouthing off to a camera man, just like when he had no problem telling a Harvard student to stop harassing his friend to impress a girl at a bar in the movie. In both personas, he has no problem telling people how he really feels and showing his anger. He also quickly defends people who are close to him.

Jackie Cotter

Anonymous said...

1. Will offers a convergence of the two microcultures. He chooses to spend his free time with the blue-collar brotherhood, and he seems to be dragged into academic elitism by Professor Lambeau in a way to escape jail time. Through Will, Professor Lambeau learns that his microculture isn’t valued or desired by people he may consider being in a lower class. Also through Will, his friends learn that not all people who have received a high education value money and think that they are highly above people who have not. When Will introduces Skylar to his friends, they act obnoxiously, and people who are considered “upper class” may think that Skylar has received a poor education, if any at all, when she is, in fact, a Harvard student.

2. I find that Will did earn my empathy. He was bitter towards certain people, but the movie showed that he had a hard time accepting his rough childhood, and he would take out his anger on anyone that he didn’t know personally and didn’t trust. In the final therapy session, Will breaks down and cried on Professor MaGuire’s shoulder; which indicates that he has gained trust in him, opposed to Professor Lambeau. It is nearly impossible not to emphasize with Will, and feel happy for him in the end when he decides to go to California to get back with Skylar.

4. Matt Damon has a very similar personality to that of his character he played in “Good Will Hunting”. He had no problem mouthing off to a camera man, just like when he had no problem telling a Harvard student to stop harassing his friend to impress a girl at a bar in the movie. In both personas, he has no problem telling people how he really feels and showing his anger. He also quickly defends people who are close to him.

Jackie Cotter

Anonymous said...

1. In the film, we encounter a collision of microcultures (a blue-collar brotherhood vs. academic elitism). How does the film negotiate the convergence of these two populations? Is there a pivot or bridge between the two? || The film is interlaced with contrast between the gritty lifestyle of Will and his buddies and the comfy, affluent lifestyle of people like Skylar, Sean, and Gerald Lambeau. The contrast not only comes the rich versus poor, however; Will's friends were content, accepting, and laughing or joking in most scenes, but Sean was mourning his wife, Skylar her grandfather, and Gerald was wasting his time acting dignified and snobby. These contrasts are, for the most part, what caused the most conflict in the film, and put Will Hunting between a rock and a hard place. Will himself acted as the bridge between the microcultures.

2. Typically, protagonists induce a sense of empathy in a reader or viewer. Does Will earn your empathy or do you find it difficult to accept him? Why or why not? || A character like Will Hunting isn't hard to find; handsome guy, cynical and rough around the edges but brilliant, dark past. The movie didn't seem to know whether it wanted Will's portrayal to be more endearing or more solemn and gritty. In the end, however, it's hard not to empathize for Will during the "it's not your fault" scene, and it's hard not to like him, though both those could easily be contributed to Matt Damon's acting abilities.

4. Watch this video clip, in which Matt Damon challenges the agenda of a trolling journalist. Compare and contrast this real life clip with a scene from Will (the character) in the movie. || In this clip, the similarities between Matt Damon and Will Hunting are strong. Damon articulately and only somewhat collectedly takes the reporter down a peg, as Hunting did in the bar scene from early in the movie. The main difference between the bar scene and Damon's response is that while Damon is concise, Hunting goes on and on, trying to make the pretentious jerk feel as inferior as possible.

- Laine Parker

Anonymous said...

1. The film focuses on how smart Will is but how he grew up in South Boston with not a lot of opportunity. He is part of the blue-collared brotherhood but wants to be accepted into the academic elites.

2. Will did earn my empathy because he went through a lot of painful occurrences growing up and it made him to be a very strong person. It made his character in the film. The things he went through make you want to believe in him because of his story.

3. I do feel as though the "local color" plays a role because living in Massachusetts, or Boston especially, people do live/act in these ways. It helps a lot that the actors are also Bostonians or from around the are so they can already act naturally. It helps create a more realistic environment.

4. Hilarious that Matt Damon really tells the reporter off like that. Shows his true Boston attitude in this just like he did in the film. He acts the same way in both.

Ashley Dixon