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Learn to be a Better Writer in Just Two Hours

  • Jun 13, 2001
Rating:
+1
Pros: Performances.

Cons: Plot execution-it's just like Good Will Hunting!

The Bottom Line: Just read the damn opinion.

After the success of Good Will Hunting, everyone knew that the people in Hollywood would try to capitalize on the theme. Well, here's an attempt. Finding Forrester is about a young genius whose talents are realized and then brought out by an older man. It's so similar to Good Will Hunting that they even hired the same director, but the execution of the plot is considerably different.

William Forrester (Sean Connery) is a Pulitzer winning novelist who never gave the world a second book. He lives as a recluse these days, staring out at the world through a pair of binoculars and ordering in his groceries. Among the things he stares at are the basketball players across the street. One day one of the basketball players is dared by his friends to retrieve something from Forrester's apartment. He is Jamal Wallace, and he is a prodigy who hides his talents, which include writing. Forrester scares off Wallace, who leaves in such a hurry that he forgets his backpack. The next day, Forrester gives the bag back. When Wallace goes through his stuff, he sees that the notebooks he writes in have red marks in them, critisizing his writing. Wallace goes back to the apartment with the intent of making peace, and long story short, him and Forrester begin a friendship which rocks the foundation of american literature.

Like I said, it's a lot like Good Will Hunting. But that's not a bad thing, really. After all, Good Will Hunting was a good movie. But there are a few things that could have been improved. For one, there are a few subplots which are underdeveloped. Same thing with a few of the characters. And with movies like this, underdevelopment is a no-no. Other than that, the main plot is engaging. A notable improvment over Good Will Hunting is the language, which was considerably cleaned up. And the casting is incredible: Sean Connery as Forrester, giving his best performance since The Untouchables; F. Murry Abraham plays Jamal's snooty professor, Anna Paquin plays Jamal's friend at his private school, rapper Busta Rhymes plays one of the underdeveloped characters (he's a good actor), and newcomer Rob Brown plays Jamal, and he's better than most newcomers are expected to be.

The one serious problem with Finding Forrester is what I kept mentioning above-it's just not original enough! Think of the parallels: Will hunting-Jamal Wallace, William Forrester-whatever the name of the psychiatrist in Good Will Hunting was, Claire-Ben Affleck's character, both main characters hide thier talents just to be accepted, both are taught to harness their talents by old men.

But the similarities of the plots aren't enough to make me call it a bad movie. Anyone who couldn't stand the consistant swearing in Good Will Hunting will no doubt prefer this (though it does have it's bad language moments). So it's worth a rental. Just don't expect anything new.

Recommended:
Yes

Viewing Format: DVD
Suitability For Children: Suitable for Children Age 9 - 12

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More Finding Forrester reviews
review by . February 26, 2002
Pros: intelligent dialogue, excellent relationship development, Superb performances     Cons: swearing seemed out of place     The Bottom Line: I expected to enjoy this movie. After seeing it, it exceeded our expectations. Not for the ADD or fatalistic crowd, this movie is an intellectual delight     Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie's plot. It is really too bad that our society has become so skeptical. Whenever …
About the reviewer
Nicholas Croston ()
Ranked #17
Hi! I'm here in part to plug my writing and let everyone know that I'm trying to take my work commercial.      Now, what about me? Well, obviously I like to write. I'm … more
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Details

Director: Gus Van Sant
Genre: Drama, Comedy
Release Date: December 20, 2000
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Runtime: 2hrs 13min
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