let me first make one point clear that i am not a very big hollywood movies freak. infact 2-3 months ago i could have counted on fingers, number of hollywood ficks i had seen. but i day while surfing channels i saw julia roberts standing in a class and teaching. now being a teacher has been my childhood dream. i decided to watch the movie for some time. and once i came across the plot i was glued to the tv.
the movie which i was watching was mona lisa smile. it is a 2003 american film. this is a story of katherine ann watson(played by julia roberts). she is a UCLA graduate and comes to wellesly college to teach art history. in this college she finds out that the girls are trained merely to be housewives and mothers. they as individuals had no goals, desires and aims. miss watson, as she is called in the film tries to encourage them to pursue a career. she tries to instill a spirit of change in her students. in doing so she faces a number of obstacles. some caused by a hard headed student betty who is also the daughter of the president of alumini association. some because of her past failed relationships and her modern approach as against the conservative environment of the college. she encourages one of her students joan to pursue a career in law which she was interested in. but joan couldn't pick up the courage to do so and gets married.
but as the session progresses katherine succeeds in changing the perception of her student towards her and also their approach towards life.
well i am not writting this post to discuss the plot of movie. what i want to express is the effcet that this movie has had on me. this movie has a lot many scenes which for me had a special message. like in a scene katherine introduces her students to he work of jason pollock. when the student mutters among themselves as whether they are required to write a paper on it and giggles, katherine replies-
" no. you are not required to write a paper on it. you are not even required to like it. but you are required to consider it."
this simple statements has a huge effect on students who watches the painting with facination and finally a smile emerges on each face. the smile very similar to the one when one gets overwhelmed by watching a sunrise. in this case this was a sunrise for perspectives.
one more statement made by katherine which stirred my soul was when she was asked about her failed relationships and she says-
"not every relationship is meant for marriage."
she was a woman who lived on her own terms, in betty's words as she described her now favourite teacher in her last editorial.
there are mixed reviews of the movie i got from internet. but for me it surely will be one of the best movies i have ever seen. katherine watson for me stands for pride, knowledge, courage and integrity. a person who gives up the job to keep her principles intact. a person whose sole motive is to show her students the right way, the way to live with dignity and cognizance. a moral code which has been mine even before the day i came to know what morals are and will be the same forever. amen.