Dead Poets Society (1989)

2014 #103
Peter Weir | 123 mins | streaming (HD) | 1.85:1 | USA / English | PG / PG

Dead Poets SocietyAt an oppressive private school (is there another kind?), a gaggle of disenchanted students are invigorated by teacher Robin Williams; until his methods, and the independent thought they inspire, attract the ire of parents and faculty.

Here’s a film all children should see, to understand the value of free thought and rejecting the system. Cynics probably find its purity of message, coupled with a tragic ending, to be over-sentimental and twee, but this earnestness is what makes it work.

A few poor choices aside (slow-mo renders a key moment comical; Maurice Jarre’s synth score jars), this is powerful, affecting filmmaking.

5 out of 5

Dead Poets Society is on BBC Two tonight at 11:35pm.

Robin Williams also stars in Good Will Hunting, which I’ll review tomorrow. Both reviews are part of the 100 Films Advent Calendar 2014. Read more here.

In the interests of completing my ever-growing backlog, I decided to post ‘drabble reviews’ of some films. For those unfamiliar with the concept, a drabble is a complete piece of writing exactly 100 words long. You’ve just read one.

2 thoughts on “Dead Poets Society (1989)

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