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Reviews of movies, books, and educational materials.

In Her Own Time

When I watched this movie I found myself so caught up in the practices of the Jewish culture. I found it amazing that all of these practices are still practiced today. Not many cultures still practice their different types of cultural practices. These are things I would quite possibly never be exposed to if it weren’t for watching this movie. I found it interesting that she turned to God in her times of trouble. Many people do that, I know I did.

When she found out that she got cancer in her lungs she began to look for things she could do that involved being with others. In the Jewish religion a sense of community is very important. I also found some of their laws to be quite interesting. There is a law that men and women cannot have sexual relations for the half of the month. Also the women must go through a purification process before sex. It showed this lady going through this purification process, although she was not married. She had to take a bath and dunk herself under so many times. It was interesting, but I also found it somewhat sad because they had to go through all these processes to feel close to God. I feel close to God everyday no matter what, but to each his own.

They also talked about how Husbands and Wives sleep in separate beds every night. They didn’t go into much detail about why they did things like this, so it’s hard to understand the reasoning behind it. They also showed a family in which the mother decided to change her life and follow God, they talked about how this changed everyone in the whole family. One by one they all began to practice the Jewish religion too. That was very interesting to me. This lady then went to a Rabbi to see if he could perform a miracle. We never got to see anything beyond that. It never said what miracle she wanted, I’m assuming she wanted healing and the movie was turned off before we found out if she ever received that healing.

By |July 27th, 2005|Reviews|0 Comments

Movie Review: The Terrible Transformations

This movie was really powerful. As I watched the movie, the things that they were saying seemed so unreal to me. I couldn’t believe that some of the things mentioned actually took place in America. As I watched I felt a certain amount of anger rising inside of me. I never realized that African Americans had once been indentured servants. I always thought that blacks only came over as slaves. This only makes the fact that the slaves were promised freedom, then it was taken away worse.

They told stories of a black man who came as an indentured servant and worked his way up until finally he owned a large plantation. The movie never mentioned that there was any type of opposition to him owning land at all. But later on the movie talked about how once the slave ships started coming over the race relations began to go sour. Blacks were suddenly faced with a fear that they would not be able to ever be free. Soon in 1640 there was the first African who was ordered to be a slave for life for trying to run away from his indentured servitude. The whites that ran with him only had there times increased slightly.

It is interesting that the punishment for one man became the rule for an entire culture. I was truly disturbed as I heard of the amount of beatings and punishments that took place as African American men, women and children were taken from the lands into a strange country to be treated as less than human. I couldn’t believe when they talked about how they branded each of the Africans like cattle. They truly believed that they were not human. I don’t know haw anyone could do that to another human being. I am really glad that I watched this movie because it provided me with information that you would not normally hear in school textbooks.

I would definitely like to some how integrate this into my teaching. I think this movie is so powerful. It really makes you think about the American society as a whole. It makes you look at the amount of corruption that took place in Americas first years and wonder how we have come so far since then. I am so glad that I didn’t live in a time when I would have had to watch people be so severely abused and treated like animals. The thought that human could cause so much physical pain to another human startles me. I wonder if anyone from and organized hate group has ever watched a film like this because I bet it would cause them to think twice about the persecution that they place on African Americans.

By |July 27th, 2005|Reviews|0 Comments

Movie Review: Chicano!

I really enjoyed this movie. I had never realized the amount of pressure that was put onto Mexican Americans. I guess I always sort of looked at Mexican Americans and felt that they had already achieved great amounts of progress. This movie suggested that they had, but it didn’t come until many years later. I thought it was interesting when they talked about the revolts led by different Mexican Americans. I never realized that Mexican Americans were so willing to come together and stand up for what they believe in. I guess I just haven’t seen any of it really in my time. It was nice to see the amount of support that Mexican Americans had for their leaders. They were truly loyal to those who stood up and took charge. This isn’t so true in white cultures. I am really glad that I watched this movie. I didn’t know before that White Americans had treated Mexican Americans so cruelly. I guess I always thought that there was a certain amount of a feeling of racial equality. I guess this has not always been so true in the past. I have much more respect for the Mexican Culture after watching the film. I guess I had always had a certain amount of respect for them, but after watching and realizing the amount of persecution that they endured, it truly made me respect their position today. They have come a long way in the last few years and it is truly a wonderful accomplishment for any group outside of the white race to achieve the social mobility that they have. I really like how in the beginning of the movie the narrator discussed how the term Chicano had been made to sound like a bad thing. It meant poor, or lower class. So the Mexican Americans decided to turn a negative word into a word that they could have pride in. I truly admire that because if they had just kept being asked to not be called Chicano any longer it is likely that they would have not achieved it. But instead they just decided that if people were going to call them that anyway then they should make the best of it. They did a great job because now when someone hears the term Chicano they no longer think of a poor, lower-class Mexican, they think of someone who chooses to stand up for what they believe in. I was quiet interested to hear about the amount of persecution that came from the police as they tried to break up speeches and marches. These police officers used severe violence. A peaceful demonstration would turn into a bloody massacre. Police officers began beating people, even young children and women. I couldn’t hardly believe my ears when I heard it because I never knew that there was so much opposition to Mexican American marches. This movie really opened my eyes to the reality that the Mexican Americans had to endure much persecution.

By |July 10th, 2005|Reviews|0 Comments